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Junior Professional Officer, Policy and Technical Advisory Division (PTA)

Position Title: Junior Professional Officer (JPO)
Grade: P-2 (step 1 in the first year)
Sector of Assignment: Gender and Social Inclusion
Division: Policy and Technical Advisory Division (PTA)
Department: Programme Management Department (PMD)
Duty station: Rome
Reporting to: Lead Technical Specialist Gender and Social Inclusion
Duration: Initially one year with the possibility of extension up to 3 years

Organizational Context

The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), an International Financial Institution and a Specialized United Nations Agency, has committed to lifting 80 million people out of poverty by 2015 for which gender equality, women's empowerment and social targeting will are critical. IFAD's Policy on Gender Equality and Women's Empowerment, approved in 2012, is central to the attainment of the overarching goal of the IFAD Strategic Framework 2011-2015: enabling poor rural women and men to improve their food security and nutrition, raise their incomes and strengthen their resilience. Not only are the achievements of gender equality and the women's empowerment outcomes in their own right, but they are major contributors to strengthening impacts on poverty reduction.
The gender and targeting desk of the Policy and Technical Advisory Division leads the effort to implement the policy and mainstream targeting and gender aspects across IFAD's work, from the design of projects and implementation support to field operations, to the development of knowledge products and advocacy. The desk works with a network of regional and country gender advisers and gender focal points within each division.

Duties, responsibilities and Output Expectations

The JPO will assist in supporting the implementation of the gender policy, with specific attention to strengthening aspects of targeting and gender mainstreaming in IFAD-supported operations, developing knowledge management products, capacity building, policy dialogue and developing partnerships.
Specific duties are:
1. Contribute to the implementation of the gender policy
  • Develop and strengthen practical tools for strengthening gender mainstreaming and social targeting in IFAD supported operations, and provide design and implementation support including field missions and training.
  • Contribute to the improvement of indicators of impact on gender equality and women¿s empowerment for monitoring and evaluations, and the collection and analysis of sex-disaggregated data.
  • Assist in developing and conducting in-house and regional gender and targeting training.
  • Organize seminars and public events related to gender equality and women's empowerment.
2.      Generate and manage knowledge in-house and through global/regional partnerships
  • The JPO will provide inputs to the development of knowledge products, including technical documents, discussion and dissemination events, and participation in global/regional initiatives, as follows:
  • Undertake background research to identify and compile good practices in innovation for scaling up, including support to knowledge management and relevant grants.
  • Contribute to maintaining the gender website, writing reports, articles and blogs, and organizing relevant knowledge management events.
  • Strengthen partnerships on gender and agricultural and rural development issues.
3.      Mainstreaming gender and targeting into divisional portfolio and country programmes
  • The JPO will contribute to mainstream priorities for gender equality and women's empowerment into the portfolio of operations and at country level through the following activities:
  • Contribute to design and/or review exercises for Country Strategy Papers and loan financed operations.
  • Support gender analysis in design and implementation teams.
  • Provide support related to gender and targeting in supervision, mid-term reviews and final evaluation missions.
  • Contribute to workshops and training sessions.
  • Provide inputs for other corporate activities (portfolio reviews, divisional work, technical grants).
4.   Other
  • Additional, related tasks (consistent with her/his background and qualifications) may be required by the supervisor.
  • Able and willing to travel extensively.

Learning elements and expectations

Upon completion of the assignment the APO will have/ will be a:
  • Results-oriented Performer: strong analytical skills together with solution-oriented project management skills. Dynamic, self-motivated and creative thinker. Ability to work independently and with limited supervision.
  • Team Worker/Builder: ability to foster teamwork and establish and maintain effective and harmonious working relationships in a multicultural, multi-ethnic environment with sensitivity and respect for diversity.
  • Networker: strong diplomatic skills with the ability to work effectively with others and create and maintain a solid network within and outside the organization.
  • Planner and Organiser: capacity to set clear priorities within a boundless and often challenging agenda, combined with ability to meet deadlines in a high-pressure and high-energy environment and development.
  • Communicator: strong capacity to listen and communicate effectively to engage others and develop close and effective working relationships with internal and external clients. Strong social skills with the capacity to demonstrate an open mind.
The APO training programme includes the following learning elements:
  • Corporate induction training: it gives staff the opportunity to gain a better understanding of IFAD's strategies, processes and core values.
  • Corporate Supervision training: it gives staff the opportunity to learn the IFAD implementation support, supervision, and knowledge management role of the grants and loans it provides to its country recipients
  • Writing clearly and concisely
  • Training on a technical thematic key to IFAD, depending on the APO's aspiration (e.g. gender, rural finance, climate change adaptation, M&E, etc.)
The APO will have a personal budget for training and training courses related to the job and future career development

Content and methodology of supervision

IFAD's approach to Performance Management is based on continuous performance review and feedback through a combination of informal and formal meetings to achieve individual, team and corporate results. The performance management cycle consists of distinct phases that occur sequentially or in parallel over a twelve-month period:
  • Performance Planning: (January to February): involves the agreement objectives, competencies, and personal development plan.
  • Mid-year review (June- July): is a formal review that must take place between June and July to review and discuss challenges and successes of the first six months, and outline how to make further progress towards achieving the performance plan over the second half of the year.
  • Year-end review: Performance over the whole year is discussed and assessed and the review is recorded.

Technical Competencies

  • Strategic thinking and organizational development: Personal influence (Level 1)
  • Demonstrating Leadership: Personal leadership and attitude to change (Level 1)
  • Learning, sharing knowledge and innovating: Continuously seeks to learn, shares knowledge and innovates (Level 1)
  • Focusing on clients: Focuses on clients (Level 1)
  • Problem solving and decision making: Demonstrates sound problem solving and decision making ability (Level 1)
  • Managing time, resources and information: Manages own time, information and resources effectively (Level 1)
  • Team Work: Contributes effectively to the team (Level 1)
  • Communicating and negotiating: Communicates effectively: creates understanding between self and others (Level 1)
  • Building relationships and partnerships: Builds and maintains effective working relationships (Level 1)

Qualification and experience

  • Master's Degree in subjects related to Rural Sociology, Agricultural Economics, Rural Development, International Development Studies, Gender Studies preferred.
  • Two up to 4 years practical experience in fields related to the job description. Some working experience on pro-poor and gender equality issues in developing countries would be an asset.

Language requirements

  • Excellent oral and writing skills in English and either French or Spanish are required.

Other Information

  • This post is opened in the context of the Junior Professional Officer (JPO) scheme sponsored by the Government of the Netherlands and is addressed exclusively to candidates from developing countries . For the list of eligible of countries: For criteria see the website of Nedworc Foundation:
  • The selected candidate will be awarded fixed-term appointment funded against the availability of resources provided by Netherlands Government. The initial offer will be for a period of one year. The appointment is conditional to the availability of the resources mentioned above, and may be extended for further one year and only up to total three years. The appointment will expire after the donor funds are exhausted and carries no expectation of renewal, continuous employment or conversion to any other type of appointment with IFAD.
  • Interested candidates are requested to apply by completing IFAD's Personal History Form (PHF) in English. A separate CV may be attached if you so desire, but only as a supplement to and NOT as a substitute for the PHF. The application should be made through the online system only. In this regard, please review our home pagefor any job openings and link your application to a specific vacancy number. PLEASE READ CAREFULLY the instructions in How to apply to current job opportunitiesbefore you start. Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted. If applicants do not hear from IFAD HRD within three months from the date of application, they should consider their application unsuccessful.


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