Org. Setting and Reporting
This position is located in the Syria Team in the Middle East and Asia and the Pacific Division of the Department of Political and Peacebuilding Affairs and Peace Operations (DPPA-DPO) at Headquarters in New York. The Senior Political Affairs Officer will serve as the Syria Team Leader and will report to the Director and Deputy Director of the Middle East Division.
Within delegated authority, the Senior Political Affairs Officer/Syria Team Leader will be responsible for the following duties:
- Formulates political affairs strategies; proposes policy directives and plan of action for immediate and long range solutions to political issues related to the Syrian crisis; identifies emerging issues pertaining to UN mandates and Syria; analyses implications and makes recommendations on possible strategies and measures.
- Plans and implements the operational activities related to the work of the Team and the Division as they relate to conflict prevention and resolution, post-conflict rehabilitation, election, political and governance institution-building, civil society support work, etc. to the Syrian crisis; incorporates an integrated approach that includes a rights-based dimension, conflict prevention sensitivity, and a gender perspective into the policy, planning and operational activities of the unit.
- Plans, coordinates and manages programmes, projects and activities requiring interdepartmental and/or interagency involvement and participation.
- Prepares briefing notes and talking points for the Secretary-General, Senior Advisers, Under-Secretary-General/Assistant Secretary-General in DPPA-DPO.
- Coordinates and directs the provision of secretariat services secretariat services -for the General Assembly, ECOSOC and the Security Council and their subsidiary bodies, and special conferences and summits.
- Provides continuous guidance and advice to the Presidents and Chairs as well as other elected offices of intergovernmental bodies concerning the organization of work, status of negotiations, conduct of business including interpretation of the rules of procedure.
- Leads and directs a work team; plans and allocates work assignments; coaches, mentors, and evaluates staff; participates in recruitment and selection of new staff and in the development of training programs.
- Manages, coordinates, organizes and supervises research on a variety of political issues related to Syria and the region, including interactions with think-tanks.
- Represents Division/Team at round tables, seminars and conferences.
- Responds to/prepares responses to comments, statements, queries of parties and manages support to operational activities involving involving the Office of Special Envoy for Syria.
- Formulates the programme of work, budget and medium-term plan of the Team and participates in the overall approval of the programme of work, and administrative matters concerning the Team, the Division, and as appropriate, the Office of the Special Envoy for Syria.
- Develops and maintains relations with Member State officials and intergovernmental bodies, as well as NGOs, on the issues related to the resolution of conflict in Syria.
- Performs other related duties as required.
- Professionalism: Knowledge of the work of intergovernmental bodies, the work of the United Nations and its related bodies concerned with political, economic, social and related matters. Ability to evaluate international political situations in area of assignment. Ability to manage and coordinate many different levels and participants in operations in both the field and UN common system. 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 & 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.
- Managing Performance: Delegates the appropriate responsibility, accountability and decision-making authority; makes sure that roles, responsibilities and reporting lines are clear to each staff member; accurately judges the amount of time and resources needed to accomplish a task and matches task to skills; monitors progress against milestones and deadlines; regularly discusses performance and provides feedback and coaching to staff; encourages risk-taking and supports creativity and initiative; actively supports the development and career aspirations of staff; appraises performance fairly.
- 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 political science, international relations, international economics, law, public administration, or related field. 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.
- A minimum of ten years of progressively responsible experience in political science, international relations, law, disarmament, security, development management, conflict resolution or related area is required.
- Experience in management and supervision of staff is required.
- Experience in political analysis on Middle East is required.
- Experience working on Syria-related matters is desirable.
- Experience working in the United Nations common system, field missions or similar international organization is desirable.
- English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the position advertised, fluency in English (oral and written) is required. Knowledge of Arabic is desirable. Knowledge of another official United Nations language is an advantage.
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