Senior Sustainable Development Officer, P5

Senior Sustainable Development Officer, P5

UN DESA - United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs

New York, United States


Within delegated authority, under the overall supervision of the Chief of the Integrated Policy Analysis Branch and guided on a day-to-day basis by the sustainable energy team leader in the Branch, the Senior Sustainable Development Officer will be responsible for the following duties:

  • Leads the development, implementation and evaluation of assigned programmes/projects on sustainable development and energy issues; directs subordinates in programme/project development, implementation, monitoring and assessment; undertakes capacity building activities; identifies priorities and issues to be addressed; and proposes recommendations for action.
  • Leads a range of policy-relevant analyses in relation to the implementation of Sustainable Development Goal 7 (SDG 7) on energy including to analyse energy’s social, economic and environmental interlinkages with other Sustainable Development Goals, to identify emerging issues/opportunities including those related to climate change, transport, science, technology and innovation, and to prepare policy recommendations.
  • Leads the preparation of various written outputs, on sustainable energy, aimed at connecting local evidences with global policy discourse, including background papers, analysis, substantial sections of reports and studies, evidence-based analysis from filed-missions, and inputs to publications on sustainable development issues.
  • Provides direct substantive thematic support to consultative and intergovernmental meetings, including, as required, the High-Level Political Forum, the UN Decade of Sustainable Energy for All 2014-2024, UNFCCC meetings, the annual Science, Technology and Innovation Forum, and other occasional meetings of a similar nature by offering strategic and technical inputs in collaboration with the multi-stakeholder SDG 7 Technical Advisory Group and other relevant partners.
  • Provides direct substantive support to UN inter-agency coordination such as UN-Energy by offering strategic advice, giving technical guidance and assisting in developing consensus.
  • Prepares speeches, outreach materials or presentations for senior staff and makes presentations at various forums of intergovernmental, governmental, inter-agency, expert or multi-stakeholder nature.
  • Coordinates activities related to budget and funding (programme/project preparation and submissions, progress reports, financial statements, etc.) and ensures preparation of related documents/reports (pledging, work programme, programme budget, etc.) on sustainable development issues.
  • Mobilizes and organizes synergetic multi-stakeholder dialogues and partnerships aimed at leveraging energy’s interlinkages with other SDGs including climate actions in line with the Paris Agreement on Climate Change.
  • Ensures gender mainstreaming, including in legislation, policies or programmes.
  • Represents, as requested, the Branch/Division at international, regional or national meetings on sustainable energy issues.
  • Performs other related duties as required.


  • Professionalism: Demonstrates understanding, professional competence and a high-level of technical expertise in sustainable development with a focus on the implementation of established principles and policies of sustainable energy; ability in mobilizing resources, and familiarity with potential donors' policies such as member states, UN funds and programmes, global funds, international and regional financial institutions as well as other stakeholders; knowledge of United Nations policy-making processes and technical cooperation activities; ability to prepare project proposals, in particular those related to supporting the transition to a green economy; ability in building and implementing multi-stakeholder partnerships, including with national institutions and organizations involved in the development process; Proven knowledge and understanding of theories, concepts and approaches relevant to sustainable development. Ability to identify key strategic issues, opportunities and risks. Ability to generate and communicate broad and compelling organizational direction. Ability to communicate clearly links between the Organization’s strategy and the work unit’s goals. Demonstrated ability to provide innovative technical leadership by performing and/or overseeing the planning, development, and management of operation. Demonstrated ability to negotiate and apply good judgment. Proven ability to analyze complex data and produce reports leading to sound policy recommendations for achieving sustainable development; Solid understanding of the political environment and the programmes and activities of the UN system in implementing Agenda 21 and the Johannesburg Plan of Implementation (JPOI); Ability to think strategically, to identify key emerging sustainable development issues and related policy implications. Shows pride in work and in achievements; demonstrates professional competence and mastery of subject matter; is conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, observing deadlines and achieving results; is motivated by professional rather than personal concerns; shows persistence when faced with difficult problems or challenges; remains calm in stressful situations.
  • Planning and Organizing: Develops clear goals that are consistent with agreed strategies; identifies priority activities and assignments; adjusts priorities as required; allocates appropriate amount of time and resources for completing work; foresees risks and allows for contingencies when planning; monitors and adjusts plans and actions as necessary; uses time efficiently.
  • Communication: 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 audience; demonstrates openness in sharing information and keeping people informed.

Managerial Competencies

  • Leadership: Serves as a role model that other people want to follow: empowers others to translate vision into results; is proactive in developing strategies to accomplish objectives; establishes and maintains relationships with a broad range of people to understand needs and gain support; anticipates and resolves conflicts by pursuing mutually agreeable solutions; drives for change and improvements; does not accept the status quo; shows the courage to take unpopular stands. Provides leadership and takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work; demonstrates knowledge of strategies and commitment to the goal of gender balance in staffing.
  • Judgment/Decision-making: Identifies key issues in complex situations, and comes to the heart of the problem quickly; 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; proposes a course of action or makes a recommendation based on all available information; checks assumptions against facts; determines actions proposed will satisfy the expressed and underlying needs for the decision; makes tough decisions when necessary.


Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in sustainable development, energy, climate change, international relations, economics, public policy, public administration, finance, natural resources management, engineering, law, social sciences or related field is required. A first-level university degree in combination with two additional years of qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.

Work Experience

  • A minimum of ten years of progressively responsible experience in analytical work, policy development, and formulation and implementation of sustainable energy programmes, of which at least five years must be at international level is required;
  • Experience in the substantive involvement in intergovernmental processes is required;
  • Experience in facilitating and servicing policy-making processes at UN organisations or field-level experience in policy and programme development dealing with sustainable energy is desirable.


  • English and French are the working languages of the UN Secretariat. For the post advertised, fluency in oral and written English is required; knowledge of the other is desirable. Knowledge of another UN official language is an advantage.

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© EuroJobsites 2019

EuroJobsites is a registered company number: 4694396 VAT number: GB 880 9055 04

Registered address: EuroJobsites Ltd, Unit 8, Kingsmill Business Park, Kingston Upon Thames, London, KT1 3GZ, United Kingdom

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