Job Opening

Posting Title: LEGAL OFFICER, P4
Job Code Title: LEGAL OFFICER
Department/Office: United Nations Conference on Trade and Development
Duty Station: GENEVA
Posting Period: 19 October 2021 - 17 November 2021
Job Opening Number: 21-Legal Affairs-UNITED NAT-166070-R-Geneva (E)
Staffing Exercise N/A
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity
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Org. Setting and Reporting

This position is located in the Competition and Consumer Protection Branch of the Division on International Trade and Commodities of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD). The incumbent reports to the Chief of the Competition and Consumer Protection Branch and works in close collaboration with the lead UNCTAD DODR Programme Officer.

Responsibilities

The UNCTAD technical cooperation project on “Delivering Digital Trading Infrastructure and online dispute resolution for consumers as means to improve international trade and electronic commerce” (DODR), aims to identify best practices and policy options to promote consumer online dispute resolution and to define the legal, technical and infrastructure requirements for the development of online dispute resolution systems in South East Asia, including through the use of block-chain and other emerging technologies. The project has limited funds and duration, and it is expected to be completed by June 2023.

In the framework of UNCTAD’s DODR project, the Legal Officer will be responsible for the following duties:

• Serves as a lead researcher in the DODR project, and independently handles a wide range of multi-discipline and complex legal matters involving issues of international, public, private and consumer protection law, to include interpretation and application of instruments in the context of the DODR project
• Provides legal advice on diverse substantive and procedural questions related to the DODR project, which may include those related to administration and management, institutions support, procurement and contracts,
• Performs extensive legal research and analysis and prepares legal opinions, studies, briefs, reports, indictments and correspondence; provides legal advice to the unit/division in relation to consumer online dispute resolution, including through the use of block-chain and other emerging technologies.
• Services diplomatic conferences, commissions, committees, task forces, expert groups and other bodies, including preparation of background materials, summaries of issues and views of delegations, meeting reports, etc.
• Reviews, advises on and drafts complex contracts, agreements, institutional and operational modalities, or legal motions/submissions and other legal documents;
• Coordinates and direct teams of other legal officers dealing with significant problems as required, and/or mentors and supervises the work of junior officers on specific projects.
• Contributes to review and design of new, or new applications of, legal instruments, policy, guidelines, etc.
• Performs other duties as assigned.

Competencies

• Professionalism: Knowledge of international legal procedures and instruments. Ability to apply legal expertise to analyzing a diverse range of complex and unusual legal issues and problems and in developing innovative and creative solutions. Expert knowledge in consumer protection legal frameworks and its challenges in its applicability across borders. Strong analytical skills and ability to conduct comprehensive legal research on a range of issues, including those of a unique and/or complex nature; proficiency in legal writing and expression and ability to prepare legal briefs, opinions, indictments or legal submissions/motions, and a variety of legal instruments and related documents. Ability to lead and cross-examine witnesses and make substantial legal arguments before Chambers of judges, or if required to take responsibility for the prosecution of criminal trials. Discretion and sound judgment in applying legal expertise to sensitive, complex legal issues. Strong negotiating skills and ability to influence others to reach agreement. Ability to work to tight deadlines and handle multiple concurrent projects/cases. Knowledge of contemporary international relations and of UN system, organization and interrelationships. 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.

• 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 & 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

Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in international law 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. Postgraduate degree in consumer protection law is desirable.

Work Experience

A minimum of seven years of progressively responsible experience in law, including legal analysis, research and writing is required.

Experience as described above in the field of international trade law is desirable.

A minimum of five years of experience in legal analysis, research and writing on consumer dispute resolution and redress is desirable.

Experience in cross-border consumer protection issues is desirable.

Experience in the use of new technologies for the development or application of consumer protection is desirable.

Experience in Asian consumer protection legal systems is desirable.

Languages

English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the position advertised, fluency in English is required; knowledge of French is desirable. Knowledge of Chinese is desirable.

Assessment

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

Special Notice

This a project funded position with an initial appointment of one year, starting as soon as possible. Extension of the appointment is subject to availability of funds, continuation of the mandate and satisfactory performance. The project will end in mid-2023.

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.

At the United Nations, the paramount consideration in the recruitment and employment of staff is the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence and integrity, with due regard to geographic diversity. All employment decisions are made on the basis of qualifications and organizational needs. The United Nations is committed to creating a diverse and inclusive environment of mutual respect. The United Nations recruits and employs staff regardless of gender identity, sexual orientation, race, religious, cultural and ethnic backgrounds or disabilities. Reasonable accommodation for applicants with disabilities may be provided to support participation in the recruitment process when requested and indicated in the application.

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, sexual abuse, or sexual harassment, 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. The term “sexual harassment” means any unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature that might reasonably be expected or be perceived to cause offence or humiliation, when such conduct interferes with work, is made a condition of employment or creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment, and when the gravity of the conduct warrants the termination of the perpetrator’s working relationship. Candidates who have committed crimes other than minor traffic offences may not be considered for employment.

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.

The paramount consideration in the appointment, transfer, or promotion of staff shall be the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity. By accepting an offer of appointment, United Nations staff members are subject to the authority of the Secretary-General and assignment by him or her to any activities or offices of the United Nations in accordance with staff regulation 1.2 (c). In this context, all internationally recruited staff members shall be required to move periodically to discharge new functions within or across duty stations under conditions established by the Secretary-General.

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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