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Senior Programme Advisor (Sustainable Livelihood)


  • Organization: UNRWA - United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian Refugees
  • Location: Amman
  • Grade: Senior level - P-5, International Professional - Internationally recruited position
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Development Cooperation and Sustainable Development Goals
    • Environment
    • Project and Programme Management
    • Food Security, Livestock and Livelihoods
  • Closing Date: 2023-12-12

Org. Setting and Reporting

UNRWA, the largest United Nations operation in the Middle East with over 30,000 staff working across five areas of operation, is looking for highly committed personnel wishing to make a change.

If you are looking for a rewarding opportunity to make a tangible difference for one of the most vulnerable communities in the world, UNRWA would like to hear from you.

The Senior Programme Advisor (Sustainable Livelihood) reports to the Director of the Relief and Social Service Department.


- Develops and formulates a new strategy for a Sustainable Livelihood Programme (SLP), under the Relief and Social Services Department (RSSD) to improve the social mobility of the most vulnerable Palestine Refugees; engages with and brings together different strategies and approaches on sustainable livelihoods used or being considered by the Agency, including initiatives that target youth, women and persons with disabilities, climate adaptation and relevant programming in other departments.

- Leads the development of a comprehensive Sustainable Livelihoods programme framework, after assessment of current approaches used by the Agency and the development of new ones in line with international best practices on evidence-based and integrated intervention for populations in crises and/or protracted conflict situations.

- Leads and facilitates consultations and research on livelihoods programming with Palestine Refugee communities, Fields’ Directors, UNRWA Programme Directors, including Education, Health, Infrastructure and Camp Improvement, host governments, donors, civil society organizations, international financial institutions, UN organizations, think tanks and the private sector.

- Oversees and provides technical guidance on a longitudinal research component focused on a participatory methodology using a selected sample of the target group; develops methodology, work plan and budget for assessments for qualitative and quantitative surveys initiatives that may be required, as well as providing technical support in the selection of qualified academic vendors during the procurement processes.

- Develops appropriate implementation and partnership strategies for SLP including defining the size and scope, a value chain and needs analysis to ensure it complements and leverages the Agency’s related other programmes/initiatives, including Social Safety Net Program (SSNP), to provide a comprehensive approach to addressing the root causes of poverty, as well as pathway to self-reliance and social mobility.

- Leads SLP monitoring and evaluation process, including develop indicators and tools to assess the effectiveness and outcomes of sustainable livelihood initiative and evaluate the policy performance, and the appropriate governance and implementation modalities of a longer-term plans based on international best practices; provides recommendations for a reference group of relevant internal and external experts, with complementary skills, to oversee and ensure an inclusive, participatory approach to build consensus throughout the design, development and implementation of the programme.

- Develops a long-term funding approach for SLP including exploring new funding modalities suitable for expanding the programme across the five fields of operation; in coordination with External Relations and Communication Department, establishes a network of internal and external stakeholders and resources to ensure a dedicated and continuous support for SLP.

- Coordinates the preparation of high-quality reports, presentations, briefings and other required documentation on SLP progress and achievements, best practices, evaluations and lessons learned, and other related ad-hoc reports.


UN Core Values of Integrity, Professionalism and Respect for Diversity, and Core Competencies of Communication, Working with People and Drive for Results apply by default.

Relating and Networking
Persuading and Influencing
Planning and Organizing
Creating and Maintaining Impact and Partnership
Managing Complexity and Change

For guidance on how to prepare for competency-based interviews:


An advanced university degree from an accredited educational institution in development studies, economics, political science, public administration, international relations, law or a related field.

Work Experience

Minimum ten years of progressively responsible work experience in evidence-based, sustainable development programming, results-based management (RBM) as well as early recovery and livelihoods programming under humanitarian operations, in international organizations, government service, commercial/private sector or NGOs is required.

Unless already serving as an international staff member in the UN Common System, at least two continuous years of relevant international experience should be outside UNRWA, and outside the country(s) of citizenship is required.

Experience with bilateral or multilateral assessments and evaluations of socio-economic recovery and sustainable livelihoods programmes and projects for conflict and/or crisis affected populations, including proven experience with qualitative and quantitative research methodologies is required.

An advanced university degree from an accredited educational institution in development studies, economics, political science, public administration, international relations, law or a related field is required.

Recognized experience in facilitation complex multistakeholder planning, programme development and fundraising strategies and processes is desirable.

Familiarity with the United Nations system, structures, and practices is desirable

Experience in working in and knowledge of UNRWA’s Areas of Operation, including understanding of regional political dynamics, especially in relation to matters related to Palestine refugees and their social and economic situation is desirable.

PhD in development studies, economics, political science, public administration, international relations, law or a related field is desirable.


Excellent command of written and spoken English.


Evaluation of qualified candidates may include an assessment exercise which may be followed by competency-based interview.

Special Notice

Type of Contract and duration: 1 year, project funded, with the possibility of further extension.

Applicants have to complete the Personal History Profile (PHP) in inspira in order to be considered. The PHP should be completed with full relevant work experience as per the requirements in the Job Opening, in order to be considered.

A roster may be created from the selection exercise, and successful candidates may become eligible for an appointment to the same post or a similar post.

UNRWA welcomes applications from qualified candidates with disabilities.

Join our eco-friendly organization dedicated to environmental sustainability and targeting to be plastic free by 2025.

A first level university degree in combination with two additional years of qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of an advanced university degree.
NB: work experience alone or formal qualifications with no relevant work experience are not considered an acceptable combination.

UNRWA is funded almost entirely by voluntary contributions from UN member states, regional bodies, business foundations and individual contributions. The mission of UNRWA is to help Palestine refugees achieve their full potential in human development under the difficult circumstances in which they live.

For more details on UNRWA, please visit:

United Nations Considerations

Staff members are subject to the authority of the Commissioner-General of UNRWA and to assignment by him or her.

UNRWA is committed to achieving gender parity at all levels of staffing under the current UN-wide gender agenda and strongly encourages applications from qualified applicants from under-represented groups.

At UNRWA, 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. UNRWA is committed to creating a diverse and inclusive environment of mutual respect. Reasonable accommodation for applicants with disabilities may be provided to support participation in the recruitment process when requested and indicated in the application.

UNRWA Considerations
UNRWA staff are expected to uphold the highest standards of efficiency, competence, neutrality, impartiality and integrity. This includes respect for and commitment to human rights, diversity and non-violent means of dealing with all kinds of conflict. Only persons who fully and unconditionally commit to these values should consider applying for UNRWA jobs. Candidates will not be considered for employment with UNRWA 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. Candidates who have committed crimes other than minor traffic offences may not be considered for employment. The Agency may disqualify applicants who have separated for reason of misconduct, who left a UN Agency while misconduct processes were pending, or who appear on the UN Sanctions List.
UNRWA is a non-smoking work environment.

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.

We do our best to provide you the most accurate info, but closing dates may be wrong on our site. Please check on the recruiting organization's page for the exact info. Candidates are responsible for complying with deadlines and are encouraged to submit applications well ahead.
Before applying, please make sure that you have read the requirements for the position and that you qualify.
Applications from non-qualifying applicants will most likely be discarded by the recruiting manager.