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International Consultant - Program Advisor

UN Women – United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women
Location: Dhaka, Bangladesh

Date  of  Issue:    25 August  2011

Closing Date:       09 September 2011  

SSA Announcement No. UNWOMEN/SRO/2011/013 

Job Code Title            :         International Consultant –  Program Advisor  Bangladesh Program Office. 

Organization             :        UN Women – United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women 

Direct supervisor  :           Regional Program Director, South Asia Sub-Regional Office 

Duty Station           :           Dhaka, Bangladesh 

Type of Contract    :           SSA 

No. of positions     :           One 

Duration                   :          Six Months (with possibility of extension)     


UN WOMEN set up its office in Dhaka in 2006 at the invitation of the Government of Bangladesh and since then has been running various programs. Some of the specific programme areas in which UN WOMEN is involved in Bangladesh include supporting the government institutions in strengthening the national structures and mechanisms for gender mainstreaming in all relevant government programmes; projects, policies, actions and budgets; ensuring safe migration of women; supporting efforts for the elimination of violence against women and combating HIV/AIDS; CEDAW learning and sharing both at national and regional levels; promoting economic security for women; supporting excluded women’s network; and taking the Beijing biennial review process forward.  

UN WOMEN wants to consolidate and intensify its work with a range of stakeholders in Bangladesh including the government, the civil society, women’s organizations, UN agencies and donors, towards the promotion of gender equality and women’s empowerment. This will entail the development of Country Programme Strategy in consultation with all the stakeholders and actors and scaling up some of the initial initiatives that have been implemented to date as well as identifying innovative opportunities for mobilizing strategic alliance within the UN, government, donors and the civil society.  UN WOMEN will expand its programme initiatives in Bangladesh through developing its Country Programme Strategy and scaling up some of the initial initiatives that have been implemented to date. To strengthen its support to Bangladesh as well as to contribute its technical expertise and resources to the effort of the RC and the UNCT to offer holistic support to assist the country to move forward on its commitments on women’s empowerment and gender equality, UN WOMEN is engaging the services of a Programme Advisor on a SSA for one year.  The Programme Advisor will be responsible for the following: 

1.        Strategic Policy Coordination and Partnerships

§  Finalize the Bangladesh Office Strategy for 20122015 taking into account UN Women’s Priorities  and the  opportunities and challenges that exist in Bangladesh,

§  Participate in the UN Country Team Meetings, UN Heads of Agencies meetings as well as donor consultation processes to ensure strategic partnerships and strengthen collaborations with UN organizations;

·         Proactively interact with all stakeholders to effectively represent UN WOMEN and to champion gender equality and women's human rights in Bangladesh, in close consultation with the team in Bangladesh;

·         Provide leadership and quality oversight on efforts to support capacity strengthening of government institutions, to implement national development strategies and focus on mainstreaming gender and developing implementation capacity in Ministries for gender responsive programs. S/he will work on developing strong partnerships with wide ranging constituencies, including NGOs, donors and the UN system;

·         Ensure UN Women’s  strategic and technical support to government counterparts, the civil society and UN agencies in Bangladesh through direct involvement as well as procurement of required services as might be needed; 

·         Identify strategic programme opportunities; broaden the scope of work; and develop further programmes which includes UN joint programming on specific gender equality and women’s empowerment issues;

·         Identify strategic programme opportunities which include better implementation of CEDAW, programmes on safe migration, anti-trafficking, gender and HIV/AIDS, gender responsive budgeting, economical security and other emerging issues such as gender and trade.

·         Monitor trends and issues affecting women in Bangladesh for a strategic response to opportunities and challenges; particularly in UN Women's core focus areas in Bangladesh in line with UN Women’s Strategic Plan including the Bangladesh Office Strategy 2011-2015. 

2.       Donor Relations and Resource Mobilization

·         Lead UN Women’s efforts to ensure ongoing and substantive communications with current and potential donors to gender equality initiatives resulting in strengthened donor confidence in UN WOMEN and resources;

·         Identify and build partnerships and mobilize resources for programme implementation including new programme development to respond to the evolving situation and critical areas of concern;

·         Lead negotiations on cost-sharing agreements with donors;

·         Ensure an open line of communication with donor representatives based in Bangladesh, as well as ensuring that high quality reports for those contributing to UN Women’s programmes are prepared and disseminated in a timely fashion.  

3.       Programme Management

·         Provide close guidance and direction to ensure a strategic focus, results orientation and effectiveness and efficiency in all aspects of UN Women's programmes and operations in keeping with organizational policies for development effectiveness;

·         Monitor programme implementation ensuring results orientation and drawing from lessons learnt;

·         Provide guidance on programme management and monitor programme implementation, resulting in strategic focus, results orientation and effectiveness and efficiency in all aspects of UN Women’s programmes and operations in keeping with organizational policies for development effectiveness;

·         Lead ongoing programme activities in Bangladesh which include migration, eliminating violence against women, HIV/AIDS, Institutional Capacity building for the national machineries and engendering the national planning, programming and program implementation processes;

·         Ensure that the evaluation framework and plans for distinct programme elements are implemented and support ongoing learning and mid-course corrections within UN Women and with partners responding to opportunities and challenges;

·         Ensure documentation and dissemination of lessons learned in promoting gender equality and dissemination of lessons learned in promoting gender equality;

·         Promote a positive and accurate image of UN Women and its work in the country through effective communication and media strategies. 

4.      Operations Management

·         Manage office operations including financial and human resources management as well as organization of logistical support including procurement of office space and equipment, as is necessary and in compliance with UN Women’s policies, rules and regulations on financial and human resources;

·         HR Management through UN recruitment process, performance and career management of professional and support staff; learning management, establishing Learning Plans and ensuring staff supervised meet their development needs while meeting the needs of UN. Include harmonization of the existing UN Women staff position in accordance with UNDP rules and regulations;

·         Ensure effective management of programme resources using appropriate financial information systems to closely monitor programming of resources and to closely track project budgets and expenditures;

·         Provide clear direction and monitor performance of the teams working on UN Women initiatives based on specific benchmarks;

·         Lead a process of increased team building and internal communication so that synergy is maximized between programme areas. Manage human resources in the office ensuring optimal performance and incorporating the principles of a transparent, learning organization. Help in developing short term as well as long term perspectives on staffing issues including succession planning where relevant, increased possibilities of transition to national staffing and staff capacity development;

·         Ensure oversight of financial resource management and administrative processes in line with UNDP/UN Women policies;

·         Matrix Management by ensuring products and results, handovers and consultations are prepared; effective and efficient management of partnerships with government and NGO partners;

·         Providing strategic and data inputs into UN Women programme activities, and the eventual gender component of the UN programme, including budget preparation exercises and management of sub-allotment to the gender program and UN Women;

·         Content Management by ensuring (1) prescriptive content on gender equality is continuously updated and available through the UN web site; (2) Good Practices are continuously identified, documented and made available to clients and peers through the web site; and (3) appropriate and up-to-date information and learning tools are available;

·         In co-operation with UNDSS and the UN Security Officer scan the environment on a regular basis for assessing external and internal risks to staff and implementation of programmes.

·         Provide written reports to SARO on a regular basis on the security situation and consult on responses and preparedness to any emerging situation;

·         Establish and lead a good management system for staff security and safety to promote inter-unit co-operation and UN Women’s effectiveness on the ground;

·         Ensure that all staff is aware of safety and security procedures and policies and that these are monitored for compliance with UNDSS rules and regulations on safety and security.  

5.       Advocacy to maximize UN support towards the realization of national plans and priorities

This will include programmatic support to the national efforts to further gender equality and in particular to the SAARC gender info base, GRB and aid effectiveness, Migration, CEDAW implementation, honouring Beijing and MDG commitments, organizing events, facilitating the full engagement of NGOs with a view to supporting strategic collective action between NGOs as well as improved cooperation between NGOs and the government; facilitate linkages with UN WOMEN regional programmes in South Asia.  

6.      Support the Resident Coordinator’s office to enhance gender mainstreaming, internal UN coordination as well as country-coordination on gender, in the UN initiative

§  Work closely with the Gender Adviser to the RC/UNCT to promote and sustain inter-agency cooperation and harmonization of gender-related activities in the UN initiative. This includes:

·         Ensuring that gender perspectives are well mainstreamed and resourced under the UNDAF; that agencies that are part of the UNDAF , harmonize activities and results on gender; that the results framework for the UNDAF has gender perspectives at it’s core;

·         That gender equality and women’s empowerment perspectives are mainstreamed into and well resourced under the joint programmes of different UN Theme Groups; that there are synergies on gender equality interventions under the UNDAF and Theme Groups;

·         Lead knowledge management on gender issues for UN organizations participating in the Joint UN Programme, ensuring documentation and dissemination of lessons learnt for UN coordination; draw on UN/UN WOMEN good practices and experiences on gender equality, including from the One UN pilots;

·         Support RC in monitoring and reporting on UN work focused on gender; ensure that UN policies and any new guidance on gender equality work are widely disseminated and supported at country level;

·         Support the RC in identifying and negotiating agreements with donors/funding mechanisms and

·         Actively participate in the UNCT/SMT and clusters. 


  • Strategic and Results:
    • Permanent seat for UN Women in the UNCT as well as in different cluster / pillar meeting of the under the UN Bangladesh UNDAF.
    • Finalized UN Women Country Strategy for 2012 – 2015. 
    • MOU with the Government of Bangladesh for working on women’s empowerment and gender equality.
  • Resource Mobilization:
    • At least three major breakthroughs (singed contract for funding guarantee) with bilateral / multi-lateral or corporate donor agencies for three major programs that will be implemented in Bangladesh to ensure financial stability of the office.
  • Program Management:
    • At least 80% delivery of allocated funds (both core and noncore) through excellent program management of all programs implemented in Bangladesh.
    • Timely annual Report submission to the sub regional office as per guidance.
  • Operations Management:
    • Excellent operations management including recruitment, procurement, administration, systems management, etc. as per operational guidelines.


Advanced University degree in Development Studies, International Affairs, Human Rights, Economic and Political Development, gender equality or a related discipline. Strong familiarity with current theories and issues in gender, development studies and human rights is an important prerequisite. 

Essential knowledge and experience

·         At least 15 years of relevant professional experience with a strong focus on women’s empowerment and gender equality at national, regional and international levels, of which a minimum of 5 years experience is in the field with an international organization;

·         Knowledge of and experience in working in the region with similar context is desirable.;

·         Strong familiarity with UN inter-agency cooperation and the UN reform;

·         Experience of working in conflict/post conflict is desirable;

·         Excellent written and spoken English.  

Competencies Required

·         Substantive knowledge and understanding specifically on gender equality issues as well as more broadly, human rights and development cooperation, with an emphasis on the provision of coordinated support and management of strategic programmes to advance gender equality

·         Substantive knowledge and experience with the development of fund mobilization and management for the UN’s work in support of gender equality

·         Ability to identify research priorities to contribute to the formulation of policies, procedures and guidelines, implementation strategies, monitoring, evaluation and reporting.

·         Proven ability to advocate and provide policy advice

·         Successful track record in developing strong partnerships with donors and mobilizing significant resources for development assistance programmes

·         Has ability to lead strategic planning, change processes, results-based management and reporting

·         Ability to lead formulation, oversight of implementation, monitoring and evaluation of development programmes  

Interested applicants should apply for the vacancy, using the “Personal History Form - P 11” and the latest CV.  

Application to this vacancy should be sent to     

Please insert SSA Announcement Number in the Subject of the E-mail.  Applications without the SSA Number or with the incorrect SSA Number will not be accepted. 

NOTE : Only short-listed candidates will be contacted.


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