Job Opening

Posting Title: Social Affairs Officer, P4
Job Code Title: SOCIAL AFFAIRS OFFICER
Department/Office: Economic Commission for Africa
Duty Station: ADDIS ABABA
Posting Period: 14 December 2018 - 27 January 2019
Job Opening Number: 18-Social Affairs-ECA-108537-R-Addis Ababa (R)
Staffing Exercise N/A
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity

Org. Setting and Reporting

Established by the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) of the United Nations (UN) in 1958 as one of the UN's five regional commissions, ECA's mandate is to promote the economic and social development of its member States, foster intra-regional integration, and promote international cooperation for Africa's development. Made up of 54 member States, and playing a dual role as a regional arm of the UN and as a key component of the African institutional landscape, ECA is well positioned to make unique contributions to address the Continent’s development challenges. The strategic objective of ECA is framed around delivering ideas and actions for an empowered, inclusive and transformed Africa in the framework of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and Agenda 2063 of the African Union through its three core functions, namely, its function as a think tank, its convening function and its operational function.

This position is located in the NEPAD Section of the Regional Integration and Trade Division of the Economic Commission for Africa. Under the direct supervision of the Chief of NEPAD and overall guidance of the Director of the Division, the incumbent will report directly to the Chief of the Section.

Responsibilities

Within delegated authority, and in the context of United Nations (UN) system-wide support to the African Union (AU), its bodies and development frameworks, including NEPAD, Regional Economic Communities (RECs) Intergovernmental Organizations (IGOs), and Agenda 2063, Agenda 2030, UN-AU cooperation frameworks, the incumbent will be responsible for the following duties:

SOCIAL ANALYSIS
• Proposes, designs and carries out substantive research projects analyzing key trends and changes in socio-economic structures and related issues (e.g., poverty, employment, ageing, disability, family, youth, occupational, cultural, educational demographic patterns, gender issues, etc.) at global, regional and national levels; assesses implications and develops proposals with respect to social development and social welfare policies and interventions;
• Develops new lines of theoretical analysis and research methodologies for the diagnosis of major transformations in socio-economic structures;
• Plans, organizes and provides substantial servicing of ad hoc expert group meetings, conferences, seminars, workshops, etc. to include identification and selection of participants, development of background documentation, preparation of reports, documents, policy recommendations and analytical briefs based on the outcome of such meetings.

INTERGOVERNMENTAL SUPPORT
• Provides substantive support on social issues to relevant ECA intergovernmental bodies;
• Represents ECA at international, regional and national meetings; organizes panels, round tables, etc. on social development issues for intergovernmental processes.
• Liaises with African Union Commission, NEPAD, RECs, IGOs, ECA Subregional Offices, other UN bodies, specialized agencies, relevant national agencies, Intergovernmental Organizations (IGOs) and Non Governmental Organizations (NGOs) on UN system-wide support to the African Union.

TECHNICAL COOPERATION
• Provides technical assistance to the AU, NEPAD, RECs, IGOs, member States and other bodies in relation to UN system-wide support to Agenda 2063, Agenda 2030 and UN-AU cooperation frameworks;
• Designs, monitors, backstops and assesses the implementation of technical cooperation programmes and projects;
• Undertakes missions to RECs, IGOs, NEPAD, member States, either alone or as a participant in a diverse team, as part of technical cooperation activities pertaining to UN system-wide support to Agenda 2063, Agenda 2030 and UN-AU cooperation frameworks programme;
• Prepares global, regional, national or sectoral analyses that provide a basis for
advising AU, RECs, IGOs, NEPAD and member States on social development issues;
• Conducts training seminars and workshops for AU, RECs, IGOs, NEPAD, member States and others;
• Formulates technical modalities for the evaluation of individual technical cooperation projects.
• Provides quantitative and qualitative analysis and substantive support to ECA’s advisory work on UN system-wide support to the African Union, including preparing global, regional, national or sector analyses that provide a basis for advising national governments on social development in Africa.

GENERAL
• Participates in intra- and inter-organizational undertakings of broader concern to represent the views or interests of ECA and its clients;
• Provides leadership and work direction to assigned work team, and/or mentors and supervises the work of new/junior officers.
• May participate in planning and preparation of unit budget and work program and in the administration of the day-to-day operations of the unit, including personnel responsibilities of the unit; and
• Undertakes on-the-job and other training activities, both internally and externally.

RESULTS EXPECTED
Delivers high quality empirical research results. Plays a lead role in identifying significant social and economic issues and problems to be addressed. Develops well-reasoned, innovative suggestions and approaches to deal with complex policy/technical issues. Effectively leads and manages major reports, projects and work teams and timely delivers outputs in a timely manner, in accordance with overall objectives and policies. Serves as an effective spokesperson internally and externally and forms strong partnerships with relevant parties to help meet organization’s objectives with respect to overall policy initiatives and coordination of socio-economic activities.

Competencies

• PROFESSIONALISM: Knowledge of social development and related fields. Ability to apply principles and concepts of socio-economic development in relation to government, the private sector, civil society and international organizations. Ability to apply modern techniques of analyzing social phenomena relevant to socio-economic development in Africa. Ability to conduct conceptual and strategic analyses. Ability to analyze and articulate the social dimension of complex issues. Problem-solving skills. Ability to use sound judgment in applying technical expertise to resolve a wide range of complex issues/problems. Very good knowledge of the Africa region, including the political, economic and social dimensions. Ability to relate socio-economic issues, trends and perspectives, including gender issues, to social development initiatives/programmes in Africa. Strong negotiating skills and ability to influence others to reach agreement. Ability to work under pressure. Very good knowledge of institutional mandates, policies and guidelines pertaining to social affairs. Sound knowledge of the institutions of the UN system and African regional and sub-regional organizations. Excellent research skills and demonstrated ability to complete in-depth studies and to formulate conclusions/recommendations. 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.

• TEAMWORK: Works collaboratively with colleagues to achieve organizational goals; solicits input by genuinely valuing others’ ideas and expertise; is willing to learn from others; places team agenda before personal agenda; supports and acts in accordance with final group decision, even when such decisions may not entirely reflect own position; shares credit for team accomplishments and accepts joint responsibility for team shortcomings.

• 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.

Education

An advanced university degree (Master’s or Doctorate) in sociology, other social science or related field is required. A first-level degree (Bachelor’s or equivalent) in the specified fields with two additional years of relevant work experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.

Work Experience

A minimum of seven years of progressively responsible experience in socio economic development, policy research and analysis, sociological research or related area in the context of Africa.

Languages

English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the position advertised, fluency in English or French with knowledge of the other is desirable. Knowledge of another official United Nations language is desirable.

Assessment

Evaluation of qualified candidates may include an assessment exercise which may be followed by competency-based interview.

Special Notice

Staff members are subject to the authority of the Secretary-General and to assignment by him or her. In this context, all staff are expected to move periodically to new functions in their careers in accordance with established rules and procedures.

The United Nations Secretariat is committed to achieving 50/50 gender balance in its staff. Female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply for this position.

For this position, applicants from the following Member States, which are unrepresented or underrepresented in the UN Secretariat as of 31 October 2018, are strongly encouraged to apply: Afghanistan, Andorra, Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Bahrain, Belarus, Belize, Brazil, Brunei Darussalam, Cabo Verde, Cambodia, Central African Republic, China, Comoros, Cyprus, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Dominica, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Grenada, Guinea-Bissau, Indonesia, Islamic Republic of Iran, Japan, Kiribati, Kuwait, Lao People's Democratic Republic, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Marshall Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Monaco, Mozambique, Nauru, Norway, Oman, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Qatar, Republic of Korea, Russian Federation, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Sao Tome and Principe, Saudi Arabia, Solomon Islands, South Sudan, Suriname, Syrian Arab Republic, Thailand, Timor-Leste, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, United Arab Emirates, United States of America, Vanuatu, Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela.

An impeccable record for integrity and professional ethical standards is essential.

United Nations Considerations

According to article 101, paragraph 3, of the Charter of the United Nations, the paramount consideration in the employment of the staff is the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity. Candidates will not be considered for employment with the United Nations if they have committed violations of international human rights law, violations of international humanitarian law, sexual exploitation or sexual abuse, or crimes other than minor traffic offences, or if there are reasonable grounds to believe that they have been involved in the commission of any of these acts. The term “sexual exploitation” means any actual or attempted abuse of a position of vulnerability, differential power, or trust, for sexual purposes, including, but not limited to, profiting monetarily, socially or politically from the sexual exploitation of another. The term “sexual abuse” means the actual or threatened physical intrusion of a sexual nature, whether by force or under unequal or coercive conditions.

Due regard will be paid to the importance of recruiting the staff on as wide a geographical basis as possible. The United Nations places no restrictions on the eligibility of men and women to participate in any capacity and under conditions of equality in its principal and subsidiary organs. The United Nations Secretariat is a non-smoking environment.

Applicants are urged to follow carefully all instructions available in the online recruitment platform, inspira. For more detailed guidance, applicants may refer to the Manual for the Applicant, which can be accessed by clicking on “Manuals” hyper-link on the upper right side of the inspira account-holder homepage.

The evaluation of applicants will be conducted on the basis of the information submitted in the application according to the evaluation criteria of the job opening and the applicable internal legislations of the United Nations including the Charter of the United Nations, resolutions of the General Assembly, the Staff Regulations and Rules, administrative issuances and guidelines. Applicants must provide complete and accurate information pertaining to their personal profile and qualifications according to the instructions provided in inspira to be considered for the current job opening. No amendment, addition, deletion, revision or modification shall be made to applications that have been submitted. Candidates under serious consideration for selection will be subject to reference checks to verify the information provided in the application.

Job openings advertised on the Careers Portal will be removed at 11:59 p.m. (New York time) on the deadline date.

No Fee

THE UNITED NATIONS DOES NOT CHARGE A FEE AT ANY STAGE OF THE RECRUITMENT PROCESS (APPLICATION, INTERVIEW MEETING, PROCESSING, OR TRAINING). THE UNITED NATIONS DOES NOT CONCERN ITSELF WITH INFORMATION ON APPLICANTS’ BANK ACCOUNTS.

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