Chief of Staff, D1| UN Job Opening

Posting Title:Chief of Staff, D1
Department/Office:Economic Commission for Africa
Duty Station:ADDIS ABABA
Posting Period:21 December 2018 – 03 February 2019
Job Opening Number:18-Political Affairs-ECA-108998-R-Addis Ababa (G)
Staffing ExerciseN/A

United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity

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Org. Setting and Reporting

Established by the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) of the United Nations (UN) in 1958 as one of the UN’s five regional commissions, ECA’s mandate is to promote the economic and social development of its Member States, foster intra-regional integration, and promote international cooperation for Africa’s development. Made up of 54 Member States, and playing a dual role as a regional arm of the UN and as a key component of the African institutional landscape, ECA is well positioned to make unique contributions to address the Continent’s development challenges. The strategic objective of ECA is framed around delivering ideas and actions for an empowered, inclusive and transformed Africa in the framework of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and Agenda 2063 of the African Union through its three core functions, namely, its function as a think tank, its convening function and its operational function.

This position is located in the Office of the Executive Secretary (OES) at the Economic Commission for Africa (ECA). The incumbent works under the direct supervision of the Executive Secretary and in close collaboration with the Deputy Executive Secretaries for Programme and Programme Support.


Within delegated authority, the Chief of Staff will be responsible for the following duties: 

• Direct and manage the office of the Executive Secretary (OES).

• Manage calendar and timing of ECA events in close coordination with Divisions, UN bodies and other local and international organizations.

• Serve as Cabinet Office liaison to ECA substantive divisions and administration advising the Executive Secretary and key officials on policies, programmes and administration, which will most effectively enable the Commission to carry out its mandate.

• Provides substantive technical advice to the ES on all issues relating to/impacting on the work of the ECA.

• Coordinate all requests from member states and review, collect, coordinate, monitor and evaluate all requests from member states and advise the Executive Secretary as appropriate.

• Monitor, review key division programmes, special events and advise the Executive Secretary on all matters related to administrative and programme developments and implementation in 
relation with the substantive divisions, other national, international and UN organizations and member states.

• Liaise with all relevant divisions, member states, the host government, UN organizations, embassies and other organizations to ensure appropriate protocol arrangements for official ECA 

• Organize all invitations and responses to meetings, special events of the Commission and serve as secretary at meetings as requested by the Executive Secretary. 

• Advise on nature and level of ECA representation for official visits to member states and organize visits of senior officials from outside organizations to ECA. 

• Responsible for contacts at the highest level on behalf of the Executive Secretary for Heads of State, Government, Ministers, and Ambassadors.

• Assist the Executive Secretary to carry out key leadership functions in policy development, strategy, priority and goal setting.

• Assist the Executive Secretary in coordinating the implementation of the ongoing UN reforms and ECA reforms.

• Act as main focal point and supervise the management of the Commission’s relations with member States, the host country, the Commission’s policy organs, the 
African Union (AU) and the African Development Bank.

• Act as focal point of the Commission and maintain liaison at the executive level with the Executive Office of the Secretary-General and United Nations Headquarters departments in general, 
as well as the Regional Commissions, Headquarters of UN Specialized Agencies and other multilateral organizations and institutions.

• At the request of the Executive Secretary, may on occasion serve as spokesperson for the Commission and advocate for ECA’s position on policy and development issues.

• Oversee the substantive and organizational arrangements for the effective functioning of the Executive Committee and the Senior Management Team and ensure the liaison between these 
bodies and other supporting management committees.

• Preside over internal committees and working groups, as designated.

• Responsible for politically sensitive follow up actions.

• Undertake the programmatic/administrative tasks necessary for the functioning of the Executive Office, including preparation of budgets; assigning and monitoring of performance parameters and critical indicators; budget and programme performance.

• Ensure the smooth running of all administrative matters of the Office of the Executive Secretary.

• Manage, guide, develop and train staff under his/her supervision, and foster teamwork and communication among staff in OES and across organizational boundaries.

• Represent the Executive Secretary, as requested.

• Perform other duties as assigned.

Work implies frequent interaction with the following:

• Managers and staff within the Division, Department, Office, Commission and/or Mission.

• Senior Staff within the UN Secretariat, Missions Heads and other UN offices, funds, programmes and specialized agencies.

• Representatives of Governments and representatives of non-governmental organizations. 

• Chairs and members of intergovernmental bodies. 

Results expected: 

Produce high-quality outputs on key issues. Effectively and efficiently manage available human and financial resources to ensure the timely delivery of programmed outputs. Provide solid substantive support in the servicing of various committees and intergovernmental bodies; report for these bodies are clear and focused on the issues at hand and the meetings or seminars are well-organized and address the topics covered in a comprehensive manner. Effectively develop staff under his/her supervision, including their on-going learning and development. Effectively assist, guide and support programme managers in meeting their objectives and outputs.



Demonstrated ability to provide intellectual leadership in a broad range of development issues on Africa, including on key development commitments and initiatives. Proven ability to manage a diverse spectrum of individuals and opinions, to identify core issues and to present them in a clear manner to top management. Sound political judgment and proven managerial skills. Sound knowledge of UN policies and procedures including administrative and programme management procedures and operations. Proven ability to produce reports, analyses and papers on technical issues; ability to review and edit the work of others, ability to establish and maintain contacts at all levels; 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 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 & 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. 


Takes ownership of all responsibilities and honors 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.


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 gain 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. 

Judgment/ Decision-making: 

Identifies the key issues in a complex situation, and comes to the heart of the problem quickly. Gathers relevant information before making a decision. Considers positive and negative impacts of decisions prior to making them. Takes decisions with an eye to the impact on others and on the Organization. Proposes a course of action or makes a recommendation based on all available information. Checks assumptions against facts. Determines that the actions proposed will satisfy the expressed and underlying needs for the decision. Makes tough decisions when necessary.


An advanced university degree (Master’s or Doctorate) in economics, political or other social sciences, management, business/public administration or related fields is required. A first-level degree (Bachelor’s or equivalent) in the specified fields with two additional years of relevant work experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree. PhD in Economics or Social Sciences is an advantage.

Work Experience

A minimum of fifteen years of progressively responsible experience in socioeconomic and development policy analysis, including at the international level. Experience in high-level dialogue on policy development with senior government representatives, heads of bilateral or multilateral institutions is required. Managerial experience, including with human and financial resources, budget and programme planning and analysis is required. Experience in streamlining and reorganizing organizational processes is required. Experience with development issues in Africa is desirable. Experience in organizing all invitations and responses to meetings, special events of the Commission and serving as secretary at meetings as requested by the Executive Secretary is also desirable.


English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the position advertised, fluency in English or French is required. Knowledge of the other is desirable. Knowledge of another official United Nations language is desirable.


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

Special Notice

The United Nations Secretariat is committed to achieving 50/50 gender balance in its staff. Female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply for this position.

For this position, applicants from the following Member States, which are unrepresented or underrepresented in the UN Secretariat as of 31 October 2018, are strongly encouraged to apply: Afghanistan, Andorra, Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Bahrain, Belarus, Belize, Brazil, Brunei Darussalam, Cabo Verde, Cambodia, Central African Republic, China, Comoros, Cyprus, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Dominica, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Grenada, Guinea-Bissau, Indonesia, Islamic Republic of Iran, Japan, Kiribati, Kuwait, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Marshall Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Monaco, Mozambique, Nauru, Norway, Oman, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Qatar, Republic of Korea, Russian Federation, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Sao Tome and Principe, Saudi Arabia, Solomon Islands, South Sudan, Suriname, Syrian Arab Republic, Thailand, Timor-Leste, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, United Arab Emirates, United States of America, Vanuatu, Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela.

An impeccable record for integrity and professional ethical standards is essential.

Staff members are subject to the authority of the Secretary-General and to assignment by him or her. In this context, all staff are expected to move periodically to new functions in their careers in accordance with established rules and procedures.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


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