The Office of the Ombudsman for United Nations Funds and Programmes offers dedicated informal dispute-resolution services to all contract holders from UNDP, UNFPA, UNICEF, UNOPS and UN Women in an informal, confidential manner with the aim of maintaining a harmonious workplace environment. The Ombudsman does not advocate for any party in a dispute but rather assists in seeing that all members of the work force are treated equitably and that justice is done.

As part of the efforts to improve organizational culture and ways of responding to grievances, the Office of the Ombudsman is increasing the existing capacity for mediation services through the establishment of a Global Mediation Panel consisting of external, on-call mediators, and through Members of the International Advisory Board approved by the Office of the Ombudsman in consultation with the Chairpersons of the relevant Staff Associations. If the Ombudsman deems that a workplace dispute brought to the attention of the Office would be best addressed by the mediation process, he or she may refer it to the Global Mediation Panel to address it in a faster, less intrusive way than through the formal process. 

Please send an expression of interest with the following:

(a) Curriculum vitae and/or bio (an example can be found here):;

(b) Profile picture; and as optional (c) A cover letter of not more than one page explaining your interest in joining the Panel to with the subject line “Global Mediation Panel” by 30 May 2020 (early applications are encouraged).


After reviewing the applications, the Office of the Ombudsman will contact qualified candidates regarding the next steps.

The Office of the Ombudsman may invite leading mediators to submit an expression of interest in becoming consultant on-call mediators, provided that such mediators meet the requirements listed above.

Duties and Responsibilities

Description of responsibilities

Under the direct supervision of the Mediation Specialist and leadership of the Ombudsman, the on-call external mediators will be responsible for the following duties:

  • Provide on-call mediation services as a third-party neutral mediator upon request by the Office of the Ombudsman;
  • Maintain neutrality and impartiality towards all parties and ensure confidentiality of the process;
  • Where required, assist in following up with the parties after mediation to receive feedback and to advise clients of further services;
  • Conduct and participate in trainings as requested by the Office of the Ombudsman;
  • Promptly provide all necessary information about the cases handled to the Office of the Ombudsman, including by reporting requested data in technology systems, surveys, and reports;
  • Collaborate with the Office of the Ombudsman and any other relevant UN organizations regarding any concerns or complaints received as to the conducted mediations; and
  • Comply with all applicable ethical standards, processes, and procedures established by the Office of the Ombudsman and the United Nations. 


  • Manage cases and tasks assigned in an effective and timely manner;
  • Keep the Office of the Ombudsman adequately informed of developments and matters requiring particular/immediate attention;
  • Provide reports, surveys, and feedback regarding the conducted mediations, training programmes, and awareness sessions.



  • Has a thorough understanding of and significant experience in the mediation process.   Demonstrates professional competence and mastery of the subject matter, is conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, and observes deadlines.


  • Speaks and writes clearly and effectively; listens to others, correctly interprets messages from others and responds appropriately; asks questions to clarify and exhibits interest in having two-way communication; tailors language, tone, style and format to match the audience; demonstrates openness in sharing information and keeping people informed.

Client Orientation:

  • Considers all those to whom services are provided to be “clients”; establishes and maintains productive partnerships with clients by gaining their trust and respect; identifies clients' needs and matches them to appropriate solutions; monitors ongoing developments inside and outside the clients’ environment to keep informed and anticipate problems; keeps clients informed of progress or setbacks in projects; meets timeline for delivery of products or services to client.


  • Identifies the key issues in a complex situation; gathers relevant information before making a decision; considers positive and negative impacts of decisions prior to making them; takes decisions with an eye to the impact on others and on the organization; checks assumptions against facts; determines the actions proposed will satisfy the expressed and underlying needs for the decision.

Required Skills and Experience

The candidates for on-call mediators of the Global Mediation Panel shall be highly experienced mediators interested in participating in the screening process with a view to being included as consultant on-call mediators in the Global Mediation Panel of the Office of the Ombudsman.

The applicants shall meet the following criteria in order to qualify:

•           A degree in law, conflict management or other relevant social sciences. A master’s degree in alternative dispute resolution (ADR) would be an asset;

•           Formal training in conflict resolution;

•           Proven mediation experience (at least five years); and

•           Fluency in the official language of the country for which the mediator will be screened and proficiency in English (both oral and written).

The Office is currently seeking applicants who have permanent residence or significant presence in countries in Africa, Asia and the Pacific, Europe, Latin America, and the Middle East where the five United Nations organizations served by the Office of the Ombudsman have country offices or an established presence.

Although current members of the national judiciary and governments are not disqualified per se, their acceptance is subject to the procurement processes of the United Nations, which may include restrictions in this regard. Furthermore, before accepting an offer to be included as an on-call mediator in the Global Mediation Panel, candidates must furnish proof that the laws of the particular jurisdiction permit the acceptance of such an offer.