Programme Specialist, Gender and Governance

Advertised on behalf of :

Application Deadline :05-May-08 (Midnight New York, USA)
Type of Contract :ALD International
Post Level :ALD-3
Languages Required :
Starting Date :
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)
Duration of Initial Contract :1 Year


The Programme Specialist on Gender and Governance will be responsible for knowledge management, advisory work, and management of the governance-related advocacy and programming of the Governance Peace and Security section. Most immediately this will involve set-up, management, monitoring and on-going fund-raising of the global programme: 'Making Politics Work with Women: Beyond the Numbers', and subsequently support to the global programme: 'Gender and Democratic Governance'. These are global programmes grounded in country-level matching activities. While each individual country project is managed in-country, the overall manager of the programme will provide coherence, consistency of approaches, ensure financial flow and effective financial management, and oversee the monitoring and evaluation. The global Programme Specialist is also responsible for a set of activities intended to yield analytical and knowledge products for use at the country level.

The Programme Specialist will have responsibility for developing a knowledge management system for the sharing of insights from effective approaches across contexts.  The Programme Specialist will set up a communications system to ensure rapid and effective exchanges of information between the project offices, as well as to ensure that all projects adhere to an agreed common calendar of milestones, deadlines, and reports.

Duties and Responsibilities

Under the overall supervision of UNIFEM's Chief Advisor, Governance, Peace and Security (based in New York), the Programme Specialist will have the following responsibilities:

  1. Consolidate the inception phase of the 'Making Politics Work for Women' Programme (which will begin in April 2008 and should be complete by December 2008). Programme set-up will involve ensuring that budgetary systems are in place for each country project and for the global, oversight, component of the programme. An important element of the inception phase is the creation and updating of a database on women's political participation, with a focus on numbers of women candidates in forthcoming elections. Work plans must be finalized and agreed with partners, implementation agreements signed, monitoring frameworks agreed, baseline assessments conducted as provided for in the project document, and regular financial and narrative reporting systems established. While each country project office is responsible for these items, the Programme Specialist will track and monitor achievement to time deadlines of these inception processes.
  2. Consolidate the implementation phase of the Programme. Ensure the smooth operational and financial running of the project. This includes maintaining an on-going overview and coordination of project and programme activities, as well as establishing and continuously updating and monitoring a detailed programme schedule shared by all of the country projects. This also includes monitoring of the spending of funds at the country level. In addition, a system of project tasks/achievements milestones and expenditure benchmarks should be set up for early identification of specific needs for special support. Communication channels with all the country project staff and the UNIFEM HQ staff in geographic sections and the Governance, Peace and Security section, will also need to be maintained. At the global level, constant upkeep of the database on women's political participation will be done, and knowledge products will be commissioned, reviewed, tracked, translated and disseminated.
  3. Timely compilation and delivery of donor reports, including both narrative and financial sections. This would require the coordination and set up of guidelines for donor reporting in order to ensure compliance with donor requirements and provide full support to the country offices, regional offices, and headquarters. This also includes the coordination for the timely production of country project information for the global report; and will require close collaboration with UNIFEM geographic sections at the HQ level as well as the operational section.
  4. Monitor and evaluate progress towards overall programme results through supporting regular review of activities and results at the country level, and through encouraging regular collection of data as indicated in the monitoring and results framework. This may include piloting simple monitoring templates for key activities that are common across most of the country projects or also managing assessments of the impact of innovative approaches. This also includes ensuring that country project offices have set up monitoring and reporting mechanisms to ensure timely spending, regular progress reports, and evaluation that refers back to programme objectives.
  5. Establish systems for documenting and analyzing the conditions enabling notable impact of these initiatives (including contracting with consultants for commissioned research). Frequent field missions are an essential part of this. Ensure information flow between field and HQ on lessons learned, promising approaches, less promising approaches. Participate in analysis of lessons learned with the Governance, Peace and Security Section and headquarters. These responsibilities include but are not limited to the facilitation of a discussion list and maintenance of programme and project updated website with public and internal information.
  6. Assess capacity-building needs of UNIFEM country office and of partners who are implementing this and related governance programmes. Contact relevant departments of UNIFEM at regional or HQ levels to ask for support where needed. Organize staff capacity-building training or skills upgrade sessions as relevant to the DFID project.
  7. Support programme-related advocacy activities at country, regional, or international levels as deemed appropriate by the GPS chief advisor, in consultation with geographic sections.
  8. Support start-up phase of the related programme: 'Gender and Good Governance' through provision of technical expertise and advice.
  9. Support other governance-related advocacy and programming activities of the GPS section. Manage UNIFEM's engagement with the partnership 'iKNOWPolitics' with NDI, UNDP, IPU, and IDEA.
  10. Attend programme meetings within UNIFEM, the UNCT, and other forums for coordinating planning and quality programme implementation, as relevant. At the direction of the Chief of the GPS section, ensure UNIFEM's participation in relevant inter-agency and inter governmental forums and liaison with NGOs, UN agencies and other project partners on gender, peace and security issues.


Technical expertise:

  • Knowledge of women's political participation, contemporary good governance reforms, electoral systems and processes, local government participatory processes, political party and campaign reform.
  • Knowledge of mechanisms for promoting women's electoral chances.
  • Familiarity with the UN system's rules and procedures.

Functional/Behavioural Competencies

  • Managerial, organizational, budgeting, results-based management, and negotiating and communication skills.
  • Familiarity with UNDP Atlas system and Prince 2 is an asset.
  • Maturity, ability to take decisions under pressure and ability to deal with matters that are politically or culturally sensitive.
  • Ability to work as a member of a team.
  • Excellent writing and communication skills.

Required Skills and Experience

  • Advanced University degree (Masters level) in social sciences, Politics and/ or international affairs (i.e. international development studies, gender/women's studies, political science and good governance, human rights, development planning, or related technical field. Capacity to analyze quantitative data an advantage.
  • Five years experience in one of these fields: women's political participation, human rights, gender and development, gender and good governance, including progressively responsible professional project management and monitoring and evaluation experience
  • Experience in programme and policy analysis, strategic planning and field experience in conflict situations.
  • Experience with women's organizations or women in politics internationally and in the field desirable.
  • Fluency in English is required. Fluency in French, Spanish or Arabic is a significant asset.

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