Programme Officer (Head of UN-SPIDER Beijing Office) - Temporary, P4 (Temporary Job Opening)

Posting Title: 

Programme Officer (Head of UN-SPIDER Beijing Office) - Temporary, P4 (Temporary Job Opening)

Duty Station: 

Beijing, China

Application Deadline: 

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Job Opening Number: 


Special Notice: 


• This position is temporarily available until 31 March 2018. Filling of this temporary vacancy is subject to availability of the post and funding. If the selected candidate is an internal staff member of the UN Secretariat, the selection will be recorded as a temporary assignment. This is a recirculation of TJO 67647 and TJO 79731. Interested applicants are requested to resubmit their application.

• A current staff member who holds a fixed-term, permanent or continuing appointment may apply for temporary positions no more than one level above his or her current grade. However, a current staff member who holds an appointment at the G-6 or G-7 level may also apply to temporary positions in the Professional category up to and including the P-3 level, subject to meeting all eligibility and other requirements for the position. A staff member holding a temporary appointment shall be regarded as an external candidate when applying for other positions, and may apply for other temporary positions at any level, subject to section 5.7 below and staff rule 4.16 (b) (ii). Therefore, a staff member holding a temporary appointment in the General Service or related categories may only apply to positions within those categories. For full information on eligibility requirements, please refer to section 5 of ST/AI/2010/4Rev.1 on Temporary Appointments. In its resolution 66/234, the General Assembly further “stressed that the Secretary-General should not recur to the practice of temporarily filling posts in the Professional and higher categories with General Service staff members who have not passed the General Service to Professional category examination other than on an exceptional basis, and requests the Secretary-General to ensure that temporary occupation of such posts by the General Service staff shall not exceed a period of one year, effective 1 January 2013…” Consequently, eligible candidates in the General Service or related categories for temporary job openings in the Professional category that have not passed the competitive examination may be selected only on an exceptional basis endorsed by the Office of Human Resources Management where no other suitable candidate could be identified.

• Upon separation from service, including, but not limited to, expiration or termination of, or resignation from, a fixed-term, continuing or permanent appointment, a former staff member will be ineligible for re-employment on the basis of a temporary appointment for a period of 31 days following the separation. In the case of separation from service on retirement, a former staff member will be ineligible for re-employment for a period of three months following the separation. This equally applies, mutatis mutandis, with respect to a former or current staff member who has held or holds an appointment in another entity applying the United Nations Staff Regulations and Rules and who applies for a temporary position with the Secretariat.

• Subject to the funding source of the position, this temporary job opening may be limited to candidates based at the duty station.

• While this temporary assignment may provide the successful applicant with an opportunity to gain new work experience, the selection for this position is for a limited period and has no bearing on the future incumbency of the post. An external candidate selected for this position is bound by the prevailing condition of the staff selection system under ST/AI/2010/3, as amended, and ST/AI/2010/4/Rev.1. A staff member holding a temporary appointment who is recruited in the Professional and above categories on a temporary appointment, and placed on a position authorized for one year or longer may not apply for or be reappointed to his/her current position within six months of the end of his/her current service. This provision does not apply to staff members holding temporary appointments and placed on positions authorized for one year or more in duty stations authorized for peacekeeping operations or special political missions.

• The expression “Internal candidates”, shall mean staff members who have been recruited after a competitive examination under staff rule 4.16 or after the advice of a central review body under staff rule 4.15.

• Please note that candidates will be required to meet the requirements of Article 101, paragraph 3, of the Charter as well as the requirements of the position. The United Nations is committed to the highest standards of efficiency, competence and integrity for all its human resources, including but not limited to respect for international human rights and humanitarian law. Candidates may be subject to screening against these standards, including but not limited to whether they have committed, or are alleged to have committed criminal offences and/or violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law.

• For information on special post allowance, please refer to ST/AI/1999/17. For more details on the administration of temporary appointments please refer to ST/AI/2010/4/Rev.1.

• The Staff Regulations, Staff Rules and administrative issuances governing staff appointments can be viewed at:

• Staff members of the United Nations common system organizations who will reach the mandatory age of separation or retirement within the duration of the current temporary need period are not eligible to apply.

Org Setting: 

The United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) is the United Nations office responsible for promoting international cooperation in the peaceful uses of outer space. UNOOSA serves as the Secretariat of the United Nations Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (COPUOS) and is also responsible for implementing the United Nations Programme on Space Applications and the United Nations Platform for for Disaster Management and Emergency Response (UN-SPIDER). Both Programmes are located within the Space Application Section (SAS) of the Office and this post is located within the UN-SPIDER Programme and based in the UN-SPIDER Office in Beijing. The Programme Officer (Head of UN-SPIDER Beijing Office) works under the direct supervision of the Chief of SAS, and under the overall guidance of the Director of OOSA.

For more information on UNOOSA, please visit our website:


Within delegated authority, the Programme Officer (Head of UN-SPIDER Beijing Office) will be responsible for the following duties:

•Supporting the implementation of the UN-SPIDER programme as mandated by the General Assembly and in accordance with the Plans of Work reviewed by the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (COPUOS) and the United Nations General Assembly. Responsibilities specifically include supporting the Senior Programme Officer in the implementation of the activities of the UN-SPIDER Programme assigned to the staff based in Beijing. This includes coordinating the Technical Advisory Support requested by Member States and also working closely and managing the requests of the UN-SPIDER National Focal Points.
•As Head of UN-SPIDER Office in Beijing, managing and carrying out all administrative activities and responsibilities related to the Beijing office, including budgetary and finance matters, funding and staff administration, ensuring close adherence to United Nations and UNOOSA administrative rules and policies.
•Ensuring synergies of the UN-SPIDER Programme with the activities carried out by the United Nations Programme on Space Applications, including the activities of the UN-affiliated Regional Centres for Space Science and Technology Education, specifically the UN-affiliated Centre for Space Science and Technology Education in the Asia and Pacific region located in India, and also carrying out specific assignments of the United Nations Programme on Space Applications assigned to him/her and/or to the staff based in Beijing.
• In carrying out these activities he/she will develop, implement and evaluate the actions needed, monitor and analyse the development and implementation of these actions, review relevant documents and reports, identify problems and issues to be addressed and initiate corrective actions, liaise with relevant parties, and ensure follow-up actions.
•Maintaining liaison and assisting Member States in taking advantage of potential opportunities in the area of capacity building and institutional strengthening in the support of disaster risk reduction and emergency response.
•Providing expert advice to Member States and to other UN programmes and agencies in matters related to the use of space-based technologies for disaster risk reduction, emergency response and humanitarian assistance, through, inter alia, participating and/or leading in field missions, provision of guidance to external consultants, government officials and other parties and drafting of mission reports. In carrying out his/her work he/she works closely with the nominated UN-SPIDER National Focal Points and engaging the established UN-SPIDER Regional Support Offices.
•Supporting inter-agency coordinating efforts, and organizing and supporting as needed expert meetings to strengthen inter-agency coordination on the use of space based technologies ensuring that available opportunities are accessed and used by the United Nations system.
•Providing support to the Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space as well as to its Scientific and Technical Subcommittee, including preparing and submitting specific reports on the activities of the UN-SPIDER Programme.
•Researching, analysing and presenting information gathered from diverse sources. Organizing and preparing written outputs, e. g. draft background papers, analysis, sections of reports and studies, inputs to publications, etc.
•Providing support to programme activities related to programme management (programme/project preparation and submissions, progress and performance reports, financial statements, etc.) and preparing related documents/reports (pledging, work programme, programme budget, etc.).
•Performing other work related duties as required.


•Professionalism: Has knowledge and professional competence in the area of space-based technologies and solutions applied to risk and disaster risk reduction and emergency response and/or sustainable urban/regional development and planning and/or environmental monitoring. Has ability to identify issues, analyse and participate in the resolution of issues/problems. Is able to develop sources for data collection. Has conceptual analytical and evaluative skills to conduct independent research and analysis, particularly a familiarity with and experience in the use of various research sources, including electronic sources on the internet, intranet and other databases. Has ability to apply judgement in the context of assignments given, plan own work and manage conflicting priorities. 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. Takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work.
•Teamwork:  Works collaboratively with colleagues to achieve organizational goals; solicits input by genuinely valuing others’ ideas and expertise; is willing to learn from others; places team agenda before personal agenda; supports and acts in accordance with final group decision, even when such decisions may not entirely reflect own position; shares credit for team accomplishments and accepts joint responsibility for team shortcomings.
•Planning & 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.
•Managing Performance: Delegates the appropriate responsibility, accountability and decision-making authority; makes sure that roles, responsibilities and reporting lines are clear to each staff member; accurately judges the amount of time and resources needed to accomplish a task and matches task to skills; monitors progress against milestones and deadlines; regularly discusses performance and provides feedback and coaching to staff; encourages risk-taking and supports creativity and initiative; actively supports the development and career aspirations of staff; appraises performance fairly.
•Judgement/Decision-making: Identifies the key issues in a complex situation, 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 the actions proposed will satisfy the expressed and underlying needs for the decision; makes tough decisions when necessary.


An advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in applied space science, geospatial science (including geography and geosciences), information systems, regional and international development or related engineering discipline is required. A first-level university degree in similar fields in combination with two additional years of qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.

Work Experience: 

A minimum of seven years of progressively responsible and relevant professional experience in the fields of scientific affairs, space technology, applications of space technologies, space engineering or in other similar fields, with several years at the international level including the following is required: (i) defining and implementing global and regional programmes that contribute to promoting and building capacity in the use of space-based technologies, information technology for development or other related technological fields, in developing countries, (ii) technical backstopping/advisory in the area of development of information technology solutions (specifically space-based solutions and/or geospatial solutions) for disaster risk reduction, emergency response and/or humanitarian assistance, or related areas such as sustainable development and environmental monitoring, (iii) service in a technical advisory capacity, including the development and implementation of capacity building and knowledge management and transfer activities in developing countries. Experience in and knowledge of national, regional and international space applications programmes and activities and specific experience in the use of space-based solutions and geospatial information in the area of disaster risk reduction, emergency response and/or humanitarian assistance is desirable.


English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For this position, fluency in English is required. Knowledge of another official United Nations language is an advantage.

Assessment Method: 

Evaluation of qualified candidates may include an assessment exercise which may be followed by competency-based interview.

United Nations Considerations: 

According to article 101, paragraph 3, of the Charter of the United Nations, the paramount consideration in the employment of the staff is the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity, including but not limited to, respect for international human rights and humanitarian law. Candidates may be subject to screening against these standards, including but not limited to, whether they have committed or are alleged to have committed criminal offences or violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law.

Due regard will be paid to the importance of recruiting the staff on as wide a geographical basis as possible. The United Nations places no restrictions on the eligibility of men and women to participate in any capacity and under conditions of equality in its principal and subsidiary organs. The United Nations Secretariat is a non-smoking environment.

Applicants are urged to follow carefully all instructions available in the online recruitment platform, inspira. For more detailed guidance, applicants may refer to the At-a-Glance on "The Application Process" and the Instructional Manual for the Applicants, which can be accessed by clicking on “Manuals” hyper-link on the upper right side of the inspira account-holder homepage.

The screening and evaluation of applicants will be conducted on the basis of the information submitted in the application according to the evaluation criteria of the job opening and the applicable internal legislations of the United Nations including the Charter of the United Nations, resolutions of the General Assembly, the Staff Regulations and Rules, administrative issuances and guidelines. Applicants must provide complete and accurate information pertaining to their personal profile and qualifications, including but not limited to, their education, work experience, and language skills, according to the instructions provided on inspira. Applicants will be disqualified from consideration if they do not demonstrate in their application that they meet the evaluation criteria of the job opening and the applicable internal legislations of the United Nations. Applicants are solely responsible for providing complete and accurate information at the time of application: no amendment, addition, deletion, revision or modification shall be made to applications that have been submitted. Candidates under serious consideration for selection will be subject to a reference-checking process to verify the information provided in the application.

Job openings advertised on the Careers Portal will be removed at midnight (New York time) on the deadline date.

No Fee: 

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