The Global Advocacy Division of Human Rights Watch (“HRW”) is seeking a highly-qualified applicant for the position of United Nations (UN) Director. The UN Director is the principal spokesperson and advocate for HRW at the UN and on UN-related issues in New York. S/he will be responsible for working with HRW’s programmatic staff to develop and implement advocacy strategies on the full range of countries and issues addressed by HRW. In addition, the UN Director engages frequently with the UN press corps, and with the media more broadly on UN-related issues.
This position is based in New York, although periodic travel is required, and reports to the Deputy Director for Global Advocacy. The UN Director oversees the UN Deputy Director and works closely with the Geneva Advocacy Director, HRW’s principal advocate liaising with the Geneva-based UN institutions.
1. Represent HRW at the UN in New York and advocate for HRW at the UN and on UN-related issues in New York, focusing on the work of the UN Security Council, the UN Secretariat, the UN General Assembly and UN Agencies, Funds and Programmes; including regular meetings with UN officials, diplomats from member and observer states and colleagues from other NGOs;
2. Work with HRW's programmatic staff to develop and implement advocacy strategies for UN-related work on the full range of countries and issues addressed by HRW;
3. Build and maintain networks across key policy targets, including UN member states, the UN Secretariat and UN Agencies, Funds and programmes;
4. Provide timely information on developments and negotiations at the UN with a view towards seizing advocacy opportunities;
5. Present HRW’s research and recommendations in public fora and represent HRW at events and meetings relating to our work;
6. Meet regularly with UN officials and diplomats from member and observer states, as well as with colleagues from other NGOs involved in UN advocacy;
7. Prepare a range of written materials, including policy analyses and advocacy documents targeting policy-makers and broader audiences;
8. Influence policy debates by writing press releases, op-eds, blog postings, and by using social media;
9. Act as principal spokesperson for HRW at the UN and engage frequently with the UN press corps, and with the media more broadly, on UN-related issues;
10. Work with other civil society organizations including through coalitions;
11. Undertake travel to field locations as required; and
12. Undertake other responsibilities as required.
Education: An advanced (graduate) degree in international relations, journalism, law, social science, or a related field is required.
Experience: A minimum of ten years of relevant international experience and substantial knowledge of the United Nations, including an understanding of its principal institutions and its work relating to human rights is required. International advocacy experience preferred.
Required Skills and Knowledge:
1. Detailed knowledge of political dynamics and decision-making processes at the UN is required.
2. Direct experience working with or at the United Nations is required.
3. Excellent public speaking and writing and editing skills in English are required; knowledge of additional UN languages is desirable.
4. Demonstrated analytical ability to think strategically and solid understanding of how to implement successful advocacy for policy change are required.
5. Ability to defend and explain complex issues and positions to UN officials, diplomats, and the media is required. Experience speaking with the media and cultivating relationships with journalists is required.
6. Ability to work independently, and strong interpersonal skills to work collaboratively within HRW and in partnership with other organizations are required.
7. Ability to think creatively, initiate projects while playing close attention to detail, and follow through on plans is required.
8. Capacity to appropriately plan, prioritize and manage multiple, often competing demands efficiently in a challenging, fast-paced environment is required.
9. A demonstrated commitment to human rights is required.
Salary and Benefits: HRW seeks exceptional applicants and offers competitive compensation and employer-paid benefits. HRW will pay reasonable relocation expenses and will assist employees in obtaining necessary work authorization, if required; citizens of all nationalities are encouraged to apply.
How to Apply
Contact: Please submit a cover letter explaining your interest for the job, resume, a brief writing sample (unedited by others), and contact information for three references to email@example.com. Please use “Advocacy UN Director Ref: ADV-16-1001” as the subject of your email.
Only complete applications will be reviewed and only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.