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Snr Investigation Specialist

Geneva (Switzerland)

  • Organization: UNHCR - United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
  • Location: Geneva (Switzerland)
  • Grade: P-4, International Professional - Internationally recruited position - Mid level
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Internal audit, Investigation and Inspection
  • Closing Date: 2020-10-20

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Before submitting an application, UNHCR staff members intending to apply to this Job Opening are requested to consult the Recruitment and Assignments Policy (RAP, UNHCR/HCP/2017/2 and the Recruitment and Assignments Administrative Instruction (RAAI), UNHCR/AI/2017/7 OF 15 August 2017.

Senior Investigation Specialist


The Senior Investigation Specialist is located in the Investigation Service of the Inspector General's Office (IGO).

The ultimate aim of the IGO is to support the effective, efficient and accountable management of UNHCR operations and to play a positive role in upholding an environment of integrity in UNHCR by contributing to the maintenance of the highest standards of personal and professional conduct by UNHCR personnel, and affiliated workforce in specific cases.

The Investigation Service, working under the authority of the Inspector General, has responsibility for carrying out investigations into possible misconduct within UNHCR in a timely and appropriate manner and that findings are transmitted to the Inspector General.

The Senior Investigation Specialist reports to the Head of the Investigation Service and works independently or as part of a team on investigation cases assigned to him or her by the Head of Service. The Senior Investigation Specialist has extensive contacts with all levels of staff within UNHCR, as well as with staff from other organisations, governments, NGOs and with UNHCR beneficiaries.

The Senior Investigation Specialist investigates cases of alleged misconduct by establishing facts based on evidence gathered from available sources. The incumbent of the post must be able to operate independently and to the highest standards of impartiality and integrity as investigation cases may lead to the imposition of disciplinary measures by DHRM on individual staff members.


- Reports received by the IGO on possible misconduct within UNHCR, and in specific cases affiliated staff members working under the supervision and management of UNHCR, are efficiently and properly assessed to identify the appropriate investigative approach / plan to establish the facts relevant to the case.
- Investigations of possible misconduct are carried out in a timely and appropriate manner (e.g. in accordance with the Administration of Justice in the UN requirements) and findings are reported without delay to the Inspector General.

- Design and monitor quality standards and procedures for all steps in the investigation process.
- Act as a focal point for specific areas of expertise / typology of investigation as may be required and/or delegated by the Head of Service.
- Train and coach Investigation Service staff, and other UNHCR staff, in carrying out professional investigations / forensics.
- Conduct investigations into allegations of misconduct as assigned, in a timely and effective manner and in accordance with the Investigation Guidelines and UN/UNHCR policies, undertaking field missions when required. This may involve gathering evidence from available sources, including electronic and e-mail records, interviewing witnesses as well as interaction at all levels with external actors (other UN agencies/embassies/missions/implementing partners etc.) as well as UNHCR staff and UNVs. 
- Assess allegations of misconduct with a view to determining the most effective investigative approach, cognizant of risks to staff and operations, and develop investigation plans and methodologies to gather evidence and establish facts.
- In coordination and compliance with due process requirements, conduct investigations with sensitivity ensuring confidentiality and accuracy of evidence gathered and impartiality of conclusions reached.
- Conduct investigation interviews (witnesses and subjects) in accordance with Investigation Guidelines, UN Administrative Instructions and the framework of Administration of Justice within the UN.
- Gather and analyse physical evidence, including forensic evidence, to establish facts.
- Prepare reports based on the available evidence and the investigation findings, such as: Preliminary Investigation Reports (PIR) in cases of misconduct; Closure Reports where no misconduct has been established; and Mmanagement Implication Reports on systemic issues (e.g. procedural or management issues) identified during the investigation.
- Liaise with different units within UNHCR; e.g. DHRM, Ethic Office, DIST etc., in relation to the investigation function.
- Provide advice and guidance to staff members on how to report misconduct and, as may be required, how to assist in conducting preliminary assessments / investigations.
- Assess initial reports of possible misconduct and enter data into I-Sight database, as required.
- Perform any other tasks in the interest of UNHCR as requested by the Head of the Investigation Service or the Inspector General (e.g. participate in inquires, ad hoc inspections or investigations in support of other UN agencies).


- Decide on interviews to be conducted during the course of investigations.
- Has authority to access to any UNHCR document, site and property related to ongoing investigations.


- Advanced University Degree, in Law, Criminology, Public Administration or related subject bearing on the conduct of investigations in administrative law contexts.
- Formal professional qualification in investigation work.
- Working knowledge of UN administrative disciplinary rules and regulations.
- Minimum 10 years of progressively responsible experience in the field of investigation, of which at least 7 years in an international environment and 5 years within the UN/UNHCR. 
- Familiarity with IT and forensic procedures.
- Ability to communicate clearly and effectively, both orally and in writing, including the preparation of clear and concise reports.
- Ability to work effectively in English essential and French highly desirable.
- Honesty and integrity in the highest degree
- Resourcefulness, initiative, maturity and judgment


- Familiarity with UN justice system
- Ability to work in other UN official languages C001L3 - Accountability Level 3
C002L3 - Teamwork & Collaboration Level 3
C003L3 - Communication Level 3
C004L3 - Commitment to Continuous Learning Level 3
C005L3 - Client & Result Orientation Level 3
C006L3 - Organizational Awareness Level 3
M001L3 - Empowering and Building Trust Level 3
M006L3 - Managing Resources Level 3
M004L3 - Strategic Planning and Vision Level 3
M003L3 - Judgement and Decision Making Level 3
X001L3 - Analytical Thinking Level 3
X005L3 - Planning and Organizing Level 3
X007L3 - Political Awareness Level 3

The UNHCR workforce consists of many diverse nationalities, cultures, languages and opinions. UNHCR seeks to sustain and strengthen this diversity to ensure equal opportunities as well as an inclusive working environment for its entire workforce. Applications are encouraged from all qualified candidates without distinction on grounds of race, colour, sex, national origin, age, religion, disability, sexual orientation and gender identity.

Please note that UNHCR does not charge a fee at any stage of its recruitment process (application, interview, meeting, travelling, processing, training or any other fees).

Please note that the closing date for vacancies in this September 2020 Compendium is Tuesday 20 October 2020  (midnight Geneva time).

We do our best to provide you the most accurate info, but closing dates may be wrong on our site. Please check on the recruiting organization's page for the exact info. Candidates are responsible for complying with deadlines and are encouraged to submit applications well ahead.
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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