Job Opening

Department/Office: Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights
Duty Station: GENEVA
Posting Period: 15 August 2023 - 29 September 2023
Job Opening Number: 23-Human Rights Affairs-OHCHR-216381-R-Geneva (G)
Staffing Exercise N/A
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity
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Org. Setting and Reporting

The post is located in the Human Rights Council (HRC) Branch, Human Rights Council and Treaty Mechanisms Division (CTMD) within the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR). The incumbent reports to the Director, CTMD.


Under the general guidance of the High Commissioner for Human Rights and the direct supervision of the Director, HR Council and Treaties Division, the incumbent:

Provides substantive, technical and administrative support to the Human Rights Council :

- Directs and supervises preparations and the substantive servicing of regular and special meetings of the Human Rights Council, its subsidiary bodies and mechanisms, including the Human Rights Council Advisory Committee, the Universal Periodic Review Mechanism, the Complain Procedure and other bodies appointed by the General Assembly in the framework of the Human Rights Council.
- Directs and supervises the timely preparation of relevant reports of the Secretary-General and of the High Commissioner, as well as the participation of human rights experts in meetings of the Human Rights Council.
- Allocates and coordinates resources for the preparation and holding of such meetings, in coordination with the United Nations Office at Geneva and other United Nations organizational entities and the host country, as required.
- Monitors the proceedings, deliberations, resolutions and other decisions of the Human Rights Council, identifying their political and policy implications for OHCHR and the United Nations system as a whole, facilitates interaction among Member States, observers, NGO and other components of civil society and other United Nations entities, with a view to assisting the Council in its legislative function in support of the promotion and protection of human rights.
- Oversees the follow-up and implementation of Council decisions by other OHCHR organizational units; coordinates and liaises, as required, with other United Nations bodies and entities in this regard.
- Oversees the dissemination of information on all aspects of the Human Rights Council activities and decisions to Member States, inter-governmental organizations, United Nations specialized agencies, funds and programmes, NGOs and other civil society entities.
- Supervises the preparation of communications on the outcome/proceedings of Council meetings.

Advises OHCHR senior management and raises awareness about Human Rights Council activities and decisions :

- Draws to the attention of the High Commissioner and senior management as well as other parts of the Secretariat and the United Nations system pertinent information and recommendations emanating from the Human Rights Council, its subsidiary bodies and mechanisms.
- Provides strategic and political advice with regard to the issues dealt with by the Human Rights Council and the branch.
Promotes awareness and about Human Rights Council deliberations and decisions in the framework of efforts to enhance human rights protection systems at national level.

Develops methods of operation for the Human Rights Council :

- Advises, supports, coordinates and liaises with the President of the Human Rights Council and the Human Rights Council Bureau on the functions and methods of work of the Human Rights Council, the Human Rights Council Advisory Committee, the Universal Periodic Review Mechanism and the Complaint Procedure as well as on their implementation and proper application, providing legal and procedural advice to the President of the Council and to chairpersons of subsidiary bodies and mechanisms, as required.
- Directs and supervises the development of methodological tools to ensure consistency and effectiveness in servicing the Human Rights Council.
- Determines and supervises the correct application of criteria and methods of work applying to the Human Rights Council, its subsidiary bodies and mechanisms.
- Directs and supervises substantive input into meetings of the Human Rights Council by defining main orientations and coordinating partners outside the United Nations System.

Leads and manages the Human Rights Council Branch :

- Ensures the preparation of the proposed programme budget components pertaining to the mandate and activities of the Branch, ensuring consistency with other parts of OHCHR; ensures the preparation of periodic cost plans and financial implication statements for draft Human Rights Council resolutions and decisions; defends the Branch's resource requirements before United Nations legislative bodies and with Member States, as required; monitors expenditures against allotments. Evaluates achievement, recording operational experience and incorporating learning into the programme budget.
- Implements the programme of work, ensuring that it is carried out in an efficient and timely fashion, in accordance with legislative mandates, High Commissioner's directives and established United Nations policies and procedures.
- Manages the human resources allocated to the branch with a view to ensuring their most effective use and the delivery of high-quality output, assigning responsibilities, training, coaching and setting performance objectives for staff of the branch, undertaking regular reviews of performance, including the PAS, recognizing good performance and taking appropriate action to address inadequate performance and fostering teamwork and communication among staff of the unit and across organizational boundaries. Manages Branch vacancies, including through the interview and evaluation of candidates.
- Manages the preparation of, and leads, meetings, briefings and seminars for Member States, other United Nations entities, NGOs and civil society organizations, OHCHR organizational units, etc. on substantive and organizational issues relating to the activities and responsibilities of the Branch.
- Represents OHCHR in consultations of Member States, inter-organizational and other meetings dealing with Human Right Council-related issues.


• Professionalism: Knowledge of the substantive field of work in general and of specific areas being supervised. Ability to produce reports and papers on technical issues and to review and edit the work of others. Ability to apply UN rules, regulations, policies and guidelines in work situations. 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; demonstrates knowledge of strategies and commitment to the goal of gender balance in staffing.

• 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.

• 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.

• Building Trust: Provides an environment in which others can talk and act without fear of repercussion; manages in a deliberate and predictable way; operates with transparency; has no hidden agenda; places confidence in colleagues, staff members and clients; gives proper credit to others; follows through on agreed upon actions; treats sensitive or confidential information appropriately.

• 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.


Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in law, political sciences or international relations is required.
A first level university degree in combination with two additional years of qualifying work experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.

Work Experience

A minimum of fifteen years of international experience in human rights or a closely related field is required.

At least seven years of experience managing intergovernmental processes or bodies is required.

Experience leading a large team of professionals (15 or more) is required.

Experience with the UN system is desirable.


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


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

Special Notice

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.

For this position, applicants from the following Member States, which are unrepresented or underrepresented in the UN Secretariat as of 30 June 2023, are strongly encouraged to apply: Afghanistan, Andorra, Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Bahrain, Belize, Brunei Darussalam, Cabo Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, China, Cuba, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Djibouti, Dominica, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Grenada, Guinea-Bissau, Israel, Japan, Kiribati, Kuwait, Lao People's Democratic Republic, Liberia, Libya, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Madagascar, Malta, Marshall Islands, Micronesia (Federated States of), Monaco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Nauru, Oman, Palau, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Qatar, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Samoa, San Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Saudi Arabia, Slovenia, Solomon Islands, Somalia, South Sudan, Timor-Leste, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, United Arab Emirates, United States of America, Vanuatu.

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.

Staff members of the United Nations Secretariat must fulfill the lateral move requirements to be eligible to apply for this vacancy. Staff members are requested to indicate all qualifying lateral moves in their Personal History Profile (PHP) and cover note.

Pursuant to section 7.11 of ST/AI/2012/2/Rev.1, candidates recruited through the young professionals programme who have not served for a minimum of two years in the position of their initial assignment are not eligible to apply to this position.

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.

Reasonable accommodation may be provided to applicants with disabilities upon request, to support their participation in the recruitment process.

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


Sorry, this job opening is no longer available.
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