REACH GIS Specialist 31 views0 applications 254 views

Job description

GIS Specialist in South Sudan

(Reference: 19/SSD/GISS01)

Background on Impact and REACH

REACH was born in 2010 as a joint initiative of two International NGOs (IMPACT Initiatives and ACTED) and the United Nations Operational Satellite Applications Programme (UNOSAT). REACH’s purpose is to promote and facilitate the development of information products that enhance the humanitarian community’s decision making and planning capacity for emergency, reconstruction and development contexts. REACH facilitates information management for aid actors through three complementary services: (a) need and situation assessments facilitated by REACH teams; (b) situation analysis using satellite imagery; (c) provision of related database and (web)-mapping facilities and expertise.

IMPACT Initiatives is a humanitarian NGO, based in Geneva, Switzerland. The organization manages several initiatives, including the REACH Initiative. The IMPACT team comprises specialists in data collection, management and analysis and GIS. IMPACT was launched at the initiative of ACTED, an international NGO whose headquarter is based in Paris and is present in thirty countries. The two organizations have a strong complementarity formalized in a global partnership, enabling IMPACT to benefit from ACTED’s operational support on its fields of intervention.

We are currently looking for a REACH GIS Specialist to support our REACH team in South Sudan.

Department: REACH

Position: GIS Specialist

Supervisor: IMPACT Country Focal Point

Location: Juba, South Sudan

Starting Date: ASAP

Country profile

IMPACT, through its own activities, or through REACH, has been implementing programming in South Sudan since 2012. Responding to the Sudan Border Crisis, REACH initially engaged through coordinated information management support – in the form of refugee camp mapping and service provision analyses, thematic assessments, and multi-sectoral needs assessments – in Maban County, Upper Nile State and Pariang County, Unity State. IMPACT was engaged by DFID to provide a series of impact evaluations of their BRACE programming across Greater Bahr el Ghazal and Upper Nile States in 2013; a programme with run for two years, included 5 total assessments, and touched a total of more than 20,000 households. Immediately following the conflict of December 2013, REACH expanded its programming to include the IDP response, participating in Initial Rapid Needs Assessments of conflict affected areas, providing mapping and monthly

service provision analyses for major IDP sites around the country, and running large-scale IDP return intentions assessments.

2018 has seen the expansions of both IMPACT and REACH programming to 10 out of 10 states, spanning the refugee, IDP and development responses, and covering diverse activities such as cross-border port monitoring, assessments of hard to reach areas, flood mapping and vulnerability analysis, market monitoring and supply chain analysis, analysis of tensions and conflicts over access to natural resources, and third party monitoring of humanitarian and development programming.


Under the supervision of the IMPACT South Sudan Country Focal Point and of IMPACT’s HQ in Geneva, the GIS Specialist will be responsible for managing all processes and outputs related to REACH GIS, products and data, as well as information management systems, including web applications, in country. He/she will ensure regular communication with REACH assessment teams in country and with IMPACT HQ. He/she directly supervises all GIS staff and contributes to the development and implementation of REACH strategy in South Sudan.

During his/her mission, the GIS Specialist will be hosted by ACTED and will fall under the direct responsibility and management of ACTED’s Country Director and his/her delegates for all Administrative, Security, Logistics and Finance issues. S/he will therefore fully abide to ACTED’s Security, HR, Administration and Logistics rules and regulations.


In coordination with the IMPACT Country Focal Point, the GIS Specialist is responsible for (1) the management of GIS-related functions in the REACH research cycles, (2) for the management of the GIS team, as well as supporting (3) external relations and (4) the development and implementation of REACH strategy in South Sudan. More specifically:

1. Management of GIS functions within Research Cycles

1.1 Assessment Preparation and Planning:

  • In coordination with the assessment manager/focal point(s), ensuring that assessments are planned in line with project and program objectives and with REACH’s research cycle and other relevant guidelines;
  • Identification of available GIS data to inform secondary data review, in coordination with the assessment team;
  • For each assessment, ensure contribution to and review of draft ToRs with a specific focus on the analysis plan, and related mapping, as well as data management plan;
  • In coordination with Assessment team, co-construct qualitative and quantitative data collection tools, ensuring GIS requirements of research cycle/assessment are met;
  • Develop geo-spatial analysis of assessment areas to be used, as relevant, in developing daily assessment plans, field movement plans and accompanying operational maps for field teams;
  • In coordination with relevant assessment officer(s), support construction of quantitative sample;
  • Keep track of progress and delays of all GIS and relevant data- and information-management tasks throughout the research cycle. Ensure that delays or identified problems are reported by writing and orally in a timely manner.

1.2 Data Collection

  • When relevant, ensure that support is provided by the GIS team for the identification and training of enumerators for primary data collection;
  • When relevant, ensure that support is provided by GIS teams in overseeing data collection, in line with agreed ToRs (including their Annexes), including spatial verification and validation as part of daily assessment checks;
  • Ensure that collected data is geo-referenced, enabling the production of maps and related products;
  • In coordination with the assessment team, ensure that all changes in data collection that lead to a modification in the agreed ToRs are documented; and that the IMPACT Country Focal Point and IMPACT HQ are informed and agree on the modifications.

1.3 Data Management & Analysis

  • Ensure that all collected data is stored in line with IMPACT’s Data Management Guidelines, and with the ToRs (data management plan Annex);
  • Facilitate data cleaning and analysis automation process for the ongoing long term projects / assessments. Providing technical guidelines and capacity building support to the team on the automated systems and workflows.
  • Ensure that data is revised and cleaned, and that all revisions are recorded;
  • Ensure spatial analysis conducted on collected data as per ToRs;
  • Ensure that data and its spatial analysis are validated by IMPACT HQ before product drafting stage;
  • Ensure that data and its analysis do not contain personal information and are validated by IMPACT HQ before sharing to external parties;
  • Ensure the quality and accuracy of technical information provided as well as the confidentiality and protection of collected information.
  • Ensure regular update and maintenance of REACH South Sudan Web products

1.4 GIS Products (including maps and web-products)

  • Ensure accurate linkages between spatial databases and assessment data;
  • Ensures that the produced maps meet the requirements of IMPACT and concerned partners;
  • Ensure regular communication maintained with IMPACT HQ on progress and deadlines for GIS products;
  • Ensure the drafting of timely and accurate GIS products, which comply with IMPACT’s guidelines;
  • Review all products before they are sent to IMPACT HQ for validation;
  • Ensure that all GIS products are validated by IMPACT HQ before external release;
  • When relevant, in close coordination with IMPACT HQ, ensure regular maintenance and update of web GIS products;
  • In coordination with the IMPACT Country Focal Point, manage the identification of satellite imagery and analysis needs in country X, and liaise with IMPACT HQ on the procurement of UNOSAT services and satellite imagery.

1.5 Product dissemination and evaluation

  • In coordination with IMPACT’s Country Focal Point, promote the dissemination of GIS products in line with IMPACT Guidelines and Research ToRs;
  • Ensure the strictest confidentiality of data and data processes. He/she will actively take measures to prevent the unauthorized sharing of information and data;
  • In coordination with IMPACT HQ, ensure that GIS products are uploaded in relevant data portals, as specified in Research ToRs;
  • In coordination with IMPACT’s Country Focal Point and with the assessment team, ensure that lessons learned are gathered and documented at the end of each research cycle.

2. Management of GIS Team

  • Conduct regular meeting with all international and senior national GIS Team members to assess progress in all research cycles and to review work plans
  • Bilateral management of international and senior national GIS team members, including (in consultation with IMPACT country focal point) the conduct of appraisals, as well as participation in staff career management;
  • In coordination with Country Focal Point, conduct induction for new staff members, including training in basic GIS, data and IM competencies;
  • Support to the IMPACT Country Focal Point in the development and implementation of capacity training plans for GIS team members;
  • Be available to provide regular support and technical backstopping;
  • When relevant, support Country Focal Point in staff appraisal and recruitment process.

3. External relations

  • Under the coordination of the IMPACT Country Focal Point, ensure that relevant partners are consulted and involved in the preparation of GIS products;
  • In coordination with the IMPACT Country Focal Point, engage in relevant technical fora in country (e.g. IM/GIS working groups);
  • In support of the IMPACT Country Focal Point, engage with other organizations engaged with the maintenance of spatial data in country X, ensuring IMPACT Geodatabases are up-to-date and in line with Common Operational Datasets (CODs) and Fundamental Operational Datasets (FODs)
  • In coordination with the IMPACT Country Focal Point, support the presentation of GIS products to relevant third parties, to enhance their use and impact;
  • Ensure that external communications with technical GIS/IM partners and key stakeholders, including relevant UN agencies, local and national government, and NGOs has been conducted and documented as appropriate;

4. Strategy Development and Implementation. The GIS Specialist will participate and actively contribute to the development of the REACH strategy in South Sudan, in support to the Country Focal Point. In particular s/he will support in identifying and concreticising:

  • GIS gaps in country
  • Synergies with other GIS and IM actors
  • Dissemination strategies to strengthen the impact of our GIS and IM work
  • Support in the preparation and follow up of country level internal strategic workshops and plans
  • Engagement with IMPACT HQ in global level GIS priorities

5. Others

  • Other tasks as requested by supervisors.

Key performance indicators

  • Ensure compliance with relevant GIS guidelines
  • Mapping guidelines are systematically followed, in particular:
  • Map templates consistently used
  • Map validation process respected
  • Ensure adherence to research cycle TOR
  • GIS products support the research as designed and align to the analysis plan envisioned
  • Data is handled according to the arrangements specified in the data management plan
  • Ensure internal communication protocols followed

o Regular communication is maintained with IMPACT HQ on progress and deadlines for GIS products

o Problems related to specific assessments are reported by writing and orally in a timely manner

  • Ensure maps produced and data analysed in a timely and accurate manner
  • Average number of days between end of data collection and internal product validation
  • Number of key automation scripts/apps for data cleaning and analysis process, fast-tracking output production.
  • Total number of maps receiving final validation
  • Human Resource management
  • Retention rate among supervised national and international staff
  • Progression in performance of supervised staff
    6. Confidentiality and Data Protection

The GIS Specialist will maintain the strictest confidentiality on all data collected and related processes. He/she will actively take measures to prevent the unauthorized sharing of any information and data belonging to IMPACT and its partners, or collected during his/her assignment with IMPACT.

Accountability to Communities and Beneficiaries

The staff member is responsible for ensuring that all relations with the communities REACH and partners work are conducted in a respectful and consultative manner. Due attention must be paid to ensuring that communities are adequately consulted and informed about REACH programme objectives, activities, beneficiary selection criteria, and methodologies. This is the responsibility of every REACH staff member.


  • Master degree in GIS or a related discipline (Geography, Geomatics, Environmental Engineering, Environmental Sciences)
  • 2 years of experience in GIS / Database management, preferably in humanitarian context;
  • Previous experience with mobile data collection (ODK, ONA, KOBO);
  • Knowledge of the Adobe Suite, particularly Illustrator and InDesign;
  • Knowledge of remote sensing analysis a plus
  • Experience analyzing complex data with R or Python a plus
  • Excellent team management skills;
  • Ability to operate in a cross-cultural environment requiring flexibility;
  • Familiarity with the aid system, and understanding of donor and governmental requirements;
  • Prior knowledge of the region an asset;
  • Fluency in English required;
  • Ability to operate Microsoft Word, Excel and Project Management Software;


  • Salary defined by the IMPACT salary grid; educational level, expertise, hardship, security, and performance are considered for pay bonus
  • Additional monthly living allowance
  • Free food and lodging provided at the organisation’s guesthouse/or housing allowance (depending on contract length and country of assignment)
  • Transportation costs covered, including additional return ticket + luggage allowance
  • Provision of medical, life, and repatriation insurance + retirement package

More Information

  • Job City Juba

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