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11 Jan 2021

Associate Humanitarian Affairs Officer

Job Description

In December 1991, the General Assembly adopted Resolution 46/182, designed to strengthen the United Nation’s response to both complex emergencies and natural disasters. In addition it aimed at improving the overall effectiveness of the UN’s humanitarian operations in the field. The resolution also created the high level position of Emergency Relief Coordinator (ERC). This new function would combine into a single UN focal point the functions carried out by representatives of the Secretary-General for major and complex emergencies, as well as the UN’s natural disaster functions carried out by the UN Disaster Relief Coordinator, UNDRO. Soon after, the Secretary-General established the Department of Humanitarian Affairs (DHA) and assigned the ERC the status of Under-Secretary-General (USG) for Humanitarian Affairs with offices in New York and Geneva to provide institutional support. Resolution 46/182 also created the Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC), the Consolidated Appeals Process (CAP) and the Central Emergency Revolving Fund (CERF) as key coordination mechanisms and tools of the ERC. As part of the Secretary-General’s programme of reform in 1998, DHA was reorganized into the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, OCHA. Its mandate was expanded to include the coordination of humanitarian response, policy development and humanitarian advocacy. OCHA carries out its coordination function primarily through the Inter-Agency Standing Committee, which is chaired by the ERC. Participants include all humanitarian partners, from UN agencies, funds and programmes to the Red Cross Movement and NGOs. The IASC ensures inter-agency decision-making in response to complex emergencies. These responses include needs assessments, consolidated appeals, field coordination arrangements and the development of humanitarian policies.

Type of Job

Job Family
Humanitarian Affairs

Job Opening Number
21-Humanitarian Affairs-OCHA-147881-J- (X)

Staffing Exercise
N/A

Description
Org. Setting and Reporting

This position is located in the Operations and Advocacy Division, Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), which is part of the United Nations Secretariat responsible for bringing together humanitarian actors to ensure a coherent response to emergencies. OCHA also ensures there is a framework within which each actor can contribute to the overall response efforts. OCHA’s mission is to mobilize and coordinate effective and principled humanitarian action in partnership with national and international actors in order to alleviate human suffering in disasters and emergencies; advocate the rights of people in need; promote preparedness and prevention and facilitate sustainable solutions.

This temporary job opening is being advertised for the position of Associate Humanitarian Affairs Officer and is located in the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) in Juba, South Sudan. The Associate Humanitarian Affairs Officer acts as the Special Assistant to the Head of the OCHA Office in South Sudan and the primary OCHA focal point for secretariat support to high-level fora, including the Humanitarian Country Team (HCT) and meetings in which the HCT engages with the Government of South Sudan. The Associate Humanitarian Affairs Officer reports to Head of Office.

Responsibilities

Within delegated authority, the Associate Humanitarian Affairs Officer will be responsible for the following duties:

  • Coordinates and provides all secretariat functions for, the South Sudan Humanitarian Country Team (HCT) including developing the weekly HCT meeting agenda, liaising with HCT members to identify strategic topics for discussion, and following-up with various components of the humanitarian community on decisions taken and action required.
  • Establishes/maintains relationships with key interlocutors in South Sudan – with national authorities, members of the Humanitarian Country Team, humanitarian partners, and members of the diplomatic community.
  • Researches, analyzes and presents information gathered from diverse sources on assigned topics/issues.
  • Contributes to the preparation of various written documents, e.g. drafts sections of studies, background papers, policy guidelines, parliamentary documents etc.
  • Develops and maintains reference/resource information on specific topics or policy-related issues; responds to various inquiries and information requests internally and externally.
  • Assists in the production of appeals for international assistance; ensures the proper use and spending of donor contributions channeled through OCHA.
  • Assists in the organization of meetings, seminars, conferences, workshops, etc. with other agencies and partners to facilitate exchanges of professional expertise and views on specific humanitarian-related subjects/issues; serves as reporter to such events.
  • Maintains awareness of current humanitarian affairs and related issues, to include relevant political, policy, gender considerations or other developments in specific subject area, country or region concerned.
  • Participates in technical assistance, disaster assessment or other missions, if requested.
  • Participates in project/programme formulation and mobilization of relevant resources.
  • Performs other duties as required, including the backstopping of other colleagues during R&R and leave.

    Competencies

    PROFESSIONALISM: Knowledge and understanding of humanitarian, emergency relief assistance and related humanitarian issues. Ability to identify issues, analyze and participate in the resolution of issues/problems. Ability to develop sources for data collection. Conceptual analytical and evaluative skills to conduct independent research and analysis, including familiarity with and experience in the use of various research sources, including electronic sources on the internet, intranet and other databases. Ability to apply judgment in the context of assignments given, work under pressure, on occasion in a highly stressful environment (e.g. civil strife, natural disasters and human misery). Shows pride in work and in achievements; demonstrates professional competence and mastery of subject matter; is conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, observing deadlines and achieving results; is motivated by professional rather than personal concerns; shows persistence when faced with difficult problems or challenges; remains calm in stressful situations. Takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work.

    COMMUNICATION: Speaks and writes clearly and effectively; listens to others, correctly interprets messages from others and responds appropriately; asks questions to clarify, and exhibits interest in having two-way communication; tailors language, tone, style and format to match audience; demonstrates openness in sharing information and keeping people informed.

    PLANNING and ORGANIZING: Develops clear goals that are consistent with agreed strategies; identifies priority activities and assignments; adjusts priorities as required; allocates appropriate amount of time and resources for completing work; foresees risks and allows for contingencies when planning; monitors and adjusts plans and actions as necessary; uses time efficiently.

    Education

    An advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in political science, social science, international studies, public administration, economics, engineering, earth sciences or a related field is required. A first-level university degree in combination with an additional two years of qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.

    A first-level university degree and no experience will be accepted for candidates who have passed the Young Professionals Programme Examination/United Nations National Competitive Recruitment Examination (NCRE) or the General Service to Professional Examination (G to P).

    Work Experience

    – A minimum of two years of progressively responsible experience in humanitarian affairs, emergency preparedness, crisis/emergency relief management, rehabilitation, development, or related area. Humanitarian experience in the field (actual setting where a mission and/or project is being implemented) in emergency situations (complex emergency or natural disaster) is required.
    – Experience in the UN Common System is highly desirable.
    – Experience in the country context (South Sudan) is desirable.
    – Experience working in the front office of an international organization is highly desirable.
    – Experience supporting humanitarian coordination architecture in a complex emergency or natural disaster setting is desirable.
    – Experience with key coordination tools (CERF, Flash Appeals, clusters, etc.) is desirable.
    – Experience organizing events/meetings in a relevant professional setting is desirable.
    ** No experience is required for candidates who have passed the Young Professionals Programme Examination/United Nations National Competitive Recruitment Examination (NCRE) or the General Service to Professional Examination (G to P).

    Languages

    English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the post advertised, fluency in English is required. Knowledge of another UN official language is desirable.

    Assessment

    Evaluation of qualified candidates may include a desk review of the applications, an assessment exercise and/or competency-based interview.

    Special Notice

  • This position is temporarily available for an initial period of eight (8) months, but may be extended, subject to availability of funds. If the selected candidate is a staff member from the United Nations Secretariat, the selection will be administered as a temporary assignment.
  • A staff member holding a temporary appointment shall be regarded as an external candidate when applying for other positions, and may apply for other temporary positions at any level, subject to section 5.7 below and staff rule 4.16 (b) (ii). Therefore, a staff member holding a temporary appointment in the General Service or related categories may only apply to positions within those categories. For full information on eligibility requirements, please refer to section 5 of ST/AI/2010/4Rev.1 on Temporary Appointments. In its resolution 66/234, the General Assembly further “stressed that the Secretary-General should not recur to the practice of temporarily filling posts in the Professional and higher categories with General Service staff members who have not passed the General Service to Professional category examination other than on an exceptional basis, and requests the Secretary-General to ensure that temporary occupation of such posts by the General Service staff shall not exceed a period of one year, effective 1 January 2013…” Consequently, eligible candidates in the General Service or related categories for temporary job openings in the Professional category that have not passed the competitive examination may be selected only on an exceptional basis endorsed by the Office of Human Resources Management where no other suitable candidate could be identified.
  • Upon separation from service, including, but not limited to, expiration or termination of, or resignation from, a fixed-term, continuing or permanent appointment, a former staff member will be ineligible for re-employment on the basis of a temporary appointment for a period of 31 days following the separation. In the case of separation from service on retirement, a former staff member will be ineligible for re-employment for a period of three months following the separation. This equally applies, mutatis mutandis, with respect to a former or current staff member who has held or holds an appointment in another entity applying the United Nations Staff Regulations and Rules and who applies for a temporary position with the Secretariat.
  • While this temporary assignment may provide the successful applicant with an opportunity to gain new work experience, the selection for this position is for a limited period and has no bearing on the future incumbency of the post. An external candidate selected for this position is bound by the prevailing condition of the staff selection system under ST/AI/2010/3, as amended, and ST/AI/2010/4/Rev.1. A staff member holding a temporary appointment who is recruited in the Professional and above categories on a temporary appointment, and placed on a position authorized for one year or longer may not apply for or be reappointed to his/her current position within six months of the end of his/her current service. This provision does not apply to staff members holding temporary appointments and placed on positions authorized for one year or more in duty stations authorized for peacekeeping operations or special political missions.
  • The expression “Internal candidates”, shall mean staff members who have been recruited after a competitive examination under staff rule 4.16 or after the advice of a central review body under staff rule 4.15.
  • Please note that candidates will be required to meet the requirements of Article 101, paragraph 3, of the Charter as well as the requirements of the position. The United Nations is committed to the highest standards of efficiency, competence and integrity for all its human resources, including but not limited to respect for international human rights and humanitarian law. Candidates may be subject to screening against these standards, including but not limited to whether they have committed, or are alleged to have committed criminal offences and/or violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law.
  • For information on special post allowance, please refer to ST/AI/1999/17. For more details on the administration of temporary appointments please refer to ST/AI/2010/4/Rev.1.
  • The Staff Regulations, Staff Rules and administrative issuances governing staff appointments can be viewed at: http://www.un.org/hr_handbook/English.
  • Candidates will be required to meet the requirements of Article 101, paragraph 3, of the Charter as well as the requirements of the position. The United Nations is committed to the highest standards of efficiency, competence and integrity for all its human resources, including but not limited to respect for international human rights and humanitarian law. Candidates may be subject to screening against these standards, including but not limited to whether they have committed, or are alleged to have committed criminal offences and/or violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law.
  • Applicants are urged to follow carefully all instructions available in the online recruitment platform, Inspira. For more detailed guidance, applicants may refer to the At-a-Glance on “The Application Process” and the Instructional Manual for the Applicants, which can be accessed by clicking on “Manuals” hyper-link on the upper right side of Inspira account holder homepage.
  • Applications are pre-screened by the system according to the published requirements of the job opening on the basis of the information provided in the application. In relation to the requirements of the job opening, applicants must provide complete and accurate information pertaining to their qualifications, including their education, work experience, and language skills. Each applicant must bear in mind that submission of incomplete or inaccurate applications may render that applicant ineligible for consideration for the job opening. Initial screening and evaluation of applications will be conducted on the basis of the information submitted. Applications cannot be amended following submission. Candidates under serious consideration for selection will be subject to a reference-checking process to verify the information provided in the application.
  • Job openings advertised on the Careers Portal will be removed at midnight (New York time)on the deadline date.
  • Candidates found suitable and not selected for the announced duty station, may be selected for deployment to other duty stations. The selection will be for similar functions with similar requirements at the same level.

    Please note that due to the ongoing situation with COVID-19 and the travel restrictions imposed by national authorities, selected candidates may be required to start the assignment/appointment remotely, in agreement with the hiring manager, and until further notice.

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