UN Women: Senior Advocacy Advisor on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

Advertised on behalf of :

Application Deadline :22-Jan-16 (Midnight New York, USA)
Type of Contract :FTA International
Post Level :P-5
Languages Required :
Duration of Initial Contract :1 year


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 (UNW) will lead and coordinate United Nations 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.

The SDG Senior Advocacy Advisor will work in the Executive Director’s Office of UN Women and report directly to the Chief of Staff. The Advisor will lead the development and execution of an advocacy strategy to amplify and ensure the implementation of the gender equality and women’s empowerment (GEWE) dimensions of the SDGs, positioning GEWE as central to sustainable development. The SDG Senior  Advocacy Advisor will interact with all Divisions within UN Women, including the 2030 Agenda Working Group,  field based teams, and other UN agencies, as well as key external stakeholders as required to fulfil her/his responsibilities.

Duties and Responsibilities

The SDG Senior Advocacy Advisor will support the Executive Director (ED) in the delivery of her functions, specifically with regard to high-level advocacy efforts and catalysing change, including through the development and dissemination of evidence-based knowledge products in support of the integration of the GEWE targets of the SDGs into policies, programmes, and budgets at global, regional, and national levels. Further, the SDG Senior Advocacy Advisor will support the implementation of commitments made under the Planet 50-50 by 2030: Step it Up for Gender Equality (Step it Up) campaign, which has garnered concrete pledges from governments to support the full implementation of the GEWE dimensions of the SDGs.  

Summary of key functions:

  • Design and lead the implementation of high impact SDG advocacy efforts under ED’s direction and in consultation with the Deputy Executive Directors and their teams;
  • Spearhead internal and external coordination of SDG advocacy;
  • Identify and build strategic alliances and partnerships that galvanize action, build diverse ownership of the SDGs and bring in resources;
  • In consultation with partners, monitor and share progress on the achievement of GEWE within the context of SDGs in accessible and impactful ways.

Design and lead the implementation of high impact SDG advocacy efforts:

  • Map the key stakeholders for advocacy efforts;
  • Conceptualize and develop innovative advocacy strategies for UN Women to advance the GEWE dimensions of the SDGs at the global, regional and national levels;
  • Develop innovative ways to use communication mechanisms and channels, including the ED’s voice, to advocate for necessary changes in pursuit of the SDGs and GEWE;
  • Develop and disseminate advocacy messaging to target constituencies and stakeholders in order to broaden and deepen ownership of the SDGs, galvanize action, support accountability and showcase best practices;
  • Package GEWE and SDGs-related content for the preparation of accessible knowledge products;
  • Analyse trends and dynamics with regard to the achievement of the GEWE dimensions of the SDGs, as well as evidence of impact and gaps in progress, in order to respond to changes in the external environment;
  • Based on well informed analysis, provide expert advice and guidance that furthers the strategic positioning of UN Women with regard to advancing the achievement of the GEWE dimensions of the SDGs.

Spearhead internal and external coordination of SDG Advocacy:

  • Develop coherent messaging and storylines that build on and integrate various GEWE commitments (e.g., Beijing Platform for Action, CEDAW, CSW declarations) with the 2030 agenda;
  • Coordinate with UN Women colleagues at the regional and national levels on SDG implementation efforts, specifically on national commitments under Planet 50-50 by 2030: Step It Up for Gender Equality
  • Provide advocacy tools and products to colleagues and partners;
  • Develop strong working relationships with  the 2030 Agenda Working Group, and with other Divisions of UN Women at HQ and with Regional and Country Offices to ensure effective internal coordination on SDG and GEWE advocacy;
  • Develop effective communication approaches to ensure all UN Women offices are empowered to engage in the SDG advocacy efforts;
  • Coordinate the various contributions and work products of UN Women’s units into a cohesive advocacy effort that leverages existing communication campaigns, UN Women’s convening power and its normative, UN coordination and programme implementation mandate;
  • Support the coordination of SDG mainstreaming across the UN system including through the UNCT, UNDAF, MARs and other strategic coordination mechanisms;
  • Represent UN Women at strategic forums and events as necessary.

Build strategic alliances and partnerships that galvanize action:

  • Use advocacy campaigns to crowdsource ideas, actions, and resources for SDG and GEWE advocacy;
  • Cultivate high-impact public-private partnerships to accelerate the implementation of the GEWE elements of the SDGs through joint advocacy, showcasing best practices, or other mechanisms to be determined by the Advisor;
  • Assist the ED in her efforts to strengthen existing strategic partnerships and alliances with key development stakeholders,  including governments, intergovernmental institutions, parliamentarians, civil society, academic institutions, media,  the private sector and UN Agencies, and build and nurture new ones with non-traditional stakeholders in order to advance the achievement of the GEWE dimensions of the SDGs.

Monitor, capture and disseminate success stories and best practices, as well as evidence of impact and gaps in progress on GEWE within the context of the SDGs:

  • Develop impactful monitoring tools and  clear graphic representation of  the results of collective stakeholder and UN Women’s progress on GEWE and SDGs (e.g., barometers, milestone charts)
  • In collaboration with colleagues and partners, advocate for the incorporation of SDG GEWE indicators into national M&E systems.
  • Develop a tracking tool to monitor new SDG and GEWE commitments made by identified stakeholders under Planet 50-50 by 2030: Step It Up for Gender Equality and engage the relevant colleagues in effective follow-up of implementation.


Core values and Guiding principles:


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


  • Demonstrate professional competence and expert knowledge of the pertinent substantive areas of work.

Cultural sensitivity and valuing diversity:

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

Core Competencies:

Ethics and Values:

  • Demonstrate and promote ethics and integrity by creating organizational precedents.

Organizational Awareness:

  • Build support for the organization and ensure political acumen.

Development and Innovation:

  • Support staff competence development, and contribute to an environment of creativity and innovation.

Work in teams:

  • Build and promote effective teams. Demonstrate ability to work in a multicultural, multi ethnic environment and to maintain effective working relations with people of different national and cultural backgrounds. 

Communication and Information Sharing:

  • Create and promote an environment for open and effective communication.

Self-management and Emotional Intelligence:

  • Stay composed and positive even in difficult moments, handle tense situations with diplomacy and tact, and have a consistent behavior towards others.

Conflict Management:

  • Surface conflicts and address them proactively acknowledging different feelings and views and directing energy towards a mutually acceptable solution.

Continuous Learning and Knowledge Sharing:

  • Share knowledge across the organization and build a culture of knowledge sharing and learning.

Appropriate and Transparent Decision Making:

  • Ensure fair and transparent decision making processes and manage risk.

Functional Competencies:

  • Possesses substantive and demonstrated professional experience and record of accomplishments in the area of gender equality and women's empowerment, human rights and sustainable development;
  • Demonstrates excellent knowledge of multilateral affairs and the UN system;
  • Demonstrates proven ability to advocate and provide policy advice to senior UN officials and in developing, implementing and monitoring advocacy strategies
  • Possesses a successful track record in developing strong partnerships with donors, networking and mobilizing significant resources for development assistance programmes;
  • Demonstrates ability to build strategic partnerships with multiple stakeholders, including governments, civil society, the private sector, and non-traditional partners;
  • Possesses ability to lead strategic planning, change management processes, results-based management and reporting;
  • Possesses ability to lead formulation, oversight of implementation, monitoring and evaluation of development programmes;
  • Demonstrates ability to act as a connector of people and partners to bring actors together to achieve results;
  • Demonstrates capacity to engage as a catalyst for change and leverage opportunities as well as to create ‘buzz’ around gender issues and the SDGs;
  • Demonstrates critical thinking – the capacity to make meaningful improvements based on critical feedback;
  • Demonstrates creativity – thinks outside the box and brings innovative ideas and new ways of working. 

Required Skills and Experience


  • Master degree (or equivalent) in gender issues, political affairs, international relations, social sciences, communications or journalism or related fields.


  • 10 years of relevant experience with particular expertise in large scale advocacy and campaign design and management, as well as marketing as related to gender and/ or development issues;
  • Familiarity with the SDGs and post-2015 development agenda required.


  • Written and oral proficiency in English is required;
  • Knowledge of another UN working language is desirable. 

Application Information:

  • 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;
  • UN Women will only be able to respond to those applications in which there is further interest.


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.

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