Director Of Legal Affairs
Org. Setting and Reporting
The Director of Legal Affairs reports to the Chief of Staff.
The Director of Legal Affairs provides leadership in managing all aspects of UNRWA’s legal issues and serves as an authoritative advisor on all such matters to the Executive Office. This post develops, promotes and implements a coherent Agency-wide legal strategy and policies. In particular, the post ensures the integration of the legal function in all aspects of the Agency’s strategic, policy, programmatic and protection activities and ensures the consistent interpretation and application of the Agency’s regulatory framework and international law throughout the Agency. The post also leads the programme of work and management of the Legal Affairs Department and provides strategic and technical leadership for the Agency’s lawyers, with a view to ensuring legally sound, timely, easily applied, politically sensitive and consistent advice.
- Leads and oversees the development and implementation of a coherent Agency-wide legal strategy and policies; in particular, ensures the integration of the legal function in all aspects of the Agency’s strategic, policy, programmatic and protection activities; analyzes legal risks facing the Agency and proposes measures to minimize them; ensures the consistent interpretation and application of the Agency’s regulatory framework and international law throughout the Agency;
- Directs the programme of work and management of the human and financial resources of the Department of Legal Affairs and provides strategic and technical leadership to the Agency’s lawyers, with a view to ensuring legally sound, timely, easily applied, politically sensitive and consistent advice;
- Leads and oversees the provision of legal input into the development and implementation of Agency strategy and policy relating to all areas of UNRWA operations, including through direct advice to the Executive Office; establishes and maintains relations with representatives of host and other governments, the UN Office of Legal Affairs, UNHCR, OHCHR, OCHA, UNSCO and other entities with respect to issues of legal concern; provides strategic, technical and legal advice in support of the Agency’s protection function;
- Advises on the interpretation, application and enforcement of the Agency’s regulatory framework, including General Assembly resolutions, Staff and Financial Regulations, Rules and associated administrative issuances, Organizational Directives, Technical Instructions and Manuals;
- Provides advice and training on relevant public international law, including UN law, and international human rights, humanitarian and refugee law;
- Provides and oversees the provision of legal advice, training, outreach and assistance on matters relating to administrative and employment law issues; in particular, advises on investigations and disciplinary matters, provides strategic leadership for the Agency’s submissions to the UNRWA Dispute Tribunal and UN Appeals Tribunal, and appears before the Tribunals as required;
- Directs the review and reform of drafts, templates and general conditions for all types of Agency contractual modalities, including contracts for procurement of goods and/or services, memoranda of understanding with partners and funding agreements;
- As a member of the Agency’s Senior Management team, the incumbent may have specific responsibilities related to internal governance structures, as established by the Executive Office;
UN Core Values of Professionalism, Integrity and Respect for Diversity and Core Competencies of Communication, Working with People and Drive for Results apply by default. Default managerial competencies may apply.
- Leading and Supervising
- Planning and Organizing
- Applying Technical Expertise
- Formulating Strategies and Concepts
- Creating and Innovating
- Deciding and Initiating Action
- Relating and Networking
- Advanced university degree (Master’s or equivalent) from an accredited educational institution in law, with specialization in international law, preferably also with some specialization in contract law, commercial law, administrative law or employment law.Work Experience
At least fifteen years of progressively responsible and relevant experience as a lawyer in the United Nations, other international organization, government service, the commercial/private sector or NGO, including a period of experience in public international law
At least seven years of relevant professional experience at a senior international level.
A minimum of 2 continuous years of relevant international experience outside UNRWA, and outside the country(s) of which the candidate is a national or holds citizenship, a passport or a national identity number.
Admission to practice law in a recognized jurisdiction. (Desirable)
Familiarity with UN Common System and practices. (Desirable)
Knowledge of the history and contemporary problems of the Middle East. (Desirable)
Excellent command of written and spoken English.
Working knowledge of written and spoken Arabic. (Desirable)
Evaluation of qualified candidates may include an assessment exercise which may be followed by competency-based interview.Special Notice
This is a re-advertisement of the post. Candidates applied to JO# 150107 need not reapply.
- The incumbent is required to travel frequently, particularly in the Agency’s area of operations.
- Contract Duration: 2 years, with the possibility of further extension
UNRWA is funded almost entirely by voluntary contributions from UN member states, regional bodies, business foundations and individual contributions. The mission of UNRWA is to help Palestine refugees achieve their full potential in human development under the difficult circumstances in which they live.
For more details on UNRWA, please visit: https://www.unrwa.org/
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.