Org. Setting and Reporting
This position is located in the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) in Geneva, under the supervision of the Coordinator of the Secretariat of the Commission of Inquiry on the Syrian Arab Republic and designated line managers.
Within delegated authority, the Political Affairs Officer will be responsible for the following duties:
• Gathers, selects and analyses information contained in communications and publications received from different sources, including the press.
• Maintains up-to-date knowledge of events relating to political issues, in general, and in particular as they affect Syria and thematic mandates for which the staff member is responsible.
• Keeps abreast of latest trends and developments in Syria and provides inputs on issues to the Commission and colleagues elsewhere in the Secretariat.
• Monitors national and regional level political developments and provides advice to the Commission.
• Provides technical and substantive back up in the implementation of mandates of the Commission.
• Maintains contacts with other sectors of the UN, other international organizations and governments on coordination and policy matters.
• Monitors actions taken by intergovernmental groups, UN organizations, government and non-governmental organizations and other non-State actors.
• Selects, classifies and stores in computerised databases information relating to the conflict in Syria.
• Participates in fact-finding and other missions to the region.
• Participates in provision of secretariat services to the meetings of the Commissioners, including those held with the Security Council, General Assembly, subsidiary organizations, negotiating bodies, conferences, meetings, and /or special missions.
• Prepares meetings of the Commissioners with officials from countries under the Organization's purview.
• Performs other related duties as required.
• PROFESSIONALISM: Ability to identify and analyze political, ethnic, racial, social and economic problems that cause civil unrest in a country or geographic area. 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.
• 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.
• 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 (Master’s degree or equivalent) in political science, international relations, international economics, law, public administration or other related field. 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.
A minimum of five years of progressively responsible experience in political science, international relations, law, disarmament, security, development management, conflict resolution or related area is required.
Prior work experience with UN common systems investigative and fact-finding bodies is desirable.
Prior work experience on or in Syria is desirable.
English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the position advertised, fluency in English (both oral and written) is required. Knowledge of Arabic is desirable. Knowledge of another language of the region is also desirable.
Evaluation of qualified candidates may include an assessment exercise which may be followed by competency-based interview.
Extension of the appointment is subject to extension of the mandate and/or the availability of the funds.
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.
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.
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.
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.