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Head of Policy

Mogadishu (Somalia)

Background Information - PSC

Peace and Security Cluster

The UNOPS Peace and Security Cluster (PSC) within the Global Portfolio Services Office is a principal service provider in the field of mine action with the United Nations Mine Action Service (UNMAS), UNDP, UNICEF, Governments of mine-affected countries and other mine action partners. The Cluster is responsible to administer, provide support and oversight of the day-to-day management of the Project Field offices, both according to the client requirements and in line with UNOPS rules and regulations.  It is headed by the Cluster Director who has the overall authority and accountability for the performance of the Peace and Security Cluster on behalf of its clients.


United Nations Mine Action Service (UNMAS) is a division of the Office of Rule of Law and Security Institutions (OROLSI) in the Department of Peacekeeping Operations (DPKO). UNMAS is mandated by the United Nations General Assembly (RES/68/72) to ensure an effective, proactive and coordinated response to the problem posed by a wide range of explosive hazards. Legislative mandates also recognize UNMAS technical expertise in responding to threats posed by unsecured and unsafe conventional weapons and ammunition stockpiles. As an office within DPKO, UNMAS supports peacekeeping and special political missions in accordance with Security Council mandates. 

UNMAS as a component of the United Nations Support Office in Somalia (UNSOS) provides explosive hazard management capacities, including mitigation, to AMISOM as part of a logistical support package. Non-lethal tactical advice and analysis is delivered by UNMAS technical advisors located in each AMISOM Sector Headquarters and at AMISOM Force Headquarters, who support AMISOM planning and operations. UNMAS support includes both enabling (“operate in spite of IEDs”) and response (“defeat the device”). As a component of the UN Mission in Somalia (UNSOM) UNMAS also supports the Federal Government of Somalia, including the Somali Police Force, Somali Explosive Management Authority and National Security Advisor. 

Background Information - Job-specific

Somalia Since 2009 UNMAS has been mandated through the UN Support Office to AMISOM (UNSOA) to support the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) with training and mentoring in explosive ordnance disposal (EOD) and improvised explosive device – defeat (IED-D), provided the relevant specialized equipment and the use of explosive detection dogs (EDD). The AMISOM support project is the core UNMAS project and contains a number of sub-projects within the whole.

In addition UNMAS is mandated through the United Nations Assistance Mission in Somalia (UNSOM) to deliver projects associated with: Weapons and Ammunition Management; stabilization and employment; humanitarian demining; EOD/IED-D with the Somali Police Force, and capacity development with the State body for Explosive Hazard Management and the coordination of humanitarian demining. UNMAS, a component of the UN Department of Peacekeeping Operations Office of Rule of Law and Security Institutions, draws upon project management services from UNOPS for implementation of its field operations

Functional Responsibilities

This position will be assigned within the project administration setup in a specific country/programme (i.e. office structure, Delegation of Authority (DOA), oneUNOPS functions, segregation of duties, etc.). The incumbent will have responsibilities determined by UNOPS rules and regulations embodied in its regulatory framework - Organizational Directives, Administrative Instructions and other documents as periodically issued and updated by UNOPS. Reporting lines with regards to compliance with UNOPS rules and regulations are ultimately to UNOPS Director Peace and Security Centre through Portfolio Manager. In addition, division of responsibilities regarding administrative processes in support of the programme objectives will be as determined for each country office and confirmed in writing by UNOPS Director of Peace and Security Centre.
The Head of Policy for UNMAS Somalia is responsible for guiding and aligning current and future operations related to Improvised Explosive Device (IED), Weapons and Ammunition Management (WAM), Somalia Security Forces (SSF) and other explosive hazard threats. The Head of Policy will advise on the Security Council Mandates, UN policies, and other relevant international and national standards. He/She will also lead analysis and ensure quality controls for the products that are produced by the analysis unit to inform operational and policy decisions related to IED, WAM, and SSF and explosive hazard threats in Somalia. The Head of Policy will act as the local focal point between UNMAS and other key stakeholders under the guidance and direction of the UNMAS Somalia Senior Programme Manager.  This position will supervise WAM Police, IED TM (Technical Manual), SSF Policy and the Analysis units.

The incumbent will report directly to the UNMAS Senior Programme Manager, and be responsible for the following functions:

  • Advise management on policy and strategic issues linked to IED, WAM, SSF as well as other explosive hazard threats;
  • Liaise between UNMAS HQ, specific programmes and key stakeholders in country;
  • Implement the policy and development of local technical solutions for IED, SSF support, and WAM;
  • Liaise with appropriate UN and international partners to facilitate information sharing on IED, SSF support, and WAM;
  • Represent UNMAS in IED, SSF support, and WAM matters at the field level;
  • Conduct the assessment and the recommendation of new training requirements in prevention and mitigation measures through the introduction of new technology, equipment, materials, and processes;
  • Support institutional capacity development of national security authorities for the protection of civilians against explosive hazards;
  • Develop mature working relationships with Federal Government of Somalia (FGS) and Federal Member State (FMS) representatives to ensure effective communication and coordination of capacity building efforts;
  • Work closely with the Programme Office and with PMO on documentation, reporting theory of change and stratgeies as well as for funding and donor processes in order to provide relevant recommendations to advance policy and build capacity of local security forces;
  • Work closely with other offices including Security to ensure information management and analysis;
  • Undertake Post Blast Investigation as required and requested by management;
  • Synchronize internal UNMAS planning and policy decisions with external coordination mechanisms such as Comprehensive Approach to Security (CAS) & Transition planning;
  • Identify continuous improvements and lessons learned;
  • Implement any other tasks requested by the UNMAS Senior Programme Manager.


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.(for levels IICA-2, IICA-3, LICA Specialist- 10, LICA Specialist-11, NOC, NOD, P3, P4 and above)
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.

Education/Experience/Language requirements


  • Advanced University Degree (Master’s Degree or equivalent) in International Development, International Relations, Public Policy, Law, Business Administration, Political Science or related fields with a minimum of Seven (7) years of relevant experience is required; OR
  • First Level University Degree (Bachelors Degree or equivalent) in International Development, International Relations, Public Policy, Law, Business Administration, Political Science or related fields  with a minimum of Nine (9) years of relevant experience; OR
  • Military Experience at the Senior Non-Commissioned Officer or Officer level (or equivalent) with a minimum of Thirteen (13) years of relevant experience.

Work Experience

  • Relevant experience is defined as progressively responsible experience in the development and delivery of policy outputs (e.g. research programmes, projects, reports and surveys, evaluation, etc)
  • Experience in the field of explosive hazard management, including C-IED operations and ammunition management is required 
  • Experience in conducting capacity building with local actors in EOD/IEDD techniques is required

  • IEDD certification through international military or civilian accredited training is required;

  • Fluency in English (Reading, writing and Speaking) is required;
  • Fluency in another UN working language desired.

Contract type, level and duration

Contract type:  (staff) Fixed Term Appointment 
Contract level:  P4
Contract duration:  One year initially, renewable subject to satisfactory performance and funding availability

For more details about United Nations staff contracts, 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.
  • Work life harmonization - UNOPS values its people and recognizes the importance of balancing professional and personal demands. We have a progressive policy on work-life harmonization and offer several flexible working options. This policy applies to UNOPS personnel on all contract types
  • 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.

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


With over 4,000 UNOPS personnel and approximately 7,000 personnel recruited on behalf of UNOPS partners spread across 80 countries, our workforce represents a wide range of nationalities and cultures. We promote a balanced, diverse workforce — a strength that helps us better understand and address our partners’ needs, and continually strive to improve our gender balance through initiatives and policies that encourage recruitment of qualified female candidates.

Work life harmonization

UNOPS values its people and recognizes the importance of balancing professional and personal demands.

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: Mogadishu (Somalia)
  • Grade: P-4, International Professional - Internationally recruited position - Mid level
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Legal - Broad
    • Managerial positions
  • Closing Date: 2018-09-17

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