Senior Liaison Adviser – Southern Africa, P5, Geneva At UN High Commissioner for Refugees

Organizational Setting and Work Relationships

Reporting to the Bureau Director, the Senior Liaison Adviser works closely with the HQ based Divisions and the Secretariat, Permanent Missions and other stakeholders based in Geneva.
S/he supports the Bureau Director to ensure that regional and corporate UNHCR positions are aligned and coherent. As part of the Regional Bureau Management Team, supports the regionalization process ensuring that the relevant regional entities are consulted and engaged when required.
S/he establishes and maintains high level contacts with Senior Officials within Permanent Missions and addresses their queries and concerns on behalf of the Bureau Director. S/he also directs Permanent Missions requests to the appropriate entity in the organization, be it in HQ or in the Regional Bureau and ensures that information regarding concerns of member states is shared across the organization.
The grade level of the positions with this role can be P5 or D1 depending on the structure and location of the organizational unit in which the position operates.

All UNHCR staff members are accountable to perform their duties as reflected in their job description. They do so within their delegated authorities, in line with the regulatory framework of UNHCR which includes the UN Charter, UN Staff Regulations and Rules, UNHCR Policies and Administrative Instructions as well as relevant accountability frameworks. In addition, staff members are required to discharge their responsibilities in a manner consistent with the core, functional, cross-functional and managerial competencies and UNHCR¿s core values of professionalism, integrity and respect for diversity.


  • Maintains relations with the Permanent Mission and responds to their information needs.
  • Coordinates preparations of high-level visits of ministers, senior partner officials, senior parliamentarians, members of cabinet or heads of major institutions to Geneva with Permanent Missions and the Regional Bureau.
  • At the request of the Regional Bureau, organizes and participates in meetings taking place in HQ (e.g. ExCom, Standing Committee, ad hoc Regional or other meetings¿).
  • At the request of the Bureau Director, participates in meetings organized in Geneva by Divisions or External Stakeholders (e.g. OCHA briefings).
  • Coordinates the periodic visits of Bureaux Directors to HQ and organize meetings with Permanent Missions and other Geneva based stakeholders.
  • At the request of the Bureau Director, participates in Executive Meetings.
  • Troubleshooting on issues that may arise from the ongoing transition process.
  • Perform other related duties as required.

Minimum Qualifications

Education & Professional Work Experience
Years of Experience / Degree Level
For P5 – 12 years relevant experience with Undergraduate degree; or 11 years relevant experience with Graduate degree; or 10 years relevant experience with Doctorate degree

Field(s) of Education
Law/International Law; Political/Social Science; Economics; Business Administration
or other relevant field
(Field(s) of Education marked with an asterisk* are essential)

Certificates and/or Licenses
Not specified
(Certificates and Licenses marked with an asterisk* are essential)

Relevant Job Experience

Minimum 10 years of relevant and progressively responsible experience, including scoping, promoting, leading, and overseeing programme and projects on an international scale. Proven ability to effectively consult to a group of senior-level professionals.
Demonstrated ability to set high standards as well as ability to consistently meet or exceed those standards. Proven ability to build a team culture of collaboration and performance.
Substantial experience in a leadership role in change management and governance of change. Client-oriented professional with the ability to anticipate client needs and to create lasting change in dynamic work environments.
A high level of skill in management of broad programmes, political decision-making and negotiating, as well as demonstrated tolerance to frequently changing and highly charged situations. Demonstrated leadership qualities, integrity, tact, diplomacy, and good management and communication skills. Ability to manage for results: translate strategic aims into achievable plans.

Donor/UN/NGO experience and familiarity from both the Field and Headquarters perspective and processes.

How to apply

Interested candidates are requested to apply on the UNHCR career page at – by clicking on the Vacancies tab and entering job ID 28910.

The UNHCR workforce consists of many diverse nationalities, cultures, languages and opinions. UNHCR seeks to sustain and strengthen this diversity to ensure equal opportunities as well as an inclusive working environment for its entire workforce. Applications are encouraged from all qualified candidates without distinction on grounds of race, colour, sex, national origin, age, religion, disability, sexual orientation and gender identity.

Please note that UNHCR does not charge a fee at any stage of its recruitment process (application, interview, meeting, travelling, processing, training or any other fees).

Closing Date

Please note that the closing date is Tuesday 24 August 2021 (mid-night Geneva time).

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