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Head of Office for SWI & LIE


  • Organization: UNHCR - United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
  • Location: Bern
  • Grade: Mid level - P-4, International Professional - Internationally recruited position
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Managerial positions
  • Closing Date: Closed

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.

Head of Office for Switzerland & Liechtenstein

Organizational Setting and Work Relationships

Under the supervision of the Deputy Director, the Head of Office for Switzerland & Liechtenstein is responsible for developing/maintaining positive relations with the relevant Governmental Authorities at senior levels, other relevant actors in the two countries, including the Courts, NGOs, UN Agencies, and Embassies to promote UNHCR objectives and mobilise support for UNHCR activities with a view to enhance the protection of refugees and persons of concern, and to promote international and regional refugee law principles.

All UNHCR staff members are accountable to perform their duties as reflected in their job description. They do so within their delegated authorities, in line with the regulatory framework of UNHCR which includes the UN Charter, UN Staff Regulations and Rules, UNHCR Policies and Administrative Instructions as well as relevant accountability frameworks. In addition, staff members are required to discharge their responsibilities in a manner consistent with the core, functional, cross-functional and managerial competencies and UNHCR¿s core values of professionalism, integrity and respect for diversity.

- Maintain relations with national and local Government Officials at a senior level, other relevant actors, including parliamentarians and Courts; other UN agencies, embassies and NGOs in order to promote UNHCR objectives and promote respect for international refugee law.
- Guide development and implementation of a protection strategy as well as an external relations strategy in line with the Bureau strategy and global strategic priorities.
- Analyse and follow-up on developments relating to refugees, asylum seekers and other PoC, and, where appropriate, intervene in respect of these with the relevant Government or other actors, providing advice/opinions where appropriate.
- Ensure that UNHCR positions and interventions are prepared on legislative proposals, policy issues, and major legal issues which arise with respect to the protection of refugees, asylum-seekers and other PoC.
- Ensure provision of technical expertise in various fora, projects, workshops, seminars, and other events/projects relevant to UNHCR and undertaken by UNHCR or others with a view to promoting international refugee law and UNHCR Guidelines.
- Ensure that media relations and public awareness activities to ensure greater knowledge in public opinion of refugee and asylum issues and promote UNHCR objectives.
- Ensure good cooperation with the national partner CH4UNHCR.
- Ensure responses to queries from Government Officials, NGOs, individuals etc. and provide the information required as appropriate or refer the queries elsewhere where possible.
- Ensure that the planning, formulation and budgeting of identified projects are done in line with UNHCR guidelines, and ensure the timely implementation of such projects, including with implementing partners.
- Ensure that all deadlines for monitoring and reporting of UNHCR operational and protection activities are met on a regular basis.
- Manage all UNHCR resources, both human, financial/material for optimum benefit to the PoC and UNHCR staff.
- Prepare and submit reports, both verbally and written, to the Deputy Director and the Director of the Bureau for Europe.
- Undertake other duties/responsibilities/functions as required and/or delegated by the Bureau Director.
- Perform other related duties as required.

Minimum Qualifications

Education & Professional Work Experience
Years of Experience / Degree Level
For P4 - 9 years relevant experience with Undergraduate degree; or 8 years relevant experience with Graduate degree; or 7 years relevant experience with Doctorate degree

Field(s) of Education
Law/International Law; Political Science; Social Science; or other relevant field.
(Field(s) of Education marked with an asterisk* are essential)

Certificates and/or Licenses
Not specified.

Relevant Job Experience
9 years of relevant experience at professional level and minimum 5 years in international capacity. In-depth knowledge of UNHCR mandate and protection guidelines. German, English and French essential.
Other UN languages. Strong background in European Asylum Law. Experience in Presentations and Public speaking.

Functional Skills
CO-Drafting and Documentation;
SO-Presentation skills;
PR-Protection-related guidelines, standards and indicators;
UN-UNHCR Operations, mandate, principles and policies;
EX-Experience in an international capacity;
MS-National legal/admin/judicial/political system of the country of assignment;
ER-Public Speaking;
(Functional Skills marked with an asterisk* are essential)

Language Requirements
For International Professional and Field Service jobs: Knowledge of English and UN working language of the duty station if not English.
For National Professional jobs: Knowledge of English and UN working language of the duty station if not English and local language.
For General Service jobs: Knowledge of English and/or UN working language of the duty station if not English. 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
M002L3 - Managing Performance Level 3
M006L3 - Managing Resources Level 3
M005L3 - Leadership Level 3
M003L3 - Judgement and Decision Making Level 3
M004L3 - Strategic Planning and Vision Level 3
X005L3 - Planning and Organizing Level 3
X001L3 - Analytical Thinking 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 addendum is Monday 7 December 2020 (midnight Geneva time).

This vacancy is now closed.
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