Senior Social Affairs Officer - United Nations, United States, Deadline: May-16-2014

Posting Title:  Senior Social Affairs Officer, P5 
Department/ Office:  Department of Economic and Social Affairs 
Duty Station:  NEW YORK 
Posting Period:  17 March 2014-16 May 2014 
Job Opening number:  14-SOC-DESA-32229-R-NEW YORK (R)

- 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.
- Staff members of the United Nations Secretariat must fulfil 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.


Org. Setting and Reporting


The position is located in the Division for Social Policy and Development in the Department of Economic and Social Affairs.The incumbent of the post reports directly to the Chief of the Social Perspective on Development Branch of the Division for Social Policy and Development.




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

Provides guidance for the development and implementation of international policies and programmes on social policy and development, especially on poverty eradication and employment;

Advises and provides assistance to inter-governmental and non-governmental bodies, Member State officials, international and other organizations on planning, evaluating and implementing strategies, policies and programmes on social policy and development, especially on poverty eradication and employment, which impact socio-economic development at global, regional or national levels, in particular with regard to the implementation of the outcomes of the World Social Summit and the 24th special session of the General Assembly.

Takes the lead in establishing partnerships with other experts and stakeholders (e.g. governments, research institutes, academia, UN system and other international organizations, NGOs, the private sector, etc.) to discuss emerging topics related to social development, exchange views on latest findings, policy guidelines, new models of development, etc.

Writes and/or supervises preparation of a variety of studies, reports, etc. on social and socio-economic issues for publication within the UN system and in academic journals and other publications; supervises the collection, analysis and dissemination of information on social policy and development, especially on poverty eradication and employment.   Represents the Division at relevant national and international meetings.

INTERGOVERNMENTAL SUPPORT: Coordinates provision of substantive services to inter-governmental bodies (e.g. the General Assembly, the Economic and Social Council, the Commission for Social Development, etc); Takes the lead in facilitating the negotiation process and promotes constructive dialogue and collaboration; coordinates and facilitates the establishment of and liaison with various groups in civil society; Prepares and reviews analytical reports and other documentation for such bodies. Manages the work unit's contribution to the preparation and management of meetings of intergovernmental bodies.   Coordinates activities to prepare for the observances of special international days related to social policy and development, especially on poverty eradication and employment.

PROGRAMME SUPPORT: Supervises professional and support staff in the preparation of documents and reports on poverty eradication and employment as required and/or mandated by the legislative bodies. Carries out and supervises key programme activities; plans and allocates work assignments; coaches, mentors and evaluates staff; participates in recruitment, selection and training of new staff. Assists the Chief of Branch to organize work of the Branch and carry out administrative duties as needed; performs other duties as required.




Ability to advise senior management and other senior officials of approaches and techniques to address highly complex/sensitive issues. Expert in the field with demonstrated capacity for intellectual leadership. Ability to conduct complex sociological research projects and development of alternative social development models and approaches. Ability to undertake conceptual and strategic analysis. Ability to analyze and evaluate critical matters pertaining to a broad spectrum of socio-economic issues. Ability to demonstrate original and creative thinking. Ability to use independent judgment and discretion in advising on and handling major policy, project and other issues/problems. Strong negotiating skills and ability to influence others to reach agreement on difficult issues. Ability to work under pressure. Excellent knowledge of institutional mandates, policies and guidelines of the UN on social development. Knowledge of the institutions of the UN system. 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. 

-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 improvement; 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.

-Delegates the appropriate responsibility, accountability and decision-making authority
-Makes sure that roles, responsibilities and reporting lines are clear to each staff member
-Accurately judges the amount of time and resources needed to accomplish a task and matches task to skills
-Monitors progress against milestones and deadlines
-Regularly discusses performance and provides feedback and coaching to staff
-Encourages risk-taking and supports creativity and initiative
-Actively supports the development and career aspirations of staff
-Appraises performance fairly

-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

-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




Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in sociology, economics, other social science or related area. 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 ten years of progressively responsible experience in socio economic development, policy analysis, sociological research or related area required. Experience with the United Nations intergovernmental bodies (such as the General Assembly, the Economic and Social Council, the Commission for Social Development) or related organisation is desirable. Experience in drafting official documents or other analytical reports and publications for United Nations inter-governmental bodies or related organisation is desirable.




English and French are the two working languages of the United Nations. For this position, fluency in English (both oral and written) is required; knowledge of a second official United Nations language is desirable.


Assessment Method


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


United Nations Considerations


The United Nations shall place 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. (Charter of the United Nations - Chapter 3, article 8). The United Nations Secretariat is a non-smoking environment.

Candidates will be required to meet the requirements of Article 101, paragraph 3, of the Charter as well as the requirements of the position. The United Nations is committed to the highest standards of efficiency, competence and integrity for all its human resources, 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 and/or violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law.
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Senior Social Affairs Officer - United Nations, United States, Deadline: May-16-2014 Senior Social Affairs Officer - United Nations, United States, Deadline: May-16-2014 Reviewed by KHMER-INSIDER on Tuesday, April 01, 2014 Rating: 5