• Added Date: Thursday, 12 March 2020
  • Deadline Date: Friday, 10 April 2020

Org. Setting and Reporting

This position is located in the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS) Juba, in the Office of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General (SRSG). Juba is classified in the "E" category and as a non-family duty station. The Special Assistant will report to the Principal Coordination Officer in the Office of the SRSG.


Within delegated authority, the Special Assistant, Political Affairs will be responsible for the following duties:

• Supports the SRSG in the implementation of the Mission's mandate as given by the Security Council.

• Brings to the attention of the SRSG all matters requiring his/her personal attention, assists in formulating options/strategies to handle matters at hand, and ensures appropriate follow-up, as directed.

• Substantively handles incoming correspondence and drafts outgoing correspondence of the SRSG.

• Contributes to the drafting/clearing of code cables, reports of the Secretary-General to the Security Council and other mission wide or thematic reports.

• Prepares talking points, speeches, and takes notes while accompanying the SRSG.

• Maintains close working relationships with Senior Leadership Team members and heads of sections, as well as with authorities, political actors, civil society organizations, religious actors and the UN Country Team. Particularly, supports the SRSG in the overall liaison with the UNCT.

• Organizes and manages conferences, meetings, seminars, workshops and visits as directed by the SRSG.

• Acts as Focal point for administrative/ budget issues pertaining to the SRSG Front office.

• Liaises as required with bilateral donors and international organizations, with a view to generating greater synergy in support of peace initiatives and mandate implementation.

• Performs other duties, as assigned.


Professionalism: Solid understanding of the political work of the United Nations in the area of peace and security; ability to identify problems and propose policy options; proven drafting, reviewing and editing skills; diplomacy and judgment in dealing with others; conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments and achieving results. 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.

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.


An advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in Political Science, Management or Development or a related field is required. A first-level university degree in combination with two additional years of qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree. Professional training in the areas of planning, facilitation and/or coordination is an asset.

Work Experience

A minimum of seven (7) years of progressively responsible work experience in political affairs, diplomacy, conflict resolution or related area is required.
Extensive experience in political and public outreach, strategic planning, facilitation, and reporting is required.
Experience working in a United Nations common system field operation (inclusive of peacekeeping, political missions and UN agencies, funds, and programmes) or similar international organization or nongovernmental organization-in a conflict or post-conflict setting for a minimum of one year is required.
Previous experience working in the office of a senior public official or as a special assistant to a senior public official is required.
Experience in providing analytical advice on political developments and mandate implementation is required.
Experience working with the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development, African Union, and Integrated Operational Teams at United Nations Headquarters is desirable.
Previous professional experience in Sudan / South Sudan 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.


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

Special Notice

The United Nations Secretariat maintains rosters of qualified and available candidates to fill anticipated job openings in peacekeeping operations, special political missions, and other field operations.

The purpose of this job opening is to generate a list of qualified candidates for inclusion in the Political Affairs Officer, P-4 roster. The entire assessment process takes an average of six months; all applicants will be notified in writing of the outcome of their application (whether successful or unsuccessful) within 14 days of the conclusion of the process. Successful candidates will be placed on the roster and subsequently will be invited to apply for field mission vacancies open only to roster members. Roster membership does not guarantee selection.

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, 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. 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. The term “sexual harassment” means any unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature that might reasonably be expected or be perceived to cause offence or humiliation, when such conduct interferes with work, is made a condition of employment or creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment, and when the gravity of the conduct warrants the termination of the perpetrator’s working relationship. Candidates who have committed crimes other than minor traffic offences may not be considered for employment.

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.

Job openings advertised on the Careers Portal will be removed at 11:59 p.m. (New York time) on the deadline date.

No Fee


This vacancy is archived.