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Settlement Planning Officer

Geneva (United States of America)

  • Organization: UNHCR - United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
  • Location: Geneva (United States of America)
  • Grade: P-3, International Professional - Internationally recruited position - Mid level
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Operations and Administrations
    • Human Settlements (Shelter, Housing, Land, Property)
  • Closing Date: 2021-06-14

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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.

Settlement Planning Officer

Organizational Setting and Work Relationships
Under the supervision of the Senior Field/Technical Coordinator or the Senior Operations Manager, the Settlement Planning Officer will perform a variety of functions related to the design, management and coordination of humanitarian settlement and infrastructure projects across various settlement typologies. This will be done within the context of UNHCR¿s Global Strategy for Sustainable Settlement, Shelter and infrastructure.
Working in coordination with other colleagues in the Field such as, protection, health, community services, WASH, education, energy and environment, the incumbent acts as focal point for maintaining effective coordination with any established settlement sector working group. In addition, s/he is responsible for the strategic management and monitoring of the implementation of settlement planning activities, and for collaboration with Administration, Finance and Programme on all programmatic issues within the Area of Responsibility (AoR). S/he shall be working closely with other sections on settlement and general infrastructure related activities and provides functional technical guidance to the team as well as to the technical experts in the Field.

The Settlement Planning Officer provides specialised support to emergency and protracted operations in designing and developing sustainable settlements to host people of concern (POC) to UNHCR. A settlement should take into consideration the spatial allocation of functions while addressing the needs of the population, the availability of resources, the enhancement of living conditions, the provision of services, enhancing transportation networks as well as provision of recreational spaces. The incumbent will therefore be expected to analyse a variety of settlement options urban, rural, formal or informal and ensure that spatial allocation of lands is decided in support of the protection, access to basic services, livelihoods, and socio-cultural life of displaced people and the host community. The incumbent will also participate and represent UNHCR in negotiations with national and local government authorities regarding land acquisition and site development works.
The Settlement Planning Officer (SPO) will ensure that management of multi-sectorial assistance and services in refugee sites are handled effectively and efficiently among all the stakeholders, through a strong collaboration with the Field unit and relevant field staff. The incumbent will contribute in inter-agency coordination structures set up for settlement planning and land related issues within the Area of Responsibility (AoR).

The SPO should maintain regular communication with the shelter and settlement team in HQ for technical advice, information, communication and access to updated global tools and resources.

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.

Duties
Technical Guidance
- Conduct assessments and ensure selection of potential sites is done in accordance with the Master Plan approach to settlement planning taking into consideration protection concerns, national legislation, environmental considerations, appropriate density, and access to basic services including water, hydrological concerns, socio/economic issues, and cultural inclusion and HLP matters.
- Ensure that settlement layouts respond to natural topography and drainage patterns of the site to reduce construction and maintenance costs.
- Ensure that safe and equitable access to basic services is provided for both the displaced and host communities while making particular emphasis on meaningful inclusion of the site community groups (women, youth, elderly and persons with specific needs) in decision-making processes including through governance structures and sectorial focal points.
- Work with the relevant technical, programme and supply colleagues in close coordination with implementing and other concerned parties to develop implementation modalities and work plans for the settlement plans. Provide technical inputs and advice to Programme in the process of Implementation Partner Selection and review of PPAs of all sector related partners and partners with construction related activities in their budget.
- Provide support in Preparedness through the development of contingency plans for population movements. Develop and update agreed response strategies (MPAs and APAs) for refugee sites, including transition/exit strategy for site consolidation and closures within the AOR.
- In close consultation with partners, conduct assessments, provide concrete initiatives and develop specific strategies to make sure that residential areas, key services and infrastructure are not susceptible to the risk of natural hazards such as flash floods and landslides.

Coordination and Leadership
- Provide strong leadership in ensuring that UNHCR¿s operation within the AOR is technically sound in the field of settlement planning to best meet the needs of POC.
- Liaise with Government, line ministries and relevant authorities and counterparts to ensure strong coordination and partnership. Ensure that settlement plans are aligned with regional, national land use plans and planned developments.
- Represent UNHCR in the process of site selection and land negotiations with the national government, local government, local community leaders and the landlords for the settlements within the AOR. In doing this, ensure that the risk of conflict linked to land tenure is addressed and mitigated while continuing to pursue actions that increase the security of tenure for displaced populations.
- In line with UNHCR¿s commitment, promote the integration of agreed priority cross-cutting issues (e.g. age, environment, gender, and human rights) in sector/inter-sector needs assessments, analysis, planning and monitoring are met.
- Develop and implement Settlement plans in a consultative process with Senior Management, relevant technical colleagues (integrated multi-sectoral approach), implementing partners, and other relevant stakeholders. Maintain, support or complement existing coordination mechanisms.
- Develop Settlement Master Plans in alignment with the UNHCR guiding principles of the Master Plan Approach to Settlement Planning. Ensure periodic updates on the Masterplan taking note of the expansion and densification of the settlement and develop plans for any settlement extensions.
- Upload technical information and settlement plan updates on the SIP (settlement information portal), ensure shelter dashboards are populated with relevant settlement data, prepare mission reports and debrief.
- Work together with implementing and operational partners to ensure the use of common standards and tools for information collection and data management, including in needs assessments and monitoring.
- Working closely with Risk management, utilise adequate Project Management tools and conduct regular monitoring of settlement and infrastructure works so these are implemented according to plans and completed within designated timelines and budget, and ensure that this information is captured in the global monitoring and evaluation framework.
- Provide support in advocating for the mobilization of resources, where applicable. Identify core advocacy concerns for the sector and contribute key messages to the broader multi-sectoral advocacy initiatives including coordinated inputs into donor proposals and multi-agency appeals.
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Collaboration
- Collaborate and coordinate with all functional units in UNHCR and relevant technical actors in the feasibility and technical assessments, planning and development of sites, including protection, environment, Health, Education, water and sanitation and, in order to inform the overall planning process, carry out appropriate assessments and mapping exercises such as environmental impact assessment, useable land area assessment, mapping of services, mapping of host communities, livelihood assessments, etc.
- Ensure a rights-based approach in physical planning/ master plan, support to active participation of communities and promote community-based approaches in the planning and implementation of activities. 
- Develop adequate reports and share information, both within the settlement planning stakeholders and with other sectors through inter-sector communication channels. Work on the reporting and monitoring through the provision of 4W, SIP and site monitoring information.
- Promote and ensure the accountability to affected populations and the identification of durable solutions that also promote peaceful co/existence with the host communities.
- Identify and maintain existing linkages between the shelter and settlement team with other actors and sectors.
- Maintain a strong collaboration with the Shelter and Settlements Section in HQ.

- Perform other related duties as required.

Minimum Qualifications
Education & Professional Work Experience
Years of Experience / Degree Level
For P3/NOC - 6 years relevant experience with Undergraduate degree; or 5 years relevant experience with Graduate degree; or 4 years relevant experience with Doctorate degree

Field(s) of Education
Architecture; Urban Planning; Civil / structural Engineering; or other relevant field.
(Field(s) of Education marked with an asterisk* are essential)

Certificates and/or Licenses
GLDC managed Autodesk Software eLearning training is considered desirable
(Certificates and Licenses marked with an asterisk* are essential)

Relevant Job Experience
Essential
Managerial and technical ability to guide a specialist team in emergency and/or protracted situations. Previous similar job experience in the humanitarian settlement planning / infrastructure field, knowledge of technical drawing software, GIS tools and an ability to produce technical plans, BQ¿s, specifications and conduct training.

Desirable
Advanced awareness of several technical sectors. Appropriate work experience in Shelter, Settlements and Infrastructure in a Humanitarian Context. Ability to use AutoCAD software and GIS technology would be an asset.

Functional Skills
*SP-AutoCAD software;
CO-Cross-cultural communication;
PR-Camp Coordination and Camp Management;
IT-Computer Literacy;
MS-Presentation;
PG-UNHCR's Programmes;
MG-Coordination;
MS-Analysis;
SP-Site/Physical Planning;
SP-Rural Settlement Development;
SP-Rehabilitation and development programmes;
SP-Natural Resources Management;
SP-Environmental Assessment/Planning/Monitoring/Evaluation of integrated projects/programs;
SP-Emerging environmentally sustainable and appropriate technologies, and renewable energy;
SP-Infrastructure Development/Construction Management/Property Management;
(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.

This is a Standard Job Description for all UNHCR jobs with this job title and grade level. The Operational Context may contain additional essential and/or desirable qualifications relating to the specific operation and/or position. Any such requirements are incorporated by reference in this Job Description and will be considered for the screening, shortlisting and selection of candidates. 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
M002L3 - Managing Performance Level 3
M003L3 - Judgement and Decision Making Level 3
M004L3 - Strategic Planning and Vision Level 3
M005L3 - Leadership Level 3
X002L3 - Innovation and Creativity Level 3
X008L3 - Stakeholder Management 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 advertised in this addendum is Monday 14 June 2021 (mid-night 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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