With the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development at its core, and in response to the General Assembly resolution 71/243 on the quadrennial comprehensive policy review of operational activities for development of the United Nations system, the UN Secretary General's report (December 2017) 'Repositioning the United Nations development system to deliver on the 2030 Agenda: our promise for dignity, prosperity and peace on a healthy planet' puts forward a comprehensive proposal on further improvements to the Resident Coordinator system to ensure more coherent, accountable, and effective support for the 2030 Agenda. The report was further reinforced by the General Assembly resolution 72/729 of 1 June 2018, which gave the Secretary-General the mandate to implement the UN repositioning agenda by reinvigorating the Resident Coordinator system. While the Resident Coordinator system has been instrumental in driving coherence on the ground over the past four decades, it is now high time to give it a new impetus to ensure the UN is well positioned to provide high quality and relevant technical support to countries to deliver the 2030 Agenda. To attain the desired goal, the Resident Coordinator Offices will need to be adequately staffed to ensure it has sufficient substantive capacities to lead United Nations country teams. The Programme Communications and Advocacy position is part of this new generation of Resident Coordinator Office, with the new skillset and competencies required to deliver on the 2030 Agenda.
The incumbent of the position, within delegated authority and under the overall supervision of the United Nations Resident Coordinator, will be responsible for the following duties:
Summary of Functions:
Description of Functions:
- Provides substantive support to the Resident Coordinator (RC) and UN Country Team (UNCT) in designing, implementing and monitoring the UN joint advocacy and communication strategy, promoting the UNDAF as the primary instrument for the planning and implementation of UN development activities in the country, in support of the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development;
- Prepares inputs for the RC and UNCT on strategic advocacy and programme communications for the 2030 Agenda and to boost impact of programmatic objectives under the UNDAF;
- Contributes to the promotion of advocacy and communications as a tool for a participatory approach to UNDAF implementation and monitoring, reflecting the views and priorities of people, including those left farthest behind;
- Monitors and analyzes the media in the areas related to the UN’s mandates and programmes in the country, as well as other issues relevant to the UN brand and positioning;
- Prepares inputs for the RC and UNCT on public messaging and media outreach, and assists in managing reputational risks or crises around sensitive issues;
- Provides substantive support to the RC and UNCT, Programme Management Team (or equivalent) and Results Groups on potential issues, concerns and risks related to communications and advocacy, and suggests corrective actions;
- Provides substantive support to the UN Communications Group throughout the stages of the UNDAF cycle;
- In collaboration with the UN Communications Group and the UN Programme Management Team (or equivalent), and in coordination with the RCO colleagues responsible for data management and results reporting, contributes to the annual communication plan to publicize and communicate results with a focus on the UN’s development impact;
- Assists the RC and UNCT in projecting UN’s image effectively and accurately as well as promoting transparency and accountability;
- Provides substantive support to identity, incorporate, monitor and report on communication performance indicators throughout the UNDAF cycle.
- Assists in the engagement of key traditional and non-traditional partners, including government, civil society, private sector, development partners and others new as well as traditional actors on the collective 2030 Agenda and the related role and impact of the UN’s work in country;
- Provides substantive support to the RC and UNCT in significantly expanding public outreach on the 2030 Agenda and the UN’s role and impact in country;
- Supports public engagement on the UN’s role and work in country, including through programme visits showcasing the UN’s development impact;
- Contributes to regular liaison with other partners for content development, information exchange, collaborative communication efforts, and innovative communication and advocacy tools;
- Compiles and analyzes communication experiences and shares findings with country, regional and HQ communication colleagues so that best practices benefit UN’s communication work;
- Assists in maintaining close working relationships with the media, including editors and journalists in key national and international news outlets; develops, maintains and updates media relations contact list/database;
- Prepares official briefing materials, talking points, speeches, statements, op-eds and presentations as necessary.
- Maintains digital external platforms such as the UN country team website as well as UN social media presence (Facebook, Twitter account etc.);
- Assists in the development and implementation of a digital content strategy and contributes to the development of key communication products (e.g. human-interest stories, photography, video, animations, etc.).
- Provides substantive support to the RC and UNCT on joint UN publications, maintaining high quality standards and the correct application of the UN branding guidelines;
- Drafts inputs for the RC and UNCT on the use of the UN joint brand at country level across UN products, both offline and online.
IV. Competencies and Selection Criteria
Description of Competency at Level Required
(For more comprehensive descriptions please see the competency inventory)
Ability to make new and useful ideas work
Level 5: Creates new and relevant ideas and leads others to implement them
Knowledge and understanding of sustainable development theories, concepts and approaches. Ability to identify and develop sources for data collection. Ability to undertake research, analyze data, make recommendations and write draft reports on sustainable development issues. 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. Takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work.
Planning and 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
Ability to persuade others to follow
Level 3: Proactively seeks and recognizes contributions of others
Knowledge Management and Learning
Ability to improve performance and satisfaction
Level 1: Understands personal and team roles, responsibilities and objectives
Ability to listen, adapt, persuade and transform
Level 3: Expresses information and views with adaptive reasoning and appreciation for complexity and variation
Takes ownership of all responsibilities and honours commitments; delivers outputs for which one has responsibility within prescribed time, cost and quality standards; operates in compliance with organizational regulations and rules; supports subordinates, provides oversight and takes responsibility for delegated assignments; takes personal responsibility for his/her own shortcomings and those of the work unit, where applicable
Considers all those to whom services are provided to be “clients” and seeks to see things from clients’ point of view; establishes and maintains productive partnerships with clients by gaining their trust and respect; identifies clients’ needs and matches them to appropriate solutions; monitors ongoing developments inside and outside the clients’ environment to keep informed and anticipate problems; keeps clients informed of progress or setbacks in projects; meets timeline for delivery of products or services to client.
Commitment to Continuous Learning
Keeps abreast of new developments in own occupation/profession; actively seeks to develop oneself professionally and personally; contributes to the learning of colleagues and subordinates; shows willingness to learn from others; seeks feedback to learn and improve.
Keeps abreast of available technology; understands applicability and limitation of technology to the work of the office; actively seeks to apply technology to appropriate tasks; shows willingness to learn new technology
Ability to get things done while exercising good judgement
Level 2: Meets goals and timelines for delivery of products or services;
Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent degree) in communications, journalism, business or public administration, sustainable development, social sciences, education or related area. A first-level university degree in combination with two additional years of qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.
A minimum of five years of progressively responsible experience in programme communications and advocacy or partnership development in the context of development cooperation or related area is required.
National Professional Officers are nationals of the country in which they are serving, and their functions must have a national context, i.e. functions that require national experience or knowledge of the national language, culture, institutions, and systems
Fluency in English is required. Knowledge of another UN official language is an advantage.
Contract Duration: 1 Year with possibility for extension