Civil Affairs Officer
United Nations - Duty, VA

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These positions are located in the United Nations Field Peace Operations and Special Political missions. The majority of P3 Civil Affairs Officers work at the local level, with some postings at Mission Headquarters. P3 Civil Affairs Officers usually report to the Director / Chief of Civil Affairs, Senior Civil Affairs Officer or Regional Administrator.

Please note that, in order to be rostered, P3 Civil Affairs Officer candidates are required to clearly demonstrate competencies and experience in one (or more) of three specialised areas, in addition to a core profile. The specialisations are:

  • Conflict Management
  • Support to State Institutions
  • Programme Management

Within the limits of delegated authority the P3 Civil Affairs Officer will be responsible for the following duties. (These duties are generic, and may not all be performed by all P3 Civil Affairs Officers.)

Core profile
  • Provides information and analysis for the Mission and other actors where applicable, on political, social and economic issues affecting conflict dynamics at the local and regional level, including analysis on how these relate to the national level and vice versa. Ensures that the concerns and perceptions of the local population are effectively communicated to the Mission, as well as other actors where appropriate.
  • Represents the mission at the local level as required.
  • Contributes to a shared understanding of the Mission environment, mandate and operations amongst Mission actors at the local level, in particular uniformed components, to support consistency and coherence of approach. Fosters effective working relations with United Nations Country Team (UNCT).
  • Contributes to the formulation of recommendations concerning Mission actions and approaches required at the local level, assists in mobilising a response from other actors where appropriate.
  • Manages individual Quick Impact Projects (QIPs) intended for confidence building purposes at the local level, in line with DPKO/DFS Policy Directive on QIPs and mission specific priorities.
  • Supervises, monitors and encourages the work of officers under his/her responsibility in undertaking the full range of their duties.
  • Identifies and researches good practice and lessons learned in Civil Affairs work and shares these with colleagues, including through active participation in the online Civil Affairs Network.
  • Contributes to overall mission monitoring and planning as required.
  • Performs other duties as required, in line with the DPKO/DFS Policy Directive on Civil Affairs.
Conflict Management
  • Within the context of the mission mandate and the Civil Affairs workplan, supports dialogue between groups in conflict in the area of responsibility by convening structured meetings and similar activities.
  • Promotes and protects the interest of excluded and/or threatened groups through advocacy in full respect of humanitarian and international law.
  • Supports government institutions and civil society groups at the state and local level that promote a culture of peace and reconciliation. Assists them, including, where appropriate, in becoming effective implementing partners for Quick Impact Projects
Establishes and maintains close working relationships with key partners and stakeholders engaged in conflict management and community security, developing keen insight in to conflict milieu and contributing to early warning and early response activities as part of CAD commitment to POC.

Support to State Institutions
  • Assists local institutions to assess capacity building and support needs, working with partners including the UNCT and in particular UNDP. Helps to design a coordinated response to these needs from relevant actors.
  • Assists in the design and implementation of appropriate and practical Civil Affairs support to local authorities, including mentoring and support to policy and decision-making processes where appropriate.
  • Supports dialogue and cooperation between authorities and relevant interest groups with the aim of creating political space and accountability, and provides support to the development of structures of accountability and transparency.
  • Supports events such as public fora or town-hall meetings to foster development of political space at the local level. Supports civic education programmes at the local level on a range of issues, including elections, policy issues, and good governance principles, in coordination with local authorities and/or civil society actors.
Programme Management
  • Manages a local field office or team, undertaking or overseeing the programmatic and administrative tasks necessary for its functioning.
  • Contributes to the development and ensures distribution of high-quality mission-specific induction materials. Assists with the design, implementation and evaluation of tailored in-mission skills training for Civil Affairs components in accordance with global Civil Affairs skills training methodologies.
  • Serves as focal point on gender for the Civil Affairs component, identifying and communicating ways to ensure that a gender perspective is taken into account in all aspects of Civil Affairs work.
  • Serves as focal point for researching, identifying and sharing good practices and lessons learned with the Civil Affairs component and the global Civil Affairs community.
Work implies frequent interaction with the following:
Staff within work unit, Mission and DPKO, DFS, DPA/Headquarters; Senior national and local government officials, community representatives, national non-governmental organizations, and community-based organizers; UN system actors such as UNDP, UNHCR, OCHA, etc.; International non-governmental organizations and multilateral/bilateral donors; Counterparts in regional organizations (e.g., AU, EU, OSCE, NATO, etc); Local and, as required, international media.

Results Expected: Provides consistently high-quality analysis and information about the local level, ensuring that the Mission as a whole understands the perceptions and concerns of the population in that area. Proactively contributes to ensuring that Mission and other actors are well coordinated at the local level and operating in a coherent and consistent manner. Delivers high quality results in relevant specialized areas.


Core Competencies:
PROFESSIONALISM - Candidates should demonstrate: solid understanding of
the contexts within which peacekeeping operations function; ability to translate a
broad strategic vision into concrete objectives on the ground; ability to build
networks and to initiate, design and maintain effective working partnerships with
a range of actors at the sub-national level, and to positively influence them in
support of the peace process; ability to source, evaluate and integrate information
and analysis from a range of actors and to articulate analysis - in clear reports -
of the political, economic and social factors affecting conflict dynamics and
mandate implementation at the local level; solid understanding of the principle of
local ownership and of how to apply this in Civil Affairs work; knowledge of
mechanisms to identify the concerns and perceptions of the local population in
post-conflict environments; proven ability to work independently under pressure,
on occasion in highly stressful or isolated environments and with minimum
supervision; takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and
ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of Civil Affairs
work; understanding of how to identify and share best practices and lessons
learned . Commitment to implementing the goal of gender equality by ensuring the equal participation and full involvement of women and men in all aspects of peace operations.
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.
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


Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in social sciences, political science, international relations, public administration, anthropology, law, economics or related area. A first-level university degree in combination with qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.

Work Experience

A minimum of five years of progressively responsible experience in Civil Affairs-related
work with UN Peacekeeping Operations, UN funds or programmes, National or International
NGOs, or community based organizations, research institutions, etc. Of these five years, a
minimum of eighteen months should be in one (or more) specialised areas: Conflict
Management and Reconciliation: A minimum of eighteen months of experience in a position
requiring conflict management, facilitation, mediation or negotiation skills; experience in
facilitating structured dialogue events between different parties, and reconciliation activities
and processes. Support to State Institutions: A minimum of eighteen months in working in
public administration or related areas. Experience in liaising with institutions on sensitive
issues, such as excluded and threatened groups. Experience in institution-building in postconflict
transition countries would be an asset. Programme Management: A minimum of
eighteen months of experience in programme/project management working with international
governmental or non-governmental organizations, including relevant experience in
monitoring and evaluation of projects. Experience in budgeting and financial reporting.


Fluency in English (both oral and written) is required; Knowledge of another UN official language is an advantage

Assessment Method


United Nations Considerations

The United Nations shall place 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. (Charter of the United Nations - Chapter 3, article 8). The United Nations Secretariat is a non-smoking environment.

No Fee