Job Opening

Posting Title: Social Affairs Officer, P3
Department/Office: Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia
Duty Station: BEIRUT
Posting Period: 15 June 2017 - 14 July 2017
Job Opening Number: 17-Social Affairs-ESCWA-81047-R-Beirut (G)
Staffing Exercise N/A
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity
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Special Notice

- 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.
- For this position, applicants from the following Member States, which are unrepresented or underrepresented in the UN Secretariat as of 31 March 2017, are strongly encouraged to apply: Afghanistan, Andorra, Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Bahrain, Belarus, Belize, Brazil, Brunei Darussalam, Cabo Verde, Cambodia, Central African Republic, Chad, China, Comoros, Cyprus, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Dominica, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Grenada, Guinea-Bissau, Honduras, Indonesia, Islamic Republic of Iran, Iraq, Japan, Kiribati, Kuwait, Lao People's Democratic Republic, Latvia, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Marshall Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Monaco, Mozambique, Nauru, Norway, Oman, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Poland, Qatar, Russian Federation, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Sao Tome and Principe, Saudi Arabia, Seychelles, Solomon Islands, South Sudan, Suriname, Syrian Arab Republic, Thailand, Timor-Leste, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, United Arab Emirates, United States of America, Vanuatu, Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela and Vietnam.

Org. Setting and Reporting

This position is located in the Unit on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, in the Social Development Division of the Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA). The Social Affairs Officer reports to the Head of the Unit on the 2030 Agenda.


1.Undertakes empirical research and analysis of trends and developments and related policy issues relevant to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development;
2.Carries out the analysis of social development issues in selected areas at the global, regional and national levels;
3.Develops indicators and methodologies for review and evaluation of specific topics.
4.Liaises with officials of governments, representatives of national, regional and global organizations, organizations of the UN system, etc. on selected social policy issues related to the implementation of specific programmes, action plans or other initiatives, and provides advice on a range of related matters.
5.Assists in the planning, organizing and servicing of technical and ad hoc expert group meeting; drafting reports and preparing summaries of meetings, etc.
6.Provides support to intergovernmental processes dealing with social development issues by: preparing inputs for reports to intergovernmental bodies; following intergovernmental meetings and preparing summary reports; assisting in the organization of panels, round tables, etc. on social development issues for intergovernmental processes.
7.Prepares various written reports, documents and communications, including drafts reports or sections of analytical reports, studies, background papers, parliamentary documents, briefings, correspondence, etc.
8.Coordinates and provides substantive support to the capacity building component of the ESCWA strategy on the 2030 Agenda, including the production and adaptation of learning tools and training modules;
9.Participates in fact-finding, needs assessment and advisory missions to government institutions and other stakeholders in support of the Unit’s capacity building pillar;
10.Liaises with government officials, representatives of national, regional and global organizations and UN system agencies in the preparation and organization of trainings, capacity-building workshops and other meetings;
11.Coordinates the delivery of national or regional training workshops on the 2030 Agenda, and the production and dissemination of promotional and learning materials;
12.Monitors, backstops and assesses the implementation of technical cooperation and capacity building programmes and projects implemented by the Unit;
13.Prepares substantive terms of reference for external consultants and experts;
14.Implements agreed-upon quality assurance tools to assess and validate the work of consultants and experts;
15.Represents the work unit at international and other meetings. Assists in the organization and servicing of expert group meetings, seminars, and workshops on sustainable development issues, and prepares reports as required;
16.Attends international, regional, and national meetings to collect information and follows-up with the main counterparts accordingly;
17.Participates in and contributes to work-planning exercises of the Unit, including the Unit budget and day-to-day operations;
18.Participates in intra- and inter-departmental undertakings of broader concern to represent the views or interests of the Unit on the 2030 Agenda;
19.Supports the Unit in coordinating substantive deliverables across ESCWA, soliciting feedback and ensuring effective knowledge and information sharing;
20.Prepares speeches, talking points, and inputs to presentations as required by senior staff;
21.Supports the Unit team members, reviews their work and provides feedback;
22.Performs other related duties as required, including a variety of administrative tasks necessary for the final delivery of the Unit’s outputs and services;
23.Undertakes on-the-job and other training activities, both internally and externally.


•Professionalism: Knowledge and practical application of theories and concepts related to social development and social policy. Strong analytical capacity and the ability to identify, analyse and articulate difficult issues/problems. Strong research skills, including ability to evaluate and integrate information from a variety of sources using standard methodologies and analytical techniques. 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.
•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.
•Teamwork: Works collaboratively with colleagues to achieve organizational goals; solicits input by genuinely valuing others’ ideas and expertise; is willing to learn from others; places team agenda before personal agenda; supports and acts in accordance with final group decision, even when such decisions may not entirely reflect own position; shares credit for team accomplishments and accepts joint responsibility for team shortcomings.


Advanced university degree in development studies or other social science discipline. Doctoral or post-doctoral qualification in a relevant area is desirable. A first-level university degree in these fields in combination with two additional years of qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.

Work Experience

A minimum of five years of progressively responsible experience in social development and policy analysis is required. Proven familiarity with internationally agreed development goals is desirable. Significant experience in the provision of capacity building and advisory services to government and private sector/non-governmental organizations is desirable.


English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For this post, fluency in oral and written Arabic and English is required. Knowledge of French is desirable.


Evaluation of qualified candidates includes an assessment exercise, which will 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


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