Associate Legal Officer, P2

United Nations Office of Legal Affairs (UNOLA)
  • Location
    Vienna, Austria
  • Sector
    Non Profit
  • Experience
    Early Career / Mid Career
  • Posted
    Sep 11

Position description

Org. Setting and Reporting

This position is located within the International Trade Law Division (ITLD), Office of Legal Affairs (OLA), which serves as a substantive Secretariat to the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) and is based in Vienna (Austria). The Associate Legal Officer reports to a Senior Legal Officer as first reporting Officer, and to the Director of the Division as second reporting Officer.


Within assigned authority, the Associate Legal Officer will be responsible for the following specific duties:

  • Conduct legal research and analysis and prepare studies in international trade and investment law, comparative studies, briefs, reports and correspondence;
  • Assist legal officers in the review of legal documents, instruments, or other material; identify important issues, similarities, and inconsistencies, etc.;
  • Assist in the preparation of drafts of background papers, studies, reports, legislative texts and commentaries on those texts, also prepare or assist in the preparation of teaching materials in the field of international trade and investment law as well as private international law, etc.;
  • Assist senior colleagues in servicing meetings of the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) and its subsidiary bodies, conferences, expert groups and other bodies (in person and hybrid), including preparation of background materials, summaries of issues and views of delegations, meeting reports, etc.;
  • Assist senior colleagues in organizing and servicing informal sessions and in preparing portions of draft reports;
  • Assist in administering programmes of legal technical assistance;
  • Assist with the preparation of international trade law seminars and symposia, lecture on various legal issues at such events;
  • Assist legal officers managing the legal content for the UNCITRAL website and social media platforms in developing and maintaining the content of the UNCITRAL website and help to ensure that information is posted in a coordinated and structured manner;
  • Contribute to the collection and analysis of data as well as identification of trends or patterns and provide draft insights through graphs, charts, tables and reports using data visualization methods for data-driven planning, decision-making, presentation and reporting;
  • Perform other work-related duties as assigned.



  • Is able to apply legal principles, concepts and procedures and terminology for review, examination, and processing of a range of legal documents. Has knowledge of various legal research sources, including electronic, and is able to conduct research and analyse information on a wide range of legal issues. Has knowledge of the civil law and/or common law legal systems and principles. Is able to interpret and apply legislative instruments, develop and present results, recommendations, and opinions clearly and concisely. Is able to draft legal papers and work under pressure. Is able to apply good legal judgement in the context of assignments given. Has ability to analyse and interpret data in support of decision-making and convey resulting information to management. 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.


  • 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.


  • Advanced university degree (Master's degree or equivalent) in international law. A first-level university degree in law in combination with two additional years of qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree. A first-level university degree and no experience will be accepted for candidates who have passed the Young Professionals Programme Examination/United Nations National Competitive Recruitment Examination (NCRE) or the General Service to Professional Examination (G to P).

Work Experience

  • A minimum of two years of progressively responsible professional experience in commercial law, comparative law, international trade or investment law, including legal analysis, research and writing OR the successful completion of the Young Professionals Programme Examination/United Nations National Competitive Recruitment Examination (NCRE) or the General Service to Professional Examination (G to P) is required;
  • Experience in international dispute settlement, preferably investor-State dispute settlement and investment law is desirable;
  • Experience in the creation or management of websites is desirable;
  • Experience with the presentation and dissemination of legal materials both in person and in an online environment is desirable;
  • Experience in operating online meeting platforms is desirable;
  • Experience with policies, procedures and operations of the United Nations system or a similar international organization is desirable;
  • Experience in data analytics or related area 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 United Nations official language is desirable.

Application instructions

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