Special Assistant, Political Affairs [Temporary]

  • Added Date: Monday, 11 February 2019
  • Deadline Date: Sunday, 17 February 2019

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Org. Setting and Reporting

This position is located in the Office of the Deputy Special Representative for Political and Electoral Affairs in the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq in Baghdad. Iraq is classified as an "E" hardship duty station and a non-family duty station. UNAMI is a political mission that provides political good offices in Iraq; works with and supports the government; supports the process of peace and reconciliation; monitors and promotes human rights and the protection of civilians in armed conflict; promotes good governance; supports electoral processes and encourages regional cooperation. The incumbent reports directly to the Deputy Special Representative.


Within delegated authority, the incumbent will be responsible for the following duties:
•Provide support to the DSRSG in implementing the Mission's mandate.
•Keep the DSRSG informed on all substantive and operational matters requiring his/her personal attention, assist in formulating options as to how those matters might be handled, and ensure appropriate follow-up, as directed.
•Organize and manage the DSRSG's meetings and Mission events, prepare written summaries and conduct follow-up activities, as appropriate.
•Coordinate/draft correspondence for the DSRSG's signature.
•Develop and maintain collaborative relationships with mission components, the authorities, the broader UN family, donors and other national and international partners on coordination and policy matters.
•Identify, analyze and monitor political developments and emerging issues with respect to the implementation of the Mission's mandate and the DSRSG’s priorities, in support of peace and reconciliation efforts.
•Assess implications and make recommendations on possible policies, strategies and other measures to address issues of concern and to advance mandated objectives.
• Coordinate/draft summary and analytical reports including, but not limited to, situation reports, briefing notes, notes to file, code cables and input for the reports of the Secretary-General to the Security Council.
•Support implementation of the Mission's programme of work, including through support to planning and budgetary processes.
•Act as UNAMI’s focal point on the Kuwaiti missing file pursuant to UNSCR 2107 and take a lead role as UNAMI’s participant in the Tripartite mechanism.
•Performs other duties, as assigned.


Professionalism: Knowledge of outreach and mediation processes amidst violent conflict. Knowledge of UN mandated tasks and activities in complex conflict and post conflict settings. 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.

Client Orientation - 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.


Advanced university degree (Master's degree or equivalent degree) in Political Science, International Relations, Development, Public Administration, Peace and Security, Social Science 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 seven (7) years of progressively responsible experience in political affairs, diplomacy, conflict resolution, or related area is required. Experience in political outreach, facilitation, analysis, advice and reporting is required. Experience providing substantive and operational support for complex multi-stakeholder processes is required. Experience in cross-cutting analysis and coordination including on humanitarian, and electoral issues is required. A minimum of two years’ experience working in a United Nations peacekeeping operation or special political mission is required. Experience working as a Special Assistant (or similar) to senior official in the United Nations is highly desirable. Experience working in Iraq is highly desirable.


English and French are the working languages of the United Nations. For this position, fluency in English is required. Knowledge of the Arabic language is desirable


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

Special Notice

• This position is temporarily available until [specific date]. If the selected candidate is a staff member from the United Nations Secretariat, the selection will be administered as a temporary assignment.

• While this temporary assignment may provide the successful applicant with an opportunity to gain new work experience, the selection for this position is for a limited period and has no bearing on the future incumbency of the post.

• Subject to the funding source of the position, the eligibility for this temporary job opening may be limited to candidates based at the duty station.

• This temporary job opening may be limited to “internal candidates,” who have been recruited through a competitive examination administered according to staff rule 4.16 or staff selection process including the review of a central review body established according to staff rule 4.15.

• Staff members of the United Nations common system organizations who will reach the mandatory age of separation or retirement within the duration of the current temporary need period are not eligible to apply.Submitting an application or selection for the current temporary job opening does not delay or increase the mandatory age of separation.

• Retirees above the mandatory age of separation who wish to be considered for the current temporary job opening must indicate the reason for their last separation as "retirement." Such retirees shall not be employed by the Organization, unless (a) the operational requirements of the Organization cannot be met by staff members who are qualified and available to perform the required functions; and (b) the proposed employment would not adversely affect the career development or redeployment opportunities of other staff members and represents both a cost-effective and operationally sound solution to meet the needs of the service.

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.

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.

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