Organizational Setting and Work Relationships
The Government Liaison Officer is usually located in country operations. S/he plays a crucial role in ensuring UNHCR’s approach to the Government is consistent, strategic and coherent. The main aim is to ensure that UNHCR can fulfil its role to support the Government to lead the refugee response ensuring the protection of refugees and – in line with the GCR – promote the inclusion of refugees into national systems by coordinating with other actors – including development actors at the early stages of a refugee response and in mixed situations supporting the Government to prevent, respond to and resolve internal displacement while complementing and reinforcing national response efforts. This should be done in line with UNHCRs Mandate, the Global Compact for Refugees, the IDP policy, and agreed inter-agency commitments. More specifically, the incumbent advises the senior management on issues and processes concerning the relationship with the Government and related positioning, coordination, advocacy, information, resource allocation, fundraising, reporting, and communication with other UN agencies, NGOs, civil society actors, private sector, media and other relevant actors through strong engagement in humanitarian inter-agency processes, but also with a focus on development processes as they impact on UNHCR. This requires strong engagement in Government processes, and knowledge and interaction with national entities and processes. The Government Liaison Officer assists senior management with ensuring the Government is aware of the humanitarian architecture and can act in line with ongoing development processes related to the UNDS reform and the 2030 agenda as they impact on UNHCR. The overall goal of the position is to strengthen and enhance the effectiveness of UNHCR¿s leadership roles and responses to situations affecting people of concern to UNHCR (refugees, asylum-seekers, IDPs, stateless persons, returnees, host communities) through an open and transparent partnership approach with the Government.
All UNHCR staff members are accountable to perform their duties as reflected in their job description. They do so within their delegated authorities, in line with the regulatory framework of UNHCR which includes the UN Charter, UN Staff Regulations and Rules, UNHCR Policies and Administrative Instructions as well as relevant accountability frameworks. In addition, staff members are required to discharge their responsibilities in a manner consistent with the core, functional, cross-functional and managerial competencies and UNHCR’s core values of professionalism, integrity and respect for diversity.
- Advise and assist senior managers to formulate and communicate UNHCR positions on Government-related matters on protection, assistance and inclusion of refugees, providing briefing notes, talking points and issue papers for relevant discussions with the Government.
- Promote UNHCR’s policies and liaise with Government authorities on issues related to latest humanitarian and development processes.
- Establish and coordinate country-specific coordination mechanisms for situations co-led by UNHCR and the Government. Where applicable, support the development of country-specific refugee response plans (or refugee and migration response plan and refugee and resilience plan) and comprehensive responses.
- Contribute to ensuring the coherence of the work of the Multi-sector group (MSG) in accordance with the Government.
- Provide protection for persons of concern to UNHCR by ensuring the observance by the local authorities of the recognized principles of refugee law.
- Promote accession to refugee law convention in a way that reinforce the asylum institution in the country.
- Articulate UNHCR¿s priorities towards the Government, including the commitment to humanitarian principles.
- With support from senior management, promote the deeper understanding within UNHCR on agreements with the Government and inform other staff on developments with the Government. This includes promoting and stimulating UNHCR’s implementation of key reforms with the Government;
- Where there is lack of clarity as to UNHCR’s positions and priorities, identify the issues and bring this to senior management attention.
- Assist the Government to ensure timely preparedness activities, including through participation and where necessary coordination of inter-agency contingency planning processes.
- Liaise with the Government, inter-government agencies, UN agencies, local and international NGOs and other partners at the country level to find areas of cooperation, joint initiatives and where applicable negotiate joint agreements or work programmes to further protection and assistance for persons of concern.
- Organise and implement capacity-building seminars or training programmes for target groups (government officials, etc.).
- Maintain close relations with the press and develop public information activities to ensure greater knowledge in public opinion of refugee and asylum issues and promote UNHCR objectives.
- Maintain close contact with HQ on emerging issues.
- Maintain frequent formal and informal contacts with counterparts in other organisations.
- Perform other related duties as required.
Years of Experience / Degree Level
For P3/NOC – 6 years relevant experience with Undergraduate degree; or 5 years relevant experience with Graduate degree; or 4 years relevant experience with Doctorate degree
Field(s) of Education
or other relevant field.
(Field(s) of Education marked with an asterisk* are essential)
Certificates and/or Licenses
Relevant Job Experience
Experience of working with partners at field or Headquarters level. Experience of liaising with governments and/or the donor community. Thorough understanding of UNHCR’s protection mandate and core mission. Thorough understanding of humanitarian coordination processes and/or development coordination.
Inter-agency coordination role. Drafting joint appeal/ refugee response plan/HRP. Experience with another UN agency or partner.
How to apply
Interested candidates are requested to apply on the UNHCR career page at www.unhcr.org/careers – by clicking on the Vacancies tab and entering job ID 31209.
The UNHCR workforce consists of many diverse nationalities, cultures, languages and opinions. UNHCR seeks to sustain and strengthen this diversity to ensure equal opportunities as well as an inclusive working environment for its entire workforce. Applications are encouraged from all qualified candidates without distinction on grounds of race, colour, sex, national origin, age, religion, disability, sexual orientation and gender identity.
Please note that UNHCR does not charge a fee at any stage of its recruitment process (application, interview, meeting, travelling, processing, training or any other fees).
Please note that the closing date is Tuesday 23 November 2021 (midnight Geneva time).