Transport Specialist

Website The World Bank

Established in 1944, the WBG is one of the world’s largest sources of funding and knowledge for development solutions. In fiscal year 2017, the World Bank Group committed more than $61 billion in loans, grants, equity investments, and guarantees to its members and private businesses. Overall, the Board approved $42.1 billion in financial assistance in fiscal 2017 through 383 operations, comprising $22.6 billion in IBRD lending and $19.5 billion in IDA support.

Background / General Description

Established in 1944, the WBG is one of the world’s largest sources of funding and knowledge for development solutions. In fiscal year 2017, the World Bank Group committed more than $61 billion in loans, grants, equity investments, and guarantees to its members and private businesses. Overall, the Board approved $42.1 billion in financial assistance in fiscal 2017 through 383 operations, comprising $22.6 billion in IBRD lending and $19.5 billion in IDA support.

The institution is governed by 189 member countries and delivers services out of 120 offices with more than 10,000 staff located globally. The WBG consists of five specialized institutions: the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD), the International Development Association (IDA), the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA), and the International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID). The World Bank is organized into six client-facing Regional Vice-Presidencies, several corporate functions, and fourteen Global Practices (GPs) as well as five Global Themes to bring best-in-class knowledge and solutions to regional and country clients.

The Transport and Digital Development Global Practice

Virtual and physical connectivity is a critical factor for competitiveness, economic growth and inclusion. Yet, a third of the world’s population lacks access to an all-weather road, two-thirds of people live more than one hour away from a large city, and 4 billion people lack access to the internet. The World Bank Group is the largest provider of development finance for transport and digital development (DD) globally, with an active portfolio of 205 projects amounting to over $39 billion (as of January 2018). More than three quarters of World Bank projects include a DD-related component, and DD-specific projects account for $1.2 billion of the Bank’s portfolio.

The Transport and Digital Development Global Practice (TDD GP) seeks to connect people, goods and services to jobs, schools, hospitals, local, regional and international markets, using faster, cheaper, safer and more efficient solutions, while keeping traffic fatalities, congestion, greenhouse gas emissions, and local air pollution in check. It responds to the needs of developing countries and transition economies for modern and reliable transport and digital development solutions. These needs are growing exponentially under the combined effect of globalization, population growth, rapid urbanization, economic development, and technological progress—making transport and digital development a cornerstone of the global development agenda.

To serve our clients, the TDD GP offers comprehensive financial and technical assistance solutions. This includes the entire range of financial instruments (loans, zero to low-interest credits, grants, and guarantees), the facilitation of financing through trust fund partnerships with bilateral and multilateral donors, reimbursable advisory services, and comprehensive knowledge offerings. TDD GP manages an active World Bank transport portfolio of about $41.5 billion and DD portfolio of about $1.5 billion, making the WB the largest provider of development finance for transport globally. In addition, TDD GP delivers annually about an additional $4.5 billion of new operations and about 200 analytical and advisory tasks in support of our clients.

The Practice is led by a Senior Director and two Directors, supported by nine Regional Practice Managers (PMs) for the delivery of transport operations and analytical and advisory work, two PMs in charge of DD operations, one PM in charge of knowledge and operational support, one Lead Economist, and five Global Solutions Group Leaders managing knowledge offerings in areas such as development corridors and regional integration, road asset management and rural accessibility, road safety, urban mobility, and broadband access for all. Communities of practice lead the agenda on other cross-cutting topics including digital platforms and solutions; railway development; air transport; fragility, conflict and violence; green transport; gender; economics; leveraging private sector financing; transit-oriented development; and environmental, social, health and safety standards. To execute our work program, TDD GP has established important partnerships inside and outside the WBG, including with other international organizations, the private sector, and civil society.

The TDD GP mission in the Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) region is to reduce poverty and promote economic growth in the region through supporting the development of reliable, efficient, cost-effective, and safe transport infrastructure and services, which are environmentally and socially responsive. The Africa Unit of the TDD GP works to accomplish this by helping countries in SSA to formulate policies, strengthen regulations and institutions, and prioritize investments in the sector to support sustainable economic and social developments in SSA. TDD GP works in close partnership with the African Development Bank, the European Union, and many other donors in SSA countries (JICA, DFID, CFD, OPEC funds, India and China), both in financing operations and in policy dialogue and analytical and advisory tasks.

The Transport Unit in the Africa region has a rapidly growing portfolio of about 45 projects under implementation or preparation, with an aggregate value of over US$ 7.5 billion. This portfolio is increasing by 5-10 projects per year, with a slightly smaller number closing over the same period. The recent record replenishment of IDA18, together with the greater focus on fragile states, gender equality, transformational projects, greater private sector participation, and climate change, is likely to lead to a further increase in both the diversity and scale of the portfolio.

The East Africa Transport unit is seeking to recruit a Transport Specialist based in Addis Abeba, Ethiopia, reporting to the East Africa Transport Practice Manager based in Washington DC. The selected specialist will work primarily on transport in Ethiopia where the World Bank currently has an extensive transport portfolio of lending and advisory and analytical (ASA) services including federal roads, expressways, corridor development, rural roads, railways, impact evaluation and trade facilitation and logistics. He/she will be responsible for the management, or contributing to the management, of a selected number of transport projects and advisory services and analytics (ASA) and contributions to the broader transport portfolio of World Bank projects and initiatives in the East Africa Unit, with a primary focus on Ethiopia. More generally, he/she will contribute to efforts in knowledge sharing and exchanges to ensure global best practices and lessons learned in the transport sector are taken into account in the initiatives and projects he/she will be managing or contributing to.


Note: If the selected candidate is a current Bank Group staff member with a Regular or Open-Ended appointment, s/he will retain his/her Regular or Open-Ended appointment. All others will be offered a 2 year term appointment.

The position requires a candidate with expertise and practical experience in highway planning, design, procurement, construction supervision, contract management, road asset management techniques and road safety combined with an appreciation and awareness of overall transport sector planning and policy issues and the challenges of working in low income countries. The position further requires candidates with knowledge of the key cross-cutting issues in the transport sector, including gender, social and environmental impacts and safeguard standards, health and safety, community engagement, institutional/governance frameworks and climate change considerations.

The specific duties will encompass contributions to project preparation and supervision, and to analytical studies consistent with the Bank’s operational policies and sector strategies, namely:

• Contribute, under the supervision of senior staff, to the preparation and supervision of transport projects covering the core elements of planning, engineering design, procurement, construction, contract management, maintenance, and operations, whilst giving appropriate consideration to safeguards and other cross-cutting issues. The focus of these activities will be primarily on the Bank’s transport portfolio in Ethiopia;

• Contribute to or support analytical studies (ASA activities), particularly on issues related to the provision of transport infrastructure and services, financing options, asset maintenance and operations, climate resilience, gender, impact evaluation, and general best practices in the investment, management and delivery of infrastructure and services.

• Provide support and guidance to teams in designing and advancing sector policy and institutional reforms and capacity building programs, seeking to develop capacity in the pertinent implementing entities to plan, develop, and manage transport projects under their responsibility. Pay appropriate attention to the cross-cutting issues of, inter alia, social and environmental impacts, gender equality, health and safety, and climate change.

• Identify opportunities for the participation of the private sector in the financing and delivery of road infrastructure and transport services.

• Participate in cross-sectoral teams responsible for preparation of policy notes, Country Partnership Strategies, public expenditures reviews, sectoral studies, and research and policy development activities on the topics/sections pertaining to transport, urban development, poverty reduction, environmental management, agriculture and trade and

• Support the Bank-wide professional community of staff engaged in the transport practice by participating in a selected number of thematic technical groups (Global Solutions Groups or Communities of Practice) and participating in drafting of technical notes in collaboration with other Global practices in order to enhance the creation and dissemination of new knowledge, and expanding the existing knowledge base; and

• Stay abreast of recent developments in the transport sector world-wide, and on cross-cutting issues, in relation to the topics of specialization for this position; identifying knowledge gaps and disseminating relevant knowledge to clients.

In carrying out those duties, the appointee will work effectively with the transport teams in Ethiopia and the Africa transport practices, and more generally with all staff working in the Transport and Digital Development Global Practice, and also with staff from other global practices working in Ethiopia and the East Africa CMUs; and ensure appropriate collaboration and partnership between Government, the World Bank, and other donors involved in the transport sector.

Candidates for the position will be selected based on the following criteria:

• Master’s degree or higher, in transport engineering /transport planning/transport economics/ or related disciplines;

• Minimum 8 years proven practical experience in the transport sector on the management of transport infrastructure projects, working for a government transport authority, contractor, supervision consultant, or development institution which includes: (a) road design; (b) civil works contract management, execution or supervision; (c) procurement of, or bidding for, civil works and consultancy contracts; (d) community-based, labor intensive mechanisms for road maintenance; and (e) economic, social, and environmental impacts of transport investments;

• Solid knowledge of: (a) road and other transport infrastructure, (b) policy, institutional and financing aspects of road sector agencies, (c) asset management and maintenance methods and issues, and (d) planning and programming of capital and maintenance works;

• Demonstrated practical experience in the preparation or critical review of bidding documents, terms of reference, procurement evaluation reports, design reports, and analytical studies, and the ability to write clear and concise reports;

• Knowledge of key cross-cutting issues that impinge on the performance of the transport sector and on which the development of transport sector infrastructure and services needs to create positive effect, including environmental and social impacts, land acquisition and resettlement, gender equality, poverty reduction, HIV/AIDS, road safety, and climate change;

• High degree of dynamism and self-motivation, as well as the ability to work with minimal supervision to ensure the timely completion of tasks under pressure, and within teams;

• Experience of working on programs financed by the World Bank or other development partners, multilateral or bilateral;

• Familiarity with the challenges facing the road sector in Sub-Saharan Africa, particularly in countries with mountainous terrain, would be an advantage;

• Knowledge of design and build, output-based or performance-based contracting formats would be an advantage;

• Excellent written and communications skills in English. A working knowledge at least one other of the Bank’s official languages, such as French or Spanish, would be a plus.


• Deliver Results for Clients – Proactively addresses clients’ stated and unstated needs.

• Teamwork (Collaboration) and Inclusion – Collaborates with other team members and contributes productively to the team’s work and output, demonstrating respect for different points of view.

• Drive for Results – Takes personal ownership and accountability to meet deadlines and achieve agreed-upon results, and has the personal organization to do so.

• Professional Maturity – Understands others and the reasons for their behavior. Takes the time to clarifying others’ points of view so that progress can be made particularly in situations of stress or conflict. Is never condescending.

• Create, Apply and Share Knowledge – Applies knowledge from across WBG to strengthen solutions for internal and/or external clients.
TDD GP Specific Competencies

• General Transport Engineering and Planning Knowledge – Possesses technical knowledge in the road and urban transport fields and ability to apply this knowledge for the practical benefit of clients.

• Operational Project Management – demonstrates knowledge and understanding of project management tools and methodologies, as well as of Bank instruments and processes related to project preparation & implementation, resource management, and stakeholder communications.

• Client Orientation – Maintains client relationships in the face of conflicting demands or directions and provides evidence-based advice and solutions based on sound diagnosis and knowledge.

• Integrative Skills – Understands relevant cross-sectoral areas, how they are interrelated; able to undertake cross-sectoral work in lending and non-lending operations.

• Transport Policy, Strategy, and Institutions, understanding of policies, strategies, institutions, and regulations that affect both passenger transport and freight logistics.

• Transport Systems and Technologies – Extensive experience with interurban and urban transport systems and technologies, with ability to apply knowledge to policy-related decisions and advice.

The World Bank Group is committed to achieving diversity in terms of gender, nationality, culture and educational background. Individuals with disabilities are equally encouraged to apply. All applications will be treated in the strictest confidence.

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