Office: United Nations Institute for Disarmament Research (UNIDIR)
Position Title: Deputy Director
Contract: Fixed-term with an appointment limited to UNIDIR
Desired Starting Date: 1 August 2021
Duration: 12 months initially, with the possibility of extension (subject to the availability of funds)
Occupational Rate: 100%
Location: Geneva, Switzerland
The United Nations Institute for Disarmament Research (UNIDIR) is an autonomous institution within the United Nations that conducts independent research on disarmament and related problems, particularly international security issues. The vision of UNIDIR is a stable and more secure world in which States and people are protected from threats of arms-related violence. The role of UNIDIR is to support Member States, the United Nations and policy and research communities in advancing ideas and actions that contribute to a more sustainable and peaceful world. UNIDIR is based in the Palais des Nations, Geneva.
UNIDIR seeks a dynamic Deputy Director with a proven track record in leadership, management, research and resource mobilization to support the Institute’s continued delivery and impact.
Under the supervision of the Director of UNIDIR, the Deputy Director will perform the following duties:
Research agenda coordination and implementation oversight:
- Supports the Director in delivering the Institute’s mandate and objectives including through the formulation and implementation of its research agenda and substantive work programme.
- Oversees the management of activities undertaken by the Institute, ensures that programmed activities are carried out in a timely fashion and in accordance with organizational objectives and policies.
- Coordinates the work of UNIDIR’s research programmes including determining priorities and allocating resources for the completion of outputs and their timely delivery.
- Supervises the development of analytical and concept papers and policy options to address challenges in disarmament and arms control; develops well-reasoned, innovative approaches to deal with sensitive issues.
- Oversees the substantive review of research reports, policy briefs and other publications produced by UNIDIR.
- Ensures that the outputs produced by the Institute maintain high-quality standards; that reports, and related activities are of a high research standard, evidence-based and contribute to advancing progress in disarmament and international security.
- Develops, drives and oversees cross-cutting Institute-wide research initiatives and activities, including the delivery of public and/or educational activities.
Resource mobilization and outreach:
- Supports the Director in consolidating, diversifying and expanding the Institute’s resource base, including in the development of research and project proposals.
- Coordinates the implementation of resource mobilization priorities including proposals submissions and substantive reporting thereon.
- Acts as spokesperson, develops and maintains close relations and strong partnerships with Permanent Missions of member states, UN legislative bodies, other UN departments, offices, specialized agencies, funds and programmes, other international and regional intergovernmental organizations, as well as representatives of non-governmental and civil society organizations, research institutions and other disarmament and arms control partners to advance the work of UNIDIR.
- Represents UNIDIR in internal and public fora to address disarmament and arms control issues; delivers research papers and presentations; builds and sustains diverse multi-stakeholder networks on disarmament and international security issues.
- Supports the Director where required in the management and administration of the Institute, including preparation of budgets, reporting on budget and programme performance, communications, recruiting qualified personnel and managing staff performance.
- Manages, guides and develops personnel under his/her supervision.
- Fosters teamwork and communication across the Institute.
- Acts as Officer-in-Charge of the Institute in the absence of the Director.
- Performs other duties as required.
The Deputy Director is to demonstrate the core values of the United Nations: Professionalism, integrity, and respect for diversity.
In addition, in this role, the Deputy Director will demonstrate the following competencies:
- Professionalism: Substantive knowledge of arms control and disarmament, security doctrines and international relations theory and disarmament. Proven capacity in management, planning and risk analysis. Ability to manage complex tasks, teams and projects, prioritize quickly in rapidly changing environments and delegate effectively. Excellent judgement and initiative, resourcefulness, energy and tact. Excellent oral and written communication skills. Thorough understanding of the intellectual, diplomatic and political challenges and responsibilities of working in an international research institute working on sensitive foreign policy issues. Provides leadership and takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work; demonstrates knowledge of strategies and commitment to the goal of gender balance in staffing.
- 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.
- 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 positions. Shares credit for team accomplishments and accepts joint responsibility for team shortcomings.
- 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 the audience. Demonstrates openness in sharing information and keeping people informed.
- Managing Performance: Delegates the appropriate responsibility, accountability and decision-making authority; makes sure that roles, responsibilities and reporting lines are clear to each staff member; accurately judges the amount of time and resources needed to accomplish a task and matches task to skills; monitors progress against milestones and deadlines; regularly discusses performance and provides feedback and coaching to staff; encourages risk-taking and supports creativity and initiative; actively supports the development and career aspirations of staff; appraises performance fairly.
- Judgment/Decision Making: Identifies key issues in complex situations and gets to the heart of a problem quickly; gathers relevant information before making a decision; considers positive and negative impact of decisions prior to making them; takes decisions with an eye to the impact on others an 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 need for the decision; makes tough decisions when necessary.
Qualifications and Experience
Advanced university (Master’s degree or equivalent) in political science, international relations, management studies, public administration, law, social sciences or a related field is required. A doctoral qualification is desirable. 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 fifteen years of progressively responsible experience in political science, international relations, international law, international security, arms control, non-proliferation and disarmament, or related field is required.
- Experience in managing policy and research programmes and activities, including responsibility for budget development and human resources, is highly desirable.
- Proven experience in mobilising funds for international policy research and activities is highly desirable.
- Experience working in and managing diverse international teams is desirable.
- Experience in diplomacy and in engaging with a wide variety of stakeholders in the field of disarmament and/or international peace and security is desirable.
- Experience in research and drafting policy-relevant materials on international security, arms control or disarmament issues is desirable.
For this assignment, fluency in English (both written and oral) is required. Knowledge of French is an advantage. Knowledge of another official United Nations language is desirable.
Evaluation of qualified candidates may include an assessment exercise which will be followed by a competency-based interview.
The Deputy Director will be required to travel during the course of this assignment. Dates and locations will be determined during implementation and establishment of the workplan. The Deputy Director must complete the UN course BSAFE (online) and other mandatory UN trainings.
The applicant should submit their application through UN Careers.
Policy-relevant publications must be listed in the candidate’s Personal History Profile.
No applications will be accepted by post. Deadline for submission of applications is 2 June 2021. Closing date is midnight Geneva time.
Please note that due to the high volume of applications received, only shortlisted candidates will be contacted. Should you move forward in the process, you may be contacted for further assessment.
UNIDIR promotes the core values of the United Nations: Integrity, Professionalism and Respect for Diversity.
UNIDIR is committed to achieving 50/50 gender balance in its staff. Female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply for this position.