Vacancy Announcement: Social Policy Specialist (Public Finance for Children), P4, Fixed Term, UNICEF, MENA Regional Office #72246

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  • Contract
  • Jordan


UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest places, to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children. To save their lives. To defend their rights. To help them fulfill their potential.

Across 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, every day, to build a better world for everyone.

And we never give up

For every child, hope.

The Middle East and North Africa region covers countries and territories from Morocco to the Islamic Republic of Iran, including Djibouti and Sudan in sub-Saharan Africa. The region is home to nearly 418 million people, including 157 million, or 38 per cent, who are under the age of 18. The Middle East and North Africa Regional Office is a hub for information, technical expertise, oversight and coordination for UNICEF Country Offices. It also supports these offices in their efforts to raise much-needed resources. Specialist advisers based in Amman help develop programmes in health and nutrition, child protection, adolescent development, HIV and AIDS, education, water and sanitation, social policy and emergency preparedness.

How can you make a difference?

Under the guidance of the Regional Social Policy Adviser, the Social Policy Specialist is responsible for the planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of an assigned programme or specific projects within the regional social policy programme. The Social Policy Specialist will play a key role in shaping and implementing UNICEF’s Social Policy agenda for children in the MENA, with a particular focus on Public Finance for Children (PF4C). This includes shaping and implementing an effective PF4C agenda at regional level – in collaboration with relevant partners from the UN, IFIs and others – as well as providing timely and effective technical advice to Country Offices. The post will also support monitoring effectively the contribution of results from the region (to global aggregate results for UNICEF) and documenting key lessons learned in PF4C programming, which can be of value beyond the region too.

Summary of key functions/accountabilities:  

  • Identifies emerging social and economic situational and policy trends (particularly with an eye on equity) and leads monitoring and evidence generation related to socio-economic, public finance and social spending trends.
  • At regional level, engages and establishes constructive dialogue and partnerships with international agencies and regional bodies to ensure that the regional development and Public Finance agenda remains child-sensitive and equity-oriented. Participates in relevant thematic working groups and actively contributes technical inputs to collaborative research.
  • Acts as regional focal point for Local Governance for Children (LG4C) initiatives at regional level.
  • Supports Country Offices in social policy analysis and advocacy, with a particular focus on technical support and guidance for PF4C and LG4C interventions and programming. Maintains regular communication with Country Offices and undertakes missions to Country Offices upon request, in order to provide technical assistance and/or training.
  • Conceptualizes and leads training sessions in selected social policy areas. Identifies interesting and useful areas for future research and training activities in UNICEF, paying special attention to priority areas such as improving basic social services and reducing social disparities and inequalities through social budgeting interventions, and the social protection of children. Develops training materials, based on UNICEF and journal sourced social policy studies for use in training workshops. Supports the identification of CO technical support needs and contributes to the development of regional technical support mechanisms.
  • Facilitates knowledge-sharing among UNICEF offices, within the region as well as across regions, on social policy and PF4C/LG4C. Identifies, reviews and disseminates key emerging research on the situation of children in the Middle East and North Africa and on policy measures and promising practices to improve it. Facilitates technical exchange between Country Offices and with Headquarters on specific issues.
  • Supports Regional Office oversight functions for the Social Policy Programme including participation in the Regional Office Annual Reports review, in review of Country Programme documentations and in the TRT/PBR process. Supports the development of the regional work plan and ensures compliance with specific assigned objectives. Supports monitoring of aggregate results related to social policy.
  • Leads development and maintenance of a regional human and institutional resources database of key institutions and thinkers, and potentially useful consultants, in the social and economic policy areas.
  • Supports collaborative work with other Regional Office programme sections, where linkages with social policy priorities exist.

To qualify as an advocate for every child you will have…


  • Advanced university degree is required in Economics, Public Financial Management, Social Sciences, Public Policy and/or Administration, International Relations or other relevant discipline.


  • A minimum of 8 of years progressively responsible professional work experience in social development, project administration, monitoring and evaluation, some at the international level and in low or middle-income countries is required.
  • Social Policy/Public Finance programming experience in a country office of a development organization highly preferred.
  • Knowledge of all core areas of Social Policy programming, especially Public Finance/PF4C.
  • Proven analytical skills and demonstrated ability to lead and draft complex social policy analyses, with a focus on public finance and social spending.
  • Experience in leading PF4C initiatives/programming, especially at country  level, is highly desirable.
  • International experience in multiple duty stations and proven collaborative abilities with other sectors (e.g: education, child protection) a strong asset for this type of RO function.


  • Fluency in English is required. Knowledge of another official UN language is considered as an asset.


For every Child, you demonstrate…

UNICEF’s Core Values of Care, Respect, Integrity, Trust and Accountability and Sustainability (CRITAS) underpin everything we do and how we do it. Get acquainted with Our Values Charter: UNICEF Values

UNICEF Competencies required for this post are:


  • Nurtures, Leads and Manages People (2)
  • Demonstrates Self Awareness and Ethical Awareness (2)
  • Works Collaboratively with others (2)
  • Builds and Maintains Partnerships (2)
  • Innovates and Embraces Change (2)
  • Thinks and Acts Strategically (2)
  • Drive to achieve impactful results (2)
  • Manages ambiguity and complexity (2)

Familiarize yourself with our competency framework and its different levels.

UNICEF is here to serve the world’s most disadvantaged children and our global workforce must reflect the diversity of those children. The UNICEF family is committed to include everyone, irrespective of their race/ethnicity, age, disability, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, nationality, socio-economic background, or any other personal characteristic.

We offer a wide range of benefits to our staff, including paid parental leave, time off for breastfeeding purposes, and reasonable accommodation for persons with disabilities. UNICEF strongly encourages the use of flexible working arrangements.

UNICEF does not hire candidates who are married to children (persons under 18). UNICEF has a zero-tolerance policy on conduct that is incompatible with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and UNICEF, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority, and discrimination. UNICEF is committed to promoting the protection and safeguarding of all children. All selected candidates will undergo rigorous reference and background checks and will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles. Background checks will include the verification of academic credential(s) and employment history. Selected candidates may be required to provide additional information to conduct a background check.

UNICEF appointments are subject to medical clearance.  Issuance of a visa by the host country of the duty station is required for IP positions and will be facilitated by UNICEF. Appointments may also be subject to inoculation (vaccination) requirements, including against SARS-CoV-2 (Covid). Should you be selected for a position with UNICEF, you either must be inoculated as required or receive a medical exemption from the relevant department of the UN. Otherwise, the selection will be canceled.


As per Article 101, paragraph 3, of the Charter of the United Nations, the paramount consideration in the employment of the staff is the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity.

UNICEF’s active commitment to diversity and inclusion is critical to deliver the best results for children. For this position, eligible and suitable from donor are encouraged to apply.

Government employees who are considered for employment with UNICEF are normally required to resign from their government positions before taking up an assignment with UNICEF. UNICEF reserves the right to withdraw an offer of appointment, without compensation, if a visa or medical clearance is not obtained, or necessary inoculation requirements are not met, within a reasonable period for any reason. 

UNICEF does not charge a processing fee at any stage of its recruitment, selection, and hiring processes (i.e., application stage, interview stage, validation stage, or appointment and training). UNICEF will not ask for applicants’ bank account information.

All UNICEF positions are advertised, and only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advance to the next stage of the selection process. An internal candidate performing at the level of the post in the relevant functional area, or an internal/external candidate in the corresponding Talent Group, may be selected, if suitable for the post, without assessment of other candidates.

Mobility is a condition of international professional employment with UNICEF and an underlying premise of the international civil service.

Additional information about working for UNICEF can be found here.


Advertised: 25 Jun 2024 Jordan Standard Time
Deadline: 09 Jul 2024 Jordan Standard Time

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