UN Women - International Consultant South-South Cooperation Strategy: Latin America and the Caribbean

Location : Panama City, PANAMA
Application Deadline :31-Oct-12 (Midnight New York, USA)
Type of Contract :Individual Contract
Post Level :International Consultant
Languages Required :
English   Spanish  
Duration of Initial Contract :35 Days


Grounded in the vision of equality enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations, UN Women works for the elimination of discrimination against women and girls; the empowerment of women; and the achievement of equality between women and men as partners and beneficiaries of development, human rights, humanitarian action and peace and security. Placing women's rights at the center of all its efforts, the UN Women will lead and coordinate United Nations (UN) System efforts to ensure that commitments on gender equality and gender mainstreaming translate into action throughout the world. It will provide strong and coherent leadership in support of Member States' priorities and efforts, building effective partnerships with civil society and other relevant actors.

UN Women launched its Regional Center for Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) in Panama following a series of consultations which enabled UN Women to identify a number of sectors and issues as priority programmes for the next years. As per the LAC regional strategy, the priority areas of work are (i) expanding women's leadership and participation; (ii) enhancing women's economic empowerment; and (iii) ending violence against women.   It uses a number of strategies to achieve results in relation to all of its areas of work. Increasingly it is looking to utilize South-South Cooperation as a means to stimulate knowledge sharing, policy advocacy, and increased institutional capacities that promote gender equality.

The scope of work of the consultant requires experience and in-depth understanding of gender equality and women’s empowerment issues in the region, as well as demonstrated experience with and understanding of institutions, policies and opportunities that are growing under the SSC agenda in the LAC region and internationally. It also requires assessing opportunities for partnerships with relevant Government counterparts, UN organizations, and CSOs. Under the supervision of the LAC Regional Director, the consultant is expected to develop a strategy for UN Women to 1) strategically employ SSC methods and mechanisms to promote its own and partner innovations and 2) to forge strategic partnerships with SSC institutions in the interest of leveraging support for gender equality, in consultation with local and regional figures in Latin America and the Caribbean.

Duties and Responsibilities

The recent report of the Secretary-General on the Promotion of South-South Cooperation for Development notes that South-South cooperation is being increasingly mainstreamed in the work and agendas of United Nations development agencies, funds and programmes. The report concluded that “The work of the United Nations should primarily focus on national capacity development in priority areas through facilitating intra- and interregional knowledge-sharing, engaging countries in difficult development circumstances with those that have acquired higher technological and other capacities in mutually beneficial exchanges. The United Nations system should support South-South and triangular cooperation primarily from the regional perspective, by linking national centres of excellence, bringing in global normative expertise corresponding to the respective mandates of the United Nations funds, programmes and agencies, and exercising political neutrality in responding to local sensitivities, thus promoting subregional and regional integration processes.”

UN Women in LAC has a history of supporting South-South Cooperation (SSC) as a strategy for knowledge sharing among its partners; to support regional networks to enhance policy advocacy efforts around common positions; and for providing support to regional intergovernmental and economic integration institutions. With the expansion of SSC as an increasingly important strategy for international development cooperation, for example as acknowledged in the Outcome Document of the Busan High Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness, as well as the continuous strengthening of both regional and international alliances to advance SSC, in which LAC countries play a significant role, UN Women will develop a strategy to make SSC a more explicit focus of its own work – cutting across multiple thematic areas.

The strategy will contain the following broad components:

Promoting effective practices of UN Women and partners through SSC:

  • Review of past experience in supporting SSC efforts on part of UN Women in LAC, as a foundation upon which to build future efforts – including identifying gaps to be filled.
  • Review of current programmatic efforts that would benefit from the incorporation of an SSC focus, or that have produced lessons that can be transferred to other contexts.
  • Identification of potential “champions”, particularly among government partners demonstrating strong national ownership of results as potential conduits for transfer of knowledge related to promising practices.
  • Identification of global and regional events (e.g. Global South-South Expo) to showcase promising practices.
  • Identify opportunities for UN Women to use its brokering role to encourage SSC among government and other partners as a means to transfer successful programmatic experiences and technical expertise.

Recommendations for mainstreaming an SSC focus as a UN Women programming strategy:

  • Supporting networking, policy advocacy and capacity development for gender equality through strategic partnerships:

Review of UN Women support to relevant networks at the regional level and identification of opportunities to strengthen platforms for advocacy.

Review of existing partnerships with regional inter-governmental/ economic integration organizations, and unmet opportunities within the region to strengthen UN Women cooperation and support.

Review of International SSC organizations (BRICS, etc) to identify opportunities to influence SSC policies/ practices to be more gender responsive, in particular those aspects focused on economic cooperation.

Mobilizing resources:
  • Identification of potential sources from which to mobilize resources to support UN Women SSC work.
  • Recommendation on the use of SSC as a means to scale up support and boost efforts in financing for gender equality.

Sources of information include desk reviews of UN Women reports, programme documents and evaluations; external publically available information related to relevant organizations engaged in SSC, including UN partners; UN reports and resolutions on SSC; select interviews with UN Women staff, partners; external SSC stakeholders.

Under the supervision of the Regional Director, the Consultant will be responsible for the following: 

  • Analysis and of trends, opportunities and challenges
  • Consultations with key stakeholders, regional and international actors and development partner.
  • Four year regional strategy for UN Women in LAC on South-South Cooperation for Gender Equality .


Core Values and Guiding Principles:

  • Demonstrating consistency in upholding and promoting the values of UN Women in actions and decisions, in line with the UN Code of Conduct.

Cultural Sensitivity/Valuing diversity:

  • Demonstrating an appreciation of the multicultural nature of the organization and the diversity of its staff.  Demonstrating an international outlook, appreciating differences in values and learning from cultural diversity. 

Core Competencies:

Ethics and Values:

  • Promoting Ethics and Integrity / Creating Organizational Precedents

Organizational Awareness:

  • Building support and political acumen

Developing and Empowering People / Coaching and Mentoring:

  • Building staff competence, creating an environment of creativity and innovation

Working in Teams:

  • Building and promoting effective teams

Communicating Information and Ideas:

  • Creating and promoting enabling environment for open communication

Self-management and Emotional intelligence:

  • Creating an emotionally intelligent organization

Conflict Management / Negotiating and Resolving Disagreements:

  • Leveraging conflict in the interests of the organization & setting standards

Knowledge Sharing / Continuous Learning:

  • Sharing knowledge across the organization and building a culture of knowledge sharing and learning

Appropriate and Transparent Decision Making:

  • Fair and transparent decision making; calculated risk-taking
Functional Competencies:
  • Substantive experience and record of accomplishment in the areas women’s empowerment and gender equality in the LAC region
  • Substantive knowledge of and experience with SSC strategies, policies and institutions in the LAC region and globally.
  • Good knowledge of UN Women and the UN system.
  • Proven ability to articulate a strategy in relation to SSC.

Required Skills and Experience

  • Master's degree (or equivalent) in social sciences, international development, economics or related field.
  • A Minimum of 10 years of experience in a combination of work on women’s empowerment and gender equality; and South-South Cooperation.
Language Requirements:
  • Fluency in written and oral Spanish and English. Portuguese is an asset.


In July 2010, the United Nations General Assembly created UN Women, the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women. The creation of UN Women came about as part of the UN reform agenda, bringing together resources and mandates for greater impact. It merges and builds on the important work of four previously distinct parts of the UN system (DAW, OSAGI, INSTRAW and UNIFEM), which focused exclusively on gender equality and women's empowerment.

All applications must include (as an attachment) the completed UN Women Personal History form (P-11) which can be downloaded from http://www.unwomen.org/about-us/employment

Kindly note that the system will only allow one attachment. Applications without the completed UN Women P-11 form will be treated as incomplete and will not be considered for further assessment.

UNDP is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality and culture. Individuals from minority groups, indigenous groups and persons with disabilities are equally encouraged to apply. All applications will be treated with the strictest confidence.

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