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BigLogo.gif UN Member States on the Record

Creating a referral pipeline to boost the number of senior women in field missions

Monday, 24 February 2014, Global | DFS

The Department of Field Support (DFS) has requested Member States to identify women with proven leadership skills, integrity, commitment to the ideals of the UN Charter, and willingness to serve as Directors in UN Peacekeeping and Special Political Missions present in a conflict or in post-conflict locations that are typically at non-family duty stations.

Women staff members at the P-5 level and above in the Secretariat, as well as United Nations agencies, funds and programmes, and women in our partner intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations are also invited to express interest in becoming part of this referral pipeline.

This initiative aims to identify qualified senior women interested in competing for senior positions in our field missions at the D-1 and D-2 levels in the areas of Political Affairs, Civil Affairs, Public Information and Communication, and Rule of Law and Security Institutions, and thereby help bridge the significant gender gap at the Director-level in field missions.

According to the study Bridging the Gender Gap in Peace Operations, carried out in 2013, out of a total of 47 D-2 and 129 D-1positions in the field, only 5 D-2 and 29 D-1 were filled by women. This disparity is partly due to the low number of female candidates for these jobs. For instance, only 9 percent of the applications for field mission D-2 jobs were from female candidates.

The referral pipeline will function within the same competitive process that has been established by the Secretary-General to make selections for appointments and assignments. Women in the referral pipeline will still have to apply to a job opening in Inspira and go through the same screening and assessment processes together with other applicants. Its purpose is to actively solicit interest among qualified women to ensure a sufficient number of potential female applicants are available for future senior positions in the field, and have at least one qualified recommended female applicant for each position.

To be eligible, candidates should have at least 15 to 17 years of relevant work experience in one of the areas listed above, a recognized advanced level university degree (Master’s Degree or higher), and be fluent in English or French, the working languages of the Secretariat. Referrals that are fluent in French or Arabic are particularly valued as most current field missions are deployed in places where those are the primary working languages.

Nominations to the referral pipeline should include a cover letter and a curriculum vitae (or PHP) and be submitted via email to the Recruitment Section, Field Personnel Division, Department of Field Support, at by 14 March, 2014.