Sustainable Development Officer (Private Sector Officer), P4

UN Resident Coordinator System
  • Location
    New York, New York
  • Sector
    Non Profit
  • Experience
    Mid Career
  • Apply by
  • Posted
    Jul 22

Position description

Org. Setting and Reporting

This position is in the United Nations Development Coordination Office (UNDCO) in New York and reports to the Chief of the Partnerships Section in the Policy and Programming Branch. The Sustainable Development Officer (Private Sector Officer) works closely with Partnerships & Development Finance Officers within Resident Coordinator Offices (RCOs).


Within delegated authority, and working closely with the global network of RCO Partnership and Development Finance Officers, the Sustainable Development Officer (Private Sector Officer) will be responsible for the following:

  • Analyzes and tracks trends relating to private sector engagement in sustainable development and contributions to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda and Our Common Agenda.
  • Provides technical support to the engagement of the DCO Director and UNSDG Chair with private sector actors for sustainable development, as appropriate.
  • Advises the Chief of Section, the Chief of Branch, the DCO Director and UN Country Teams (UNCTs) on private sector engagement in sustainable development and opportunities to profile and promote the work of the UN Development System with private sector audiences to encourage further business support.
  • Forges and maintains partnerships with private sector actors and UN platforms for private sector engagement in sustainable development that contribute to the work of the RC system in support of the implementation of the 2030 Agenda, including on multi-stakeholder partnerships which have innovative financing components.
  • Serves as primary liaison between DCO, the UN Global Compact (UNGC) and its country-based Local Networks, strengthening RCO engagement with UNGC to advance DCO and UNGC’s overlapping strategy objectives relating to expanding UNGC’s geographic coverage and deepening RCO private sector engagement.
  • Acts as DCO focal point for other inter-agency private sector platforms, networks
  • Leads, where requested, on various interagency private sector initiatives, identifying collaborative solutions to mobilize private sector resources, innovation and expertise on sustainable development issues.
  • Closely liaises with DCO Regional Desks to ensure effective support to RCs and UNCTs on private sector matters and contributes to research, capacity building, knowledge sharing and country level efforts on private sector partnerships.
  • Designs and facilitate workshops, webinars, capacity building exercises and communities of practice to assist PDFOs strengthen private sector engagement including through annual regional retreats and similar convenings.
  • Facilitates the work of relevant UNSDG working mechanisms and the RC system on private sector engagement for sustainable development.
  • Advises on private sector components of humanitarian-development nexus work, such as the Secretary-General’s Action Agenda on IDPs or the UN Connecting Business Initiative, helping to bridge the gap between humanitarian and development system efforts to mobilize business in emergencies, such as the COVID-19 pandemic and other crises.
  • Contributes to the provision of strategic advice and support on key operational issues relating to private sector partnerships at the country level, including partner due diligence; negotiating partnership agreements; consulting with the Office of Legal Affairs on RCO partnership modalities; and UNCT coordination efforts relating to interagency partnership working groups and task forces.
  • Contributes to DCO review and support for Common Country Analysis and UN Sustainable Development Cooperation Frameworks to ensure private sector dimensions and opportunities for engagement are adequately incorporated in these critical planning exercises.
  • Researches, monitors and analyzes private sector partnership and funding mechanisms and their viability to support new and emerging development opportunities; reviews relevant documents and reports; identifies problems and sustainable development issues to be addressed and initiates corrective actions; liaises with relevant parties; ensures follow-up actions
  • Develops draft policy recommendations on private sector partnerships issues, including the review and analysis of issues and trends, preparation of evaluations or other research activities and studies,
  • Organizes and prepares written outputs on private sector partnerships and other sustainable development issues, e.g., draft background papers, analysis, sections of reports and studies, inputs to publications, etc.
  • Provides substantive backstopping to consultative and other meetings, conferences, etc., including proposing agenda topics, identifying participants, and preparation of documents and presentations on sustainable development issues.
  • Provides substantive support on sustainable development issues to DCO’s engagement with intergovernmental bodies for Strategic Partnerships (especially on Private Sector) and the High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development, the Economic and Social Council, and the General Assembly.
  • Participates in or take the lead in specific inter-agency or expert task forces or working groups either internally or with outside parties.
  • Initiates and coordinates outreach activities; conducts training workshops, seminars, etc.; makes presentations on assigned topics/activities.
  • Coordinates activities related to collaborations, budget funding and partnerships, regarding private sector issues and prepares related documents.
  • Prepares speeches and other inputs for presentations by senior staff on sustainable development and private sector and partnerships issues.
  • Designs, manages and monitors the implementation of capacity building on strategic private sector partnership and SDG financing issues.


  • Professionalism: Understands the 2030 Agenda and linkages to private sector for its implementation and the importance of partnerships. Ability to apply sustainable development theories, concepts and approaches. Ability to identify issues, analyze and participate in the resolution of issues/problems. Ability to conduct data collection using various methods. 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 resources on the internet, intranet and other databases. 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.
  • 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.
  • Client Orientation: Considers all those to whom services are provided to be ‘clients’ and seeks to see things from ‘clients point of view’; establishes and maintains productive partnerships with clients by gaining their trust and respect; identifies client’s needs and matches them to appropriate solutions; monitors ongoing developments inside and outside of the ‘client’s environment to keep informed and anticipate problems; keeps clients informed of progress or setbacks in projects; meets timeline for delivery of products or services to clients.
  • 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 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) in sustainable development, economics, public policy, public administration, finance, natural resources management, engineering, law, social sciences or related field. A first-level university degree in combination with qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.

Work Experience

  • A minimum of seven years of progressively responsible experience in strategic private sector engagement and UN-business partnerships is required.
  • Experience facilitating interagency working groups or processes on private sector partnership issues is required.
  • Experience working within UN Development System or a comparable international organization at the country level is desirable.
  • Experience working at the headquarters of a development cooperation organization is desirable..
  • Experience working with the UN Global Compact and/or other sustainable business organizations is desirable.


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

Application instructions

Please be sure to indicate that you saw this position on