Senior Legal Officer, P5

UN Office of Legal Affairs
  • Location
    New Yor, New York
  • Sector
    Non Profit
  • Experience
    Mid Career
  • Apply by
    Feb-04-2018
  • Posted
    Dec 23

Position description

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 fulfill the lateral move(s) requirements to be eligible to apply for this vacancy. Staff members are requested to indicate all qualifying lateral in their Personal History Profile (PHP) and cover note.

The United Nations Secretariat is committed to achieving 50/50 gender balance in its staff. Female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply for this position.

For this position, applicants from the following Member States, which are unrepresented or underrepresented in the UN Secretariat as of 30 September 2017, are strongly encouraged to apply: Afghanistan, Andorra, Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Bahrain, Belarus, Belize, Brazil, Brunei Darussalam, Cabo Verde, Cambodia, Central African Republic, China, Comoros, Cyprus, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Dominica, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Grenada, Guinea-Bissau, Indonesia, Islamic Republic of Iran, Iraq, Japan, Kiribati, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Lao People's Democratic Republic, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Marshall Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Monaco, Mozambique, Nauru, Norway, Oman, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Qatar, Russian Federation, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Samoa, Sao Tome and Principe, Saudi Arabia, Seychelles, Solomon Islands, South Sudan, Suriname, Syrian Arab Republic, Thailand, Timor-Leste, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, United Arab Emirates, United States of America, Vanuatu, Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela and Viet Nam.

Org. Setting and Reporting

This position is located in the General Legal Division (GLD) of the Office of Legal Affairs (OLA), in the Accountability and Judicial Support Cluster. The incumbent typically reports to the Principal Legal Officer and/or Director of GLD.

Responsibilities

Within delegated authority, the Senior Legal Officer may be responsible for the following duties: 

• Works in the area of international law, and independently handles a wide range of highly complex, and often sensitive legal matters involving issues relating to international, public, private and administrative law, to include interpretation and application of relevant instruments.
• Coordinates and directs teams of legal officers, guides and supervises the work of junior legal officers; assists the Director/Principal Legal Officer in general management and administration of the unit, including in respect of budgetary documents and recruitment of staff, organizes and prioritizes the workload and provides general coordination and supervision of assignments as regards the legal work. 
• Makes various types of recommendations to senior officials of substantive units with respect to actions to take; recommendations are usually accepted as proposed.
• Provides authoritative legal advice on diverse range of highly complex or novel substantive and procedural questions of law, in particular, legal advice, assistance and support for the Organization’s accountability measures in relation to both internal sanctions and external enforcement actions against UN officials, experts on mission and third parties who may be responsible for sexual exploitation and abuse, financial crimes or other wrongdoing. This includes, among others, referrals of cases of such conduct to national authorities and the provision of assistance to investigations and proceedings by the production of documents and witnesses, within the framework of the privileges and immunities of the Organization. 
• Organizes and supervises research studies and the preparation of legal opinions, as well as performs extensive legal research and analysis on highly complex or novel legal issues/questions and prepares legal opinions, studies, briefs, reports, and correspondence.
• Provides legal advice and supervises the review, negotiation and drafting of major contracts, and other legal instruments, including advice on operational issues arising in connection with peacekeeping missions and similar operations in the field, and advice on matters that may relate to the status and mandate of UN subsidiary bodies including the separately funded Funds and Programmes, or institutional and operational modalities for activities of the Organization and these Funds and Programmes in the economic, social and humanitarian field.
• Provides legal advice, as appropriate, to senior officials on the interpretation of personnel policies, regulations and rules, including but not limited to issues of sexual exploitation and abuse. 
• Serves in standing boards, committees, ad hoc working groups and task forces, as required; represents, as appropriate, OLA at meetings of the General Assembly, the 6th Committee or other intergovernmental bodies, promotes the work of the United Nations and represents the organization at meetings, conferences, seminars, etc.
• Contributes to review and design of new, or new applications of, legal instruments, policy, guidelines, systems.
• Performs other duties as required.

Competencies

• Professionalism: Knowledge of the application of international law, including the law of international organizations. Knowledge of international legal procedures and instruments, including criminal law, both substantive and procedural. Ability to apply legal expertise to analyzing a diverse range of complex legal issues and problems and in developing innovative, creative and pragmatic solutions in handling legal matters. Strong analytical skills and ability to conduct comprehensive legal research on a range of issues, including those of a unique and/or complex nature; proficiency in legal writing and expression and ability to prepare legal briefs, opinions, and a variety of legal instruments and related documents. Discretion and sound judgment in applying legal expertise to sensitive, complex legal issues. Strong negotiating skills and ability to influence others to reach agreement. Ability to work to tight deadlines and handle multiple concurrent projects/cases. Knowledge of contemporary international relations and of UN system, its organizations and interrelationships. 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. Provides leadership and takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work.

• Communication: Speaks and writes clearly and effectively; listens to others, correctly interprets messages from others and responds appropriately; asks questions to clarify, and exhibits interest in having two-way communication; tailors language, tone, style and format to match audience; demonstrates openness in sharing information and keeping people informed.

• 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.

• Managing Performance: Delegates the appropriate responsibility, accountability and decision-making authority; makes sure that roles, responsibilities and reporting lines are clear to each staff member; accurately judges the amount of time and resources needed to accomplish a task and matches task to skills; monitors progress against milestones and deadlines; regularly discusses performance and provides feedback and coaching to staff; encourages risk-taking and supports creativity and initiative; actively supports the development and career aspirations of staff; appraises performance fairly.

• 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.

Education

Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent degree) in international law. A first-level university degree in combination with two additional years of qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.

Work Experience

A minimum of ten years of progressively responsible experience in international law, including legal analysis, research and writing, most of which should be in the field of public international law, is required. Experience in dealing with issues related to white collar crimes, such as fraud and corruption is required. Experience as a legal officer in a field mission of the United Nations, or other international organization, is desirable. Experience working with the status and the privileges and immunities of international organizations, is desirable.

Languages

English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For this post, 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.

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 or sexual abuse, or crimes other than minor traffic offences, 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.

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.

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.

Application instructions

Please be sure to indicate that you saw this position on Globaljobs.org

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