Junior Professional Officer (JPO) in Humanitarian Affairs at P2 level

December 3, 2021
Geneva, Switzerland
Post Type
Experience (minimum)
2-5 Years
Education (minimum)
Travel Required?
Not specified
Base Salary
Not specified



Through USAID’s Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance (USAID/BHA), the United States sponsors qualified U.S. citizens for employment in the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA) the Junior Professional Officer (JPO) Program. These fully funded JPO positions strengthen the humanitarian coordination capacity of UNOCHA. They further encourage U.S. citizens to become active members of the international community. After completing their JPO assignments, a number of JPOs successfully compete for positions at UNOCHA, and in other international and non-governmental organization.


Title of Supervisor: Head of IASC secretariat

Content and methodology of supervision: Establishment of a Work Plan: During the first month of the assignment, the Junior Professional Officer (JPO) will work jointly with his/her direct supervisor to finalize an agreed upon work plan. The final work plan will be discussed and mutually agreed to by the JPO and his/her supervisor.

Evaluation: The United Nations Performance Evaluation System (e-performance) will serve as a primary platform to evaluate the JPO’s performance.

Duties, Responsibilities, and Output Expectations:

The Associate Humanitarian Affairs Officer, under the supervision of the Head of the IASC secretariat will undertake the following duties:


  • Maintain, update as necessary, dissemination strategy to make the body of IASC policy, guidelines, tools more easily accessible to an audience both within and outside of the IASC system, especially at the field level;
  • Enhance and streamline communication between the IASC, IASC partners, the field, and key non-IASC actors;
  • Regular production and issuance of the IASC Newsletter;
  • Ensure regular and systematic information flows between the various IASC structures (OPAG, EDG, RG, etc) to ensure improved and efficient implementation of workplan;
  • Support the efforts for the IASC website content to be systematically updated and made available in a client-friendly way to the humanitarian community, in close consultation with the IASC secretariat Focal Points and IASC members;
  • Support efforts to enhance information management, including through regular
    information update in Salesforce and its Client Relations Management platform.

Outreach and Inclusivity:

  • Arrange thematic and context-specific briefings by senior UN and non-UN officials to the IASC members and humanitarian community;
  • Ensure regular, targeted and custom-tailored dissemination of critical information, policies and guidelines to humanitarian leaders on the ground;
  • Conduct an analysis of opportunities to enhance engagement with non-IASC actors (particularly from the Global South) to better shape policies, humanitarian response and advocacy efforts; and contribute to the implementation of the recommendations;
  • Support to strengthen engagement with member states, including donors, on IASC related issues;
  • Support and contribute to increasing visuality of the IASC’s work through social media.

Other Tasks:

  • Monitor and report on the implementation of the IASC decisions;
  • Support in monitoring the progress in the implementation of the workplans of the various IASC Results Groups, by drafting/consolidating progress reports and identifying gaps, bringing them to the attention of the IASC secretariat;
  • Support with the preparation of remarks and statements for engagement in various fora;
  • Support regular reporting on the work of the IASC (including to OCHA’s Annual Report and donor reporting);
  • Support the IASC secretariat daily business and management.

 Learning Elements
On completion of the assignment, the JPO will have/be able to:

  • Understand the mandates of the IASC and its subsidiary bodies and the mandates of
    different humanitarian organizations;
  • Understand the different elements of inter-agency coordination;
  • Develop strategies to operationalize policies and guidelines;
  • Develop strategies to increase communication between the IASC and various partners through different platforms including for social media and the IASC website;
  • Prepare concise background documents with clear expected outcomes;
  • Write action-oriented summary records and minutes of the meetings;
  • Organise high-level inter-agency events;
  • Describe the key humanitarian policy and operational issues in current emergencies;
  • Establish a monitoring system to track follow-up to decisions;
  • Establish working relationships and partnerships with colleagues from 18 organizations listed below.

Background Information
The Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC) was established in 1992 in response to General Assembly resolution 46/182 calling for strengthened coordination of humanitarian assistance. The IASC is a unique inter-agency forum for humanitarian dialogue and decision making that brings together a range of UN and non-UN humanitarian partners. Through interaction among main humanitarian actors, the IASC ensures greater coherence among the humanitarian community.

The IASC is composed as follows:

Full Members Standing Invitees

  • International Organisation for Migration (IOM);
  • United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF);
  • United Nations Development Programme (UNDP);
  • United Nations Fund for Population Activities (UNFPA);
  • United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR);
  • United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-HABITAT);
  • World Food Programme (WFP);
  • Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO);
  • World Health Organization (WHO);
  • Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA);

Standing Invitees:

  • Inter-Action (more than 160 members);
  • International Council of Voluntary Agencies (ICVA, 75 members);
  • International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC);
  • International Federation of the Red Cross (IFRC);
  • Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR);
  • Office of the Special Rapporteur on the Human Rights of IDPs (SR on HR of IDPs);
  • Steering Committee for Humanitarian Response (SCHR, 8 large non-governmental organizations);
  • World Bank.

IASC Five Strategic Priorities:

  • Operational Response
  •  Accountability and Inclusion
  •  Collective Advocacy
  • Humanitarian-Development Collaboration
  • Humanitarian Financing

Qualifications and Experience

You must be a U.S. Citizen to apply.

Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in humanitarian affairs, political science, business administration, communications, management, economics or a related field.A
first-level university degree in combination with qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.

Work experience:
A minimum of 2 years of relevant work experience in humanitarian affairs, project or programme management, public information, event management, administration or related area. Knowledge of key inter-agency and intergovernmental processes, field and headquarter operations is required. Experience with IASC processes, general organizational design, and reform projects, preferably with the UN Secretariat and or the UN system, is desirable.

English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the post advertised, fluency in English is required. Knowledge of another UN official language is an

Other skills:
Knowledge of the institutions of the UN system, familiarity with humanitarian principles and practices and relevant experience at both UN headquarters and in UN field operations is desirable. Proven aptitude for representation, advocacy and liaison on a range of international policy issues is also a plus. Good computer skills required, preferable website and information
management software, etc

UN competencies:

  • Professionalism: Strong analytical capacity, strong research skills, including ability to evaluate and synthesize information from a variety of sources.
  • Commitment to Continuous Learning: Willingness to keep abreast of new developments in the field.
  • Communications: Exemplary communication (spoken and written) skills in English, including the ability to draft and edit a variety of written reports and communications and to articulate
    ideas in a clear, concise style.
  • Planning and Organizing: Ability to plan own work, manage conflicting priorities and work under pressure of tight and conflicting deadlines.
  • Technology awareness: Fully proficient computer skills and use of relevant software and other applications, e.g. word processing, spreadsheets, internal databases, Internet, website
    software etc.
  • Teamwork: Very good interpersonal skills and ability to establish and maintain effective partnerships and working relations in a multi-cultural, multi-ethnic environment with sensitivity
    and respect for diversity

Application Instructions
The JPO Program selection process is carried out jointly by USAID/BHA and the UNOCHA. You must be a U.S. Citizen to apply.

  1. To apply please send completed UN Personal History Statement (P11) (see link below),
  2. resume (CV) and;
  3. cover letter to explain your interest in this position to BHA.JPOCoordinator@usaid.gov . Please state which position you are applying for in the subject line of your email. If you wish to apply for multiple positions, please complete a Personal History Statement (P11) for each position and submit these to us in separate emails with the appropriate subject heading.

Application Details
Please complete the UN Personal History Statement (P11) thoroughly.  The P11 provides the opportunity to include all required information in one document, including your professional work experience and references.  Please attach a cover letter to explain your interest in the position and interest in working with the UN, along with a general resume. The P11 has instructions on how to complete the profile; however, please be sure to also follow the additional instructions below:

  • The P11 must be completed in English only. You can find the P11 form at BHA job website.
  • You may leave the signature/date sections blank at this time.  If selected for one of the positions, you will then need to submit a signed version.
  • Do not submit a photograph.
  • Incomplete applications will not be considered;
  • Application deadline: December 31, 2021, 5:00 PM Eastern Time
  • For more information please consult the Frequently Asked Questions

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