Legal Expert – Jigjiga, Somali Regional State of Ethiopia


Legal Expert – Jigjiga, Somali Regional State of Ethiopia

Job Description
Legal Expert (UNHABITAT)
Job ID
Basic Social Service – URBAN PLANNING
Vacancy End Date
(Midnight New York, USA)
Time Left
10d 23h 34m
Jijiga, Ethiopia
Education & Work Experience
I-Master’s Level Degree – 4 year(s) experience
Vacancy Type
Service Contract (SC)
Posting Type
Contract Duration
One year with a possibility of extension


The United Nations Human Settlements Programme, UN-Habitat, is the United Nations agency for human settlements. It is mandated by the UN General Assembly to promote socially and environmentally sustainable towns and cities with the goal of providing adequate shelter for all.
Through its Regional Office for Africa (ROAf), located in Nairobi, Kenya, UN-Habitat has been supporting African governments to take early action to position themselves for predominately urban populations to achieve sustainable urbanization and the right to adequate housing for all, within the framework of the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda – particularly Sustainable Development Goal 11 to “make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable” – and the New Urban Agenda.
Since 1998, the UN-Habitat has implemented several projects in Ethiopia. Key areas of partnership include: Capacity Building for Sustainable Urban Development, Implementation of the Habitat Agenda, Integrating Local Development Planning and Slum Upgrading in Urban Policy,  Cities without Slums, Water for African Cities Programme – Phases I and II, Promoting Sustainable Transport Solutions for East Africa (SUSTRAN), Support to the improvement of Public Spaces in Addis Ababa,  Support in rehabilitation of Solid waste dump sites in a number of cities, Support in development of Structural plans, Supporting the Ethiopian Cities Sustainable prosperity Goals (ECSPGs),  and Development of the State of Addis Ababa Reports.
Together with the Ethiopian Ministry of Urban Development and Construction (MUDCo), UN Habitat’s latest endeavor is the preparation of Regional Development Spatial Plans to strengthen coordination and cooperation among spatial development plans at all levels (federal, regional, local) and to identify unique opportunities and comparative advantages to support regional economic development, complementarity for growth and also to attract investments.
The main objective of the project is to prepare regional development spatial plans for the regional states of Tigray, Afar, Amhara, Oromia, Somali, Benishangul Gumuz, Southern Nations, Nationalities and People (SNNP), Gambella, Harari and Sidama that can enable them define and achieve their own development goals in line with the national development goals.
Objective of the Project:
The main objective of the project is to prepare regional development spatial plans for the regional states of Tigray, Afar, Amhara, Oromia, Somali, Benishangul Gumuz, Southern Nations, Nationalities and People (SNNP), Gambella, Harari and Sidama that can enable them define and achieve their own development goals in line with the national development goals.
The specific objectives of the assignment for each Regional Development spatial plan are:
  • To conduct situational analysis: this includes regional spatial diagnosis and base-mapping at Wereda level, summary of the key strategic issues (constraints and opportunities) and determination of the emerging spatial structure which influences regional development, based on desk review, data collection (Matrix of Function and spatial documents), and consultative workshops;
  • To identify the existing resources and plan utilization of such resources in each region;
  • To prioritize and guide investment decisions as per the regional spatial development plan;
  • To prepare a complete Regional Spatial Development Framework (SDF) comprising of vision for 2040, spatial development strategies (i.e. goals, objectives, targets, and strategies) and planning guidelines for the desired future, in the context of the national development goals as stipulated in strategic development plans of the country (i.e. NUSDP and the Ten-Year Perspective Plan) and other relevant global agendas, especially the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the New Urban Agenda (NUA);
  • To identify and prepare regional development policies and measures (i.e. policy statements, programs, projects, etc.) that can achieve the objectives under the SDF following the regional spatial structure proposed based on a preferred scenario;
  • To develop a comprehensive implementation plan, including an investment roadmap, institutional arrangements and legislation framework, and organizational capacity development program;
  • To prepare a monitoring and evaluation system that inform government budgeting, private investments, public-private partnership, etc
Duties and Responsibilities
The incumbent will work as Institutional/Legal Specialist for the preparation of the Regional Spatial Development Plan and provide support in the following tasks:
  • Examine policy, institutional, legal matters, including assuring compliance with safeguards, and proposing new organizational arrangements;
  • Assess and analyse the prevailing institutional set-up, financial and legal frameworks, governance and working procedures at the national, regional and local levels;
  • Assess future projections (5, 10, and 15 years) on critical sectors and needs assessment (with financial analysis), where applicable;
  • Identify the development of constraints and opportunities and analyse strategies and present through financial analysis;
  • Prepare the Regional Development Spatial Plan by spelling out of the vision 2040 of RDSP and articulating agreed and accepted goals for the region and how to monitor the progress and achievements (targets);
  • Develop an implementation action plan;
  • Provide continuous capacity development programs during plan preparation and operationalization;
  • Undertake fieldwork/surveys and collect additional information, as needed;
  • Support the organization of consultative workshops, focus group discussions and individual interviews with key stakeholders/informants for data collection, discussion of preliminary/intermediate products/plans, exchange of ideas, etc.;
  • Mainstream participatory planning approaches at the various levels, including through involvement of local groups in the Regions, and building consensus gradually;
  • Propose different development options for the intra-regional urban cluster area including catalytic projects and priority investments, highlighting advantages and disadvantages, costs and benefits, etc.;
  • Support in organizing training workshops on the methods of data collection for data collectors who are filling the questionnaires at Wereda levels;
  • Support in organizing consultative workshops at Zonal levels to validate the results and the data gathered regarding the regional profiles;
  • Present the study reports for validation workshops with relevant stakeholders at various stages of the process of the work and incorporate the valuable feedbacks before the final submission.


Core Competencies:
  • Ability to identify key strategic issues, opportunities and risks. Ability to generate and communicate broad and compelling organizational direction. Ability to communicate clearly links between the Organization’s strategy and the work unit’s goals.  Demonstrated ability to provide innovative technical leadership by performing and/or overseeing the planning, development, and management of operation.  Demonstrated ability to negotiate and apply good judgment  Shows pride in work and in achievements; demonstrates professional competence and mastery of subject matter; 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.
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 ongoing 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.
Managing Performance: 
  • Delegates the appropriate responsibility, accountability and decision-making authority; makes sure that roles, responsibilities and reporting lines are clear to each staff member; accurately judges the amount of time and resources needed to accomplish a task and matches task to skills; monitors progress against milestones and deadlines; regularly discusses performance and provides feedback and coaching to staff; encourages risk-taking and supports creativity and initiative; actively supports the development and career aspirations of staff; appraises performance fairly.
  • Identifies the key issues in a complex situation, and comes to the heart of the problem quickly; gathers relevant information before making a decision; considers positive and negative impacts of decisions prior to making them; takes decisions with an eye to the impact on others and on the Organization; proposes a course of action or makes a recommendation based on all available information; checks assumptions against facts; determines the actions proposed will satisfy the expressed and underlying needs for the decision; makes tough decisions when necessary.

Functional Competencies:

  • Excellent communication and interpersonal skills;
  • Proven ability for building and managing effective partnerships;
  • Excellent writing skills, with analytical capacity and ability to synthesize project outputs and relevant findings for the preparation of quality reports.
  • Ability to work independently or with minimal supervision with a high degree of responsibility, in a flexible manner and often under pressure;
  • Knowledge of financial resources and human resources management, contract, asset and procurement, and general administration;
  • Capacity to coordinate and organize a team and to support project implementation;
  • Ability to conduct interviews, surveys, and other data collection techniques.
Required Skills and Experience
  • Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in institutional arrangement and organizational development, public administration, legislation and governance or related fields. with specific work experience in organizational development, institutional and governance aspects of regional and urban planning and analysis of legal policy frameworks;
  • Recognised experience and knowledge on urban and regional planning;
  • Excellent knowledge of the Ethiopian context and particularly aware of the region she/he wants to work in.
Work Experience:
  • A minimum of four (4) years of progressively responsible experience in organizational development, institutional and governance aspects of regional and urban planning and analysis of legal policy frameworks at national level and at least three (3) years of similar experience on planning and development related international projects or on international level is required;
  • Proven experience in development and regional planning fields, projects/ programme design and implementation with the UN or other international agencies is desirable. Work experience in technical cooperation and development issues required.
  • English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the position advertised, fluency in English (both oral and written) is required. Knowledge of any of the local languages is an asset.

Important applicant information

All posts in the SC categories are subject to local recruitment.

Applicant information about UNDP rosters

Note: UNDP reserves the right to select one or more candidates from this vacancy announcement.  We may also retain applications and consider candidates applying to this post for other similar positions with UNDP at the same grade level and with similar job description, experience and educational requirements.

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