The United Nations Human Settlements Programme, UN-Habitat, is the agency for human settlements. It is mandated by the UN General Assembly to promote socially and environmentally sustainable towns and cities with the goal of providing adequate shelter for all.
The position is located in the Planning, Finance & Economy Section of the Urban Practices Branch (UPB) with the Global Solutions Division in Nairobi.
The Global Solutions Division (GSD) is responsible for providing programmatic direction for UN-Habitat and is responsible and accountable for the programmatic delivery of the Strategic Plan. The Division leads the tools and methodology production and the integration of the various substantive competencies towards effective delivery of the Strategic Plan and the mandate of UN-Habitat. It provides substantive training to staff members and supports Capacity Development of Member States and partners.
The Urban Practices Branch (UPB) is the tools and methodology production and skills centre of the UN-Habitat, that develops normative guidance and cutting-edge tools through communities of urban practice. It provides technical and policy advice approaches and methodologies to Multi-Country Office/Country Offices (MCOs/CO), government and partners and mainstreams them throughout the programme portfolio. It also ensures that the cross-cutting area of safety and the social inclusion issues of human rights; gender; children, youth and older persons; and disability are developed and mainstreamed across the Agency.
The Planning, Finance and Economy Section is responsible for coordinating the Agency’s substantive, normative and operational work on various dimensions of planning, finance and economy. The Planning, Finance and Economy Section aims to develop, document, pilot/test and disseminate planning policies, norms, standards, tools, methodologies, regulatory frameworks, operating procedures and practices at global, regional, national and sub-national levels in support of (a) urban and territorial planning at all scales including urban Design and public space design; (b) urban finance (municipal finance and urban development/projects finance); and (c) local economic development.
The Public Space Programme aims to improve the quality of public spaces and helps cities become more sustainable by providing policy advice, capacity development, knowledge sharing and support for public space regeneration and improvement. The overall goal is to support local governments in creating and promoting socially inclusive, integrated, connected, environmentally sustainable and safe streets and public spaces, especially for women, children, the elderly and people with disabilities. More concretely, the programme maps public spaces and works with cities to develop city-wide strategies and urban development frameworks.
The focus of this job is to lead the implementation, monitoring and evaluation of programmes, operations and other activities in the field of Public Space.
The position reports to the Chief of the Section.
Within delegated authority, the Programme Officer will be responsible for the following duties:
• Manages the Public Space Programme of UN-Habitat and related operational and normative activities, human resources, and budget.
• Develops, implements and evaluates the Global Public Space Programme; monitors and analyzes programme/project development and implementation; reviews relevant documents and reports; identifies problems and issues to be addressed and initiates corrective actions; liaises with relevant parties; ensures follow-up actions.
• Performs assignments, in planning facilitating workshops, and in collaboration with local and national governments assists in developing city-wide public space strategies and action plans and supports local governments to manage the change.
• Researches, analyzes and presents information gathered from diverse sources. specifically supporting local governments in gathering data on safe, accessible and inclusive public space on the city-wide level, contributing to monitoring the implementation of Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 11.7.1 which states: “By 2030, provide universal access to safe, inclusive and accessible green and public spaces particularly for women and children, older persons and persons with disabilities”.
• Coordinates policy development, including the review and Analysis of issues and trends, preparation of evaluations or other research activities and studies, • Generates survey initiatives; designs Data Collection tools; reviews, analyzes and interprets responses, identify problems/issues and prepares conclusions.
•Organizes and prepares written outputs, e.g. draft background papers, analysis, sections of reports and studies, inputs to publications, etc.
• Provides substantive backstopping to consultative and other meetings, conferences, etc., to include proposing agenda topics, identifying participants, preparation of documents and presentations, etc.
• Initiates and coordinates outreach activities; conducts training workshops, seminars, etc.; makes presentations on assigned topics/activities.
• Leads and/or participates in field missions, including provision of guidance to external consultants, government officials and other parties and drafting mission summaries, etc.
• Coordinates activities related to budget funding (programme/project preparation and submissions, progress reports, financial statements, etc.) and prepares related documents/reports (pledging, work programme, programme budget, etc.).
• Performs other duties as required
• PROFESSIONALISM: Knowledge and understanding of theories, concepts and approaches relevant to Public Space in Urban Planning and Sustainable Urban Development. Ability to identify urban development issues and their relation with the role of public space and urban quality, and capacity to analyze and participate in the resolution of complex urban development issues. Knowledge of the SDGs, their targets and indicators and the New Urban Agenda. Ability to conduct data collection using various methods. Conceptual analytical and evaluative skills to conduct independent research and analysis, including familiarity with and experience in the use of various research sources, including electronic sources on the internet, intranet and other databases. Ability to apply judgment in the context of assignments given, plan own work and manage conflicting priorities. 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.
• 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.
Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in Urban Planning, Architecture or Human geography, or a related field is required. A first-level university degree in combination with two (2) additional years of qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.Work Experience
A minimum of seven years of progressively responsible experience in management of urban development programmes is required.
Experience in the field of public space: experience in the promotion, design, planning and management of public space would be highly desirable.
Working experience with the UN system or equivalent international organisation is desirable.
English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the post advertised, fluency in oral and written English is required. Knowledge of another official United Nations language is an advantage. "Fluency" equals a rating of "fluent" in all four areas (read, write, speak, understand) and " Knowledge of" equals a rating of " confident" in two of the four areas.Assessment
Evaluation of qualified candidates may include an assessment exercise which may be followed by competency-based interview.Special Notice
This is a project post. Appointment against this post is for an initial period of one year and may be subject to extension. 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.
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.
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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.
The paramount consideration in the appointment, transfer, or promotion of staff shall be the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity. By accepting an offer of appointment, United Nations staff members are subject to the authority of the Secretary-General and assignment by him or her to any activities or offices of the United Nations in accordance with staff regulation 1.2 (c). In this context, all internationally recruited staff members shall be required to move periodically to discharge new functions within or across Duty Stations under conditions established by the Secretary-General.
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