Humanitarian Affairs Officer
New York City (United States of America)
Org. Setting and Reporting
OCHA is part of the United Nations Secretariat and is responsible for bringing together humanitarian actors to ensure a coherent response to emergencies. OCHA also ensures there is a framework within which each actor can contribute to the overall response efforts. OCHA's mission is to mobilize and coordinate effective and principled humanitarian action in partnership with national and international actors in order to alleviate human suffering in disasters and emergencies; advocate the rights of people in need; promote preparedness and prevention and facilitate sustainable solutions.
This job opening is being advertised for the position as Humanitarian Affairs Officer (HAO) which is located in New York in the Operations and Advocacy Division (OAD), Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA). The Humanitarian Affairs Officer reports to the Section Chief for Africa I.
Within delegated authority, the Humanitarian Affairs Officer will be responsible for the following duties:
• Serve as a policy officer; advise on overall policy direction on specific issues; and, more generally, review and provide advice on a diverse range of policy issues related to safeguarding humanitarian principles and ensuring the effective delivery of humanitarian assistance and the linkages with other related areas (e.g. human rights).
• Prepare policy position papers for review.
• Monitor, analyze and report on humanitarian developments, disaster relief/management programmes or emergency situations in assigned country/area; develop and maintain a “watch list” of countries with potential for humanitarian crisis.
• Lead and/or participate in large, complex projects, to include disaster assessment or other missions; coordinate international humanitarian/emergency assistance for complex emergency/disaster situations; ensure necessary support (e.g. staff, funding, specialized equipment, supplies, etc.); prepare situation reports to the international community, apprising of situation to date and specifying unmet requirements of stricken countries.
• Assist in the production of appeals for international assistance; ensure the proper use and spending of donor contributions channeled through OCHA.
• Assist member states in capacity-building for handling emergency situations; develop country-specific indicators for countries of concern in collaboration with area experts and ensure the subsequent monitoring of these indicators; recommend actions based on the analysis of pertinent information.
• Initiate and coordinate activities related to technical cooperation and technical assistance projects in disaster response and disaster response preparedness; formulate project proposals and relevant project documents; provide technical support to field work; review and clear project reports for submission to governments.
• Analyze and assist in introducing new technologies for disaster warning/management.
• Organize and prepare studies on humanitarian, emergency relief and related issues; organize follows-up work, including interagency technical review meetings to support policy development work and decision-making on important issues; and ensure the implementation of recommendations emanating from relevant studies.
• Assist or lead, as appropriate, in the preparation of OCHA reports, studies, background papers, policy guidelines, correspondence, presentations, background papers, policy guidelines, parliamentary documents, etc.; with respect to the latter, take the lead in providing support and information to relevant councils or other entities on specific issues.
• Partner with other humanitarian agencies to plan and evaluate complex humanitarian and emergency assistance programmes; help ensure that latest findings, lessons learned, policy guidelines, etc. are incorporated into these activities, including gender-related considerations.
• Establish and maintain contacts with government officials, other UN agencies, non-governmental organizations, diplomatic missions, media, etc.; ensure appropriate mechanisms to facilitate collaboration and exchange of information both in and outside the UN system, including on early warning and contingency planning, etc.
• Serve as the primary focal point on specific topics or policy-related issues; keep abreast of latest developments, liaise with other humanitarian organizations, donors, etc., ensure appropriate monitoring and reporting mechanisms; provide information and advice on a range of related issues.
• Organize and participate in work groups, meetings, conferences, consultations with other agencies and partners humanitarian and emergency relief-related matters.
• May participate in planning and preparation of unit budget and work program.
• Provide leadership and work direction to assigned work team, and/or mentor and supervise the work of new/junior officers.
• Perform other duties as required.
• PROFESSIONALISM: Knowledge of wide range of humanitarian assistance, emergency relief and related human rights issues. Conceptual and strategic analytical capacity, to include ability to analyze and articulate the humanitarian dimension of complex issues that require a coordinated UN response. Demonstrated problem-solving skills and judgment in applying technical expertise to resolve a wide range of complex issues/problems. Knowledge of region or country of assignment, including the political, economic and social dimensions. Ability to negotiate and to influence others to reach agreement. Ability to work under extreme pressure, on occasion in a highly stressful environment (e.g. civil strife, natural disasters and human misery). Knowledge of institutional mandates, policies and guidelines pertaining to humanitarian affairs and knowledge of the institutions of the UN system. Demonstrated ability to complete in-depth studies and to formulate conclusions/recommendations. Ability to relate humanitarian affairs issues and perspectives, including gender issues, to political, economic, social and human rights programmes in affected country/region. Shows pride in work and in achievements; demonstrates professional competence and mastery of subject matter; is conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, observing deadlines and achieving results; is motivated by professional rather than personal concerns; shows persistence when faced with difficult problems or challenges; remains calm in stressful situations. Takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work.
• TEAMWORK: Works collaboratively with colleagues to achieve organizational goals; solicits input by genuinely valuing others’ ideas and expertise; is willing to learn from others; places team agenda before personal agenda; supports and acts in accordance with final group decision, even when such decisions may not entirely reflect own position; shares credit for team accomplishments and accepts joint responsibility for team shortcomings.
• PLANNING & ORGANIZING: Develops clear goals that are consistent with agreed strategies; identifies priority activities and assignments; adjusts priorities as required; allocates appropriate amount of time and resources for completing work; foresees risks and allows for contingencies when planning; monitors and adjusts plans and actions as necessary; uses time efficiently.
• JUDGEMENT/DECISION-MAKING: Identifies the key issues in a complex situation, and comes to the heart of the problem quickly; gathers relevant information before making a decision; considers positive and negative impacts of decisions prior to making them; takes decisions with an eye to the impact on others and on the Organization; proposes a course of action or makes a recommendation based on all available information; checks assumptions against facts; determines the actions proposed will satisfy the expressed and underlying needs for the decision; makes tough decisions when necessary.
Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in political science, social science, public administration, international studies, economics, engineering, earth sciences or a related field. A first-level university degree in combination with qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.Work Experience
- A minimum of seven (7) years of progressively responsible experience in humanitarian affairs, emergency preparedness, crisis/emergency relief management, rehabilitation, development, or other related area is required.
- Humanitarian experience in the field (actual setting where a mission or project is being implemented) in emergency situations (complex emergency or natural disaster) is required.
- Experience in the UN Common System or any comparable international organization is desirable.
French and English are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the position advertised, fluency in English is required. Knowledge of another UN official language is desirable.Assessment
Evaluation of qualified candidates may include an assessment exercise which may be followed by competency-based interview.Special Notice
Appointment to this position is limited to a finite period of one year. Extension of the appointment is subject to extension of the mandate and/or the availability of the funds.
Staff members are subject to the authority of the Secretary-General and to assignment by him or her. In this context, all staff are expected to move periodically to new functions in their careers in accordance with established rules and procedures.
Staff members of the United Nations Secretariat must fulfil the lateral move requirements to be eligible to apply for this vacancy. Staff members are requested to indicate all qualifying lateral moves in their Personal History Profile (PHP) and cover note.
The United Nations Secretariat is committed to achieving 50/50 gender balance and geographical diversity in its staff. Female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply for this position.
At the United Nations, the paramount consideration in the recruitment and employment of staff is the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence and integrity, with due regard to geographic diversity. All employment decisions are made on the basis of qualifications and organizational needs. The United Nations is committed to creating a diverse and inclusive environment of mutual respect. The United Nations recruits and employs staff regardless of gender identity, sexual orientation, race, religious, cultural and ethnic backgrounds or disabilities. Reasonable accommodation for applicants with disabilities may be provided to support participation in the recruitment process when requested and indicated in the application.
For this position, applicants from the following Member States, which are unrepresented or underrepresented in the UN Secretariat as of 30 September 2020, are strongly encouraged to apply: Afghanistan, Andorra, Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Bahrain, Belize, Brazil, Brunei Darussalam, Cabo Verde, Cambodia, China, Comoros, Cuba, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Dominica, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Grenada, Guinea-Bissau, Japan, Kiribati, Kuwait, Lao People's Democratic Republic, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Marshall Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Monaco, Mozambique, Namibia, Nauru, Norway, Oman, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Qatar, Republic of Korea, Russian Federation, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, San Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Saudi Arabia, Solomon Islands, South Sudan, Suriname, Timor-Leste, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, United Arab Emirates, United States of America, Vanuatu, Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela.
United Nations Considerations
According to article 101, paragraph 3, of the Charter of the United Nations, the paramount consideration in the employment of the staff is the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity. Candidates will not be considered for employment with the United Nations if they have committed violations of international human rights law, violations of international humanitarian law, sexual exploitation, sexual abuse, or sexual harassment, or if there are reasonable grounds to believe that they have been involved in the commission of any of these acts. The term “sexual exploitation” means any actual or attempted abuse of a position of vulnerability, differential power, or trust, for sexual purposes, including, but not limited to, profiting monetarily, socially or politically from the sexual exploitation of another. The term “sexual abuse” means the actual or threatened physical intrusion of a sexual nature, whether by force or under unequal or coercive conditions. The term “sexual harassment” means any unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature that might reasonably be expected or be perceived to cause offence or humiliation, when such conduct interferes with work, is made a condition of employment or creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment, and when the gravity of the conduct warrants the termination of the perpetrator’s working relationship. Candidates who have committed crimes other than minor traffic offences may not be considered for employment.
Due regard will be paid to the importance of recruiting the staff on as wide a geographical basis as possible. The United Nations places no restrictions on the eligibility of men and women to participate in any capacity and under conditions of equality in its principal and subsidiary organs. The United Nations Secretariat is a non-smoking environment.
The paramount consideration in the appointment, transfer, or promotion of staff shall be the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity. By accepting an offer of appointment, United Nations staff members are subject to the authority of the Secretary-General and assignment by him or her to any activities or offices of the United Nations in accordance with staff regulation 1.2 (c). In this context, all internationally recruited staff members shall be required to move periodically to discharge new functions within or across duty stations under conditions established by the Secretary-General.
Applicants are urged to follow carefully all instructions available in the online recruitment platform, inspira. For more detailed guidance, applicants may refer to the Manual for the Applicant, which can be accessed by clicking on “Manuals” hyper-link on the upper right side of the inspira account-holder homepage.
The evaluation of applicants will be conducted on the basis of the information submitted in the application according to the evaluation criteria of the job opening and the applicable internal legislations of the United Nations including the Charter of the United Nations, resolutions of the General Assembly, the Staff Regulations and Rules, administrative issuances and guidelines. Applicants must provide complete and accurate information pertaining to their personal profile and qualifications according to the instructions provided in inspira to be considered for the current job opening. No amendment, addition, deletion, revision or modification shall be made to applications that have been submitted. Candidates under serious consideration for selection will be subject to reference checks to verify the information provided in the application.
Job openings advertised on the Careers Portal will be removed at 11:59 p.m. (New York time) on the deadline date.
THE UNITED NATIONS DOES NOT CHARGE A FEE AT ANY STAGE OF THE RECRUITMENT PROCESS (APPLICATION, INTERVIEW MEETING, PROCESSING, OR TRAINING). THE UNITED NATIONS DOES NOT CONCERN ITSELF WITH INFORMATION ON APPLICANTS’ BANK ACCOUNTS.