USAID Mekong Safeguards Project

Chief of Party (COP) Position Description

The Asia Foundation (TAF) is a non-profit international development organization committed to improving lives across a dynamic and developing Asia. TAF seeks an experienced Chief of Party (COP) for the Mekong Safeguards Project funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). The program focuses on a range of issues including environmental, social, and governance standards, environmental protection, and infrastructure development in the Mekong region. Program activities will be based in China, with related activities in Cambodia, Laos, Thailand, and Vietnam.

The COP’s responsibilities include providing overall vision, leadership, and guidance for the project. Based in Beijing, the COP must have a proven experience managing multi-country environmental governance, public sector, and private sector-related governance reform. The focus of the program is on promoting environmental and social safeguards on infrastructure development, financing, and regulations. The ideal candidate will have considerable experience and networks in China and/or the Mekong region. Experience implementing complex and multifaceted projects is required, with knowledge of or experience in adaptive management approaches a strong plus. The COP is expected to have the strategic vision, leadership qualities, depth and breadth of technical expertise and experience, a solid professional reputation, management experience, interpersonal skills, and written and oral presentation skills to fulfill the diverse technical and managerial requirements of the program. S/he will have exceptional communication and collaboration skills and a proven track record of working effectively with diverse groups of senior level government counterparts, business leaders, multilateral development banks, regulators, financial institutions, developers, think tanks, and civil society organizations. Given the complexity and scope of this project, it is critical that the COP exhibit effective management of project consortium, personnel management, workplans, and monitoring and evaluation.


  • Serve as the primary point of contact with USAID for procedural and substantive matters, and be responsible for quality control of the technical aspects of performance, procurement, personnel, reporting, and other management-related requirements of the cooperative agreement;
  • Provide technical leadership for program activities including conceptualizing, designing, implementing and monitoring innovative, cutting-edge programming activities;
  • Build and manage relationships with USG and USAID counterparts in Bangkok, including meeting and consulting regularly with USAID regarding the program’s performance and direction;
  • Ensure efficient management and coordination of multiple consortium partners across several countries;
  • Supervise a team of professionals and experts across various technical and functional areas.


  • Relevant degree in international development, environment/social science, public policy, or a related field of study;
  • At least eight years of senior managerial-level experience in China and/or the Mekong region;
  • Proven track record managing multi-country and high-profile projects;
  • Demonstrated leadership capabilities in high-level strategic visioning, and experience working effectively with senior government officials/agencies, government and private sector leaders, USAID, Department of State, and other development partners and donors, multilateral development banks, regional platforms, regulators, financial institutions, developers, and civil society in the Mekong region.
  • Strong understanding of infrastructure development in the Mekong region and the Mekong ecosystem, climate change, development finance, and the BRI;
  • Demonstrated leadership/managerial, technical, and administrative skills in project management, particularly for USAID projects of similar size and scope, including managing budgets and personnel, motivating and supervising team efforts, and achieving success in complex activities, preferably in China or the Mekong region;
  • Proven effectiveness in relationships with counterparts, partners, and clients, and strong interpersonal and organizational skills;
  • Solid understanding of the value systems, traditions, and social norms and practices of different cultures, particularly in China and the Mekong region, strongly preferred; and
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills in English. Excellent oral and written communication skills in Chinese a strong plus.

Interested applicants should submit a cover letter and CV no later than July 12, 2019 to [email protected] with the position listed in the subject line. The Asia Foundation is an equal opportunity employer. No phone calls, please.