Chief of Branch, Intergovernmental Support and Interagency Branch, D1

UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs
  • Location
    New York, New York
  • Sector
    Non Profit
  • Experience
  • Apply by
  • Posted
    Mar 15

Position description

This position is located in the Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA), Division for Sustainable Development (DSD), in the Intergovernmental Support and Interagency Branch. The Division for Sustainable Development, under the Department of Economic and Social Affairs, provides leadership in promoting and coordinating implementation of the sustainable development agenda of the United Nations and serves as secretariat to the High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development which was established following the Rio+20 Conference and GA resolutions 66/288 and 67/290. The Chief of the Intergovernmental Support and Interagency Branch reports to the Director of the Division.


Under the overall supervision and guidance of the Director of the Division for Sustainable Development, the incumbent will be responsible for the following:

  • Formulate, plan and manage the work programme of the Branch and its resources, including:
    • preparing biennial programme budget and strategic framework and reports periodically on budget performance and implementation;
    • preparing Branch work plans in line with Divisional and Departmental goals and priorities;
    • implementing and monitoring the Performance Appraisal System and working with staff to ensure their understanding and participation;
    • cooperating and maintaining liaison with other branch chiefs in divisional level work and activities.
  • Lead, oversee and coordinate, under the supervision and guidance of the Director, the work of the Division for the provision of substantive secretariat support to the intergovernmental bodies, including the High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF), the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), the General Assembly and relevant conferences and summits; Lead preparation of expert meetings, reports for intergovernmental bodies, in particular the High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF), the Economic and Social Council, the General Assembly and other policy-making organs and processes;
  • Coordinate and cooperate with other partners in the United Nations system as well as with other national, regional and global organizations for the implementation of the work programme of the Branch, including interagency coordination and support to the work of the Executive Committee for Economic and Social Affairs (EC-ESA Plus);
  • Provide policy advice to the Director of the Division on substantive and policy aspects of the intergovernmental processes on sustainable development issues, including follow up to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the Rio+20 outcomes, World Summit on Sustainable Development outcomes, the Samoa Pathway, the Barbados Programme of Action for the sustainable development of Small Island Developing States (BPOA), the Mauritius Strategy for Implementation of the Programme for the sustainable development of Small Island Developing States (MSI); Coordinate and oversee the preparation of briefing material, presentations, draft speeches, and policy proposals on sustainable development issues, including on national and thematic reviews and issues related to the intergovernmental processes, for the Director and Senior Management;
  • Act as Officer-in-Charge of the Division in the absence of the Director and represent the Director in DESA’s Directors’ meetings or other senior management meetings and represents the Division at international, regional or national meetings.


  • Professionalism: Knowledge of sustainable development issues, inter-linkages, and consensus-building in negotiations. Knowledge of the United Nations system in implementing Agenda 21, the Johannesburg Plan of Implementation (JPOI); the Barbados Programme of Action for the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States (BPOA), the Mauritius Strategy for the Further Implementation of the Programme of Action for the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States (MSI), the Rio+20 outcomes, the SAMOA Pathway and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Knowledge of analytical and policy development skills and ability to produce reports and papers on technical issues and to review and edit the work of others. Ability to apply UN rules, regulations, policies and guidelines in work situations. 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;
  • 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;
  • Leadership: Serves as a role model that other people want to follow: empowers others to translate vision into results; is proactive in developing strategies to accomplish objectives; establishes and maintains relationships with a broad range of people to understand needs and gain support; anticipates and resolves conflicts by pursuing mutually agreeable solutions; drives for change and improvements; does not accept the status quo; shows the courage to take unpopular stands. Provides leadership and takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work; demonstrates knowledge of strategies and commitment to the goal of gender balance in staffing;
  • Judgement/Decision-making: Identifies the key issues in a complex situation, and comes to the heart of the problem quickly; gathers relevant information before making a decision; considers positive and negative impacts of decisions prior to making them; takes decisions with an eye to the impact on others and on the Organization; proposes a course of action or makes a recommendation based on all available information; checks assumptions against facts; determines that the actions proposed will satisfy the expressed and underlying needs for the decision; makes tough decisions when necessary.


Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent degree) in sustainable development, economics, public policy, business or public administration, finance, accounting, law, social sciences or related area is required. A first-level university degree in combination with two additional years of qualifying work experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree

Work Experience

A minimum of fifteen years of progressively responsible experience in policy oriented work in a broad range of sustainable development issues, ten years of which must be at the international level, either in the public or private sector is required. Experience in supervision, including organizing, managing and leading a team and experience with intergovernmental negotiating processes is required. Experience in supervising preparation of reports, formulating and implementing projects and recommendations for use by intergovernmental bodies is required. Experience in substantive servicing of intergovernmental bodies as well as broad exposure to various aspects of the Organization’s work in the economic, social and environmental fields is desirable.


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

Application instructions

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