Political Affairs Officer, P3 (Temp)

UN Department of Political and Peacebuilding Affairs-Department of Peace Operations-Shared Structure


Position description

Org. Setting and Reporting

The position is located in the Middle East Division (MED), Department of Political and Peacebuilding Affairs and Peace Operations (DPPA-DPO) at Headquarters in New York.

For the post advertised, the Political Affairs Officer will serve as Desk Officer in the Middle East Team within the Middle East Division of DPPA-DPO. The incumbent will report directly to the Team Leader of the Middle East Team, under the general supervision of the Director and Deputy Director of MED.


Within delegated authority, the Political Affairs Officer will be responsible for the following
• Gathers, selects and analyses information relevant to the countries in the Team’s purview (Israel, Palestine, Jordan).
• Maintains up-to-date knowledge of events relating to political issues in the Middle East, and in particular as they affect countries in the Team’s purview and thematic mandates for which the staff member is responsible.
• Monitors and analyses national and regional level political and other developments with a view to providing advice to the Director and Deputy Director of MED, ASG for the Middle East and Asia Pacific and/or the Under-Secretaries-General for Political and Peacebuilding Affairs and Peace Operations as well as Resident Coordinators and UN agencies on the ground, as appropriate.
• Contributes to the drafting of reports, notes, background papers, talking points, code cables, speeches and other correspondence for senior UN officials, as required.
• Maintains contacts with other teams within the Middle East Division and other DPPA-DPO divisions; other UN departments, agencies, funds and programmes, including through Integrated Task Forces; other international
organizations and governments on coordination and policy matters, as appropriate.
• Monitors actions taken regarding Middle East Team countries (Israel, Palestine and Jordan) by intergovernmental groups, UN entities, governments and non-governmental organizations.
• Participates in fact-finding and other missions to countries within assigned area of responsibility, as required.
• Prepares meetings of the SG/DSG/USG with officials from countries under the Organization’s purview.
• Contributes as required to reports of the Secretary-General and UN official reports, analytical papers, talking points, speeches and other correspondence.
• Provides political, substantive and operational backstopping support to UNSCO.
• Participates in the preparation of the budget proposals for UNSCO, including preparation, development and management of extra-budgetary projects for these missions.
• Manages extra-budgetary projects for ad-hoc initiatives linking DPA and the UN system on issues of common interest in the region.
• Supports the Middle East Team’s responsibilities, including as a back-up, and 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.


An advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in political science, international relations, international economics, law, public administration or other related area is required. A first-level university degree with a relevant combination of academic qualifications and 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 political science, international relations, law, disarmament, security, development management, conflict resolution or related area is required.

Experience working on political issues concerning the Middle East and North Africa countries is required.

Experience providing Headquarters backstopping to special political missions or peacekeeping operations is desirable.

Experience working in the field, particularly a peacekeeping operation or special political mission, or in an international organization is desirable.

Experience in developing and managing extra-budgetary projects in support of preventive diplomacy, political, peacebuilding or peace-making activities is desirable.


English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For this post advertised, fluency in English (both oral and written) is required. Knowledge of another UN official language is an advantage.


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

Special Notice

• This position is temporarily available until 11 June 2024. If the selected candidate is a staff member from the United Nations Secretariat, the selection will be administered as a temporary assignment.

• While this temporary assignment may provide the successful applicant with an opportunity to gain new work experience, the selection for this position is for a limited period and has no bearing on the future incumbency of the post.

• Subject to the funding source of the position, the eligibility for this temporary job opening may be limited to candidates based at the duty station.

• This temporary job opening may be limited to “internal candidates,” who have been recruited through a competitive examination administered according to staff rule 4.16 or staff selection process including the review of a central review body established according to staff rule 4.15.

• Staff members of the United Nations common system organizations who will reach the mandatory age of separation or retirement within the duration of the current temporary need period are not eligible to apply. Submitting an application or selection for the current temporary job opening does not delay or increase the mandatory age of separation.

• Retirees above the mandatory age of separation who wish to be considered for the current temporary job opening must indicate the reason for their last separation as “retirement.” Such retirees shall not be employed by the Organization, unless (a) the operational requirements of the Organization cannot be met by staff members who are qualified and available to perform the required functions; and (b) the proposed employment would not adversely affect the career development or redeployment opportunities of other staff members and represents both a cost-effective and operationally sound solution to meet the needs of the service.

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.

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.

The United Nations Secretariat is committed to achieving 50/50 gender balance and geographical diversity in its staff. Female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply for this position.

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