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. Placing women’s rights at the centre of all its efforts, UN Women leads and coordinates United Nations system efforts to ensure that commitments on gender equality and gender mainstreaming translate into action throughout the world. UN Women provides strong and coherent leadership in support of Member States’ priorities and efforts, building effective partnerships with civil society and other relevant actors.

UN Women in South Sudan supports the government to implement commitments to international normative standards on gender equality and women’s human rights. The new UN Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework (UNSDCF) for 2022-2026 and the corresponding UN Women South Sudan Strategic Note (2022-2026), defining UN Women’s strategic engagement in South Sudan, focuses on strengthening the national structures and mechanisms for gender mainstreaming in policies, plans and budgets; supporting efforts to prevent and eliminate violence against women; promoting women’s economic empowerment; promoting policies and government investment in women’s empowerment and resilience building in the context of climate change, humanitarian crisis as well as threats to peace and security. UN Women works with a range of stakeholders in South Sudan including the government, civil society and women’s organizations, youth, UN agencies, and donors, to promote gender equality and women’s empowerment.

Currently, UN Women in partnership with the Ministry of Gender, Child and Social Welfare and the Office of the Vice President (Gender and Youth Cluster) is implementing a project that aims at promoting the social-economic empowerment of women and adolescent girls in South Sudan. The project called “South Sudan Women Economic Empowerment Project (SSWEEP)”, is currently implemented in 10 states and 2 administrative areas in South Sudan focusing on promoting women’s access to economic opportunities, protection, and access to GBV information and services and also strengthening the capacity of the Ministry of Gender, Child and Social Welfare to effectively implement its mandate of promoting Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment. The project has four (4) components, namely: a) Community Empowerment Support to Women and Girls, b) Establishment of the Women’s Entrepreneurial Opportunity Facility (WEOF), c) Scaling up services for Survivors of GBV, and d) Institutional strengthening focusing on the Ministry oF Gender, Child and Social Welfare, the Office of the Vice President (Gender and Youth Cluster), Project Management Unit (PMU) and related national institutions.

The Social Safeguards Specialist is responsible for executing the Social safeguards program in accordance with national regulations, UNWomen and World Bank Safeguard requirements as detailed in the Environmental and Social Commitment Plan and related social and environmental instruments prepared for the project. The social safeguards specialist will work closely with the project teams at UNWomen, MGCSW/PMU to effectively deliver the tasks.

Under the overall guidance and direct supervision of the Country Representative, the Social Safeguards Specialist will be required to monitor and report on the SSWSEEP social safeguards risks, compliance with project instruments and guidelines, environmental and/or social screening, and staff capacity building in consultation with the World Bank and Project Management Unit (PMU).

Duties and Responsibilities

The main duties and responsibilities of the Social Development Specialist are to:

Manage the implementation of social safeguards for the SSWSEEP to ensure Compliance:

  • Closely supervise the implementation of social safeguards instruments as outlined in the Environmental and Social Commitment Plan as outlined in the Environmental and Social Management framework;
  • Lead in the oversight of the implementation of social risk management and compliance with Government and Project Environmental and Social Safeguards guidelines in consultation with the Project Management Unit Environmental and Social safeguards officers;
  • Undertake targeted visits to subprojects to assess compliance and propose necessary remedies;
  • Prepare revisions of the social safeguard’s provisions of the SSWSEEP ESMS and present them to Management for endorsement where required;
  • Be responsible for monitoring the social safeguard issues of all construction sub-projects with the field staff and relevant contractors and if there are problems report to the Project Manager and suggest solutions;
  • Coordinate and monitor regular social safeguards capacity development of implementing partners, consultants, and Contractors during project implementation, including project awareness, communication, and sensitization activities;
  • Supervise and coordinate the promotion and integration of social aspects such as gender, child protection, HIV/AIDs, social inclusion, and SGBV prevention and response, at all stages of project implementation in collaboration with the GBV Specialist;
  • Work closely with the Social Development Specialist in the PMU and the Environmental Safeguards Specialist to ensure the full integration and harmonization between the environmental requirements and the social aspects;
  • In coordination with the environmental safeguards’ specialist, follow up on social-related complaints and ensure resolving relevant ones while properly documenting the process in line with the World Bank and UN Women requirements on the topic;
  • Coordinate and follow up with Third-Party monitoring (TPM) agency on the site visit reports. Verify the deviations tracked by TPM and rectify the deviations;
  • Provide support for strengthening the collaboration and linkages amongst different teams within the SSWSEEP project, social safeguards, environmental safeguards, GBV Specialist and M&E to achieve project results;
  • Coordinate and monitor regular social risks, including capacity development of consultants, and Contractors during project implementation, including conduct of project awareness, communication, and sensitization activities;
  • Closely supervise the implementation of the SSWSEEP, including conducting social audits to ensure that all the social risks and impacts are addressed.

Support the MGCSW to set up and manage the Grievance Redress Mechanism and monitoring:

  • Supporting the setup and operationalization of projects Grievances Redress Mechanisms (GRMs);
  • Receiving social complaints relating to SSWSEEP activities and ensuring that they are addressed in accordance with the project ESMS system;
  • Supporting/facilitating stakeholder engagement, and grievance management with project stakeholders, and vulnerable and marginalized groups who may be affected by the SSWSEEP activities. 

Manage technical assistance and capacity development for project staff, partners, and contractors:

  • Provide technical advice and guidance on the implementation and monitoring of all social safeguards under the SSWSEEP;
  • Develop and implement technical tools, and initiatives to assess and manage social risks in the project locations;
  • Build and manage relationships with national partners to support the implementation of social safeguards plans; respond to any potential problems;
  • Identify capacity-building needs of staff, and partners and lead the coordination of technical assistance, mentoring, training, and capacity development initiatives to partners;
  • Develop training materials and deliver trainings on social safeguards requirements and apply its tools to the relevant staff of the project, beneficiaries, and stakeholders;
  • Develop/update the environmental safeguard and support the development of Greivance Redress Mechanism (GRM) training manuals and conduct training sessions for project staff and stakeholders;
  • Ensure all site engineers and relevant project staff, contractors NGOs, and/or other stakeholders in the project, are trained on gender, GBV, and other social issues and risks related to the project implementation.

Manage the monitoring and reporting of the project’s environmental safeguards:

  • Manage the monitoring of all social safeguards instruments as detailed in the Environmental and Social Commitment Plan (ESCP) , and related budgets, using results-based management tools;
  • Travel regularly to field sites to conduct social audits, monitor social risks, impacts, and performance of SSWSEEP as needed;
  • Coordinate the preparation of reports (periodical reports, midterm reviews, and completion Reports) and other documentation regarding social safeguards across the project;
  • Work closely with the M&E officer to maintain records on the social safeguard’s performance of staff, partners, and contractors in accordance with the Environmental and Social Management System (ESMS) policy objectives and targets;
  • Monitor the implementation of social safeguard activities to ensure compliance with National Policies, Regulations, Strategies, Standards, Plans, World Bank guidelines, and agreed safeguard instruments as detailed in the Environment and Social Management Frameworks, including the Environmental and Social Management Plan (ESMP),  Gender Based Violence Action Plan, Labor Management Procedures and Codes of Conduct, and Vulnerable and Marginalized Groups Framework (VMGA);
  • Review quarterly progress reports from funded sub-projects and prepare reports covering all social safeguards aspects of the project;
  • Write quarterly reports and donor reports, focusing on results, output, and outcomes related to social safeguards;
  • Contribute to office donor and UN Women reports;
  • Maintain social safeguards records and information showing the compliance of the different sub-project activities (including accidents and incident logs) to the national policies and World Bank standards.

Manage advocacy, knowledge-building, and communication efforts:

  • Working closely with other Project Management Unit (PMU) members to address any challenges, and sensitive matters relating to social impacts and risks associated with SSWSEEP activities;
  • Develop and review background documents, briefs, and presentations related to environmental safeguards;
  • Represent UN Women in meetings and policy dialogues on issues related to social safeguards as necessary;
  • Assist in documenting best practices and lessons learned in environment management at construction sites, and share it with senior management in UN Women, Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Welfare/PMU, and World Bank for their effective random check of the EIA and ESMP;
  • Develop knowledge management strategies, products, and methodologies on social safeguards under the SSWSEEP;
  • Attend social and environmental safeguard seminars such as those held by the government, World Bank, and organizations;
  • Maintain close linkage for the flow of information amongst UN Women, Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Welfare/PMU, and World Bank regarding social safeguard issues in project implementation;
  • All the tasks above will be undertaken using a gender responsive approach.


  • Final social safeguards management plan in place;
  • Social screening document reviewed and in place;
  • Redress document reviewed in place, informed by the Grievance Redress mechanism (GRM);
  • Implementation of social risk management instruments as per the Environment and Social Commitment Plan;
  • Represent UN Women in all environmental and social safeguards meetings;
  • All staff and field teams knowledgeable of ESRM instruments and safeguards issues;
  • Implementation of sub-projects in compliance with the ESMP;
  • Regular Reporting on safeguard issues.


Core Values:

  • Respect for Diversity;
  • Integrity;
  • Professionalism;
  • Accountability.

Core Competencies:

  • Awareness and sensitivity regarding gender issues;
  • Creative problem solving;
  • Effective communication skills;
  • Inclusive collaboration;
  • Ability to lead stakeholder engagement at community and national levels;
  • Leading by example.

Functional Competencies:

  • Strong knowledge of gender equality and women's rights issues;
  • Demonstrated ability to interact effectively with government representatives of Member States (donor and program);
  • Proven networking skills, and ability to mobilize support on behalf of UN Women;
  • Strong negotiating skills;
  • Knowledge and understanding of the UN system and familiarity with inter-governmental processes;
  • Strong IT skills, including databases, extranet, and office software packages;
  • Strong analytical and interpersonal skills;
  • Knowledge of social risk management and broader safeguard Issues;
  • Knowledge of National environment and/or social policies and requirements and the World Bank/UN Women environment and social frameworks.

Required Skills and Experience

Education and certification:

  • Master’s degree in social sciences/social work and social, Administration, Development Studies/Counselling, and Guidance from a recognized University/Institution. Or
  • A first-level University degree (bachelor’s degree or equivalent) in the related fields with an additional 3 years of relevant experience will be given due consideration instead of a Master’s degree.


  • A minimum of 7 years professional experience in social safeguards management, especially in public civil works projects and/or development projects and/or emergency assistance and/or social development is required;
  • Experience in the implementation of large-scale projects regarding social safeguards-related work financed by Multilateral, such as the World Bank;
  • Experience in gender equality and women's empowerment;
  • A project/program management certification would be an added advantage;
  • Previous experience with the UN or World Bank-funded projects is desirable;
  • Experience in supervisory work on-site of contractors or working on the implementation of infrastructural projects is an asset;
  • Knowledge of environmental safeguards and best practices is an asset.

Language Requirement:

  • Fluency in English required;
  • Knowledge of another official UN language is desirable.


All applications must include (as an attachment) the completed UN Women Personal History form (P-11) which can be downloaded from: 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.


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.

Diversity and inclusion:

At UN Women, we are committed to creating a diverse and inclusive environment of mutual respect. UN Women recruits, employs, trains, compensates, and promotes regardless of race, religion, color, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, ability, national origin, or any other basis covered by appropriate law. All employment is decided on the basis of qualifications, competence, integrity and organizational need.

If you need any reasonable accommodation to support your participation in the recruitment and selection process, please include this information in your application.

UN Women has a zero-tolerance policy on conduct that is incompatible with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and UN Women, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination. All selected candidates will be expected to adhere to UN Women’s policies and procedures and the standards of conduct expected of UN Women personnel and will therefore undergo rigorous reference and background checks. (Background checks will include the verification of academic credential(s) and employment history. Selected candidates may be required to provide additional information to conduct a background check.