Fisheries Scientist (Marine Spatial Planning), Nouméa, New Caledonia At Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC)


The Pacific Community (SPC) is the principal scientific and technical organisation in the Pacific region, supporting development since 1947. We are an international development organisation owned and governed by our 27 country and territory members. In pursuit of sustainable development to benefit Pacific people, our unique organisation works across more than 25 sectors. We are known for our knowledge and innovation in such areas as fisheries science, public health surveillance, geoscience, and conservation of plant genetic resources for food and agriculture.

The Fisheries, Aquaculture and Marine Ecosystems (FAME) Division includes the Oceanic Fisheries Programme (OFP) and Coastal Fisheries Programme (CFP). The goal of the OFP is to ensure fisheries that exploit the region’s resources of tuna, billfish and related species are managed for economic and ecological sustainability using the best available scientific information. In pursuing this goal, the OFP provides scientific support for the management of fisheries for tuna and associated species, with a strong focus on stock assessment and modelling, fisheries and ecosystem monitoring and analysis and data management. The OFP works closely with member countries and territories, the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission, the Forum Fisheries Agency, the Parties to the Nauru Agreement and other regional and sub-regional entities.

The role – the Fisheries Scientist (Marine Spatial Planning) will provide scientific advice on the status of tuna and other oceanic stocks to SPC members; and provide training to national counterparts in interpretation and use of stock assessment information. She/he will support member national marine spatial planning activities with a focus on work relevant to the US-funded Climate Resilient Marine Spatial Planning for the Pacific Islands project.

The key responsibilities of the role include the following: National level advice

  •  Identifying the analyses required to support key fisheries management decisions at the national level
  •  Analysing fisheries and environmental data to deliver country-specific scientific advice through reports and presentations that support fisheries management decision making at a national level.
  •  Providing authoritative scientific advice on fisheries and the status of oceanic fisheries resources as required at in-country Tuna Management Planning consultations and stakeholder workshops.
  •  Provide information and advice on oceanic fisheries to inform national marine spatial planning (MSP) activities.
  •  Work with other SPC divisions, CROP agencies and national counterparts to support national marine spatial planning.
  •  Contribute to regional events on marine spatial planning and ocean management by presenting analyses and support provided to member countries.
  •  Responding to ad-hoc requests from SPC member countries and territories.
  •  Working collaboratively with FFA staff in the delivery of joint in-country workshops.

Capacity building of SPC members

  •  Develops and delivers capacity building workshops to enhance SPC members understanding and use of stock assessment information and understanding MSP tools
  •  Develops and delivers in country one-to-two week targeted courses on fisheries stock assessment and harvest strategy.
  •  Organises and hosts attachments of SPC member fishery officers to SPC Headquarters to participate in performing analyses and drafting reports of national and sub-regional relevance, including provision of skills training to enhance capacity to interpret and analyse national fisheries data and information in light of regional management approaches.
  •  Provides national level support at regional scientific meetings to ensure understanding and uptake of the scientific information presented.

For a more detailed account of the key responsibilities, please refer to the online job description.

Key selection criteria


  •  Masters qualification, in fisheries science, population biology, stock assessment modelling, natural resource management, or a related discipline.

Technical expertise

  •  At least 5 years’ experience in the development of scientific advice for fisheries management.
  •  Thorough knowledge of fisheries stock assessment principles and techniques
  •  Skills in data analysis, statistics and modelling of fisheries data in R
  •  Able to develop solutions to deliver tangible results for SPC, its members and other stakeholders.
  •  Able to generate new ideas/opportunities, develop policy advice based on sound analysis, and support original solutions.
  •  Excellent verbal and written presentation and communications skills in English, both at a technical level and in the preparation of information for general public.
  •  Proven ability to meet project deadlines, often under difficult circumstances.
  •  Proven ability to work as part of an interdisciplinary and/or multicultural team.
  •  Excellent interpersonal skills that contribute to building productive relationships and partnerships across SPC and with stakeholders

Language skills

  •  Well developed technical writing competencies in English.
  •  Excellent oral communication in skills in English.

Interpersonal skills and cultural awareness

  •  Proven ability to supervise the tasks of an inter-disciplinary and/or multi-cultural team.
  •  Knowledge of Pacific Island countries and territories is an advantage.

Salary, terms and conditions

Contract Duration – This vacant position is budgeted for 3 years and is subject to renewal depending on funding and performance.

Remuneration – the Fisheries Scientist (Marine Spatial Planning) is a band 11 position in SPC’s 2023 salary scale, with a starting salary range of SDR (special drawing rights) 4,206-5,161 per month, which converts to approximately XPF 637,132-781,844 (USD 5,636-6,916; EUR 5,339-6,552). An offer of appointment for an initial contract will normally be made in the lower half of this range, with due consideration being given to experience and qualifications. Progression within the salary scale is based on annual performance reviews. SPC salaries are not presently subject to income tax in New Caledonia.

Benefits for international staff employees based in New Caledonia – SPC provides subsidised housing in Noumea. Establishment and repatriation grant, removal expenses, airfares, home leave travel, health and life and disability insurances and education allowances are available for eligible employees and their eligible dependents. Employees are entitled to 25 working days of annual leave per annum and other types of leave, and access to SPC’s Provident Fund (contributing 8 % of salary, to which SPC adds a matching contribution).

Languages – SPC’s working languages are English and French.

Recruitment principles – SPC’s recruitment is based on merit and fairness, and candidates are competing in a selection process that is fair, transparent and non-discriminatory. SPC is an equal-opportunity employer, and is committed to cultural and gender diversity, including bilinguism, and will seek to attract and appoint candidates who respect these values. Due attention is given to gender equity and the maintenance of strong representation from Pacific Island professionals. If two interviewed candidates are ranked equal by the selection panel, preference will begiven to the Pacific Islander. Applicants will be assured of complete confidentiality in line with SPC’s private policy.

Application procedure

Closing date: 4 June 2023 – 11:00 pm (Noumea time)

Job Reference: SH000319

Applicants must apply online at

Hard copies of applications will not be accepted.

For your application to be considered, you must provide us with:

  •  an updated resume with contact details for three professional referees
  •  a cover letter detailing your skills, experience and interest in this position
  •  responses to all screening questions

Your application will be considered incomplete and will not be reviewed at shortlisting stage if all the above documents are not provided. Applicants should not attach copies of qualifications or letters of reference.

Please ensure your documents are in Microsoft Word or Adobe PDF format.

SPC does not charge a fee to consider your application and will never ask for your banking or financial information during the recruitment process.

Screening questions (maximum of 2.000 characters per question):

  •  Describe the key issues you feel fishery managers must understand when reviewing scientific advice on stock status.
  •  Provide an example of a statistical or modelling analysis of fisheries data you have performed, and why the results were useful.
  •  Discuss how projected impacts of Climate Change should be considered when implementing a Marine Spatial Planning approach to the management of marine resources.

Position Description

Type: Contract – International

Category: Fisheries – Aquaculture and Marine Ecosystems

Reference ID: SH000319

Date Posted: 04/05/2023



Search Jobs By Country

List of Countries

February 2024