Economic Affairs Officer (Energy)

UNECE - United Nations Economic Commission for Europe

Geneva, Switzerland

Org. Setting and Reporting

The post is located in the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE), within the Sustainable Energy Division (SED). This is one of the substantive sub-programmes of UNECE. SED works to promote a sustainable energy development strategy for the region, with the following objectives:

  • sustained access to high quality energy services for all individuals in the ECE region;
  • facilitate a transition to a more sustainable energy future and introduce renewable energy sources to reduce health and environmental impacts resulting from the production, transport and use of energy;
  • sustained improvements in energy efficiency, in production and use, particularly in countries with economies in transition;
  • well-balanced energy networks tailored to optimise operating efficiencies and overall regional cooperation;
  • security of energy supply; and
  • integration of energy restructuring, legal, regulatory and energy pricing reforms, as well as of the social dimension into energy policy making.

The incumbent reports to the Chief of the Industry Section. The Industry Section of the SED includes sustainable energy activities in the areas of coal, natural gas, electricity, and resource classification.


The incumbent assists in implementing UNECE’s sustainable energy sub-programme and extra-budgetary fund-raising. The incumbent is expected to carry out the work with a significant degree of independence, seeking advice from section chief when necessary. The objectives of the post are:

  • To encourage cooperation and joint action among ECE member countries on issues and matters relating to sustainable energy development, energy efficiency, and the security of energy supplies;
  • Working with non-ECE member States, the private sector, industry organizations, NGOs, and academia, to seek opportunities for international cooperation and assist ECE member governments in formulating relevant policies and programmes to meet future energy requirements in an environmentally and publicly acceptable way in sustainable energy;
  • To collaborate with other relevant programme managers on the design and implementation of the programme of the Committee on Sustainable Energy.

Duties include management of subsidiary bodies of the Committee on Sustainable Energy, oversight of consultants, contractors, grant recipients, seconded staff, and junior professional officers (JPO). The incumbent designs, researches, and/or provides oversight on policy analyses and preparation and dissemination of studies. Under the direct supervision of the Section Chief and within delegated authority, the incumbent will carry out the following duties:

  • Monitors developments in the field of energy and identifies issues of concern to the United Nations;
  • Conducts studies on selected issues in the field of energy and drafts resulting reports;
  • Develops draft policy recommendations pertaining to the sustainable development and use of energy, access to modern energy services, and the development and fuller integration of the energy economies and energy infrastructure of member countries;
  • Formulates proposals for development strategies, policies and measures, including the development of norms, standards, and guidelines, for presentation to intergovernmental bodies and others;
  • Attends international, regional, and national meetings to represent the Division and to hold discussions with representatives of other institutions;
  • Establishes regular contacts as needed with the energy experts in ministries, international organizations, associations, donor organizations, companies, and other stakeholders in energy to exchange information, best practices and lessons learned, to coordinate cross-sectoral technical cooperation activities, and to provide regular information on the planned, on-going and implemented activities; undertakes consultations, coordination, and exchange of information to achieve synergies and avoid duplication of activities;
  • Services subsidiary bodies to the Committee on Sustainable Energy, including organization of meetings and preparation of meeting documentation;
  • prepares speeches and other inputs for presentations by senior staff;
  • prepares technical cooperation projects undertaken under the auspices of the Committee on Sustainable Energy to facilitate the convergence of legal, regulatory, and policy measures, including business practices of member States;
  • Undertakes missions to member States, either alone or with a team on ECE's technical cooperation activities;
  • Participates in undertakings of broader concern to represent the views or interests of the organisation; and
  • Performs other related duties as required, including a variety of administrative tasks necessary for the final delivery of the Division's services;
  • Undertakes on-the-job and other training activities, both internally and externally.


  • PROFESSIONALISM: Ability to apply economic theories and concepts on energy topics, conduct independent research and produce reports. Shows pride in work and in achievements; demonstrates professional competence and mastery of sustainable energy issues; is conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, observing deadlines and achieving results; is motivated by professional rather than personal concerns; shows persistence when faced with difficult problems or challenges; remains calm in stressful situations. Takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work;
  • PLANNING & ORGANIZING: Develops clear goals that are consistent with agreed strategies; identifies priority activities and assignments; adjusts priorities as required; allocates appropriate amount of time and resources for completing work; foresees risks and allows for contingencies when planning; monitors and adjusts plans and actions as necessary; uses time efficiently;
  • CLIENT ORIENTATION: Considers all those to whom services are provided to be “clients” and seeks to see things from clients’ point of view; establishes and maintains productive partnerships with clients by gaining their trust and respect; identifies clients’ needs and matches them to appropriate solutions; monitors on-going developments inside and outside the clients’ environment to keep informed and anticipate problems; keeps clients informed of progress or setbacks in projects; meets timeline for delivery of products or services to client.


Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent degree) in economics, engineering (civil and electrical engineering) or related field. A first-level university degree in any of these fields, in combination with two additional years of qualifying work experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.

Work Experience

A minimum of seven (7) years of progressively responsible experience in energy and sustainable development or related field is required. Experience in servicing committees and activities for either intergovernmental organizations or the private sector is desirable. Experience in managing energy projects and producing written publications on sustainable energy related topics is also desirable.


English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the post advertised, fluency in English is required; knowledge of French or Russian is desirable.


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

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