Org. Setting and Reporting
This position is located in Bangui, the headquarters of the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Central African Republic (MINUSCA). The Special Assistant will report directly to the Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary-General (DSRSG).
Within delegated authority, the Special Assistant, Political Affairs will be responsible for the following duties:
Coordination and Facilitation
- Provide specialized advice, substantive, practical and technical support to the DSRSG in implementing the Mission’s mandate.
- Keep the DSRSG informed on all matters requiring her personal attention, assist in formulating options as to how those matters might be handled, and ensure appropriate follow-up, as directed.
- Plan, Organize and manage the DSRSG's meetings and Mission events, prepare written summaries and conduct follow-up activities, as appropriate.
- Coordinate/draft correspondence for the DSRSG’s signature.
- Develop and maintain collaborative relationships with mission components, the authorities, the broader UN family, donors and other national and international partners on coordination and policy matters.
Political Analysis, Advice and Reporting
- Identify, analyze and monitor political developments and emerging issues with respect to the implementation of the Mission’s mandate.
- Assess implications and make recommendations on possible policies, strategies and other measures to address issues of concern and to advance mandated objectives; Monitor, evaluate and report on implementation.
- Coordinate/draft summary and analytical reports including, but not limited to, situation reports, briefing notes, notes to file, code cables and input for the reports of the Secretary-General to the Security Council.
- Assist in formulating and managing the implementation of the Mission’s programme of work, including through support to planning and budgetary processes.
- Supervise, mentor and evaluate staff; assist in the selection of new staff.
- Attend workshops as directed by the DSRSG.
- Coordinates, as required, actions related to the transition towards the United Nations agency-led commitment, depending on the mission’s mandate and the situation in the country concerned. This includes liaising with bilateral donors and other international organizations, with a view to realizing greater synergy and coordination, specifically regarding post-mission activities in the country.
Performs other duties, as assigned.
- Professionalism – In-depth understanding of the political work of the United Nations in the area of peace and security, identify problems, and propose policy options; proven drafting, reviewing and editing skills; 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.
- 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 clients’ needs and matches them to appropriate solutions; Monitors ongoing developments inside and outside the clients’ 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 client.
- 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 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.
- Building Trust - Provides an environment in which others can talk and act without fear or repercussion; Manages in a deliberate and predictable way; Operates with transparency; has no hidden agenda; Places confidence in colleagues, staff members and clients; Gives proper credit to others; Follows through on agreed upon actions; Treats sensitive or confidential information appropriately.
- Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in political science, international relations, social science, economics, law, public administration, or a related field is required. A first-level university degree in combination with two additional years of qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.
- A minimum of ten years of progressively responsible experience in political affairs, diplomacy, conflict resolution, or related area is required.
- Extensive experience in political outreach, facilitation, analysis, advice and reporting is required.
- Experience working in a United Nations common system field operations (inclusive of peacekeeping, political missions and UN agencies, funds and programmes) or similar international organization or nongovernmental organization-in a conflict or post-conflict setting is required.
- A minimum of 3 years’ experience working in the office of a senior public official and/or as a Special Assistant (or similar) to a senior public official is desirable.
- Previous experience working in a conflict or post conflict setting in the Central Africa Region, in particular relating to supporting peace process, protection of civilians and human rights is desirable.
- English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the position advertised, fluency in oral and written English and French is required.
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