Chief, Partnership and Communications • UNDP

United Nations Development Programme


Job Purpose and Organizational Context

UNDP is the UN’s global development network, an organization advocating for change and connecting countries to knowledge, experience and resources to help build nations that can withstand crisis and support their efforts to implement the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and achieve the new Sustainable Development Goals. UNDP works in nearly 170 countries and territories, helping to achieve the eradication of poverty, and the reduction of inequalities and exclusion. We help countries to develop policies, leadership skills, partnering abilities, institutional capabilities and build resilience in order to sustain development results.

UNDP’s Regional Bureau for Africa (RBA) is its largest regional bureau, covering 46 countries, ranging from high middle-income economies to least developed countries, as well as countries in crisis and post-crisis situations. UNDP works with its national counterparts in the Africa region to help them implement national development priorities and achieve their national development goals. Its work is guided by global and regional development and normative frameworks to which countries in Africa are signatories, including the 2030 Agenda and Agenda 2063.

Achieving these core strategic goals requires UNDP to take action in a number of areas that conform its programme for the Africa region. These range from service delivery support in crisis and post-crisis settings, to national capacity development, the provision of innovative policy advice to national governments, or the convening of national and regional dialogues around key development issues.

To make this possible, UNDP’s Regional Bureau for Africa counts with a core capacity of highly qualified professionals located in its headquarters in New York and in its regional and sub-regional offices in Addis Ababa, Dakar and Nairobi. RBA staff provide both substantive and managerial support to UNDP’s operations in the Africa region, enhancing its standards of efficiency and accountability, providing innovative region-wide strategic thinking and policy analysis, and engaging in advocacy and partnerships development, helping translate corporate and RBA strategies and goals into development impact and results on the ground.
RBA has identified partnerships and communications as a core strategic area of growth in support of its work in the Africa region. Focus on this area is motivated by the new demands posed by the 2030 and 2063 Agendas, which require of concerted actions from all development actors, in order to achieve their ambitious goals for socioeconomic transformation and sustainable development. It is also driven by the growing number of development actors active in the African development landscape and the demands that this places on UNDP as convener of national and regional policy dialogue and facilitator of development partnerships.

RBA’s new approach to partnerships seeks to mobilize African leaders and experts in support of Africa’s development around key RBA priority areas. To this end, RBA intends to build coalitions of African influencers in business, the arts, civil society and academia to steer the African agenda, identifying champions who can drive change. As part of this strategy, RBA plans to collaborate with academia and the private sector to create distinct bespoke products to connect RBA with African leaders to influence and build stronger partnerships and impact.

To support its work in this area, RBA intends to establish a dedicated team of professionals to work in the areas of Partnerships and Communications. Under the direct supervision RBA Director, this team will lead the work of RBA in this area, in support of the partnerships and communications needs of its headquarter, regional and country offices.

RBA’s Partnerships and Communications team is headed by the Chief of Partnerships and Communications. Under the leadership of the RBA Director, the Chief of Partnerships and Communications leads a team of highly qualified professionals to successfully position RBA as a trusted partner for development in Africa, both at the regional and country level. In doing so, it helps RBA forge strategic partnerships with key global and regional partners in the private sector, civil society, think tanks, philanthropies and academia and leverage its role as convener and facilitator, connecting development actors across the world and the Africa region in support of Africa’s ambition for socioeconomic transformation and sustainable development, as well as of UNDP’s activities in the Africa region. The Chief of Partnerships and Communications also leads RBA’s communications work with a view of ensuring that UNDP’s partners in and for Africa remain informed of its activities and results, thereby contributing to consolidate RBA’s profile as a partner of choice in Africa.


Strategic positioning

  • Leads RBA’s efforts to position the bureau as a trusted partner of choice and convener of regional and sub-regional policy dialogue in the Africa region.
  • Identifies opportunities for global and regional dialogues on Africa’s development.
  • Helps convene RBA’s partners for development around core values, issues and priority areas for UNDP’s work in the Africa region.
  • Develops and constantly updates and ensures the timely implementation of innovative RBA positioning in the African development context.
  • Collaborates with relevant UNDP bureaus and units to support RBA’s positioning efforts and compliance with its commitments in the implementation.
  • Examines risks and opportunities presented by the strategic positioning of RBA in the Africa region and proposes appropriate responses.
  • Liaises with other RBA units and regional and sub-regional offices, as well as with other bureaus in UNDP to identify opportunities and development issues that can drive RBA’s strategic positioning.
  • Liaises with the Executive Office in support of the Director’s positioning as a substantive thought leader within the development domain in the region, promoting UNDP’s mandate and corporate goals through effective advocacy in a way that boosts demand for our programmes and upstream policy advice.

Partnerships for development

  • Leads the development and implementation of RBA’s partnerships strategy and work programme.
  • Advises RBA senior management on the bureau’s partnership engagements in and for the Africa region.
  • Leads the development of strategic partnership frameworks with leading global and regional actors for development (i.e. private sector, civil society, think tanks, philanthropies and academia) in support of UNDP’s regional convening role and of operational activities in the Africa region.
  • Effectively networks with key actors relevant to the African development context seizing opportunities to build strategic alliances relevant to UNDP’s mandate and strategic agenda.
  • Closely liaises with other RBA units and regional and sub-regional offices to identify opportunities for partnership engagement and development in and for the Africa region.
  • Liaises with UNDP’s Bureau for External Relations and Advocacy to ensure full alignment with UNDP corporate partnerships policies and strategies.
  • Supports RBA’s resource mobilization efforts in support of its programme in the Africa region and in line of UNDP’s corporate priorities and values.
  • Support the RBA Director on specific partnership initiatives.

Communications and advocacy

  • Leads RBA’s communication work, including the development and implementation of RBA’s communication and advocacy strategy and RBA’s media engagements.
  • Leads the development of communication products and communication material that contribute to illustrate RBA’s work, results and impact in the Africa region.
  • Supports RBA’s senior management’s communication needs and engagements.
  • Advises the RBA Director on strategic communications, reputational and crisis management.
  • Forges, maintains and nourishes strong relations with key communication and advocacy partners, including international media outlets, etc.
  • Closely liaises with other RBA units and regional and sub-regional offices to identify opportunities for partnership engagement and development in and for the Africa region.
  • Liaises with UNDP’s Bureau for External Relations and Advocacy to ensure full alignment with UNDP corporate communications and advocacy policies and strategies.

Effective team management

  • Manages the Partnerships and Communication Team and its work plan in support of the RBA’s partnerships and communications needs.
  • Under the guidance of RBA’s director, sets priorities of the Partnerships and Communications Team in support of RBA’s mission in the Africa Region and its partnerships and communications team.
  • Leads the development and overseas the implementation of the Partnerships and Communications Team’s annual work plans.
  • Encourages and fosters intra-team collaboration to ensure the provision an integrated package of partnerships and communications support to RBA.
  • Supports staff development and professional growth, as well as effective management for results.
  • Represents RBA’s Partnerships and Communication Team at RBA’s senior management team.

Knowledge Development and Management

  • IInstills a strong culture of knowledge management and knowledge sharing in the team;
  • Provides substantive leadership to relevant UNDP’s communities of practice and other practice networks, within UNDP and in the broader UN landscape.
  • Stimulates the use of blogs, social media, community of practice to ensure wide dissemination of positions, events, debates on the topics covered by the team;
  • Ensures the continuous collation of lessons learnt and best practices in the areas of partnerships and communications for development.





  • Ability to make new and useful ideas work.


  • Ability to persuade others to follow.

People Management:

  • Ability to improve performance and satisfaction.


  • Ability to listen, adapt, persuade and transform.


  • Ability to get things done while exercising good judgement.


Strategic positioning:

  • Ability to strategically position organizations as key partner of choice.

Partnership development:

  • Ability to identify, develop and grow partnerships for development.

Communications for development:

  • Ability to communicate organizational impact and, results.


  •  Ability to advocate for organizations’ core values.
Required Skills and Experience


  • Master’s Degree or equivalent in media relations, journalism, development studies, social sciences, international relations or related studies;


  • At least 10 years of professional experience leading teams to successfully develop partnerships, communicate organizational results and strategically position organizations as key partners of choice.
  • Demonstrated experience in partnership development.
  • Demonstrated experience in media engagement and external relations management.
  • Experience in the African context advising governments, large corporations or international organizations on partnerships and communications would be an asset.
  • Relevant experience in the field of international development would be an asset.

Language Requirements:

  • Proficiency in English;
  • Working knowledge of other UN language desirable.

How To Apply

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