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Regional Infrastructure Advisor

Copenhagen | Copenhagen

Background information - AFR

Africa Region

Based in Copenhagen, Denmark, the Africa Region supports UNOPS country offices in the region, providing financial oversight of projects, procuring goods and services and managing human resources.

AFR helps ensure that projects are executed to the highest standards, providing a shared knowledge base and ensuring that best practices and lessons learned are disseminated between projects across the entire region.

Background Information - Job-specific

UNOPS strategic focus places increased emphasis on national capacity development and sustainable approaches to project management, procurement and infrastructure services.  A key objective is to be recognized as an organization that delivers world-class infrastructure and project management, which is both economically and socially sustainable, even in the most challenging environments

The Office of the Regional Director for Africa is located in Copenhagen and manages a geographically-defined portfolio of engagements, including leading strategy and business development for the region, overseeing management of operations, and ensuring appropriate risk management.

The Africa (AFR) region currently consists of Operational Hubs (a cluster of neighboring countries) in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Senegal, Ethiopia, Ghana, Tunisia and Kenya. 

Within UNOPS, the Infrastructure and Project Management Group’s objectives are to serve the organization’s personnel and partners by broadening their infrastructure and project management capabilities, while disseminating best-practices in both of these areas. Through this work, the group helps facilitate the successful delivery of programs and projects around the world. This role will play a critical role working within the Africa Region (AFR) while working closely with the Infrastructure and Project Management Group to serve the needs of the region in an Infrastructure Regional Advisory position.

Working with both the Africa Region and the Infrastructure and Project Management Group, the  incumbent will be responsible for providing technical advice and support in infrastructure and project management to the Regional Director and the UNOPS offices across the Africa Region.

This role will support the Africa region with quality assurance, support and advice regarding the implementation of infrastructure projects, and partnerships development.  The incumbent will support the partnerships development agenda in Africa through their expertise, regional contacts and ability to demonstrate a depth of experience in their field.

The Regional Infrastructure Advisor will be a critical link between AFR and its operations in the field, and IPMG.  This position will report to the existing Regional Director with a secondary reporting line to  IPMG. The  incumbent will be required to work in a collaborative manner, with colleagues at all levels across the organization.

This role will be based in Copenhagen, Denmark but should business needs change, the duty station may be re-located within the Africa Region. 

Functional Responsibilities

The Regional Infrastructure Advisor will be responsible for representing all aspects of the practice within the Africa region. Specific responsibilities include, but are not limited to:

1.       Technical Advice & Quality Assurance

  • Provide technical advice and a quality assurance framework within the region in relation to  infrastructure projects
  • Provide advice with regard to the preparation of  technical specifications, Bills of Quantities, bidding documentation, engineering drawings, construction methodologies, construction planning and programming, and assessments of contractors' technical capacity to deliver
  • Assessment of the quality of design and construction
  • Advising the UNOPS Country management teams regarding compliance with UNOPS Health and Safety and Environmental Management System

2.       Implementation Support

  • Substantive support to the Programme/Project & Team managers in the implementation of infrastructure projects
  • Advise infrastructure practitioners on the application, interpretation and adoption of corporate policy, guidance and best practices
  • Advising the Country management Teams regarding design considerations and design review requirements, and being aware of the capacity and capabilities of the various in-house units across the regions
  • Support with the identification, engagement and management of local and regional consultancy firms providing these services

3.       Partnerships Development Support

  • Support UNOPS Partnership Development & Strategic positioning agenda in the region through her/his expertise, regional contacts and demonstrated ability
  • Represent UNOPS at appropriate regional or country level forum within Africa
  • Review proposals for infrastructure projects in the region as appropriate, via the corporate Engagement system and providing advice to the Hub Directors and Regional Director accordingly.
  • S/he will provide advice and support on new initiatives, with focus on quality assurance and quality control of project documents, costing and cost implications, implementation plans, milestones and benchmark indicators
  • S/he will advise and assist with technical input to proposals, including project planning, governance, and approach considerations

4.       Knowledge Sharing and Technical leadership

  • Dissemination of training for corporate guidance and instructions that impact infrastructure practitioners, as required
  • Ensure best practice guidance is disseminated and communicated throughout the region and within the organisation more generally.
  • S/he will contribute to the knowledge of IPMG knowledge management by capturing case studies and best practice examples from the region, making recommendations on policy and tools, as well as contributing to the development of guidance material and tools
  • Undertake missions to Country Offices and project sites to review and advise with regard to quality and progress related issues, and highlight operational problems, within the region.
  • S/he will provide expertise and support in implementation of standards and frameworks, procurement and contract modality selection and management, Quality Control, Quality Assurance, OH&S, EMS etc.

5.       Project Management Technical Advice and Implementation Support 

  • The incumbent will provide substantive support to Programme Managers/Project Managers/Team Managers in the planning and implementation of projects and programmes throughout their whole life cycle within the region he/she is assigned.
  • S/he will be responsible for providing advice to projects or programmes that may need to be brought back to stability.
  • Provide advice to Head of Programmes, Programme Managers, Project Managers and Heads of PMOs on how to embed best practices of project and programme governance, risk management, project and programme management in their Country Offices.
  • Advise and provide expertise/support in the implementation of UNOPS Project and Programme Management methodologies, which are based on best practices as recommended by PMI and PRINCE2®
  • Play a crucial role in advising UNOPS Programme and Project Managers on measures to strengthen national capacity building with regards to sustainable project management best practices, as well as other cross cutting issues, and support a stronger focus on benefit management of projects.
  • Assist with the development of work plans and provide tangible support in helping country offices, where relevant, achieve P3M3® level 3 or 4.
  • In coordination with IPMG, the incumbent will deliver project/programme maturity model assessments and follow-up missions, and provide advisory support to field staff on UNOPS best practices, engagement risks, management models, and use of PM tools and systems.

Education/Experience/Language requirements


  • An Advanced University degree (Master's or equivalent such as MEng, MASc) or professional certification in Civil Engineering (CEng, PE, P. Eng.) is required;
  • A first-level University degree (Bachelor's or equivalent such as BEng, BASc) in combination with 2 additional years of experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.


  • Certification in a recognized project management methodology, preferably PRINCE2® or PMP and knowledge of programme management methodology (e.g. MSP®) is required.

Work Experience:

  • A minimum of 7 years progressive work experience in an Engineering and/or Construction Management role including minimum 3 at senior management level is required.
  • A minimum of 5 years progressive work experience in Project Management is required.
  • Experience of working in developing countries in an international environment is highly desired. 
  • Experience of working in and providing innovative technical solutions for post-conflict, post-disaster environments will be an asset. 


  • Fluency in English is required;
  • Fluency in French is required;


Develops and implements sustainable business strategies, thinks long term and externally in order to positively shape the organization. Anticipates and perceives the impact and implications of future decisions and activities on other parts of the organization.
Treats all individuals with respect; responds sensitively to differences and encourages others to do the same. Upholds organizational and ethical norms. Maintains high standards of trustworthiness. Role model for diversity and inclusion.
Acts as a positive role model contributing to the team spirit. Collaborates and supports the development of others. For people managers only: Acts as positive leadership role model, motivates, directs and inspires others to succeed, utilizing appropriate leadership styles.
Demonstrates understanding of the impact of own role on all partners and always puts the end beneficiary first. Builds and maintains strong external relationships and is a competent partner for others (if relevant to the role).
Efficiently establishes an appropriate course of action for self and/or others to accomplish a goal. Actions lead to total task accomplishment through concern for quality in all areas. Sees opportunities and takes the initiative to act on them. Understands that responsible use of resources maximizes our impact on our beneficiaries.
Open to change and flexible in a fast paced environment. Effectively adapts own approach to suit changing circumstances or requirements. Reflects on experiences and modifies own behavior. Performance is consistent, even under pressure. Always pursues continuous improvements.
Evaluates data and courses of action to reach logical, pragmatic decisions. Takes an unbiased, rational approach with calculated risks. Applies innovation and creativity to problem-solving.
Expresses ideas or facts in a clear, concise and open manner. Communication indicates a consideration for the feelings and needs of others. Actively listens and proactively shares knowledge. Handles conflict effectively, by overcoming differences of opinion and finding common ground.

Functional competencies

• Ability to innovate and provide solutions to infrastructure challenges in a development context

• Time Management Ability

• Exceptional written and verbal Communication Skills

• Goals oriented and driven

• Creativity and demonstrated experience in forging innovating concepts and advocating best practices

• Excellent analytical ability

• Ability to develop networks through existing links to infrastructure industry professionals within the development sector

• Organizational Ability and Quality Orientation

• Results focused, with the energy and ability to manage multiple competing priorities

• Ability to implement and take strategic actions through sound operational understanding of the technical field

• Able to add value and act as partner with other practices and across regional structures to ensure optimal resource mobilization within the organisation

• Teamwork Skills;

• Promotes a knowledge sharing and learning culture in the office

• Ability to advocate and provide policy advice

• Actively works towards continuing personal learning and development in one or more Practice Areas, acts on learning plan and applies newly acquired skills.

• Commitment to Diversity

Contract type, level and duration

Contract type: ICA
Contract level: I-ICA3
Contract duration: one year initially, renewable subject to satisfactory performance and funding availability

For more details about the ICA contractual modality, please follow this link: 

Additional Considerations

  • Please note that the closing date is midnight Copenhagen time
  • Applications received after the closing date will not be considered.
  • Only those candidates that are short-listed for interviews will be notified.
  • Qualified female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply.
  • For staff positions only, UNOPS reserves the right to appoint a candidate at a lower level than the advertised level of the post
  • The incumbent is responsible to abide by security policies, administrative instructions, plans and procedures of the UN Security Management System and that of UNOPS.  

It is the policy of UNOPS to conduct background checks on all potential recruits/interns. Recruitment/internship in UNOPS is contingent on the results of such checks.

Background Information - UNOPS


UNOPS supports the successful implementation of its partners’ peacebuilding, humanitarian and development projects around the world. Our mission is to serve people in need by expanding the ability of the United Nations, governments and other partners to manage projects, infrastructure and procurement in a sustainable and efficient manner.

Working in some of the world’s most challenging environments, our vision is to advance sustainable implementation practices, always satisfying or surpassing our partners’ expectations.

With over 7,000 personnel spread across 80 countries, UNOPS offers its partners the logistical, technical and management knowledge they need, wherever they need it.

A flexible structure and global reach means that we can quickly respond to our partners' needs, while offering the benefits of economies of scale. 

Before applying, please make sure that you have read the requirements for the position and that you qualify.
Applications from non-qualifying applicants will most likely be discarded by the recruiting manager.

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  • Organization: UNOPS - United Nations Office for Project Services
  • Location: Copenhagen | Copenhagen
  • Grade: IICA-3, International Individual Contractors Agreement - Mid level
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Infrastructure and Urban-Rural development
    • Infrastructure and Urban-Rural development
    • Project and Programme Management
  • Closing Date: 2017-06-21

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