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Director, Sexual and Reproductive Health and Research
World Health Organization (WHO)
HQ/SRH Sexual and Reproductive Health and Research
Grade: D2, Director and Top Executive
Close on 4 Oct 2021
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Added 2 months ago
Job Description


The World Health Organization's Department of Sexual and Reproductive Health and Research (SRH) includes the UNDP-UNFPA-UNICEF-WHO-World Bank Special Programme of Research, Development and Research Training in Human Reproduction (HRP). HRP is the main instrument within the United Nations system for identifying research priorities on sexual and reproductive health and rights; for promoting, conducting, evaluating and coordinating related interdisciplinary research; for collaborating with countries to build national capacity to conduct research; and for promoting the use of research results in policy making for sexual and reproductive health programmes.The SRH Department draws on the research and global expertise of HRP to set norms and standards and develop WHO guidelines on sexual and reproductive health and rights, provides leadership onsexual and reproductive health and rights, and provides technical support to countries to strengthen their health systems' capacity to achieve universal access to sexual and reproductive health services, thereby contributing to UHC..More information about SRH andHRPcan be found at


(1) Leads the Department and HRP Special Programme in providing technical expertise to Member States and other stakeholders with guidance, evidence and data required for the development, implementation, and monitoring of national and/or global policies and programmes.(2) Provides the overall leadership, management accountability, and direction of the Department and HRP Special Programme in delivering its objectives through managing and galvanizing a diverse workforce and financial resources to optimize the department deliverables and mandate.(3) Provides senior level technical advice and expertise to Senior Management of WHO and HRP Cosponsors in sexual and reproductive health and rights, in order to position the Department and HRP Special Programme as leaders in the area.(4) Leads the development and periodic update of a prioritized research and capacity strengthening agenda for the HRP Special Programme, in consultation with WHO, HRP cosponsors, Member States and a broad range of other stakeholders.(5) Directs and leads overall establishment and development of the Department's evidence-based policies and strategies for roll out and delivery for implementation by WHO Regional and Country Offices and HRP cosponsors.(6) Serves as the scientific/technical reference among UN Agencies, HRP governing bodies, and other key players in sexual and reproductive health and rights.(7) Promotes the integration of WHO Regional and Country Office, and HRP cosponsor perspectives and operational capacities into the Department's programme area of work(8) Establishes and maintains a network of research and policy institutions and works synergistically to complement existing research agenda items; interacts with the private sector, pharmaceutical companies and financing institutions for product development, negotiating public-sector prices and promoting support to scale up programmes in national settings.(9) Builds strong partnerships and fosters consensus building with external partners, Member States, UN Agencies, donors, members of HRP governing bodies, HRP cosponsors, cutting edge research institutions,non-state actors, and other stakeholders in the subject area to politically position the technical area of work and its implementation into national and/or global policies.(10) Represents WHO and the HRP Special Programme in a diverse array of global fora to position WHO and the HRP Special Programme as leaders in the global health community.(11) Mobilizes partnerships and networks for promoting investment in research and development in sexual and reproductive health products, including resources for WHO and the HRP Special Programme.(12) Represents WHO, the Department, and the HRP Special Programme at policy and governance meetings of WHO and other agencies and institutions, as well as at international scientific meetings, acting as a spokesperson on WHO and HRP's work in, and as an advocate for, sexual and reproductive health and rights.(13) Directs the organization of HRP's annual governing bodies, the Policy and Coordination Committee, Scientific and Technical Advisory Group, Gender and Rights Advisory Panel, the HRP Alliance Advisory Board and the Standing Committee of HRP Cosponsors. Develops governing body documents and proposals, including budget proposals, for approval by both HRP and WHO governing bodies.(14) Directs monitoring, evaluation and reporting activities of the Department and HRP Special Programme to ensure development of key performance indicators and global reporting requirements and mechanisms to ensure optimal performance.(15) Perform other related duties as assigned.




Essential: An advanced university degree in a health-related field, with a post-graduate qualification in a discipline related to sexual and reproductive health.
Desirable: A PhD in any health field related to sexual and reproductive health


Essential: A minimum of 15 years of relevant work experience of which at least 10 years in research and research management, including experience at the international level. At least 5 years of experience of sexual and reproductive health programmes and their public health aspects in national health systems, including in low- and middle-income countries. Proven leadership and experience with team management at middle or senior organizational levels.
Desirable: Experience of working within a UN agency.


-Strong skills in the area of developing and establishing health system polices and strategies, including for low- and middle-income countries.-Excellent skills and ability in managing diverse teams and financial resources.-Strong understanding and skills in mobilizing resources.-Ability to engage, build consensus and communicate effectively and diplomatically with Member States, partners and media. Commitment to collaborate effectively with other key partners in sexual and reproductive health and rights.-Globally-respected level of technical expertise and knowledge of sexual and reproductive health and rights and their public health aspects in national health systems, including the gender equality, equity and human rights dimensions. - Proven vision, political acumen, and dynamic leadership skills in the planning and coordination of multidisciplinary public health programmes. -Strong research, analytical and scientific writing skills, as evidenced by an extensive track record of peer-review publication relating sexual and reproductive health and rights.


WHO Competencies

Respecting and promoting individual and cultural differences
Promoting innovation and organizational learning
Driving the Organization's Position in Health Leadership
Creating an empowering and motivating environment

Use of Language Skills

Essential: Expert knowledge of English.
Desirable: Intermediate knowledge of WHO officl.language.


WHO salaries for staff in the Professional category are calculated in US dollars. The remuneration for the above position comprises an annual base salary starting at USD 113,621 (subject to mandatory deductions for pension contributions and health insurance, as applicable), a variable post adjustment, which reflects the cost of living in a particular duty station, and currently amounts to USD 8266 per month for the duty station indicated above. Other benefits include 30 days of annual leave, allowances for dependent family members, home leave, and an education grant for dependent children.


  • This selection may be subject to special selection procedures.  Further details of these procedures shall be made available upon request to Alfred Plei,”
  • This vacancy notice may be used to fill other similar positions at the same grade level
  • Only candidates under serious consideration will be contacted.
  • A written test may be used as a form of screening.
  • In the event that your candidature is retained for an interview, you will be required to provide, in advance, a scanned copy of the degree(s)/diploma(s)/certificate(s) required for this position. WHO only considers higher educational qualifications obtained from an institution accredited/recognized in the World Higher Education Database (WHED), a list updated by the International Association of Universities (IAU)/United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). The list can be accessed through the link: Some professional certificates may not appear in the WHED and will require individual review.
  • Any appointment/extension of appointment is subject to WHO Staff Regulations, Staff Rules and Manual.
  • Staff members in other duty stations are encouraged to apply.
  • WHO is committed to workforce diversity.
  • WHO has a smoke-free environment and does not recruit smokers or users of any form of tobacco.
  • WHO has a mobility policy which can be found at the following link: Candidates appointed to an international post with WHO are subject to mobility and may be assigned to any activity or duty station of the Organization throughout the world.
  • Applications from women and from nationals of non and underrepresented Member States are particularly encouraged.
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