STANDARD PRE-SELECTION TEST SCHEDULED for 1-3 April 2017.
Screened-in applicants will be invited by email to take the Standard Pre-selection Test (SPT); please ensure that your primary email address in Inspira is correct as this will be used for the invitation. No communications will be sent to your secondary email address.
Information on the SPT will also be available on your "My Upcoming Test Schedule" page in Inspira. The SPT will take place between 10:00 a.m. on 1st April to 9:59 a.m. on 3rd April 2017 (EST, New York time). Applicants must complete the test during this 48-hour testing window in order to remain under consideration.
All applicants should regularly check the United Nations HR Portal at https://hr.un.org/page/assessment or their "My Upcoming Test Schedule" page in Inspira for any updates/changes after the closing of this job opening, particularly during the week before the scheduled testing dates.
Please note that applicants who apply as rostered candidates are not subject to any further assessment and accordingly, will not be invited to participate in the SPT or any other assessments (including any written exam, interview, etc.) throughout the selection process. For more information about the assessment process, please visit the United Nations HR Portal.
Is a career at the United Nations right for you? Take the voluntary self-assessment questionnaire and get valuable insight into the working environment of the United Nations as well as the Political, Peace and Humanitarian Network (POLNET). This questionnaire is anonymous and has no impact on your potential candidacy for this position. Upon completion, you will receive feedback to help you decide if working in the United Nations is right for you.
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.
Extension of the appointment is subject to extension of the mandate and/or the availability of the funds.
Staff members of the United Nations Secretariat must fulfill the lateral move(s) or geographical requirements as set out in ST/AI/2016/1 to be eligible to apply for this job opening. Staff members are requested to indicate all qualifying lateral or geographical move(s) in their Personal History Profile (PHP) and cover note.
This position is located in the Office of the DSRSG-Political in the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA) in Bamako. Bamako is classified as a “C” hardship duty station and a non-family duty station. The Special Assistant reports directly to the DSRSG-Political.
The United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA) was established by Security Council resolution 2100 of 25 April 2013 to support political processes in that country and carry out a number of security-related tasks. By unanimously adopting resolution 2295 of 29June 2016, the Council further decided that the Mission should focus on duties, such as ensuring security, stabilization and protection of civilians; supporting national political dialogue and reconciliation; and assisting the reestablishment of State authority, the rebuilding of the security sector, and the promotion and protection of human rights in that country. For more information on the mission mandate visit
Within delegated authority, the incumbent will be responsible for the following duties:
Planning, Coordination and Facilitation
• Provide substantive and practical support to the DSRSG-P in implementing the Mission’s mandate;
• Keep the DSRSG-P informed on all matters requiring his personal attention, assist in formulating options as to how those matters might be handled, and ensure appropriate follow-up, as directed;
• Organize and manage the DSRSG’s meetings and Mission events, prepare written summaries and conduct follow-up activities, as appropriate;
• Coordinate/draft correspondence for the DSRSG’s signature; and
• Develop and maintain collaborative relationships with mission components, the authorities, , political leaders, civil society actors, the broader UN family and other national and international partners on coordination and policy matters.
Political Analysis, Advice and Reporting
• Identify, analyze and monitor political developments and emerging issues with respect to the implementation of the Mission’s mandate;
• Assess implications and make recommendations to the DSRSG-P on possible policies, strategies and other measures to address issues of concern and to advance mandated objectives; with special focusing on political issues;
• Coordinate/draft summary and analytical reports including, but not limited to, situation reports, briefing notes, notes to file, code cables, option papers and input for the reports of the Secretary-General to the Security Council.
• Provide advice and assessments on political issues both within Mali and in the region.
• Formulating and managing the implementation of the Mission’s programme of work, including through support to planning and budgetary processes;
• Supervise, mentor and evaluate staff; as required
• Participate in the selection of new staff;
• Performs other relevant duties as requested by the DSRSG.
Professionalism: In-depth understanding of the political work of the United Nations in the area of peace and security, identify problems, and propose policy options; proven drafting, reviewing and editing skills and experience; diplomacy and judgment in dealing with others; conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments and achieving results. 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.
Integrity: Demonstrates the values of the United Nations in daily activities and behaviours; acts without consideration of personal gain; resists undue political pressure in decision-making; does not abuse power or authority; stands by decisions that are in the Organization’s interest, even if they are unpopular; takes prompt action in cases of unprofessional or unethical behaviour.
Respect for Diversity: Works effectively with people from all backgrounds; treats all people with dignity and respect; treats men and women equally; shows respect for and understanding of diverse points of view and demonstrates this understanding in daily work and decision-making; examines own biases and behaviours to avoid stereotypical responses; does not discriminate against any individual or group.
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.
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 confidences in colleagues, staff members and clients; gives proper credit to theirs; 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 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 degree) in political science, international relations, social science, economics, law, public administration, or a related field. A first-level university degree in combination with two additional years of qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.
A minimum of ten years of progressively responsible experience in political affairs, diplomacy, conflict resolution, or related field is required. Experience in political outreach, facilitation, analysis, advice and reporting is required. Experience working in the office of a senior public official and/or as a Special Assistant (or similar) to a senior public official is highly desirable. Experience working in a field location is desirable. Experience working in the region is desirable.
English and French are the working languages of the United Nations. For this post, fluency in English and French is required. Knowledge of another UN language is an advantage.
Evaluation of qualified candidates may include an assessment exercise which may be followed by competency-based interview. Core values and competencies will be assessed throughout the evaluation process.
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, including but not limited to, respect for international human rights and humanitarian law. Candidates may be subject to screening against these standards, including but not limited to, whether they have committed or are alleged to have committed criminal offences or violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law.
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 At-a-Glance on "The Application Process" and the Instructional Manual for the Applicants, which can be accessed by clicking on “Manuals” hyper-link on the upper right side of the inspira account-holder homepage.
The screening and 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, including but not limited to, their education, work experience, and language skills, according to the instructions provided on inspira. Applicants will be disqualified from consideration if they do not demonstrate in their application that they meet the evaluation criteria of the job opening and the applicable internal legislations of the United Nations. Applicants are solely responsible for providing complete and accurate information at the time of application: 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 a reference-checking process to verify the information provided in the application.
Job openings advertised on the Careers Portal will be removed at midnight (New York time) on the deadline date.
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.