Policy Specialist, Humanitarian, Peace and Security

Advertised on behalf of :

Location : Abuja, NIGERIA
Application Deadline :07-Mar-19 (Midnight New York, USA)
Type of Contract :Individual Contract
Post Level :International Consultant
Languages Required :
Duration of Initial Contract :6 months


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.


Nigeria’s central role in ECOWAS, its large population and strong economy makes it a strategic player in West Africa and in sub-Saharan Africa more generally. However, Nigeria faces several security challenges including low-intensity conflicts over resource wealth, crimes and kidnappings and in recent years, the onset of the North-East insurgency. Nonetheless, the conflict between pastoralists and farmers, which stretch from the North-East, North-West, South West and South East of the country is estimated to have resulted in more deaths than the North-East insurgency. Although conflicts between nomadic herdsmen and sedentary farmers is not a new phenomenon in Nigeria, there has been an escalation both in the frequency and intensity of the conflicts over the last decade, and particularly in 2018. The southward movement of herdsmen in search of grazing land has resulted in increasing numbers of clashes with farming communities who accuse the herdsmen of deliberately grazing cattle on farmlands causing crop destruction.


Moreover, even though women are highly affected by conflict and they play diverse roles, their contribution to formal conflict resolution and peacebuilding processes has been overlooked, and their capacity under-utilized, leaving untapped an incredible tool for transformative change and sustainable peace.  They are often seen only as victims of conflicts that need to be protected rather than agents of change for peace. This is due to cultural and religious norms limiting their roles. Women do tend to play the role of advising youth in their communities against acts that could escalate violent conflict therefore contradicting local conventional wisdom on women’s inadequacies to participate in peacebuilding activities. To the extent they are included, women from farmer communities tend to be more active as members of the peace committees than the women from the pastoralist communities. This notwithstanding, women from pastoralist communities are critical stakeholders that any project will need to effectively engage with in promoting peace. In addition, post-conflict economic and social disenfranchisement renders women and girls even more vulnerable to sexual and economic predation.



UN Women’s work

UN Women has just completed implementation of a four-year programme, “Promoting Women’s Engagement in Peace and Security in Northern Nigeria (2014-2018)”. The Programme supported the Nigerian Government at Federal level and three Northern States (Adamawa, Plateau and Gombe), to strengthen women’s leadership, advance gender equality and improve protection for women and children in conflict settings. The Programme facilitated the implementation of UN Security Council Resolution 1325 (UNSCR 1325). UN Women has also worked closely with the Nigerian Government and the Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development to update the National Action Plan for the implementation of the UNSCR 1325 and other resolutions. The Plan makes provisions to address emerging peace and security issues in the country, from a gender perspective.


UN Women, in partnership with UNDP, FAO and OHCHR, has secured funding from the Peacebuilding Fund (PBF) to implement the project, ‘Integrated Approach to Building Peace in Nigeria’s Farmer-Herder Crisis in Benue, Nasarawa and Taraba States.’ The eighteen-month project started in January 2019 and will be concluded in June 2020. The project will support the aforementioned beneficiary States in addressing the farmer-herder crisis through enhancing their preventive capacities by promoting dialogue and proactive engagement; building mutually beneficial economic relationships between farmers and herders; improving the effectiveness of the security response through strengthened human rights monitoring and accountability; and providing an impartial and evidence-based narrative to defuse the politicized debate and help mobilize a broader response. UN Women’s critical role is to ensure that these processes and interventions are gender-responsive. 


As part of this effort, UN Women is seeking to recruit a consultant to support start-up and implementation of a number of key deliverables. Working under the supervision of the Deputy Country Representative, with strategic reporting to the Country Representative, the consultant will undertake the following key tasks:

Duties and Responsibilities

Enhance Gender Mainstreaming

  • Guide the establishment of State-level agency/commission/structure to drive a gender-sensitive peacebuilding agenda (especially in response to the farmers-herders crisis) and operationalize relevant elements of UNSCR 2325
  • Ensure a gender-responsive mapping and review of State Agencies/Commission/ Structure, CSOs engaged in peace and security, and existing Early Warning Early Response Systems (EWERS) available in the States


Strengthen capacity/ Improve knowledge

  • Train government officials, traditional and religious leaders, security actors and CSO’s (including women’s rights organizations) on gender-sensitive dialogue and mediation
  • Facilitate two workshops to raise awareness and improve knowledge on sexual exploitation and abuse (SEA) and sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV), targeting security actors and key service providers for displaced communities
  • Train CSOs and other stakeholders on gender-sensitive monitoring, investigation and following-up on human rights offences
  • Organize two sensitization and awareness raising workshops among pastoralists, crop farmers and members of the public on the cost of conflict and economic benefits of peaceful co-existence


Promote Advocacy/Dialogue

  • Facilitate monthly meetings among ministries, departments, CSOs/CBO, traditional and religious institutions, and women and youth networks to promote coordination around peace
  • Organize two advocacy meetings each at national and state levels with top Government officials and security agencies to enhance effective response to conflict early warnings
  • Organize a dialogue forum on legislation around open grazing, targeting farmers, herders and other stakeholders
  • Facilitate two meetings through local level platforms for dialogue and exchange with security agencies and informal security actors (vigilante groups)


Key Deliverables

  • State-level agency/commission/structure established to drive gender-sensitive peacebuilding agenda
  • Gender analysis included in Mapping Report (including gender-responsive recommendations) on State Agencies/Commission/structure, CSOs engaged in peace and security, and existing Early Warning Early Response Systems (EWERS)
  • Government officials, traditional and religious leaders, security actors and CSO’s (including women’s rights organizations) trained on gender-sensitive dialogue and mediation, monitoring, investigation and following-up on human rights offences
  • Meetings with stakeholders on legislation around open grazing held and reports produced
  • Security personnel and other peacebuilding actors trained on SEA and SGBV; and report produced on dialogue and exchange with security agencies and informal security actors (vigilante groups)
  • Sensitization and awareness raising meeting held with pastoralists, crop farmers and members of the public on the cost of conflict and economic benefits of peaceful co-existence; and report produced


Key Performance Indicators

  • Timely and quality technical advice and support
  • Leadership in area of expertise in the region
  • Quality reports and other strategic documents drafted and submitted in a timely manner
  • Strong relationships with various partners and stakeholders
  • Timely and quality resource mobilization and knowledge products
  • Quality monitoring and reporting
  • Increased awareness about UN Women’s work
  • Increased cooperation and communication between UN Women and partners engaged in peace and security in the project implementation States in Nigeria (Benue, Nasarawa and Taraba)


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 Gender, Women’s Peace and Security issues, including in Nigeria
  • Excellent project implementation, monitoring and Evaluation skills
  • Excellent networking skills
  • Excellent writing skills including the writing of policy papers, speeches, briefing notes
  • Ability to interact with donors, identify and analyze trends, opportunities and threats to fundraising
  • Ability to advocate and provide policy advice
  • Excellent analytical and problem solving skills;
  • Strong knowledge of programme development, implementation, results based management and reporting
  • Ability to develop detailed operational plans, budgets, and deliver on results
  • Ability to lead formulation of strategies and their implementation

Required Skills and Experience

Education and certification

Master’s degree or equivalent in Peace and Security, human rights, international relations or other social science fields is required.



  • At least 5 years progressively responsible experience in designing and implementing programmes on women, peace and security; ideally with some experience in Africa, especially Nigeria
  • Experience in project implementation, monitoring and evaluation
  • Experience in proposal development, policy analysis, and strategic planning;
  • Experience working with, and building partnerships with governments, donors and civil society organizations internationally and in the field;
  • Technical experience of implementing peace and security projects
  • Experience in working with women in peacebulding is an asset
  • Experience working with the UN is an asset;
  • Experience working in Nigeria is an asset.

 Language Requirements:

  • Fluency in English is required;
  • Knowledge of any other UN official working language is an asset

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.

If you are experiencing difficulties with online job applications, please contact erecruit.helpdesk@undp.org.

© 2016 United Nations Development Programme