Job Opening

Posting Title: EXECUTIVE SECRETARY (364 days), D2 (Temporary Job Opening)
Job Code Title: EXECUTIVE SECRETARY
Department/Office: United Nations Environment Programme
Duty Station: NAIROBI
Posting Period: 29 April 2022 - 08 May 2022
Job Opening Number: 22-Administration-UNEP-180392-J-Nairobi (X)
Staffing Exercise N/A
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity
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Org. Setting and Reporting

The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) is the leading global environmental authority that sets the global environmental agenda, promotes the coherent implementation of the environmental dimension of sustainable development within the United Nations system and serves as an authoritative advocate for the global environment.

Through resolution “End plastic pollution: Towards an international legally binding instrument” (UNEP/EA5/L23/REV.1), the United Nations Environment Assembly requested the Executive Director of UNEP to convene an Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee, commencing its work during second half of 2022, with the ambition of completing its work by the end of 2024. The resolution established that the Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee (INC) is to develop an international legally binding instrument on plastic pollution, including in the marine environment henceforth referred to as the instrument, which could include both binding and voluntary approaches, based on a comprehensive approach that addresses the full lifecycle of plastic, taking into account among other things, the principles of the Rio Declaration on Environment and Development, as well as national circumstances and capabilities, including provisions.

The position is based at the Nairobi duty station. Under the direct supervision of the Deputy Executive Director of the UN Environment Programme, and the overall guidance of the Executive Director, the incumbent of the post will lead the Secretariat of the Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee established by UNEP pursuant to UNEA Resolution UNEP/EA5/L23/REV.1. and is responsible for the following duties:

Responsibilities

• Organize and convene, through support to the INC Chair, the intergovernmental meetings necessary to provide a strong platform for negotiation, including but not limited to regional preparatory meetings, and the INC meetings;
• Provide strategic coordination and lead the provision of technical, legal and administrative support for the development of the instrument;
• Provide advice to the Executive Director on all matters related to the development of the instrument;
• Lead the organization of Bureau meetings and other governance meetings requested by the INC process;
• In close collaboration with the substantive Divisions, prepare the organization of multi-stakeholder meetings to be held in the margins of the INC process with participation of private sector, civil society and other relevant stakeholders;
• Prepare and convene a final Diplomatic Conference for the adoption of the instrument;
• Conduct high level policy outreach to senior government officials, private sector and civil society;
• Assist Member States in the exchange of information related to the development of the draft instrument;
• Lead and manage a multidisciplinary team to deliver the responsibilities, tasks and duties of the Secretariat;
• Oversee the recruitment of staff for the INC process for technical and organizational needs, including as necessary consultants to support the negotiations;
• Together with UNEP’s Divisions, ensure that the negotiation process is informed by scientific analyses underpinning the life cycle of plastics;
• Together with UNEP’s Divisions, expand and nurture the scope of partnerships with a wide range of critical players in the plastic pollution arena,
• Communicate and coordinate across the UN on the process and needs from other UN entities;
• Coordinate closely with bilateral and multilateral donors to ensure funding is available for the INC process and technical delivery;
• Raise funds for the INC process as required;
• Contribute to UNEP’s strategic communications on plastics to ensure strategic, coherent and comprehensive outreach and engagement;
• Lead engagement with partners, including financial institutions, towards the successful development of a financial mechanism to support the implementation of the instrument;
• Lead the interagency work of the Secretariat in close cooperation and coordination with Multilateral Environmental Agreements and with other chemicals and waste related conventions, including the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm conventions, to support the development of the draft instrument;
• Perform other related duties as required.

Competencies

PROFESSIONALISM: Knowledge and understanding of international negotiations and issues related to the Minamata Convention and its overarching objectives; Ability to think strategically and to clearly articulate a strategic direction; Capacity to manage and develop people, to lead high performance teams and to work cooperatively; Facilitation of and conducting of inter-governmental negotiating processes as well as handling of a multidisciplinary portfolio of tasks and duties; Integrity, openness and transparency in dealing with all stakeholders; Possesses understanding of the chemicals agenda; Ability to defend and explain difficult issues with respect to key decisions and positions to staff, senior officials and members of intergovernmental bodies; Ability to apply UN rules, regulations, policies and guidelines in work situations; Shows pride in work and in achievements and is conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, observing deadlines and achieving results; shows persistence when faced with difficult problems or challenges; remains calm in stressful situations.

PLANNING & ORGANISING: 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.

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 the audience; Demonstrates openness in sharing information and keeping people informed.

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 that the actions proposed will satisfy the expressed and underlying needs for the decision. Makes tough decisions when necessary.

LEADERSHIP: Serves as a role model that other people want to follow: Empowers others to translate vision into results; is proactive in developing strategies to accomplish objectives; Establishes and maintains relationships with a broad range of people to understand needs and gain support; Anticipates and resolves conflicts by pursuing mutually agreeable solutions; Drives for change and improvements; Does not accept the status quo; shows the courage to take unpopular stands. Provides leadership and takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work; Demonstrates knowledge of strategies and commitment to the goal of gender balance in staffing.

Education

Advanced university degree (Master's degree or equivalent) in Environmental Science, Chemistry; Natural sciences; Law, Public or Business Administration; International and/or Environmental Studies or other related area 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.

Work Experience

A minimum of fifteen (15) years of professional and progressively responsible experience, in the area of environment and sustainable development, out of which at least seven (7) years are at the international level is required.

Experience in leading intergovernmental environmental processes is required.

Experience on intergovernmental negotiations is required.

Experience with the UN system or similar organisations is desirable.

Experience with industry engagement in UN processes is desirable.

Languages

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

NOTE: ''Fluency'' equals a rating of ''fluent'' in all four areas (read, write, speak, understand) and ''Knowledge of'' equals a rating of ''confident'' in two of the four areas.

Assessment

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

Special Notice

This position is temporarily available for an initial period of 364 days.

If the selected candidate is a staff member from the United Nations Secretariat, the selection will be administered as a temporary assignment.

While this temporary assignment may provide the successful applicant with an opportunity to gain new work experience, the selection for this position is for a limited period and has no bearing on the future incumbency of the post.

Subject to the funding source of the position, the eligibility for this temporary job opening may be limited to candidates based at the duty station.

This temporary job opening may be limited to “internal candidates,” who have been recruited through a competitive examination administered according to staff rule 4.16 or staff selection process including the review of a central review body established according to staff rule 4.15.

Staff members of the United Nations common system organizations who will reach the mandatory age of separation or retirement within the duration of the current temporary need period are not eligible to apply. Submitting an application or selection for the current temporary job opening does not delay or increase the mandatory age of separation.

Retirees above the mandatory age of separation who wish to be considered for the current temporary job opening must indicate the reason for their last separation as "retirement." Such retirees shall not be employed by the Organization, unless (a) the operational requirements of the Organization cannot be met by staff members who are qualified and available to perform the required functions; and (b) the proposed employment would not adversely affect the career development or redeployment opportunities of other staff members and represents both a cost-effective and operationally sound solution to meet the needs of the service.

All staff at the D2 level and above are required to submit a financial disclosure statement upon appointment and annually thereafter.

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

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 and geographical diversity in its staff. Female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply for this position.

Internal Applicants – When completing the Candidate Profile form, ensure ALL fields, ALL professional experience and contact information are completed and up to date. This information is the basis for the hiring manager to assess your eligibility and suitability for the position and to contact you.

Individual Contractors and Consultants who have worked within the UN Secretariat in the last six months, irrespective of the administering entity, are ineligible to apply for or be appointed to any professional and higher temporary or fixed-term positions, within six months of the end of their current or most recent service. For such positions, at least six months need to have elapsed between the end of a consultancy or individual contract and the time of application and consideration for an appointment as a staff member under the Staff Rules and Regulations of the United Nations.

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.

On-line applications will be acknowledged where an email address has been provided. All applicants are strongly encouraged to apply on-line as soon as possible after the job opening has been posted and well before the deadline stated in the job opening. If you do not receive an e-mail acknowledgement within 24 hours of submission, your application may not have been received. If the problem persists, please seek technical assistance through the Inspira "Contact Us" link.

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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