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Vice President, Asia Sustainable Finance

Title: Vice President, Asia Sustainable Finance
Reports to: Head, Asia Sustainable Finance

About WWF-Singapore
World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) is one of the world’s largest and most respected independent conservation organisations. WWF’s mission is to stop the degradation of the earth’s natural environment and to build a future in which humans live in harmony with nature. As one of WWF’s international hubs, WWF-Singapore supports a global network spanning over 100 countries. WWF Singapore works closely with local stakeholders towards a greener and more sustainable Singapore and the region around us. We work to address key conservation areas, such as climate change, sustainable finance, deforestation, illegal wildlife trade, marine conservation, and sustainable production and consumption, through collaboration, education and outreach efforts involving the community, businesses, and governments. For more information, please visit wwf.sg.

Mission of the WWF Asia Sustainable Finance Team:
The World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) is one of the world’s largest and most experienced conservation organisations with a global network of 6000 experts working across the areas most critical to global sustainable development, including food systems, climate and energy, and freshwater, forests and oceans, active in more than 100 countries. 

Positioned at the cutting-edge of sustainable finance internationally, our global sustainable finance team of 80 experts - including 30 in Asia - is dedicated to supporting the finance sector to transition to sustainable and resilient economy via working key finance sector players including banks, investors, regulators, and stock exchanges, across six focus areas:

Regulations and Guidelines: We provide recommendations and facilitate dialogue between regulatory authorities and financial institutions (FIs) to issue harmonised regulations and guidelines that raise the bar for sustainable finance at the national and regional level.
Standards: We help FIs understand what makes certain standards and certification schemes credible to help them ensure that their due diligence and verification processes assure robust sustainability practices.
Capacity Building: We empower FIs through capacity building on environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues through industry-wide workshops and bilateral training sessions. Our training covers a range of sectors and thematic focus areas and helps FIs to better assess and price risk, value companies, and develop new products.
Research & Tools: We conduct research, develop best practice guides, and benchmark FIs’ progress on ESG integration to ensure timely progress towards a resilient and sustainable financial system. We also help FIs to understand and implement cutting-edge tools so they can better understand, measure, and manage evolving ESG risks and opportunities.
Engagement: We help investors exert their influence and facilitate large scale, meaningful change by providing research and analysis that supports their engagement with portfolio companies over key ESG issues.
Green Financial Solutions: We work with FIs to support the development of innovative green financial solutions based on science-based criteria that create measurable environmental and social impacts alongside competitive financial returns.

In Asia, we work across seven (6) ASEAN countries - Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam – as well as in Japan, South Korea and India. 

In this role, the Vice President will have a specific focus on strategy development and stakeholder engagement in major Asian financial centres. He/she will also oversee the sustainable banking assessment (SUSBA) analysis and collaborate with the regulation, investment and technical content development teams to amplify the banking team’s work.

Major Duties and Responsibilities:

Stakeholder engagement and relationship management (internal and external)
  • Seek out, establish and nurture strategic relationships with senior representatives of key finance sector stakeholders in the region and where relevant, globally, to secure future opportunities for collaboration and capacity building
  • Understand the varying interests and priorities of different finance sector stakeholders, including banks, stock exchanges, regulators, investors (asset owners, asset managers), government ministries, etc. and adjust engagement strategy accordingly to maximise effectiveness
  • Where beneficial, forge internal and external partnerships and develop platforms that contribute to the goals of WWF’s Global Finance Practice
  • Work closely with other WWF national offices in the region to 1) deliver guidance on and co-execute country-specific financial sector engagement strategies and 2) ensure that Finance practice activities contribute to other WWF goals and strategies
  • Establish own reputation as an expert and WWF as a leading organisation in sustainable finance in coverage countries
  • Influence and foster the development of the finance sector’s strategies, policies and/or regulations (in collaboration with the regulations team) on sustainable finance
  • Identify and create opportunities for WWF to work with key banks, investors, and industry associations to develop their responsible lending strategies, policies, ESG risk assessment tools, and appropriate monitoring and reporting frameworks (e.g. ISSB, climate risk assessment and alignment, geospatial tools, natural capital impact reporting, etc.)
  • In coordination with the regulations team, advocate for the issuance of sustainable finance guidelines and regulations with regulators and policymakers; directly support their development by providing input and recommendations to ensure their harmonisation across the region and consistency with international best practice and standards (e.g. TCFD, TNFD, NGFS, EU regulation, etc.)

ESG research and tools
  • Research and understand the risk transmission channels between ESG issues, business and financial performance and socio-economic development
  • Lead and manage research on topics including analysis of financial institutions’ performance on ESG integration/risk management and corporate sustainability disclosure and performance; based on findings, develop recommendations for finance sector and other relevant stakeholders
  • Author reports and develop tools to support capacity building, policy development and investor collective engagement

  • Represent WWF perspectives, present WWF research and tools, and demonstrate thought leadership on sustainable finance at international conferences and other events
  • Develop strategies and manage processes for communicating research findings and WWF positions to finance sector stakeholders through multiple channels, e.g. press releases for mainstream/trade media, op-eds/blogs, interviews, social media, etc.
  • Develop strategy for and oversee communications with other WWF national offices and other relevant internal stakeholders to identify and address potential conflicts in objectives, interests

Technical capacity building
  • Leverage deep technical expertise to oversee content development and organise and conduct capacity building workshops, webinars and other events for finance sector stakeholders on sustainable finance and ESG issues/trends
  • Work with WWF food systems, climate and energy, and freshwater, forests and oceans experts to distil insights and knowledge into guidance and recommendations for the finance sector
  • Serve as a sustainable finance expert within the WWF network; build capacity of wider WWF network on sustainable finance and ensure understanding of its contribution to their respective interests and priorities

Developing green and blue financial solutions
  • Develop and structure innovative financial solutions to mobilise additional capital to protect and restore nature and communities
  • Collaborate with financial institutions to pilot, implement and measure the impacts of green financial solutions

Internal strategy development, team management, fundraising, budgeting, and reporting
  • Stay on top of global developments in sustainable finance, assess effectiveness and relevance of the sustainable banking team’s long term strategy, and propose new strategic activities and product innovations (i.e. ideas for new research, tools, green financial solutions)
  • Conceptualize and lead the writing of funding proposals that align WWF strategy and priorities with those of major donors to secure long-term funding for both the Singapore sustainable finance team and regional offices
  • Conduct monitoring, evaluating, budgeting and reporting of project performance against planned objectives and deliverables and milestones

Required Qualifications 
  • Relevant educational qualifications, Master’s Degree preferred, in relevant field, including economics, finance, public policy, or environmental sciences
  • Minimum 12 years working experience in the field(s) of sustainable development/finance, corporate sustainability, climate/environmental policy, consulting, banking/asset management
Required Skills and Competencies
  • Strong passion and interest in sustainability and sustainable finance
  • Able to prioritise, work in a dynamic environment and operate under tight deadlines
  • Ability to work independently and proactively
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills; business proficiency in Indonesian, Japanese, Korean, Mandarin an asset
  • Positive mentality and can-do attitude
  • Team player and desire to value add to the organisation
  • Adheres to WWF’s values
  • Must be able to travel internationally (up to 15%)

Working Relationships:
Internal - Relevant departments within the WWF network
External – With financial institutions, regulators, stock exchanges, sustainable finance platforms and consultants

 How to apply
Interested candidates should email a CV and a cover letter to the HR Department (Email: hr@wwf.sg). Applications without a cover letter will not be considered.
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Location: Singapore, Singapore, Singapore
Company: WWF-Singapore

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