UN Women: Chief of Communications and Advocacy

Advertised on behalf of :

Application Deadline :11-May-20 (Midnight New York, USA)
Type of Contract :FTA International
Post Level :D-1
Languages Required :
Duration of Initial Contract :1 year

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.

In this role as the global voice and advocate for gender equality and the empowerment of women, UN Women must deliver to an ambitious agenda as a centre of excellence on knowledge, partnerships, advocacy and social mobilization, as well as a convener, thought leader and champion of gender equality and women’s empowerment.  UN Women has a lead role in helping to drive commitment and action on gender equality, women’s rights and women’s empowerment as the imperative of our time.

The Communications & Advocacy Section is responsible for proactively advancing the strategic positioning of UN Women and its mandate in this context through effective outreach through its strategic communications capacity and function. Since the inception of UN Women, communications and advocacy demand and output have grown exponentially.  The Chief of Communications and Advocacy is the driver of corporate response to these demands and oversees a fast-growing portfolio with increasing responsibility and a global audience of hundreds of millions.

The Chief of Communications & Advocacy works under the supervision of the Director, Strategic Partnerships Division and heads a team of some 15 staff. In addition, the Chief of Communications & Advocacy guides and coordinates the work of over 150 UN Women communications officers and focal points around the world on global campaigns and initiatives and provides guidance through corporate communications policies.

Duties and Responsibilities

Lead UN Women strategic direction and advice on communications and public advocacy:

  • Lead development and implementation of a global communications & advocacy strategy in line with UN Women’s Strategic Plan to position UN Women and its mandate to global audiences, outlining the brand, messages, audience, and communication channels to reach the intended audiences, and ensure that UN Women’s message is consistently communicated;
  • Guide and oversee application of UN Women’s brand and message and grow brand equity. Ensure messaging and branding is uniformly applied across the organization, its programmes and activities; Lead the provision of communications policies and guidelines to direct communications activities and ensure organization-wide coherence and consistency;
  • Provide strategic communications advice to UN Women senior management, including on high-level media engagement to drive key issues on the organization’s agenda; provides advice and guidance on crisis communications;
  • Develop global campaigns and messaging to advance UN Women global advocacy priorities. Ensure that campaign strategies and messages are audience appropriate to enhance UN Women reach and visibility among all stakeholders;
  • Drive a “whole of organization” approach to communications that leverages the collective capacity of the organization in the most holistic and mutually reinforcing way possible.

Lead the communications & advocacy team and guides and supervises all communications initiatives:

  • Guide the development and implementation of event-specific, integrated communications strategies to advance UN Women’s advocacy and position the organization, such as for intergovernmental meetings, international conferences, launches of UN Women flagship reports; International Women’s Day etc.;
  • Direct relationships with the media at the global level. Develop and nurture media networks, to educate and sensitize journalists to UN Women’s mandate and work;
  • Oversee the expansion and strategic direction of UN Women’s digital presence through web sites and social media channels;
  • Guide the development of audio-visual and print products to inform about UN Women’s work and enhance the organization’s visibility;
  • Provide advice and oversight to HQ Sections and Field Offices on communications initiatives to ensure effective coordination and consistent messaging and outreach;
  • Develop and manages the communications budget.

Lead the development of strategic partnerships for communications & public advocacy:

  • Develop partnerships with private sector, incl. media, and civil society to enhance public awareness on women’s empowerment and gender equality issues and position UN Women and its mandate; to that end, seeks opportunities for marketing, advocacy and editorial collaboration;
  • Direct and manage engagement of UN Women Goodwill Ambassadors to amplify UN Women’s cause in the context of campaigns and events; plans and prepares public events and ensures that messaging is in line with the organization’s strategic priorities and advocacy;
  • Develop and maintain partnerships within the UN system for joint communications and collaboration around overarching issues on the international agenda; ensures that women’s empowerment and gender equality issues are positioned in this context.

Provide substantive lead and guidance for UN Women’s work on gender and media:      

  • Develop advocacy opportunities, in collaboration with partners in media, UN system and civil society to advance women’s representation in media;   
  • Identify research initiatives in collaboration with partners to enhance availability of data and knowledge on gender and media;
  • Advise UN Women offices on their work on gender and media.

Manage the Unit:

  • Exercise oversight of the Communication and  Section to ensure the delivery of quality results according to UN-Women’s standards and goals established in the Section;
  • Manage the performance off staff and ensure compliance to the performance management process; Promote teamwork and establish a working environment that is conducive to delivering results;
  • Manage financial resources and take responsibility for the integrity of financial systems and consistent application of the internal control framework and/or UN Women/UN rules and regulations;
  • Identify and integrate efficiency gains and cost reductions in all operations;
  • Build staff capacity through planned training, learning programs, mentoring and coaching;
  • Support strategic evaluations and that learning from evaluations;
  • Oversee security requirements for team.

Key Performance Indicators:

The Chief of Communications & Advocacy is a key function in positioning UN Women and its mandate to external audiences. The incumbent is a major driver of the organization’s global advocacy on women’s empowerment, women’s rights. As such, the post is critical in advancing the international gender equality agenda.

Key performance indicators include:

  • Implementation of UN Women strategy on Communication and Advocacy on time, on scope on budget;
  • Implementation of event-specific, integrated communications strategies to advance UN Women’s advocacy and position the organization on time, on scope and on budget;
  • Development of partnerships and initiatives and outcomes as a result of partnerships with private sector, incl. media, and civil society;
  • UN Women visibility in high level media;
  • UN women social media reach;
  • Performance of staff.


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.

Please visit this link for more information on UN Women’s Core Values and Competencies: https://www.unwomen.org/-/media/headquarters/attachments/sections/about%20us/employment/un-women-values-and-competencies-framework-en.pdf?la=en&vs=637

Functional Competencies:

  • Proven knowledge and expertise in leading strategic communications at the international level;
  • Proven ability to conceptualize and implement communications & advocacy strategies and 
  • campaigns;
  • Excellent knowledge of news media and media relations; digital media and other communications channels and proven ability to apply these for effective outreach;
  • Proven ability to develop partnerships for communications & advocacy;
  • Outstanding written and oral communications and editing skills; proven ability to position issues effectively, both orally and in writing;
  • Demonstrated experience and skill in effectively managing teams and creating an enabling working environment; 
  • Familiarity with UN Women and the UN system;
  • Strong knowledge of gender issues.

Required Skills and Experience


  • Master’s degree (or equivalent) in one or more of the following disciplines: communications, international development, social studies, and other related fields.


  • At least 15 years of management experience in global strategic communications, preferably with an international organization;  
  • Experience in leading strategic communications at the international level;
  • Experience of managing teams, including networked capacity in multiple countries.


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


All applications must include (as an attachment) the completed UN Women Personal History form (P-11) which can be downloaded from https://www.unwomen.org/-/media/headquarters/attachments/sections/about%20us/employment/un-women-p11-personal-history-form.doc?la=en&vs=558. 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.

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