Senior Program Officer

United States Institute of Peace (USIP)
  • Location
    Washington, D.C.
  • Sector
    Non Profit
  • Experience
    Mid Career
  • Posted
    Jan 11

Position description

Peace is our commitment.  The United States Institute of Peace represents the American people’s shared values and commitment to peace around the world.  We know that Peace is Security – it advances both U.S. and international security by preventing, managing and mitigating violent conflict.

We were chartered in 1984 as an independent, non-partisan institution and are actively engaged with peacebuilding efforts around the world.  Together we tackle the toughest problems and hold fast to the possibility of a more peaceful world.

To learn more about USIP programs and job openings, go to


Through advisory, strategic planning, and outreach activities, the Senior Expert will provide thought leadership on peacebuilding efforts in Colombia.  More specifically, he/she will develop and implement the Institute’s overall strategy for helping to sustain peace in Colombia, with a focus on the implementation of the peace process, as well as help to glean lessons learned from the Colombian experience for other country contexts.  This effort includes advising USIP staff and external partners on recent developments and practices considered model examples; authoring articles, blogs and other publications; convening relevant public events at USIP; and representing USIP at external events or engagements with USG officials, international officials, the Colombian Government or civil society to inform policy and practice in the broader field.


Advising and Planning

  • Provides technical assistance on peacebuilding efforts and peace process developments in Colombia to policy makers, government practitioners, non-government organizations, and regional and international organizations in the U.S. and abroad as a representative of USIP.       
  • Advises internally and externally on the development and planning for projects related to peacebuilding in Colombia.  Specifically, collaborates across the institute on work being carried out on Colombia with the Academy or other thematic teams, as well as engages with country teams to exchange effective approaches and strategies applied in Colombia, including for example inclusivity in the Colombian peace process.
  • Builds and sustains networks of professionals in the public, private, and non-profit sectors who seek to develop, strengthen, and evaluate peacebuilding initiatives in Colombia.

Public Outreach, Analysis and Commentary

  • Demonstrates USIP’s thought leadership on peacebuilding efforts in Colombia, with a focus on the implementation of the peace accords, by providing analysis and commentary in USIP articles and blogs as well as external publications such as op-eds, and journal articles. Reviews, on request, publications and project plans drafted by other Institute or external partners.
  • Develops and oversees USIP public programming, including convening Colombia Peace Forum and/or roundtables, and participating in various conferences, events, and briefings to government officials, including testimony to Congress, to speak on behalf of USIP. Responds to relevant media requests.
  • Builds strategic partnerships and cultivates contacts with country and subject matter experts and a wide variety of external organizations to leverage resources and combine efforts to promote USIP program initiatives and goals.
  • Translate lessons learned from the Colombia experience for other countries on issues such as innovations in the peace processes, inclusion, demobilization, and transitional justice.

Financial Management:

  • Manages the program budget to ensure that the program is operating within its budget limitations in order to meet its goals and objectives.

Performs other duties as assigned.


  • Master’s degree in international relations, political science, social science, conflict resolution, peace studies or relevant field.
  • Ten or more years related experience.
  • Must speak Spanish.
  • Must have experience related to the peace process in Colombia, such as providing policy recommendations or programmatic work related to negotiation, mediation, and dialogue efforts. 
  • Must have a proven track record of thought leadership including speaking, writing and representation related to Colombia, including directly on the peace process.
  • Previous field-based experience in conflict settings preferred. 
  • Must have strong project management skills and experience managing complex projects. Must have the ability to design and manage budgets. 
  • Must have strong collaboration skills; must have the ability to coordinate the input and priorities of multiple players. 
  • Must have excellent interpersonal skills. Must have proven ability to lead and motivate others, and to work as a team player; 
  • Must have the ability to think strategically, and to effectively develop, communicate, and execute plans.
  • Must have excellent oral and written communication skills. 
  • Must be able to travel in the United States and abroad. 

Application instructions

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