Job Opening

Posting Title: Senior Regional Planning Specialist
Department/Office: United Nations Human Settlements Programme
Duty Station: NAIROBI
Posting Period: 24 March 2023 - 01 April 2023
Job Opening Number: 23-United Nations Human Settlements Programme-203972-Consultant
Staffing Exercise N/A
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity
Sorry, this job opening is no longer available.

Result of Service

The Regional Planning Specialist will guide and finalize the technical development of the projects in Greater Abidjan, Guinea-Bissau and Guinea. He/she will use the experience and collaboration in teams for the development and implementation of spatial development framework and matrix of functions.

Work Location

Home Based

Expected duration

6 months

Duties and Responsibilities

The United Nations Human Settlements Programme, UN-Habitat, is the agency for human settlements. It is mandated by the United Nations General Assembly to promote socially and
environmentally sustainable cities with the aim of providing adequate housing for all. UN-Habitat is the lead agency within the United Nations for the implementation of the New Urban Agenda. UN-Habitat helps Member States and development partners to turn cities into safer, more resilient, and healthier places with better opportunities. It works with organizations at all levels, including all levels of government, civil society, and the private sector.

UN-Habitat Regional Office for Africa supports African countries developing human settlements projects to address fast urbanization of the continent and achieve sustainable development by focusing on challenges faced by cities in Africa. The current portfolio of UN-Habitat is expanding in West Africa, in order to assist governments at all levels to promote sustainable, inclusive urban development and to implement the New Urban Agenda.

In Côte d’Ivoire, the capital Abidjan is experiencing exponential population growth due to the natural increase in births, but also to significant migration from the northern areas of the country and from countries in the subregion. This wave of migration is creating major challenges, including an increase in the risk of urban sprawl and the precariousness of the population, particularly women and young people. These elements make it necessary to have appropriate urban planning with investment and job creation strategies, specific environmental policies and access to basic services such as water, sanitation and public transport, as well as affordable housing. In collaboration with the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, UN-Habitat has developed a project for the integration of migrant workers in Greater Abidjan, focusing on the socio-economic inclusion of migrant workers and local communities in vulnerable situations in Greater Abidjan and the improvement of the unplanned urban environment.

In Guinea-Bissau, social conflicts are arising mainly due to the mismanagement of space and natural resources, and particularly of land. One of the main types of natural resource conflicts in Guinea-Bissau arises from the use of or access to pastureland and water. These are particularly important for mobile herders and their practices, which makes the transhumance issue an important one for peacebuilding in the country. These conflicts between mobile herders, cashew growers, agriculturalists, and other community members, particularly prevalent in Bafatá and Gabú regions, are left unaddressed. As a crucial partner of the government of Guinea-Bissau in issues related to territorial development in the country, UN-Habitat jointly with FAO and UNFPA will carry out the project “Prevention of natural resources conflicts related to Pastoralism and Transhumance” in order to reduce and prevent conflicts based on natural resources and transhumance in Bafata and Gabu regions. In particular, the project intends to respond to increasing conflicts on land between farmers and herders and to marginalization of transhumant herders, which have become more prevalent due to climate change effects.

Finally, in Guinea, the urban population, estimated at 4.4 million inhabitants in 2014, will increase by 67.9% and will reach, according to forecasts, 13.7 million inhabitants by 2050. Appropriate measures must be taken, implemented and regularly monitored by the authorities and populations to improve the urbanization process that continues, both in Conakry and in secondary or tertiary towns and villages, mostly anarchically. The new neighborhoods, which constitute the predominant landscape in many urban agglomerations, are generally composed of precarious and unsanitary housing and suffer from a lack of local public services and the lack of an integrated and well-functioning sanitation system. In this context, the European Union, in collaboration with the Government of Guinea, has adopted urban sanitation as a focal sector in the National Indicative Programme (NIP), through the development and urban sanitation programme SANITA. In 1991, the Republic of Guinea developed a tool for controlling rapid urban growth, namely the SNAT, whose general purpose was "to modify and optimize the distribution of individuals and their activities on the national territory in order to achieve geographical balance, social development, economic and environmental efficiency". This planning tool, which is now obsolete, needs to be updated based on the observed territorial developments since 1991 and also integrate new challenges related to globalization, sustainable urbanization, high demographic pressure, the environment, climate change, as well as health issues, especially in view of the various epidemics hitting the country. To this end, one of the components of the SANITA Sustainable Cities Project has undertaken a participatory examination of the implementation of the SNAT of 1991, and a macroeconomic and territorial diagnosis is being developed towards the formulation of new strategic orientations (White Paper) that will need to be taken into account by the new National Spatial Planning Scheme.

Support is needed within UN-Habitat’s Regional Office for Africa (ROAf) for undertaking the implementation of its activities in Côte d’Ivoire, Guinea Bissau, and Guinea.

Under the overall supervision of the Senior Human Settlements Officer (SHSO) in the Regional Office for Africa and Task Manager for West Africa, the Senior Regional Planning Specialist will be responsible of providing substantive contribution to UN-Habitat’s regional portfolio in Côte d’Ivoire, Guinea-Bissau, and Guinea within the Regional Office for Africa.

Specifically, he/she will:
1) Develop adapted and adequate methodological guide for the data collection process;
2) Review and finalize the regional data collection and compilation;
3) Provide training for the consultants and local team responsible of the process at national level;
4) Provide technical inputs in the implementation of the Spatial Development Framework methodology using the Matrix of Functions, and the interpretation of the data collected

Qualifications/special skills

Advanced university degree (Master's degree or equivalent) in architecture, urban development, regional development, relevant to development and management of human settlements is required. A first level university in combination with qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced degree.

At least 7 years of working experience in the areas of urban planning, urban development or regional development, preferably in developing countries is required.
Proven experience in developing the Spatial Development Framework and the Matrix of functions is required.
Familiarity with the concepts and current practices related to climate change adaptation, urban resilience, and regional and urban planning is required.


English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For this position, reporting will be done in English and French. For the day-to-day communication in the field good understanding and sufficient speaking proficiency in English is required. Fluency in oral and written Portuguese and French is desirable.

No Fee


Sorry, this job opening is no longer available.
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