Feb 232021


Country: Switzerland
Organization: UN High Commissioner for Refugees
Closing date: 4 Mar 2021

Organizational Setting and Work Relationships

The Global Shelter Cluster Section belongs to the Division of Resilience and Solutions (DRS) and its Chief reports to the Deputy Director in DRS and requires a unique combination of strategic vision, leadership and coordination abilities, broad operational and technical experience, managerial and teambuilding skills, as well as the capacity for strategic, creative and innovative thinking, planning and action.

As Co-Coordinator of the Global Shelter Cluster with the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), the Chief of the Global Shelter Cluster Section plays a crucial role in ensuring that UNHCR, as Cluster Lead Agency, delivers on its interagency commitments and accountability to support preparedness and provide the technical capabilities needed for timely, effective and well-coordinated humanitarian responses to shelter and settlement needs, within the framework of the Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC) and through the Transformative Agenda. S/he advocates for shelter in the humanitarian response, leads the mainstreaming of early recovery activities in the Global Shelter Cluster and spearheads the integration of cross-cutting issues into the work of the Global Shelter Cluster, especially age, gender and diversity. S/he is also expected to impartially represent the interests of the members of the Global Shelter Cluster.

To this end, the incumbent works in collaborative approaches and leads an interagency team in an environment that requires high standards of accountability and demonstrable leadership, coordination, negotiation and conflict resolution skills and in which the principles of partnership and collaboration are essential.

The incumbent will be responsible for sustaining and expanding partnerships with key UN and international organizations, NGOs and government agencies, foundations, academic institutions and the private sector in order to maintain and further develop research and innovative approaches to shelter solutions and settlement planning.

The position requires a comprehensive approach that brings together UNHCR’s Regional Bureaux and field operations and Headquarters units, including the Division of International Protection, the Division of Emergency, Security and Supply and the different sections within DRS, including the Technical Support Section, specifically the shelter and settlement technical team, to ensure the complementarity of coordination and technical approaches and fulfilment of the goals, as well as minimum requirements, of the IDP Policy and associated guidance. The incumbent must have the experience and skills needed to engage these stakeholders and navigate the relevant internal processes.

All UNHCR staff members are accountable to perform their duties as reflected in their job description. They do so within their delegated authorities, in line with the regulatory framework of UNHCR which includes the UN Charter, UN Staff Regulations and Rules, UNHCR Policies and Administrative Instructions as well as relevant accountability frameworks. In addition, staff members are required to discharge their responsibilities in a manner consistent with the core, functional, cross-functional and managerial competencies and UNHCR¿s core values of professionalism, integrity and respect for diversity.


  • Ensure that UNHCR delivers on its commitments and accountability as lead of the Global Shelter Cluster.

  • Establish strong working relationships with all cluster members and take final decisions over high level running of the Global Shelter Cluster, the running of the strategic advisory group, sub and task groups, technical working Groups and ad hoc/task-related bodies for specific issues.

  • Establish and maintain strong collaboration and partnering with the CCCM and the Protection Clusters as well as the other agency lead clusters e.g. Education, Health, Logistics, and WASH.

  • Ensure a consistent interpretation and application of international law and related UNHCR and IASC legal standards and policies for the adequate provision of shelter.

  • Oversee and work towards the Shelter Cluster¿s adherence to international human rights instruments, the Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement as well as other relevant international and regional instruments; in cooperation with the Humanitarian Country Team.

  • Ensure that coordination services, including meetings, are provided in line with the Principles of Partnership, ensuring that cluster coordination is inclusive, consultative and results oriented.

  • Establish a functional information management strategy and mechanism for the Global Shelter Cluster to report and share information within the Shelter Cluster, with the other clusters and the overall humanitarian community including donors, with the UNHCR internal mechanisms.

  • Coordinate the integration of cross-cutting issues in the work of the Shelter Cluster, including age, gender, environment, diversity, cash assistance and mental health and psychosocial support.

  • Establish mechanisms for accountable and transparent financial resource allocation within the Cluster.

  • Ensure provision of adequate support to the country Shelter Clusters.

  • Develop, manage and lead cooperation with UNHCR’s partners for the benefit of the quality and effectiveness of UNHCR’s shelter and settlements coordination programmes.

  • Perform other related duties as required.

Minimum Qualifications

Education & Professional Work Experience

Years of Experience / Degree Level

For P5 – 12 years relevant experience with Undergraduate degree; or 11 years relevant experience with Graduate degree; or 10 years relevant experience with Doctorate degree

Field(s) of Education

Architectural Engineering; Architecture; Civil Engineering;

Engineering; Shelter-related sciences; or other relevant field.

(Field(s) of Education marked with an asterisk* are essential)

Certificates and/or Licenses

Project Management;

HCR Learning Programme, preferably in programme management and protection

(Certificates and Licenses marked with an asterisk* are essential)

Relevant Job Experience


Minimum 10 years of previous relevant work experience.

Demonstrated leadership and coordination experience and technical expertise with emergency and transitional shelter in humanitarian operations, including refugee and internal displacement situations.

Knowledge of UNHCR and interagency policies, standards, programmes and humanitarian operations in a variety of geographical locations and operational contexts.

Excellent communication skills, with strong drafting skills.


Knowledge of UNHCR’s mandate for protection and solutions and relevant policies.

Knowledge of results-based management and evidence-based planning approaches, methods and tools.

Functional Skills

*MG-People Management

*PG-Programme Management (programme cycles and reporting standards)

*MG-Resource Management

FI-Application of Financial Rules, Regulations and Procedures

UN-UN/UNHCR Inter-agency Policies, Standards, Programmes, and Partnerships

UN-UNHCR¿s Mandate/Policy and Global Strategic Priorities

CL-Inter-Agency Leadership/Coordination

(Functional Skills marked with an asterisk* are essential)

Language Requirements

For International Professional and Field Service jobs: Knowledge of English and UN working language of the duty station if not English.

How to apply:

Interested candidates are requested to apply at by clicking on ‚Vacancies‘ and entering job ID 25091.

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.

Please note that UNHCR does not charge a fee at any stage of its recruitment process (application, interview, meeting, travelling, processing, training or any other fees).

Closing Date

Please note that the closing date for vacancies advertised in this addendum is Thursday 4 March 2021 (mid-night Geneva time).

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T ypische Fragen
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Fragen zu Fragen
What skills and experiences would make an ideal candidate? This is a great open-ended question that will have the interviewer put his or her cards on the table and state exactly what the employer is looking for. If the interviewer mentions something you didn’t cover yet, now is your chance.