Senior Policy Support Officer, Vienna, Austria 200 views

Issued by: OSCE Secretariat

Vacancy number: VNSECP01493

Vacancy type: International Contracted

Field of expertise: Political Affairs

Grade: P4

Number of posts: 1

Duty station: Vienna

Date of issue: 17 December 2019

Deadline for application: 14 January 2020 – 23: 59 Central European Time (CET/CEST)


The OSCE has a comprehensive approach to security that encompasses politico-military, economic and environmental, and human aspects. It therefore addresses a wide range of security-related concerns, including arms control, confidence- and security-building measures, human rights, national minorities, democratization, policing strategies, counter-terrorism and economic and environmental activities. All 57 participating States enjoy equal status, and decisions are taken by consensus on a politically, but not legally binding basis.

The OSCE Secretariat in Vienna assists the Chairmanship in its activities, and provides operational and administrative support to the field operations, and, as appropriate, to other institutions.

The Conflict Prevention Centre (CPC) plays a key role in supporting and co-ordinating the OSCE’s activities in the field, in providing analysis and policy advice to the Secretary General (SG) and the Chairmanship, in leading work on all aspects of the conflict cycle, and in supporting the various formats dealing with protracted conflicts. The CPC also serves as the focal point in the Secretariat for co-ordinating and developing the OSCE’s role in the politico-military dimension.

The Policy Support Service (PSS) serves as the Organization’s primary point of contact on all matters concerning field operations; it monitors the implementation of the mandates of the individual field operations and advises the SG and the Chairmanship on related policy and operational issues. It also analyses early-warning signals regarding the situation in the field and recommends the implementation of relevant preventive or reactive action. Support provided to the SG and the Chairmanship includes background information, policy support and advice, input to speeches and travel files as well as drafting summary records. PSS facilitates the co-ordination of programmes and activities among field operations and with those of OSCE specialized units within the Secretariat and institutions and assists field operations with their input to the budget cycle process. PSS also provides support for the Chairperson-in-Office’s representatives dealing with protracted conflicts and related formats.

The PSS is composed of four regional desks covering Eastern Europe, South-Eastern Europe, the South Caucasus and Central Asia.

The OSCE is committed to further increasing the number of female staff in all areas of the OSCE’s work. Currently women are underrepresented in the Conflict Prevention Centre, especially in management roles. Female candidates are encouraged to apply for this management opportunity.

Tasks and Responsibilities

Under the direct supervision of the Deputy Director for Policy Support Service, as Senior Policy Support Officer, you will act as a point of contact for matters related to the Eastern Europe desk, provide policy advice on the implementation of mandates and ensure follow-up of all Secretariat activities for designated field operations. Additionally, you will draft speeches, statements and talking points on a variety of OSCE field-related activities for use by CPC management.

More specifically, you will be responsible for the following:

Monitoring and analysing developments in the region; Actively monitoring and reporting on the implementation of the mandates of designated field operations; analysing the impact of present and future activities on agreed tasks and objectives; scrutinizing reports submitted by field operations and advising the Chairmanship on their distribution; Analysing developments in the field with a focus on early warning signals of potential crisis situations, alerting the Chairmanship and the Secretary General to issues that might constitute a threat to security and stability, and providing recommendations on appropriate preventive or reactive action that could be taken in response to such developments; Assisting field operations in implementing policy guidance from the participating States and the Secretary General, including leading or participating in CPC Task Force meetings with the involvement of relevant Institutions/Units, the OSCE Troika representatives and field operations; Providing the Secretary General and, through him/her, the Chairmanship, as well as their representatives and envoys, with expert, advisory, material, technical and other support which may include analytical reports and policy options proposals, background information, draft decisions and draft statements on issues related to OSCE activities in the field; Facilitating the co-ordination of programmes and activities among field operations, the Secretariat and Institutions, including co-ordinating initiatives involving two or more field operations and organizing meetings of Heads of Mission in Vienna and in the designated region; paying regular visits to all designated field operations to ensure maximum support of their work by the Secretariat; Taking an active part in consultations with partner organizations on issues related to activities in the field; giving presentations on the work of the Organization to representatives of international organisations, officials and delegations; Taking an active part in performance-based programme budgeting process for the assigned field operations including interacting with the delegations of the Advisory Committee on Management and Finance (ACMF) and taking part in discussions on their content under the guidance of the OSCE Permanent Council; participating in the development and review of proposals for activities of field operations financed from extra-budgetary resources; Working closely with the Department of Human Resources on staffing issues for designated field operations and, if appropriate, participating in selection panels; supervising the activities of Policy Support Officers (Eastern Europe desk) as well as support staff and interns; providing input to the General Orientation Programme and briefing new Mission members; Conducting research on political topics and presenting findings; Performing other related duties and assignments as required, such as replacing other Policy Support Officers during their absence.

For more detailed information on the structure and work of the OSCE Secretariat, please see //’>https: //

Necessary Qualifications

  • Second-level university degree in political science, public or international law, international relations or another related field; a first-level university degree in combination with two years of additional qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of the second-level university degree;
  • Eight years of progressively responsible experience in government, national administration or in a relevant nongovernmental organization;
  • Proven experience in the management of staff;
  • Work in the diplomatic service and/or international organizations would be an asset;
  • Excellent communication skills, resourcefulness, initiative, maturity of judgement and team spirit;
  • Professional fluency in English including excellent drafting skills and working knowledge of the Russian language;
  • Ability to operate Windows applications including word processing and email;
  • Demonstrated gender awareness and sensitivity, and an ability to integrate a gender perspective into tasks and activities;
  • Ability and willingness to work as a member of team, with people of different cultural and religious backgrounds, different gender and diverse political views, whilst maintaining impartiality and objectivity.

Required competencies

Core values

  • Commitment: Actively contributes to achieving organizational goals
  • Diversity: Respects others and values their diverse perspectives and contributions
  • Integrity: Acts in a manner consistent with the Organization’s core values and organizational principles
  • Accountability: Takes responsibility for own action and delegated work

Core competencies

  • Communication: Actively works to achieve clear and transparent communication with colleagues and with stakeholders of the Organization
  • Collaboration: Works effectively with others on common goals and fosters a positive, trust-based working environment
  • Planning: Works towards the achievement of goals in a structured and measured manner
  • Analysis and decision-making: Analyses available information, draws well-founded conclusions and takes appropriate decisions
  • Initiative-taking: Proposes and initiates new ideas, activities and projects
  • Flexibility: Responds positively and effectively to changing circumstances

Managerial competencies (for positions with managerial responsibilities)

  • Leadership: Provides a clear sense of direction, builds trust and creates an enabling environment
  • Strategic thinking: Identifies goals that advance the organizational agenda and develops plans for achieving them
  • Managing performance: Helps to maximize team performance by providing active feedback and skill development opportunities

Remuneration Package

Monthly remuneration is approximately EUR 7,686, depending on post adjustment and family status. OSCE salaries are exempt from taxation in Austria. Social benefits will include possibility of participation in the Cigna medical insurance scheme and the OSCE Provident Fund. Other allowances and benefits are similar to those offered under the United Nations Common System.

Please note that appointments are normally made at step 1 of the applicable OSCE salary scale.

How To Apply

If you wish to apply for this position, please use the OSCE’s online application link found under //’>https: //

The OSCE retains the discretion to re-advertise/re-post the vacancy, to cancel the recruitment, to offer an appointment at a lower grade or to offer an appointment with a modified job description or for a different duration.

Only those applicants who are selected to participate in the subsequent stages of recruitment will be contacted.

Please note that vacancies in the OSCE are open for competition only amongst nationals of participating States, please see //’>http: //

The OSCE is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages qualified female and male candidates from all religious, ethnic and social backgrounds to apply to become a part of the Organization.

The OSCE is a non-career organization committed to the principle of staff rotation, therefore the maximum period of service in this post is 7 years.

Please be aware that the OSCE does not request payment at any stage of the application and review process.

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