Ethiopia: Senior Development Officer (Socio-Economic) Job Vacancy in Ethiopia

Organization: UN High Commissioner for Refugees
Country: Ethiopia
Closing date: 16 Dec 2018

Duties and Qualifications

UNHCR's mandated responsibility for finding solutions to refugee situations has long required stronger cooperation with development partners and the inclusion of refugees within national development programmes. Notwithstanding the Office's efforts over many decades, the proportion of refugees and internally displaced persons in protracted displacement situations remains high. Moreover, the diminishing number of people who have found durable solutions constitutes a worrying trend that has persisted in recent years. In addition, the increasing scale of irregular migration, large scale refugee movements, and the costs of responding to humanitarian situations have also placed forced displacement high on the global agenda. These elements have further driven the realization that humanitarian support alone is insufficient to lift displaced populations out of poverty, enable solutions to their situations or assist them to realize their development potential.

Among the most significant humanitarian-development cooperation partnerships strengthened in recent years has been between the World Bank and UNHCR on forced displacement. In the eighteenth replenishment (2017-2019) of the World Bank's International Development Association (IDA) financing programme for least developed countries, an amount of US$ 2 billion has been included for those states receiving large numbers of refugees. The IDA 18 allocation follows the operationalization of a Global Concessional Financing Facility (GCFF) for Middle Income Countries affected by large numbers of refugees. In addition, UNHCR has enhanced cooperation with the International Labour Organization (ILO), the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and more recently, the Private Sector.

Within the context outlined above, the role of the Senior Development Officer (Socio-economic) is to steer and direct UNHCR's engagement and cooperation with strategic partners such as: the Private Sector, International Finance Institutions, and Development Agencies in exploring opportunities for leveraging their support to actively participate in tackling the problem of forced displacement especially protracted situations. It is envisioned that such partnerships will unlock potential for investments that in return translate into opportunities for creation of jobs, incomes and linkages for refugees and local communities. It is also anticipated that such partnerships will grow in significance in future years due to the greater importance attached to addressing protracted displacement situations by donor governments. The role will be pivotal to ensuring complementarity between UNHCR's protection work and the economic and social development objectives pursued by development partners and their government counterparts. It will also be critical in identifying the best vehicles for engaging the private sector and being able to attract their interest into the humanitarian space. It is therefore important that the Senior Development Officer coordinates closely with UNHCR senior management within the Country (Sub and Field Offices). For that reason, he/she will work under the overall supervision of the Assistant Representative (Programme) to ensure that (i) policy, operational and programme priorities are properly aligned between humanitarian and development agencies; there is an explicit engagement strategy for engaging the private sector; and (ii) that reporting and information exchanges on key developments are established and maintained among all interested stakeholders.


  • Graduate Degree (equivalent of a Master's) in Economics, Development, or related field plus minimum 8 years of previous work experience relevant to the function. Undergraduate degree (equivalent of a BA/BS) plus 9 years or Doctorate degree (equivalent of a PhD) plus 7 years of previous relevant work experience may also be accepted.
  • At least six (6) years of direct working experience with an international agency/organisation implementing development programmes, of which at least two (2) years were in field operations, preferably with knowledge of, or experience in, local or area based economic development.
  • Knowledge of primary data collection, quantitative research methods and results-based management preferably related to development policy, research and analysis.
  • Proven collaboration and or networking skills engaging development actors, preferably with familiarity of these translate into development programs.
  • Excellent policy and development programming skills and familiarity with results based management.
  • Solid understanding of development context and related operational challenges as they relate to refugees, including institutional arrangements.
  • A clear understanding of the Private Sector, challenges to growth of the sector as well as the role it can play in developing durable solutions to protracted forced displacement situations.
  • Demonstrable experience in working with the Private Sector to contribute to country development initiatives preferably with knowledge of, or experience in intra-regional, inter-regional and international market activities that advance economic inclusion.
  • Knowledge of cross-cutting issues prioritised by development actors in supporting local communities such as: gender, climate change, job creation and inclusion, which usually used to design impact driven initiatives.
  • Adeptness in quickly comprehending political-economy issues and how they can contribute or affect development initiatives and desired impact.
  • Solid understanding of the relationship between development actors and governments particularly in relation to alignment of support to country development plans and delivery mechanisms used to achieve results and visible impact.
  • Excellent communication skills including ability to communicate and disseminate information effectively to a broad background of stakeholders.
  • Excellent analytical and report writing skills.
  • Excellent English language skills, including drafting skills.


  • Strong and up-to-date knowledge of development, state-building and peace-building in fragile and conflict-affected situations.
  • Good grasp of refugee protection.
  • Fluency in second UN language is an added advantage.

How to apply:


Interested candidates should submit their online application on the UNHCR career page by clicking on the 'international vacancies' tab here:

Deadline for applications: Sunday, 16 December 2018 (midnight Geneva time).

To view all UNHCR vacancies, go to

The UNHCR workforce consists of many diverse nationalities, cultures, languages and opinions. UNHCR seeks to sustain and strengthen this diversity to ensure equal opportunities as well as an inclusive working environment for its entire workforce. Applications are encouraged from all qualified candidates without distinction on grounds of race, colour, sex, national origin, age, religion, disability, sexual orientation and gender identity

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