Job Opening

Posting Title: Chief of Office, Political Affairs, D1
Duty Station: BAGHDAD
Posting Period: 22 January 2017 - 20 February 2017
Job Opening Number: 17-Political Affairs-FMADPKO-73432-R-Baghdad (M)
Staffing Exercise N/A
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity
Sorry, this job opening is no longer available.

Special Notice

Extension of the appointment is subject to Extension of the mandate and/or the availability of the funds.
- 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.
- An impeccable record for integrity and professional ethical standards is essential. All staff of the Ethics Office are required to submit a financial disclosure statement upon appointment and annually thereafter.
- This vacancy is subject to availability of post. 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.
- These posts are financed by the Support Account for Peacekeeping Operations. Extension of appointment will be subject to budgetary approval.
- This position is vacant due to the temporary assignment/secondment of the regular incumbent to another office/organization. The selection and extension of appointment of the selected candidate will be contingent on the return of the incumbent who maintains a lien against this post. If the selected candidate is an internal staff member of the UN Secretariat, the selection will be recorded as a temporary assignment.
-The United Nations Joint Staff Pension Fund (UNJSPF) is an independent inter-agency body established by the United Nations General Assembly. The applicable human resources procedures are governed by a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the Fund and the UN Secretariat. On the basis of that MoU and in light of the status of the UNJSPF, it was decided that staff members applying to posts at the P-5 level in the UNJSPF are exceptionally not subject to the lateral move requirement for purposes of eligibility. However, selected candidates who do not meet the lateral move requirements will be granted appointments strictly limited to service with the United Nations Joint Staff Pension Fund.

Org. Setting and Reporting

This position is with United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI), duty station Baghdad. The incumbent will report to the DSRSG (POL).


The Office of Political Affairs (OPA) provides strategic analysis and reporting as well as operational support to the offices of the SRSG, DSRSG-Political and the United Nations Headquarters. It liaises with political parties, official state institutions, diplomatic community, civic organizations, academia and other concerned entities. The Office has a lead role in developing, organizing, engaging and following up on the various meetings of the SRSG and DSRSG-Political inside and outside Iraq, in a dynamic and complex political environment coupled with volatile security situation. This position is located in an integrated Special Political Mission and peace operation. The Chief of Political Affairs reports to the Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary-General (DSRSG) for Political Affairs. Within delegated authority, and under the supervision of the DSRSG for Political Affairs, the Chief of Political Affairs will be responsible for the following:

•Directs and manages OPA fostering teamwork and communication among staff in OPA, with other Mission components and at the desk level with the Department of Political Affairs (DPA).

•Provides substantive and operational guidance to professional and administrative OPA staff members in Baghdad and in the UNAMI regional offices. Identifies emerging issues at the national and regional levels pertaining to the mandate of the Mission, analyzes implications and makes recommendations on possible strategies for immediate and long range solutions to political problems on a national and regional level.

Liaises with Iraqi political and elected officials, community and civil society leaders and representatives as well as with the international community, as required and appropriate.

•Coordinates the activities of the UNAMI Political Pillar and provides other components of the Mission, UNCT and DPA with regular political updates related to the work of the Mission.

•Contributes to the formulation of the Mission's overall strategies and policies by participating in various committees, preparing documents on policy issues, and acting in an advisory capacity to the SRSG/DSRSG.

•Undertakes or oversees the programmatic/administrative tasks necessary for the functioning of OPA, including preparation of budgets, assigning and monitoring of performance parameters and critical indicators, reporting on budget/programme performance, preparation of inputs for results-based budgeting (RBB), evaluation of staff performance (PAS) and staff recruitment taking into account geographical and gender balance and other institutional values.

•Provides guidance and ensures coordination of political activities of UNAMI regional offices that report to him/her, in support of the overall strategic objectives of the Mission. To this end, ensures that UNAMI political and strategic objectives are shared and understood by all OPA staff. Formulates and implements the substantive work programme of OPA, determining priorities, allocating resources for the timely completion and delivery of expected outputs, delegating authority as required and appropriate.

•Ensures that programmed activities are carried out in a timely fashion in coordination with other Mission components and the UNCT, donors and agencies as required.

•Co-ordinates and oversees the preparation of OPA's input to reports for presentation to the Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budget Questions (ACABQ), the General Assembly and other policy-making organs, as appropriate.

•Co-ordinates and oversees the preparation of UNAMI's input to reports of the Secretary-General to the Security Council. Ensures that the outputs produced by the Mission maintain high-quality standards. Performs any other duties requested by the SRSG and/or DSRSG Political.

•Deputises for DSRSG/Political in his/her absence.

Work implies frequent interaction with the following: Managers and staff within UNAMI; Senior Staff within the UN Secretariat, Missions Heads and other UN offices, funds, programmes and specialized agencies; Representatives of Governments, political and civil society bodies at central and local levels as well as representatives of nongovernmental organizations; Chairs and members of intergovernmental bodies.


Professionalism - Analytical skills and ability to comprehend the complex inter-relations between different substantive components of the Mission; ability to identify problems (e.g. political, ethnic, religious/sectarian, social, economic) and causes of instability in Iraq and to provide strategic advice and recommendations to senior officials to address them; sound knowledge of the institutions of the UN system, their institutional mandates, policies and guidelines; very good interpersonal skills; demonstrated managerial experience and ability to develop and maintain effective work relationships in a multicultural environment. Shows pride in work and in achievements; 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; is committed to implementing the goal of gender equality by ensuring the equal participation and full involvement of woman and men in all aspects of peace operation.

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.

Planning and Organizing - Ability to establish priorities, plan, coordinate and follow the work plan as established; ability to manage conflict situations; ability to work under extreme pressure with tight deadlines and sometimes insufficient resources; proven competencies in problem-solving. 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.

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.

Judgment /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) in political science, international relations, social science, economics, law, public administration, or a related field. A first level university degree with a relevant combination of academic qualifications and experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.

Work Experience

A minimum of fifteen years of progressively responsible experience in political, civil or humanitarian affairs, human rights, programme management, or a related field is required. A proven track record of leadership in multi-cultural settings, including management and coordination of multi-disciplinary teams, is required. Experience working in a United Nations common system field operation (inclusive of peacekeeping, political missions and UN agencies, funds, and programmes) -or similar international organization or non-governmental organization- in a conflict or post-conflict setting is required. Extensive experience in outreach, facilitation, analysis, advice and reporting is required. A minimum of two years of experience working in a UN Peacekeeping Operation or Special Political Mission is desirable. Experience working in two or more different substantive areas covered by UN field operations is desirable.


English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the position advertised, fluency in English (oral and written) is required. Working knowledge of Arabic would be a strong asset and is desirable. Knowledge of other languages spoken in Iraq is also an asset.


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

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, 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.

No Fee


Sorry, this job opening is no longer available.
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