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  • Organization: UNRWA - United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian Refugees
  • Location: Jordan
  • Grade: Senior Executive level - D-1, Director - Internationally recruited position
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Refugee rights and well-being
    • Managerial positions
  • Closing Date: Closed

Org. Setting and Reporting

UNRWA, the largest United Nations operation in the Middle East with over 30,000 staff working across five areas of operation, is looking for highly committed personnel wishing to make a change.

If you are looking for a rewarding opportunity to make a tangible difference for one of the most vulnerable communities in the world, UNRWA would like to hear from you.

The Director of UNRWA Affairs, Jordan reports to the Deputy Commissioner-General.


- The incumbent is responsible for providing UNRWA core services and assistance to Palestine refugees in one of its fields of operation, The incumbent is required to abide by the roles and responsibilities as set out in the United Nations Security Management System Framework of Accountability and the UNRWA Framework of Accountability. He/she is responsible for fulfilling his/her duties as provided by the United Nations Security Management System and the UNRWA Security and Risk Management system.

- Under the overall direction of the Deputy Commissioner-General and in consultation with all Headquarters Directors, the incumbent of the post plans, manages and controls all aspects of UNRWA’s activities in a field of operations characterized by a large and complex refugee population; difficult, sensitive, and volatile political situations; a large complement of staff in dispersed centers of operations; quasi-government social programme; complex inter-relationships with governmental and non-governmental organizations and difficult security situations, especially where refugees are involved in conflict situations.

- Works to directly influence the protection and care of Palestine refugees and support for UNRWA locally, regionally and globally:
. Represents UNRWA and performs vital advocacy, public communication and resource mobilization functions, sourcing and providing, as appropriate, current information on the conditions affecting Palestine refugees and promoting support for UNRWA and Palestine refugees with host and donor governments, the UN country team, civil society and other relevant actors.
. Plays a critical role in building an effective partnership with local authorities, diplomatic missions community leaders, UN agencies and NGOs, ensuring that programme design and delivery enables the continuation of services in line with global development commitments guided by the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development; advocates with government representatives, community leaders and the broader public for the Agency’s programme, highlighting its critical importance, quality and value of its work.

- Leads UNRWA’s delivery of public and community services in education, health, relief and social services, infrastructure and, where applicable, microfinance ensuring consistency and quality in programmes; supports the Agency in the implementation of the Protection Strategic Framework including protection mainstreaming, programming and advocacy, the Gender Equality Strategy, promoting gender equality and women’s empowerment; supports the implementation of the Disability Inclusion policy ensures meaningful participation and accountability to affected populations; oversees the development and delivery of programme and emergency operations, ensuring that refugee needs are met as far as possible and that the services delivered meet Agency and international standards.

- Leads, motivates and supervises a team of programme and operations managers and specialists, contributing to create an ethical, inclusive and empowering workplace in line with UN values builds an effective integrated service delivery capacity which is adapted to the needs of the refugee community and to the particular demands of a volatile environment; contributes to the modernization of the Agency in its fields of operation, strengthening accountability internally and externally in line with the Agency’s management reforms.

- Serves as the principal advisor to the Commissioner-General on policies, programme design, state of operations, the determination of UNRWA’s priorities and resource needs in the assigned field and on the security and political contexts.

- Is responsible for ensuring accountability and rigor in financial and budget management and the maintenance of internal controls and set procedures.

- As part of the Senior Management Team, contributes to determining the strategic direction of UNRWA and to accomplishing its mission; advocates for the needs of refugees within the overall programme priorities of the Agency.


UN Core Values of Integrity, Professionalism and Respect for Diversity, and Core Competencies of Communication, Working with People and Drive for Results apply by default. Default managerial competencies may apply.

- Persuading and influencing
- Planning and Organizing
- Relating and Networking
- Deciding and Initiating Action
- Managing Complexity and Change

For guidance on how to prepare for competency-based interviews:


Advanced university degree (Master’s or equivalent) from an accredited educational institution in political science, social science, public or business administration, or international relations.

Work Experience

At least 15 years of progressively responsible and relevant professional and managerial experience is required.

At least seven years of professional experience at international level in a senior position in a large governmental or international agency dealing with similar programmes to UNRWA’s is required.

Unless already serving as an international staff member in the UN Common System, at least two continuous years of relevant international experience outside UNRWA, and outside the country(s) of citizenship is required.

Advanced university degree (Master’s or equivalent) from an accredited educational institution in political science, social science, public or business administration, or international relations is required.

Knowledge of activities of UNRWA operations and services is desirable.

Knowledge of Middle East geo-political realities and socio-culture implications is desirable.


Excellent command of written and spoken English.

Knowledge of other UN languages in particular Arabic and/or French for dealing with host government/authority officials and refugee population representatives, and with delegations from donor countries.


Evaluation of qualified candidates may include an assessment exercise which may be followed by competency-based interview.

Special Notice

Type of Contract and duration: 2 years, with the possibility of further extension.

The incumbent may be required to travel frequently throughout the Agency's area of operations in the Middle East.

Only applications that have been fully completed in UNRWA's online e-recruitment system inspira will be considered and no late applications will be accepted. The Personal History Profile (PHP) should be completed with full work experience under the experience tabs as per the requirements in the Job Opening.

A roster may be created from the selection exercise, and successful candidates may become eligible for an appointment to the same post or a similar post.

UNRWA welcomes applications from qualified candidates with disabilities.

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:

United Nations Considerations

Staff members are subject to the authority of the Commissioner-General of UNRWA and to assignment by him or her.

UNRWA is committed to achieving gender parity at all levels of staffing under the current UN-wide gender agenda and strongly encourages applications from qualified applicants from under-represented groups.

At UNRWA, 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. UNRWA is committed to creating a diverse and inclusive environment of mutual respect. Reasonable accommodation for applicants with disabilities may be provided to support participation in the recruitment process when requested and indicated in the application.

UNRWA Considerations
UNRWA staff are expected to uphold the highest standards of efficiency, competence, neutrality, impartiality and integrity. This includes respect for and commitment to human rights, diversity and non-violent means of dealing with all kinds of conflict. Only persons who fully and unconditionally commit to these values should consider applying for UNRWA jobs. Candidates will not be considered for employment with UNRWA 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. Candidates who have committed crimes other than minor traffic offences may not be considered for employment. The Agency may disqualify applicants who have separated for reason of misconduct, who left a UN Agency while misconduct processes were pending, or who appear on the UN Sanctions List.
UNRWA is a non-smoking work environment.

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.

This vacancy is now closed.
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