Chief, Economic Empowerment Section

UN Women
  • Location
    New York, New York
  • Sector
    Non Profit
  • Experience
  • Apply by
  • Posted
    Mar 08

Position description

Duties and Responsibilities

Lead global policy support for initiatives that support women’s income security, decent work, and economic autonomy, focusing on the informal economy, gender-responsive procurement, and addressing the gender pay gap:

  • Lead the review and development of global policies in the area of economic empowerment to enhance understanding of gender equality issues and dimensions, advance UN Women’s normative, coordination, and operational mandates and support its strategic programmes and that of other partners;
  • Provide policy guidance and advice to UN Women regional and country offices to develop and implement initiatives that promote decent work and social protection for all women; women’s entrepreneurship and women’s enterprises; and women’s access to productive resources and sustainable agriculture; with a specific focus on the informal economy, gender-responsive procurement, and addressing the gender pay gap;
  • Act as a thought leader for the section, and provide strategic advice to the Policy Director and the rest of the organization on economic empowerment;
  • Introduce innovation and cutting-edge practices, drawing on feminist economic development policy and practice, to enhance the development of policies and programmes.

Lead the development and/or the support to women’s economic empowerment programmes, including Flagship Programme Initiatives and the Women’s Empowerment Principles (WEPs):

  • Lead and implement a research agenda on the linkages between global commitments on women’s economic empowerment and their implementation at global, regional and national levels;
  • Oversee the roll out and implementation of Flagship Programme Initiatives and the WEPs, in close coordination with Regional Directors and Country Representatives and external partners.

Lead the development of knowledge production on women’s economic empowerment:

  • Lead the production of studies, reports and background papers on a range of gender equality issues relating to women’s economic empowerment;
  • Lead the development, testing and roll out of tools and methodologies in the area of women’s economic empowerment to provide standards and guidelines, based on a gender-equality and human-rights based approach, for programming and management; and ensure that lessons learned are incorporated into strategic programmes and activities;
  • Provide substantive contributions to international fora to help shape development of global and regional policies, norms and standards and implementation strategies;
  • Build and facilitate internal and external communities of practice on women’s economic empowerment. Contribute to the development and maintenance of global and regional knowledge networks, activities and practice.

Develop, maintain and expand partnerships and lead advocacy initiatives for tangible advancement of women’s economic empowerment:

  • Represent UN Women in international fora to encourage greater commitment to, collaboration on the implementation of gender equality and women’s economic empowerment policies;
  • Convene or represent UN Women in UN inter-agency working groups and other high level academic and policy conferences and events to participate in strategic discussions and establish cooperation/collaboration;
  • Provide substantive advice and guidance on the development of strategic approaches to resource mobilization, partnerships, and outreach for women’s economic empowerment, including building partnerships with the private sector, women’s business organizations, women workers’ organizations and trade unions, in close coordination with the Strategic Partnerships, Coordination and Intergovernmental Support Bureau;
  • Establish and nurture relationships with academia, research institutes, civil society and experts in the area of women’s economic empowerment, including the International Association for Feminist Economics.

Manage the Economic Empowerment Section:

  • Finalize and oversee the implementation of the annual workplans and annual reports for the section;
  • Promote teamwork and establish a working environment that is conducive to delivering results;
  • Supervise, guide and oversee the work the work of the team to ensure the delivery of quality results according to standards and goals established in the Section and the Policy Division; Manage the performance of staff and ensure compliance to the performance management process;
  • Manage and monitor financial resources and take responsibility for the integrity of financial systems and consistent application of the internal control framework and/or UN Women/UN rules and regulations. Submit timely mandated reports;
  • Oversee the development and implementation of strategic evaluation plans, ensure that management responses to all evaluations are completed and followed up, and that learning from evaluations is fed back into UN Women initiatives and operations;
  • Oversee security requirements for the team.

Key Performance Indicators:

The Section Chief has a significant impact on the success of efforts to develop and implement UN Women’s Strategic Plan in the area of women’s economic empowerment. The Section chief is responsible for developing and implementing the organization’s policies in this thematic area of expertise to achieve gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls. The chief will also be core to building UN Women’s economic credibility in policy and knowledge contexts.

Key Performance Indicators include:

  • Timely and quality strategic advice to the Policy Director, the ELT and the rest of the organization;
  • Support for Flagship Programme rollout and WEPs implementation, ensure that the team provides timely and substantive advice to ROs / COs and external partners, such as communities of practice and knowledge guidance; support resource mobilisation efforts and ensure that donor reports are provided in a timely fashion;
  • Initiatives to engage and build relationships with key partners;
  • Quality of inputs provided to intergovernmental fora to help shape development of global and regional policies, norms, standards and implementation strategies; timely and quality production of SG reports and other normative ;
  • Quality and timeliness of substantive guidance and knowledge products;
  • Drawing up and implementation of annual work plan, as per organisational and Divisional timelines;
  • Performance management, support and development of staff.


Core values:

  • Integrity;
  • Professionalism;
  • Respect for Diversity.

Core Competencies:

  • Awareness and Sensitivity Regarding Gender Issues;
  • Accountability;
  • Creative Problem Solving;
  • Effective Communication;
  • Inclusive Collaboration;
  • Stakeholder Engagement;
  • Leading by Example.

Functional Competencies:

  • Substantive knowledge on successful women’s income security, decent work, economic autonomy, and/or poverty reduction policy initiatives;
  • Ability to establish and foster good relations with government counterparts, UN agencies, donors and NGO partners, the private sector and international bodies;
  • Substantive knowledge of current thinking, policies and practices in feminist economics and women’s economic empowerment.
  • Ability to conceptualize and convey strategic vision from the spectrum of development experience;
  • Strong communication and advocacy skills, with proven expertise in writing cogent and convincing policy materials;
  • Managerial competencies and supervisory and management experience, including proven strong team-building and people management skills;
  • Proven analytical and problem-solving skills;
  • Excellent strategic planning, goal-setting and prioritization skills;
  • Effectiveness in establishing and fostering good relations with government counterparts, UN agencies, donors, and NGO partners;
  • Strong, proven commitment to gender equality and women’s empowerment.

Required Skills and Experience


  • Master degree (or equivalent) in Economics or disciplines related to feminist economics, such as gender and development, public policy, or other social science fields; PhD desirable.


  • Minimum of 15 years of progressively responsible experience in gender and development, policy analysis, feminist economics or related areas;
  • Proven experience in advocating for women’s rights and economic empowerment;
  • Proven experience in implementation of initiatives related to women’s income security, decent work, and economic autonomy or justice;
  • Substantial experience in preparing and publishing policy pieces in feminist economics and women’s (economic) empowerment publications.
  • Previous experience in successfully collaborating with UN Agencies, governments, the private sector, international organizations, and civil society;
  • Demonstrated experience in successfully managing teams in a collaborative and transparent manner;
  • Field experience in developing countries is an advantage;
  • Recognized authority on women’s economic empowerment is desirable.


  • Fluency in English is required;
  • Knowledge of the other UN official working language is an asset.

Application instructions

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