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Senior Marine Conservation Planner - Flexible in UK

Reference: FEB20248583
Expiry date: 2024-03-17 17:00:00.000
Location: Edinburgh - Flexible in UK
Salary: £36,577.00 - £39,267.00 Per Annum
Benefits: Contributory Pension Scheme, Payment of Professional Subscription Fees, Paid Volunteer Day with charity of your choice, Sabbatical opportunities.
Attachments: CandidateGuidanceNotes2023.pdf


Would you like a planning job that makes a real and tangible difference for nature?  Does a job that combines ensuring that the interests of nature are addressed in the planning process with cutting edge marine policy development appeal to you?  

About the Role

We’re looking for an enthusiastic and motivated individual to join our Edinburgh-based planning team, which forms part of a wider policy and advocacy function, the purpose of which is to influence and shape nature and climate policy, in this case through the planning process but also marine policy development processes, in Scotland and the UK.  RSPB is probably the most active ENGO in this sphere of work - we are at the forefront of marine conservation, being involved in marine spatial planning, offshore wind development, fisheries management, blue carbon and protected areas, focussing on the need to halt biodiversity decline, restore our marine environment and deliver upon our climate aspirations.

Working closely with colleagues across RSPB Scotland, and RSPB UK, you will take the lead in scrutinising and responding to the most significant marine development proposals in Scottish waters, as well as working closely with colleagues dealing with terrestrial developments, and shaping RSPB Scotland’s approach to Biodiversity Enhancement.  You’ll also work hand in hand with colleagues dedicated to shaping marine conservation policy in Scotland and the UK, feeding in, for example, to statutory marine planning processes such as the production of Scotland’s National Marine Plan 2, and to wider policy development in the areas of mitigation and ‘strategic compensation’.

If you’re looking for a job where you can see the results of your own actions and initiative, as well as for opportunities to shape the future, then this is the job for you!    

What we need from you


  • Degree or postgraduate qualification in an environmental or planning subject.
  • Good knowledge, or ability to quickly assimilate knowledge of the planning process and / or other regulatory processes and their relevance to site conservation, e.g. Environmental Impact Assessment, Habitats Regulations Assessment, Strategic Environmental Assessment.
  • Able to analyse complex issues in a fast-paced environment.
  • Good written and verbal communication skills (to, for example, ensure that consultation/casework responses are professional and persuasive, and to engage in debates/discussions in a professional and persuasive manner).
  • Strong time management and organisational skills, and ability to prioritise effectively.
  • Competent use of Microsoft Office.


  • Chartered member of Royal Town Planning Institute (MRTPI) or other equivalent (e.g. CIEEM), or working towards chartered membership, or willing to undertake further education leading to chartered membership.
  • Good knowledge, or ability to quickly assimilate knowledge of environmental issues and policy, ecology and biology of key species and habitats, and their relationship to land use change, and principles of biodiversity enhancement.
  • Able to act independently to generate and lead on policy positions and project development at a senior level of influence.
  • Excellent negotiating and influencing skills (to, for example, advocate RSPB positions to key decision makers and negotiate common positions with partners and/or ‘opposition’).
  • Able to manage projects effectively.
  • Confident and capable of being a public face for the RSPB where required.
  • Professional experience of the Town and Country Planning system, other regulatory system or of working in a relevant policy role.

Additional Information

This is a Permanent Full-Time role for 37.5 hours per week, although other working patterns will be considered.  There will be a need to be present in the RSPB Edinburgh office on a reasonably regular basis to attend meetings in central Scotland and occasional meetings elsewhere in the UK.    

We are looking to conduct interviews for this position on either Monday 25th or Thursday 28th March 2024. For further information, please contact:  

As part of this application process you will be asked to provide a copy of your CV and complete an application form including evidence which shows how you meet the skills, knowledge, and experience listed above.

The RSPB is an equal opportunities employer. This role is covered by the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974.

Before applying for this role, we recommend reading through the candidate guidance notes attached to the top of this advert.

We are committed to developing an inclusive and diverse RSPB, in which everyone feels supported, valued, and able to be their full selves. To achieve our vision of creating a world richer in nature, we need more people, and more diverse people, on nature’s side. People of colour and disabled people are currently underrepresented across the environment, climate, sustainability, and conservation sector. If you identify as a person of colour and/or disabled, we are particularly interested in receiving your application. Contact us to discuss any additional support you may need to complete your application.

We are actively recruiting for this role and reserve the right to close the advert at any time.