Senior Adviser on Women’s Leadership

Advertised on behalf of :

Location : Homebased with travel to HQ in New York, USA
Application Deadline :26-Sep-22 (Midnight New York, USA)
Type of Contract :Individual Contract
Post Level :International Consultant
Languages Required :
Starting Date :
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)
Duration of Initial Contract :1 Year; Part-time
Expected Duration of Assignment :1 Year; Part-time

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.

UNDP does not tolerate sexual exploitation and abuse, any kind of harassment, including sexual harassment, and discrimination. All selected candidates will, therefore, undergo rigorous reference and background checks.


UN Women, grounded in the vision of equality enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations, 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.

From the local to the global level, women’s leadership is restricted. Women are under-represented in leading positions, whether in elected offices, the civil service, the private sector, or academia. This occurs despite their proven abilities as leaders and agents of change, and their right to participate equally in public life and beyond. Women face several obstacles to participating in decision-making and governance. Women are less likely than men to have the education, contacts and resources needed to become effective leaders. In line with SDG 5 target 5.5 of ensuring women’s full and effective participation and equal opportunities for leadership at all levels of decision-making in political, economic, and public life, UN-Women prioritizes women’s leadership in its Strategic Plan 2022-2025. In addition, UN-Women has spearheaded several initiatives to promote women’s leadership in recent years. For example, in the context of the flagship programme on women leadership and Generation Equality, UN-Women has, since 2019, launched 1) Leaders for Generation Equality, now re-launching as the UN Women Leaders Network: a global intergenerational network of 75+ women leaders from different sectors who advocate for gender-equal participation in leadership and decision-making positions and aims to change the traditional picture of a leader; 2) a Call to Action to parliamentarians to increase the number of women in politics; and 3) a Generation Equality Action Coalition dedicated to Feminist Movements and Leadership. 

Under the overall guidance of the Advisor, GEF, and working on a day-to-day basis with the Office of the Executive Director, the Senior Adviser on Women’s Leadership will lead and oversee the UN Women Leaders Network, as well as support the positioning of UN-Women on women’s leadership. The Senior Adviser will focus on three main deliverables: a) building on the above-mentioned initiatives, establish the first permanent UN Women Leaders Network chaired by the Executive Director to significantly enhance UN-Women’s positioning in the area of women’s leadership; b) mobilize 100 intergenerational women leaders from different sectors to join the UN Women Leaders Network; and c) ensure regular convenings of the Network are held, with particular emphasis on facilitating partnerships with other networks and organizations to advance women’s leadership.

Duties and Responsibilities

Lead UN Women Leaders Network development, strategy, and positioning 

  • Lead development of the UN Women Leaders Network, with a clear mandate, strategy, and structure to ensure it can be permanently embedded within UN Women; 
  • Ensure the UN Women Leaders Network terms of reference and functions are aligned with UN Women’s Strategic Plan 2022-2025 and the broader mission and work of UN Women. 
  • Lead internal alignment of the UN Women Leaders Network with UN Women HQ, regional and country offices to ensure the project adds value to UN Women’s work. 
  • Oversee outreach and engagement for the UN Women Leaders Network, focusing on partnerships with existing leading women leaders networks.  
  • Advising, supporting and coordinating the role of the Executive Director as the Chair of the UN Women Leaders Network.  

High-level representation and thought leadership of UN-Women  

  • Enhance UN-Women’s positioning on women’s leadership, political participation and legal reform through high-level dialogue and representation to relevant global and regional events in connection with the UN Women Leaders Network and UN Women’s broader work on women’s leadership; 
  • Represent UN-Women in international and regional conferences and high-level events on gender equality, women’s leadership and participation;  
  • Position UN Women in key forums, networks and other mechanisms or institutions in support of women’s leadership, including the Reykjavík Global Forum – Women Leaders and Women Political Leaders (WPL); 
  • Ensure that the needs and special situations of least developed countries and fragile settings in regards to women’s leadership are reflected in global and regional discussions; 

Develop strategic partnerships 

  • Develop and manage strategic partnerships in the area of women’s leadership and in relation to the UN Women Leaders Network; 
  • Undertake high-level advocacy and strengthen partnerships with collaborating organizations for UN-Women’s global priorities. 

Oversee knowledge management, and capacity building 

  • Lead the production of knowledge products. 
  • Oversee the development of policy briefs, background papers, presentations, reports and other knowledge documents on women’s leadership as required by the EDO.  

Provide any other support to the EDO  as required


  • Establish the first permanent UN Women Leaders Network chaired by the Executive Director to significantly enhance UN-Women’s positioning in the area of women’s leadership. 
  • The UN Women Leaders Network is composed of 100 active and mobilized women leaders. 
  • The UN Women Leaders Network hosts regular convenings and engagement events for Generation Equality and UN Women.  
  • Outreach and communications strategy for the UN Women Leaders Network.  
  • Opportunities for UN Women to be represented at important global events on women’s leadership.  
  • Strong relationships with various partners and stakeholders, with a focus on existing networks of women leaders; 
  • Increased resources mobilized for UN-Women’s work on women’s leadership and the UN Women Leaders Network; 
  • Timely and quality advice and support;  
  • Timely and quality knowledge products; 
  • Regular updates and reporting on the UN Women Leaders Network provided to the ED and ELT of UN Women.  


Core Values:

  • Respect for Diversity
  • Integrity
  • Professionalism

Core Competencies:

  • Awareness and Sensitivity Regarding Gender Issues
  • Accountability
  • Creative Problem Solving
  • Effective Communication
  • Inclusive Collaboration
  • Stakeholder Engagement
  • Leading by Example

Functional Competencies

  • Excellent knowledge of women’s leadership 
  • Excellent networking skills 
  • Ability to interact with donors, identify and analyze trends, opportunities and threats to fundraising  
  • Ability to perform qualitative and quantitative policy research 
  • Ability to advocate and provide policy advice  
  • Excellent analytical skills 
  • Ability to write policy papers, speeches, briefings 

Required Skills and Experience


  • Master’s degree or equivalent is required. 

Required Qualifications and Experience:

  • At least 15 years progressively responsible experience in advocating for women’s leadership with concrete demonstrable results in this area; 
  • Demonstrated leadership skills, including having held senior leadership positions in the public or private sectors.  
  • Experience in establishing and managing networks, working with, and building partnerships with governments, donors and civil society organizations at the national and international level; 
  • Knowledge of the UN system is an asset.  


  • Fluency in oral and written English is required.
  • Knowledge of another official United Nations language is desirable. 

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