Senior Political Affairs Officer, P5

United Nations - Department of Political and Peacebuilding Affairs - Department of Peace Operations - Shared Structure
  • Location
    New York, New York
  • Sector
    Non Profit
  • Experience
  • Posted
    Sep 22

Position description

Org. Setting and Reporting

The position is located in the Europe and Central Asia Division (ECAD) of the Departments of Political and Peacebuilding Affairs and Peace Operations (DPPA-DPO). The Senior Political Affairs Officer serves as Team Leader for Central Asia and the South Caucasus and will report to the Deputy Director and Director of the Division.


Within delegated authority, the Senior Political Affairs Officer will be responsible for the following duties:

  • Formulates political affairs strategies; develops a vision or direction for work; proposes policy directives and plan of action for immediate and long range solutions to political problems in general and in specific geographical areas; identifies emerging issues pertaining to the mandates of the unit; analyses implications and makes recommendations on possible strategies and measures;
  • Plans and implements the operational activities related to the work of the Division, i.e., peacekeeping, conflict prevention and resolution, post-conflict rehabilitation, political and governance institution-building, civil society support work, etc.; incorporates an integrated approach that includes a rights-based dimension, conflict prevention sensitivity, and a gender perspective into the policy, planning and operational activities of the unit;
  • Plans, coordinates and manages programmes, projects and activities to be implemented with UN or non-UN partners’ involvement and participation;
  • Prepares reports, briefing notes and talking points for the Secretary-General, Senior Advisers, Under-Secretary-General/Assistant Secretary-General;
  • Designs conflict prevention, peacekeeping or peacebuilding initiatives; advises on and participates in the negotiation to establish operations and develops guidelines, terms of reference and operational plans and time frames for new operations;
  • Ensures the backstopping of relevant UN field presences under the supervision of the Division as well as the strategic and policy work undertaken in that context;
  • Leads and directs a work team; plans and allocates work assignments; coaches, mentors, and evaluates staff; participates in recruitment and selection of new staff and in the development of training programs;
  • Acts as coordinator for complex coordination and support missions;
  • Manages, coordinates, organizes and supervises research on a variety of political issues in a region, a country or a major conflict;
  • Represents the Division at round tables, seminars and conferences;
  • Responds to/prepares responses to comments, statements, queries of parties;
  • Formulates the programme of work, budget and medium-term plan of the unit and participates in the overall elaboration of the programme of work, and administrative matters concerning the Division; coordinates and oversees work of colleagues and unit;
  • Develops and maintains relations with relevant Permanent Missions to the UN, other UN departments, agencies and programmes;
  • Performs other related duties as required.


  • Professionalism: Strong knowledge in political analysis, conflict prevention and negotiations at the international level and knowledge of the practices and procedures of the United Nations Organization in peace and security is required; Proven experience with European countries and organizations; In-depth knowledge and understanding of a broad range of issues relevant to European countries and on European policy agendas, in particular in Eastern Europe; Proven capacity in providing political support and guidance to peace operations and/or good offices missions; Ability to contribute with vision and creativity to the development of the Division’s strategic direction and to transform that strategic direction into a results-oriented work programme; 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;
  • 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;
  • Teamwork: Works collaboratively with colleagues to achieve organizational goals; solicits input by genuinely valuing others’ ideas and expertise; is willing to learn from others; places team agenda before personal agenda; supports and acts in accordance with final group decision, even when such decisions may not entirely reflect own position; shares credit for team accomplishments and accepts joint responsibility for team shortcomings;
  • Leadership: Serves as a role model that other people want to follow; Empowers others to translate vision into results; Is proactive in developing strategies to accomplish objectives; Establishes and maintains relationships with a broad range of people to understand needs and give support; Anticipates and resolves conflicts by pursuing mutually agreeable solutions; Drives for change and improvement, does not accept the status quo; Shows the courage to take unpopular stands;
  • Managing Performance: Delegates the appropriate responsibility, accountability and decision-making authority; Makes sure that roles, responsibility 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.


  • Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in political science, international relations, international economics, law, public administration, or related field. 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 political science, international relations, law, disarmament, peace and security, conflict resolution, peacebuilding or related area is required;
  • A minimum of three years of experience in supervising and managing staff in an international setting is required;
  • Experience in political analysis and liaison and excellent analytical and drafting skills is required;
  • Experience in dealing with political issues relevant to European/Central Asian countries is required;
  • Experience working in multilateral institutions is desirable;
  • Experience in working or providing backstopping support and guidance to a United Nations field missions or those of other international/regional organizations is desirable;
  • Experience working at the international or regional level is required;
  • Experience in the practices and procedures of the United Nations Organization or a similar international organization in peace and security is desirable.


  • English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the post advertised, fluency in English (both oral and written) is required. Knowledge of Russian is desirable.

Application instructions

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