Humanitarian Affairs Officer, P3

UN OCHA

Position description

Org. Setting and Reporting

This position is located in the Policy and Reporting Unit Guidance, Learning and Reporting Section (GLRS), in the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) in New York.

OCHA is the part of the United Nations Secretariat responsible for bringing together humanitarian actors to ensure a coherent response to emergencies. OCHA ensures there is a framework within which each actor can contribute to the overall response efforts. OCHA’s mission is to mobilize and coordinate effective and principled humanitarian action in partnership with national and international actors in order to alleviate human suffering in disasters and emergencies; advocate the rights of people in need; promote preparedness and prevention and facilitate sustainable solutions.

Responsibilities

Within delegated authority, the Humanitarian Affairs Officer will be responsible for the following duties:

  • Monitors, analyzes and reports on humanitarian developments, disaster relief/management or emergency situations in assigned country/area.
  • Organizes and prepares studies on humanitarian, emergency relief and related issues – including studies under the Performance and Accountability Framework of the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) as well as studies relating to the Country-Based Pooled Funds (CBPF); organizes follow-up work, including interagency technical review meetings to support policy development work and decision-making on important issues.
  • Participates in large, complex projects, to include disaster assessment or other missions; assists in the coordination of international humanitarian/emergency assistance for complex emergency/disaster situations and in ensuring the necessary support (e.g. staff, funding, specialized equipment, supplies, etc.); drafts situation reports to the international community, apprising of situation to date and specifying unmet requirements of stricken countries.
  • Partners with other humanitarian agencies to plan and evaluate humanitarian and emergency assistance programmes and help ensure that latest findings, lessons learned, policy guidelines, etc. are incorporated into these activities, including gender-related considerations.
  • Establishes and maintains contacts with government officials, other UN agencies, non-governmental organizations, diplomatic missions, media, etc.
  • Coordinates strategic planning exercises, including internal workplan processes and the business cases of major donors to the OCHA-managed pooled funds.
  • Undertakes and provides support to technical assistance and other field missions, e.g. participates in field trips to undertake in-depth reviews of specific country coordination mechanisms.
  • Prepares or contributes to the preparation of various written reports, documents and communications, e.g. drafts sections of studies, talking points for senior officials, background papers, policy guidelines, parliamentary documents, briefings, case studies, presentations, correspondence, etc.
  • Serves as the primary focal point on specific topics or policy-related issues; keeps abreast of latest developments, liaises with other humanitarian organizations, donors, etc., ensures appropriate monitoring and reporting mechanisms; provides information and advice on a range of related issues.
  • Reviews and provides advice on policy issues related to safeguarding humanitarian principles and ensuring the effective delivery of humanitarian assistance.
  • Organizes and participates in work groups, meetings, conferences, consultations with other agencies and partners on humanitarian and emergency relief-related matters.
  • Provides guidance to, and may supervise, new/junior staff.
  • Performs other duties as required.

Competencies

  • Professionalism: Knowledge of a range of humanitarian assistance, emergency relief and related human rights issues, including approaches and techniques to address difficult problems. Analytical capacity and in particular the ability to analyze and articulate the humanitarian dimension of issues which require a coordinated UN response. Ability to identify issues and judgment in applying technical expertise to resolve a wide range of problems. Ability to conduct research, including ability to evaluate and integrate information from a variety of sources and assess impact on the humanitarian rights situation in assigned country/area. Ability to work under extreme pressure, on occasion in a highly stressful environment (e.g. civil strife, natural disasters and human misery); ability to provide guidance to new/junior staff. 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.
  • Creativity: Actively seeks to improve programmes or services; offers new and different options to solve problems or meet client needs; promotes and persuades others to consider new ideas; takes calculated risks on new and unusual ideas; thinks “outside the box”; takes an interest in new ideas and new ways of doing things; is not bound by current thinking or traditional approaches.

Education

  • Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in political science, social science, public administration, international studies, economics, engineering, earth sciences 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.

Work Experience

  • A minimum of five years of progressively responsible experience in humanitarian affairs, emergency preparedness, crisis/emergency relief management, rehabilitation, development, or other related area is required.
  • Experience working with pooled funds is required.
  • Experience with the preparation of corporate reports and external information/communication products and related data analyses is required.
  • Prior experience with engagement in policy discussions or the development of new corporate innovations in a humanitarian and/or development context is required.
  • Experience with corporate learning processes is desirable.
  • A minimum of two years in the last five years of international field experience in aid operations is desirable.

Languages

  • English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For this position, fluency in English is required; knowledge of the French is desirable. Knowledge of another UN official language is desirable.

Application instructions

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