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 Representative of the High Commissioner/ Head of Office:


 3 December 2009 | visits 521


ORGANIZATIONAL UNIT: Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights



Staff members are subject to the authority of the Secretary-General and to assignment by him or her. In this context, all staff are expected to move periodically to new functions in their careers in accordance with established rules and procedures. Staff members of the UN Secretariat must fulfill the lateral move requirements to be eligible to apply for this vacancy. They are requested to indicate all qualifying lateral moves in their Personal History Profile (PHP) and cover note.
Depending on professional background, experience and family situation, a competitive compensation and benefits package is offered.
More Info
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity


The incumbent acts as the Representative of the High Commissioner for Human Rights and the Head of Office in Mexico. Under the general supervision of the Chief of the Americas, Europe and Central Asia Branch and the direct supervision of the Chief of the Americas Section, the Head of Office leads and coordinates the work of the Office in Mexico including monitoring and analysing the human rights situation, advisory services, technical cooperation and information and promotion activities, and ensures the necessary coordination, organization and completion of tasks in conformity with the Office's mandate. The Head of Office acts as Representative of the High Commissioner vis-a-vis Mexican authorities, the United Nations Country Team, diplomatic corps, non-governmental organizations, media and civil society; Leads and co-ordinates the work of OHCHR-Mexico on the basis of its mandate of observation, advisory services, technical cooperation and promotion; Advises and assists Mexican authorities on the definition and implementation of human rights standards and policies, taking into account in particular the areas identified in the 2003 Diagnostic Survey and the recommendations of international UN human rights bodies and mechanisms; Liaises with civil society on issues relating to human rights, including building their awareness and capacity to protect and promote human rights; Ensures and promotes the full participation of federal governmental institutions, state governments and institutions, national and state human rights institutions, other State agencies, representative s of civil society, NGOs, indigenous and women organizations in the implementation of technical cooperation activities; Provides adequate support to the special procedures of the Human Rights Council, particularly in the context of their official visits to the country; Advises the UN Resident Coordinator and the UN Country Team on strategies to build and strengthen national capacities and institutions for the promotion and protection of human rights; Oversees the preparation and presents to headquarters monthly and quarterly reports on the activities and the achievement of the objectives set in the mandate, as well as public reports; Perform other related duties as required.



PROFESSIONALISM: Knowledge of and exposure to a range of human rights issues including approaches and techniques to address and advise on highly sensitive and complex problems in their political, ethnic, racial, gender and socio-economic dimensions. Knowledge of institutional mandates of human rights organizations, prevailing policies and procedures. Knowledge of international human rights standards and the work carried out by the United Nations in the field of human rights, especially with regard to the functions of OHCHR, the monitoring bodies of the international human rights treaties and the thematic mechanisms established by the Human Rights Council. Ability to evaluate and integrate information from a variety of sources and assess impact on the human rights situation in the region or country of assignment, including the political environment and legal statutes as they pertain to human rights. Ability to complete in-depth studies and reach conclusions on possible causes and solutions to human rights problems in specific societies and systems. Ability to relate and advise on human rights issues and perspectives, including their gender equality dimensions, to political, social, economic and humanitarian programmes in affected countries and areas. 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. 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. 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 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.


ACCOUNTABILITY: Takes ownership of all responsibilities and honours commitments; delivers outputs for which one has responsibility within prescribed time, cost and quality standards; operates in compliance with organizational regulations and rules; supports subordinates, provides oversight and takes responsibility for delegated assignments; takes personal responsibility for his/her own shortcomings and those of the work unit, where applicable.

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. VISION: Identifies strategic issues, opportunities and risks; clearly communicates links between the Organization's strategy and the work unit's goals; generates and communicates broad and compelling organizational direction, inspiring others to pursue that same direction; conveys enthusiasm about future possibilities.





Advanced university degree (Masters' degree or equivalent) in human rights, political science, law, international relations, social sciences or 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 ten years of progressively responsible experience in human rights or a human-rights related field, including in a managerial role. Prior field experience in an OHCHR or UN operation, regional organisation or related operation is required.


Fluency in English and Spanish is required; Knowledge of another UN official language is an asset.

Other Skills

The United Nations shall place 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. (Charter of the United Nations - Chapter 3, article 8). English and French are the two working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. The United Nations Secretariat is a non-smoking environment.



How to apply

All applicants are strongly encouraged to apply online as soon as possible after the vacancy has been posted and well before the deadline stated in the vacancy announcement. Because applications submitted by United Nations (UN) staff members are considered first, provided the eligibility requirements set out in ST/AI/2006/3 are met and the application is submitted in a timely fashion, staff members should apply within 15-day or 30-day mark.

Online applications will be acknowledged where an email address has been provided. If you do not receive an e-mail acknowledgement within 24 hours of submission, your application may not have been received. In such cases, please go to "My UN" page and check the status of your application by clicking on "View Application History", and resubmit the application, if necessary.


To start the application process, applicants are required to register by opening a "My UN" account. Go to Login, and Register as a User. Fill in the form and choose a User Name and Password.


After opening the account, applicants may apply for vacancies using the Personal History Profile (PHP) provided. Once the PHP has been completed for a particular vacancy, it can be saved and used for future applications. The PHP may be up-dated, when necessary, for future applications.

In completing the PHP, please note that all fields marked with an asterisk must be completed.

UN staff members must submit scanned copies of their two latest Performance Appraisal System (PAS) reports at the time of application to the appropriate Human Resources Office (HRO)/Personnel Office (PO) to the email address below, clearly indicating the vacancy announcement number. In case you have no access to the digitizing equipment, please submit hard copies of the two latest PAS reports to the relevant HRO/PO via fax.


Fax: 41-22-917- 0074

Please see the Frequently Asked Questions, if you encounter problems when applying.

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