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Spotlight (SI) Coordinator

Dushanbe (Tajikistan)

  • Organization: UN WOMEN - United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women
  • Location: Dushanbe (Tajikistan)
  • Grade: SB-5 (SC10/SC11), Service Contract, Local Contractors Agreement - Mid level
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Women's Empowerment and Gender Mainstreaming
    • Managerial positions
  • Closing Date: 2020-04-03

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The European Union and the United Nations have launched the Spotlight Initiative, an ambitious and innovative multi-year global programme aimed at addressing all forms of violence against women and girls (VAWG), and harmful practices. It will follow a transformative and evidence-based approach, addressing unequal power relations between men and women and focusing on gender equality and women’s empowerment, as well as ending impunity for VAWG. 

In line with the principles of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the Initiative will follow a human rights-based approach and take into consideration the specific needs of women and girls who experience multiple and intersecting forms of discrimination and uphold the principle of “leaving no one behind.”

The Spotlight Initiative aims to support transformative change on the ground to end violence against women and girls (EVAWG), in numerous countries globally, including Tajikistan. The initiative comes with the highest level of commitment globally and will be governed by the UN Deputy Secretary General and the Vice President of the EU Commission.

The Spotlight Tajikistan Programme will be implemented through four Recipient UN Organizations – RUNOS (UN Women, UNFPA, UNDP and UNICEF) with a focus on addressing Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV), notably violence within the family. In line with the impact expected from the Spotlight Initiative in the region, the interventions from the Spotlight Tajikistan Programme will contribute to ensuring that women and girls, particularly those most vulnerable, live a life free of violence and harmful practices.

This will be achieved through a comprehensive multi-sectoral, survivor-centred and do-no-harm approach to the implementation of interventions across the six Outcome Areas/Pillars, to bring positive and meaningful change to the lives of women and girls subject to all types of violence and harmful practices in Tajikistan, ensuring that women and girls, particularly those most vulnerable, live a life free of violence and harmful practices. These six pillars include: 1) Laws and Policies, 2) Institutional Strengthening, 3) Prevention of Violence, 4) Available, accessible, and acceptable, quality services, 5) Quality and reliable data, 6) Supporting women’s movements and relevant civil society organizations.

The interventions across the six Pillars will complement each other to engage a range of actors and institutions at the national and sub-national levels, ensuring that actions at the national level are influencing change at the sub-national levels and that local actions and voices are informing decisions at the national level.

The Spotlight Tajikistan Programme aims to effect change at the individual and inter-personal level, while shifting institutional practices and social norms which are more gender equitable and supporting legal and policy improvements and enforcement of existing legislation on VAWG, in line with international human rights standards, accelerating Tajikistan’s achievement of SDG 5 on Gender Equality and the broader 2030 Agenda.

The programme will generate new connections and facilitate creativity in seeking solutions to difficult challenges. It will listen and build on the priorities of key stakeholders and recognize that empowerment and change must start from within. The UN system will model this change in its investment and approach to partnership, striving to ‘walk the talk’ in EVAWG and building the momentum for wider fight for equality in Tajikistan.

This post is in line with the new generation of Resident Coordinator offices, with the new skillset and competencies required to deliver on the 2030 Agenda, as well as the EU/UN Spotlight Initiative.

Duties and Responsibilities

The Spotlight Initiative Coordinator (SI Coordinator) will exercise overall responsibility for facilitating the planning and coordination of the Spotlight Tajikistan Program, monitoring and reporting on the implementation and programme results, overseeing joint programme implementation and providing technical support and mentoring to the implementing Agencies as needed, ensuring the technical coherence of the Spotlight Initiative in Tajikistan. This role will be carried out with the support of a Programme Specialist who will be directly managed by the SI Coordinator.

This requires working closely with various high-level stakeholders the Resident Coordinator’s Office, RUNOS and the technical task-forces (on Monitoring and Evaluation, Communications and Finance and Administration), the EU Delegation technical focal point as well as other stakeholders – such as the National Multi-stakeholder Steering Committee and the Civil Society Reference Group.

The SI Coordinator will therefore need to have demonstrated experience and understanding of gender equality, women's empowerment and EVAW, as well as coordination and mentoring experience and communication and mediation skills.

The SI Coordinator will be ultimately accountable to the UN Resident Coordinator, working closely with the Resident Coordinator’s Office (RCO) on technical issues as required. However, in the spirit of collaboration, engagement and transparency, the SI Coordinator will report regularly to an Oversight Committee chaired by the RC and comprised of all the Heads of RUNOs. On a daily basis the SI Coordinator will work in close coordination and under the technical guidance of UN Women as Technical Coherence Agency and Chair of the Tajikistan Gender Thematic Group. 

  1. Description of tasks

The SI Coordinator facilitates the planning, coordination and reporting of the Spotlight Initiative, ensuring the technical coherence of the intervention. This includes:

  1. Guide the implementation of the Spotlight programme in Tajikistan
  • ensure the timely coordination and management of the Spotlight Programme, notably by ensuring the consolidation of joint annual work plans and budgets, facilitating and following-up on agreed deliverables and schedules;
  • report regularly to the Spotlight Oversight Committee on programme performance and results;
  • ensure that programme guidance, updates and information is consolidated for the Steering Committee, implementing partners and other stakeholders, with the support from the Programme Specialist and in close coordination with the RCO;
  • regularly communicate with the Spotlight Initiative Secretariat Technical Unit in New York as needed);
  • provide technical advice on best global practices and innovative approaches to support effective programme implementation and achievement of programme deliverables, regularly consulting and providing feedback on products developed and relevant documents (including support and feedback on implementation processes) to ensure coherence and quality;
  • develop a common vision and understanding amongst the agencies on the main technical issues/interventions, sharing what is the evidence on what works and support the different agencies to ensure the evidence of what works to prevent and respond to VAWG is at the center of the programme.
  1. Oversee the monitoring and reporting of the programme
  • oversee and contributing to the process of monitoring the programme implementation of activities and finances – and ensuring the resulting maintenance of internal expenditure controls, production of consolidated budgets and annual reports (both narrative and financial) following SI guidelines and tools and ensuring the coherence and quality of the final products;
  • guide the Programme Specialist on monitoring and evaluation support to the team and follow-up on activities and deadlines;
  • prepare analytical reviews and systematically capturing lessons learnt and main findings from the programme implementation, making recommendations and ensuring that SI teams follow technical advice and recommendations;
  • identify and monitor programme risks and provide support and guidance to mitigate and address them in a timely manner.
  1. Coordinate between the different UN agencies and support the implementation team to achieve a coherent and aligned presence of the Spotlight initiative in Tajikistan
  • provide technical support to RC, RUNOS and the UN Women Country Programme Manager on inter-agency coordination related activities by attending meetings, events, and participating in groups and committees;
  • support coordination with other UN agencies, EU delegation, government departments, donors and NGOs to ensure the Initiative’s capacity development approach is harmonized and aligned with other in-country efforts;
  • provide guidance in the overall coherence of the programme across pillars, in line with Country Programme Document;
  • facilitate the Spotlight Implementation Hub (SI Hub) where focal points from implementing Agencies and thematic task forces will coordinate interventions and discuss and plan joint programming, notably facilitating linkages with partners when implementation of activities is similar;
  • provide SI Hub and wider implementation team with substantive advice and technical assistance, providing training and capacity development as needed;
  • mentor and coaching implementing staff and providing input to performance assessments as required;
  • guide the process of delivery of technical assistance and engagement with partners, as per the planned activities;
  • support recruitment processes, as necessary.
  1. Promote partnerships and support in developing resource mobilization strategies
  • provide technical and coordination support to RUNOS and RC in the development of a joint resource mobilization and sustainability strategy for the programme;
  • develop relevant documentation on donors and develop potential opportunities for resource mobilization;
  • support the SI Hub as needed to build, manage, and expand relationships with national and sub-national partners.
  1. Oversee advocacy, knowledge building and communication efforts
  • support the implementation team in drafting briefs, policy dialogue and other documents related to the Spotlight Initiative – monitoring that these are being done and ensuring the coherence and quality;
  • organize periodic consultations with key stakeholders, women leaders, human rights experts and UN partners to gather inputs on interventions, as necessary;
  • support representation of the Spotlight Programme in meetings and policy dialogues as necessary;
  • oversee the design and implementation of the Spotlight Communication and Advocacy Strategy, including following-up and supporting joint tasks, ensuring the coordination of efforts, the coherence of the messages and the quality of communication and visibility products.
  • facilitate the dissemination of knowledge products on the Spotlight programme targeting relevant stakeholders at the state, national and international levels;
  • review and oversee the development of knowledge management strategies and methodologies and products on the Spotlight programme, in collaboration with the SI Hub and the relevant task forces.
  1. Key performance indicators
  • Timely and quality programme strategies and contributions
  • Timely and quality of programme delivery in line with budget, workplans and the Programme Document (including quality reports), ensuring technical coherence
  • Quality of advocacy, communication and knowledge management initiatives, including overseeing maintenance of internal systems
  • Quality background and presentation materials
  • Timely and accurate support to events, workshops, and missions
  • Full compliance of administrative activities with UN rules, regulations, policies and procedures
  • Performance of implementation team
  • Strong and positive relationships with donors, partners and other stakeholders working in the area of elimination of the violence against women and girls


Core Values:

  • Professionalism - demonstrated understanding of operations relevant to the Resident Coordinator Office; technical capabilities or knowledge relevant or transferrable to the UN RCO procedures and rules; discretion, political sensitivity, diplomacy and tact to deal with clients; ability to apply good judgement; ability to liaise and coordinate with a range of different actors, especially in senior positions; where appropriate, high degree of autonomy, personal initiative and ability to take ownership; resourcefulness and willingness to accept wide responsibilities and ability to work independently under established procedures; ability to manage information objectively, accurately and confidentially; responsive and client-oriented
  • Integrity - demonstrate the values and ethical standards of the UN and UN RCO in daily activities and behaviours while acting without consideration of personal gains; resist undue political pressure in decision-making; stand by decisions that are in the organization’s interest even if they are unpopular; take prompt action in cases of unprofessional or unethical behaviour; does not abuse power or authority;
  • Respect for Diversity - ability to operate effectively across organizational boundaries; excellent interpersonal skills; ability to establish and maintain effective partnerships and harmonious working relations in a multi-cultural, multi-ethnic, mixed-gender environment with sensitivity and respect for diversity; sensitivity and adaptability to culture, gender, religion, nationality and age; commitment to implementing the goal of gender equality by ensuring the equal participation and full involvement of women and men in all aspects of UN operations; ability to achieve common goals and provide guidance or training to colleagues.

Core Competencies:

  • Awareness and Sensitivity Regarding Gender Issues
  • Accountability
  • Creative Problem Solving
  • Effective Communication
  • Inclusive Collaboration
  • Stakeholder Engagement
  • Leading by Example

Functional Competencies

  • Strong knowledge and demonstrated experience with evidence-based approaches to ending violence against women and girls
  • Strong strategies / programme formulation, implementation and monitoring and evaluation skills, with ability to synthesize program performance data and produce analytical reports to inform management and strategic decision-making
  • Ability to develop detailed operational plans, budgets, and deliver on them
  • Knowledge of Results Based Management and developing capacities on RBM
  • Excellent oral and written skills; excellent drafting, formulation, reporting skills, with accurate and professional document production and editing
  • Excellent interpersonal skills; culturally and socially sensitive; ability to work inclusively and collaboratively with a range of partners
  • Ability to work and adapt professionally and effectively in a challenging environment; ability to work effectively in a multicultural team of international and national personnel
  • Ability to work with minimum supervision; ability to work with tight deadlines
  • Strong networking skills and ability to interact with donors, identify and analyze trends, opportunities and threats to fundraising
  • Commitment to continuous learning - initiative and willingness to learn new skills and stay abreast of new developments in area of expertise; ability to adapt to changes in work environment.
  • Flexibility - adaptability and willingness to travel within the area of operations as necessary.

Required Skills and Experience

Education and certification     

  • Master’s degree or equivalent in social sciences, human rights, gender/women's studies, international development, or a related field with 5 years of qualifying experience is required. A first-level university degree in combination of 7 years of qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.
  • A project/programme management certification would be an added advantage.


  • Minimum 5 years of progressively responsible experience at the national or international level in design, planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of development projects;
  • Technical experience in evidence-based approaches to ending violence against women and girls;
  • Experience of UN (interagency) coordination and liaising with government agencies and/or donors is a strong asset;
  • Experience working in the UN System is an asset;
  • Experience in leading/managing a diverse team is an asset.

Language Requirements         

  • Fluency in English is required
  • Working knowledge of Russian or Tajik is an advantage


Important applicant information

All posts in the SC categories are subject to local recruitment.

Applicant information about UNDP rosters

Note: UNDP reserves the right to select one or more candidates from this vacancy announcement.  We may also retain applications and consider candidates applying to this post for other similar positions with UNDP at the same grade level and with similar job description, experience and educational requirements.

Workforce diversity

UNDP is committed to achieving diversity within its workforce, and encourages all qualified applicants, irrespective of gender, nationality, disabilities, sexual orientation, culture, religious and ethnic backgrounds to apply. All applications will be treated in the strictest confidence.

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