Senior Coordination Officer

United Nations Environment Programme (UN Environment)

Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire 🇨🇮

Org. Setting and Reporting

The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) is the leading global environmental authority that sets the global environmental agenda, promotes the coherent implementation of the environmental dimension of sustainable development within the United Nations system and serves as an authoritative advocate for the global environment.

UNEP’s mandate is to coordinate the development of environmental policy consensus by keeping the global environment under review and bringing emerging issues to the attention of governments and the international community for action.

Headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya, UNEP has a network of country and regional offices facilitating the relevant country and regional processes and coordinating coherent delivery of UNEP’s programme targeting the causes of climate change, biodiversity loss and pollution through seven interlinked sub-programmes for action that include: Climate Action, Chemicals and Pollution Action, Nature Action, Science Policy, Environmental Governance, Finance and Economic Transformations and Digital Transformations.

UNEP’s Africa Office supports environmental governance institutions and processes and engages a broad range of partners that include governmental, non-governmental, academic, and private sector entities on multilateral environmental agreements and sustainability programs and projects in response to national, sub regional and regional needs and priorities. UNEP’s support to regions and countries is guided by reforms of the UN Development System including the UN Resident Coordinator and UN Country Team systems.

The West Africa Sub Regional Office based in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, was established with the objective to strengthen UNEP’s strategic regional presence, increase its relevance, and enhance advocacy for the environment in the sub-region. Its core functions include political engagement, collection and analysis of data/information to inform decision-making processes by the organization, programmatic collaboration with UN agencies and other actors, engagement with the UN Resident Coordinator system, UN Country Teams and other UN coordination and collaborative mechanisms and platforms at sub regional and national levels, building strategic partnerships to support implementation of its mandate; resource mobilization, and advocating for the environment through targeted communication and outreach. The office also serves the function of liaison with the African Development Bank (AfDB), and the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS).

Under the direct supervision of the Regional Director of the UNEP Regional Office for Africa, the Head of the sub-regional office serves as UNEP’ s representative in West Africa, advocates for the environment in the sub-region, and guides and coordinates the effective implementation of UNEP programmes and projects, in cooperation with overnments and other operational partners in the sub-region and is responsible for the following duties:


Oversee the development of sub-regional partnerships and carry out high level consultations with governments, UN agencies, regional and sub-regional organizations, donors, private sector, NGOs, and other major groups and stakeholders to enhance opportunities and address environmental challenges in the sub-region, with a focus on strengthening the capacity of countries in the sub-region to integrate environmental sustainability into their national, sub-regional and regional development processes.

Gather and provide information on national and sub-regional priorities and in close collaboration with the regional sub programme coordinators and division leads, contribute to the preparation of specific interventions for the sub-region in line with UNEP’s Medium Term Strategy and programme of work.

Evaluate policy and programme needs and mechanisms for the delivery of products and services to meet the needs of the sub-region; ensure that sub-regional priorities are given precedence; and support the coordinated and effective delivery of UNEP’s Programme in West Africa.

Coordinate UNEP’s engagement with the UN Resident Coordinators, UN Country Teams and other UN coordination and collaborative processes, mechanisms and platforms at sub regional and national levels and mobilize UNEP expertise to provide contributions for the integration of climate action, nature action, pollution action and environmental sustainability in the development of CCAs and UNSDCF and specific initiatives by the UN Development System in West African countries.

Advise the Regional Director on areas for inter agency consultation, including the regional UN Development Group (UNDG), intergovernmental meetings of ministers or other high level forums taking place within, and concerning, the sub-region and prepare inputs to these consultations, meetings, and forums.

Assist governments in the sub-region to coordinate, organize and convene intergovernmental meetings of policy makers, technical experts, and other actors to discuss environmental matters of interest to the sub-region. Monitor progress of UNEP-led activities, projects and other interventions in the sub-region and assess the results achieved. Undertake resource mobilization efforts to support implementation of UNEP’s programme of work in the sub-region. Undertake internal and external communication and outreach to enhance awareness on environmental opportunities and challenges in the subregion, and enhance UNEP’s profile and visibility.

Perform other duties as may be assigned by management of the United Nations Environment Programme.


PROFESSIONALISM: Ability to identify key strategic issues, opportunities, and risks. Ability to establish and maintain relationships with a broad range of individuals and institutions to understand needs and gain support. Ability to generate and communicate broad and compelling organizational direction; Ability to develop strategies and communicate clearly links between the organization’s strategy and programme of work the region’s and sub-region’s and countries’ goals; Demonstrated ability to provide innovative technical leadership by performing and/or overseeing the planning, development, and management of operation; Demonstrated ability to negotiate, apply good judgment and the ability to influence others to reach agreement; Mastery of diverse scope of capacity building and a clear vision of UNEP’s role at the national, sub-regional, regional and global levels; Ability to resolve complex and politically sensitive problems with governments, cooperating institutions, and other stakeholders. 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 the 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.

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 improvement; 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.


Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in Environmental Studies, Economics, Law, Social Sciences, or related discipline, or the equivalent combination of education and experience in a relevant 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

At least ten (10) years of progressively responsible work in a field associated with this post, including five years at the international level, and relevant work experience in the region, and extensive experience in environmental management and policy development are required.

Knowledge of the UN Development System processes at regional and country level is desirable.

Experience working in the context of delivering as one UN and of collaboration with UN Country Teams is desirable.

Experience in environmental/natural resources management, in a UN context or international organization context in a developing region of the world is desirable.


English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the post advertised, fluency in English and French is required. Knowledge of other UN languages is desirable.

NOTE: ‘Fluency’ equals a rating of ‘fluent’ in all four areas (speak, read, write and understand) and ‘Knowledge of’ equals a rating of ‘confident’ in two of the four areas


Evaluation of qualified candidates for this position may include a substantive assessment, which may be followed by a competency-based interview.

Special Notice

For this position, applicants from the following Member States, which are unrepresented or underrepresented in the UN Secretariat as of 31 December 2021, are strongly encouraged to apply: Afghanistan, Andorra, Angola, Antigua and Barbuda, Bahrain, Belize, Brunei Darussalam, Cabo Verde, China, Comoros, Cuba, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Djibouti, Dominica, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Grenada, Guinea-Bissau, Haiti, Israel, Japan, Kiribati, Kuwait, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Marshall Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Monaco, Namibia, Nauru, Norway, Oman, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Qatar, Republic of Korea, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, San Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Saudi Arabia, Solomon Islands, Somalia, South Sudan, Timor-Leste, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, United Arab Emirates, United States of America, Vanuatu, Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela.

Appointment against this position is for an initial period of one year and may be subject to extension.

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 United Nations Secretariat must fulfil the lateral move(s) requirements, or geographical move(s) to be eligible to apply for this vacancy. Staff members are requested to indicate all qualifying lateral or geographical move(s) in their Candidate Profile (CP) and motivation statement.

The United Nations Secretariat is committed to achieving 50/50 gender balance and geographical diversity in its staff. Female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply for this position.

Internal Applicants – When completing the Candidate Profile form, ensure ALL fields, ALL professional experience and contact information are completed and up to date. This information is the basis for the hiring manager to assess your eligibility and suitability for the position and to contact you.

Individual Contractors and Consultants who have worked within the UN Secretariat in the last six months, irrespective of the administering entity, are ineligible to apply for or be appointed to any professional and higher temporary or fixed-term positions, within six months of the end of their current or most recent service. For such positions, at least six months need to have elapsed between the end of a consultancy or individual contract and the time of application and consideration for an appointment as a staff member under the Staff Rules and Regulations of the United Nations.

At the United Nations, the paramount consideration in the recruitment and employment of staff is the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence and integrity, with due regard to geographic diversity. All employment decisions are made on the basis of qualifications and organizational needs. The United Nations is committed to creating a diverse and inclusive environment of mutual respect. The United Nations recruits and employs staff regardless of gender identity, sexual orientation, race, religious, cultural and ethnic backgrounds or disabilities. Reasonable accommodation for applicants with disabilities may be provided to support participation in the recruitment process when requested and indicated in the application.

On-line applications will be acknowledged where an email address has been provided. All applicants are strongly encouraged to apply on-line as soon as possible after the job opening has been posted and well before the deadline stated in the job opening. If you do not receive an e-mail acknowledgement within 24 hours of submission, your application may not have been received. If the problem persists, please seek technical assistance through the Inspira “Contact Us” link.

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. Candidates will not be considered for employment with the United Nations if they have committed violations of international human rights law, violations of international humanitarian law, sexual exploitation, sexual abuse, or sexual harassment, or if there are reasonable grounds to believe that they have been involved in the commission of any of these acts. The term “sexual exploitation” means any actual or attempted abuse of a position of vulnerability, differential power, or trust, for sexual purposes, including, but not limited to, profiting monetarily, socially or politically from the sexual exploitation of another. The term “sexual abuse” means the actual or threatened physical intrusion of a sexual nature, whether by force or under unequal or coercive conditions. The term “sexual harassment” means any unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature that might reasonably be expected or be perceived to cause offence or humiliation, when such conduct interferes with work, is made a condition of employment or creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment, and when the gravity of the conduct warrants the termination of the perpetrator’s working relationship. Candidates who have committed crimes other than minor traffic offences may not be considered for employment.

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.

The paramount consideration in the appointment, transfer, or promotion of staff shall be the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity. By accepting an offer of appointment, United Nations staff members are subject to the authority of the Secretary-General and assignment by him or her to any activities or offices of the United Nations in accordance with staff regulation 1.2 (c). In this context, all internationally recruited staff members shall be required to move periodically to discharge new functions within or across duty stations under conditions established by the Secretary-General.

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

The 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 according to the instructions provided in inspira to be considered for the current job opening. 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 reference checks to verify the information provided in the application.

Job openings advertised on the Careers Portal will be removed at 11:59 p.m. (New York time) on the deadline date.

No Fee