Director, Cities Alliance – UNOPS – Brussels, Belgium

Brussels, Belgium
Industry Sector:
International Public Sector
Type of contract:

Director, Cities Alliance – UNOPS – Brussels, Belgium

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Director, Cities Alliance – UNOPS – Brussels, Belgium

Functional Responsibilities

Management Board
  • Oversees the provision of high-quality strategic information to the Management Board to facilitate its role in setting policies and strategies. This includes regular, high-level strategic analysis, advice, and communication in its strategic, results and risk management roles, in active collaboration with the Chair of the Management Board.
  • Facilitates and promotes communication between the Management Board and partners on policy and programme issues. This includes regular monitoring and clear reporting of progress toward key targets.
  • Communicates on a regular basis with the Chair of the Management Board on ongoing progress and highlights emerging issues. Identifies operational challenges at an early stage that need the Board’s support, including any resource deficiencies.
Strategy and Planning
  • Leads the development of the Strategic Plan and Annual Work Plans, with time-bound targets and milestones for fulfilling the Cities Alliance vision and ensures their timely approval by the Management Board.
  • Ensures that the Cities Alliance Strategic Plan is aligned with, and actively contributes to, implementation of Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development, the Paris Climate Agreement, and the New Urban Agenda;
  • Leads organizational planning exercises with clear objectives and timelines.
  • Directs and oversees the setting of framework targets and monitoring tools.
  • Ensures that all Cities Alliance policies and governance instruments are regularly reviewed and updated, including the Charter, Standard Operating Procedures, Conflict of Interest Policy and the Risk and Results Frameworks.
Resource Mobilization
  • Leads and coordinates all efforts toward clear targets to urgently mobilize additional financial resources in order to sustain the organization.
  • Ensures the development and management of an effective and proven resource mobilization strategy which underpins Cities Alliance’ sustainability and growth.
  • Develops strategies to expand and diversify the existing core Donors and Funding Sources.
  • Identifies ways to balance the relationship between core and project financing, to ensure that the Cities Alliance retains sufficient flexibility in pursuing new and/or strategic activities.
Global Advocacy and Communications
  • In partnership with the President and/or Chair of the Management Board where appropriate, acts as spokesperson for Cities Alliance and reports regularly to Members on progress on the implementation of the Strategic Plan.
  • Represents the Cities Alliance at high-level events, and/or appoint appropriate staff to represent the Cities Alliance.
  • Leads the Secretariat in articulating and communicating Cities Alliance strategy, vision and values to external stakeholders.
  • Ensures that Members are kept fully appraised of all relevant Cities Alliance activities and provided with opportunities to design, lead and participate in events.
  • Maintains an active focal point system to ensure consistent and personal interaction with Members.
  • Makes a positive contribution to the values and mission of the United Nations system, and to improved development coherence.
  • Liaises with key relevant organizations and agencies, including regional entities.
Management of Secretariat
  • Provides clear and effective leadership to the Secretariat, being responsible and accountable for the administration, guidance and direction of its work.
  • Provides both leadership and support to the Cities Alliance Management Team, ensuring cohesive and effective team operations and optimal staff motivation; providing regular supervision and annual performance appraisal for the Management Team members and ultimate oversight of all Secretariat personnel.
  • Ensures all operational structures, systems and processes are in line with UNOPS policies and procedures.
  • Provides leadership in optimizing timely, cost-effective arrangements that meet value for money expectations and fiduciary standards.
  • Works in close cooperation with UNOPS reporting line to ensure smooth operational support and timely problem solving, where necessary.
  • To ensure effective planning, recruitment and development of a flexible workforce with the skills and competencies needed to ensure optimum performance, and ensure gender and geographical diversity.
  • To foster a positive work environment, respectful of both men and women, and ensure that the highest standards of conduct are observed.
  • To champion gender parity, gender mainstreaming and diversity.


  • Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent), in urban planning, economics, social science, international development, public policy and administration, or related area is required.
  • A minimum of fifteen (15) years of progressively responsible experience of senior management, , strategy development and implementation, resource mobilisation, advocacy, programme management, and/or related area, preferably with a combination of service in either the public, private, or non-profit sectors at an international level is required.
  • Of this, five (5) years should be  work experience in a bilateral or  multilateral development organisation .
  • Strong  knowledge of issues affecting urban development and the role of cities, especially in the global south. A particular understanding of gender issues, and citywide  approaches to inclusive  development, would be a distinct advantage.
  • A solid technical and operational understanding of the delivery of high-quality programmes and their implementation modalities and challenges, especially in the Global South. Experience of building successful partnership-based approaches to development would be an advantage. Experience of building successful partnership-based approaches to development would be an advantage.
  • Proven experience in successful business development and fundraising would be an advantage.
  • Fluency in English (both oral and written) is required; good working knowledge of another UN language (esp. French) would be an asset.
Closing date for applications 22 March 2020 before midnight.

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United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS)

UNOPS is an operational arm of the United Nations, supporting the successful implementation of its partners’ peacebuilding, humanitarian and development projects around the world. UNOPS mission is to help people build better lives and countries achieve sustainable development.

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