Department/Office:United Nations Environment Programme
Duty Station:BONN
Posting Period:23 September 2020 – 06 November 2020
Job Opening Number:20-Administration-UNEP-141391-D-Bonn (X)
Staffing ExerciseN/A
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity

Org. Setting and Reporting

The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) is the leading global environmental authority that sets the global environmental agenda, promotes the coherent implementation of the environmental dimension of sustainable development within the United Nations system and serves as an authoritative advocate for the global environment.

UNEP’s Science Division is responsible for analyzing the state of the global environment, providing early warning information and assessing global and regional environmental trends to catalyze and promote international cooperation and action on the environment. Under the overall guidance of the UNEP Executive Director/UN Under Secretary General, the incumbent shall be accountable to the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) Plenary, through its Bureau on policy, programmatic and financial matters. This post is located within the IPBES Secretariat at the Bonn duty station.

Within delegated authority, the Executive Secretary will be responsible for the following:


• Directs and manages the implementation of the IPBES work programme as approved by the IPBES Plenary.
• Contributes to the formulation, implementation and monitoring of all the elements of the work programme, overall strategies, resource mobilization efforts and management of relationships with contributors, yearly budgets and policies by participating in various committees, preparing documents on policy issues and yearly budgets.
• Leads the development of documentation, and reporting on budget/programme performance, and on programmatic/ substantive issues, innovative and/or change management programmes.
• Leads the formulation, implementation and monitoring of yearly budgets and schedules for all elements of work programme determining priorities and allocating resources for the completion of outputs and their timely delivery.
• Oversee the management of activities undertaken by the Secretariat, with the aim of facilitating implementation of programmed activities and key findings of IPBES by IPBES members and stakeholders from the scientific, indigenous, business and broader stakeholder communities;
• Coordinates nomination and selection processes for experts to participate in the preparation of IPBES deliverables in the different areas both within the subsidiary bodies, task forces and expert groups of the Secretariat and Plenary, and with other organizations of the United Nations System, Governments, donors and agencies as appropriate.
• Oversees and coordinates, together with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the implementation of the collaborative partnership arrangement, as set out in decision IPBES-2/8.
• Coordinates the preparation of reports to Governments and intergovernmental bodies such as the IPBES Plenary, Bureau, Multidisciplinary Expert Panel. Liaises with relevant subsidiary bodies, relevant Multilateral Environmental Agreements , stakeholders from the scientific, indigenous, business and broader stakeholder communities and other policy-making organs, as appropriate with a view to foster coordination and coherence with existing relevant initiatives.
• Liaises with the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), and other biodiversity related multilateral environmental agreements on programmatic/substantive issues, as appropriate, to ensure timely updates regarding new findings of IPBES Assessments, and cohesion with their activities as appropriate.
• Ensures that all documents and publications of IPBES maintain high-quality standards to build and defend the credibility of the Platform; that reports are clear, objective and based on credible data and peer-reviewed literature. Ensures the documents and publications are effectively communicated to the priority audiences and or stakeholders identified by the Plenary directly.
• Undertakes or oversees the programmatic, administrative and financial tasks necessary for the functioning of the Secretariat ensuring that the Secretariat operates under the relevant IPBES procedures and in compliance with the Regulations and Rules of the United Nations and applicable rules and procedures of UNEP.
• Reports to the IPBES Plenary on collaboration with Partners that have established an institutional link with the Platform, whereby the Partners coordinate relevant activities and cooperate in areas related to the functions of the Platform.
• Provides regular updates on the activities of IPBES to the heads of UNEP, FAO, UNDP and UNESCO, and through them to their respective Governing Bodies. Brings decisions and resolutions of governing bodies of these organizations that are relevant to IPBES’ work to the attention of the IPBES Bureau and Plenary for their consideration.
• Recruits professional staff of the secretariat in collaboration with the executive heads of UNEP, UNESCO, FAO and UNDP, taking due account geographical and gender balance and core values and competencies required by the United Nations.
• Manages, guides, develops and trains staff under his/her supervision; creates and ensures an inclusive and friendly working environment; foster teamwork and communication among staff members including technical units in the Secretariat and across organizational boundaries.
• Chairs meetings, seminars, etc., on substantive-related issues, as appropriate; represents the Secretariat at/in international, regional, inter-agency processes, meetings, seminars and conference; provides programmatic/substantive expertise on an issue or holds programmatic/substantive and organizational discussions with representatives of other institutions.
• Perform other related duties as requested by the IPBES Plenary, Chair of IPBES or UNEP Executive Director.


• PROFESSIONALISM: Knowledge of the substantive field of work in general and of specific areas being supervised. Shows ability to produce reports and papers on technical issues and to review and edit the work of others. Shows ability to apply UN rules, regulations, policies and guidelines in work situations. 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.

• 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.

• LEADERSHIP: 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 improvements; does not accept the status quo; shows the courage to take unpopular stands. 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. Proven leadership in the development of innovative programmes with significant impact on the overall effectiveness of the United Nations. Intellectual and professional leadership for overall strategy, quality, delivery and results.

• EMPOWERING OTHERS: Delegates responsibility, clarifies expectations, and gives staff autonomy in important areas of their work; encourages others to set challenging goals; holds others accountable for achieving results related to their area of responsibility; genuinely values all staff members’ input and expertise; shows appreciation and rewards achievement and effort; involves others when making decisions that affect them.

• 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.


Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in biophysical science, economics, business administration, law, social sciences or related area is required. A first-level university degree in combination with two additional years of qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.

Work Experience

Over fifteen (15) years of progressively responsible experience in managing and supporting intergovernmental processes, programme management and administration, including preparation of budgets, programmes of work and the management of financial resources is required.
Proven managerial experience at a supervisory level is required.
Experience in collaborating and developing partnership with various stakeholders such as UN agencies, Secretariats of relevant multilateral environmental agreements and global environments assessments, NGOs and private sectors is required.
Proven working experience in science and policy communities to enhance science-policy interface is desirable.
Experience in establishing coherent frameworks to guide and integrate final services/products in the programmes is desirable.


English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For this post, fluency in English (both oral and written) is required. Knowledge of another UN official language is an advantage.


Evaluation of qualified candidates may include an assessment exercise which will be followed by a competency-based interview.

Special Notice

This position is open for recruitment 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.

Internal Applicants – when completing the PHP, ensure ALL fields, ALL professional experience and contact information are completed and up to date. This information is the basis for the hiring manager to assess your eligibility and suitability for the position and to contact you.

Individual contractors and consultants who have worked within the UN Secretariat in the last six months, irrespective of the administering entity, are ineligible to apply for professional and higher temporary or fixed-term positions and their applications will not be considered.

All applicants are strongly encouraged to apply on-line as soon as possible after the job opening has been posted and well before the deadline stated in the job opening. On-line applications will be acknowledged where an email address has been provided.

If you do not receive an email acknowledgement within 24 hours of submission, your application may not have been received. In such cases, please resubmit the application, if necessary. If the problem persists, please seek technical assistance through the Inspira “Need Help?” link.


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, 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.

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


Above texts are copied from United Nations Official Web Page ( 
Copyright 2020 United Nations. All rights reserved

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