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Job Vacancies World Bank Washington DC (2)

Senior Social Development Specialist

Closing Date    07-Jan-2011

Background / General description
The Middle East and North Africa (MNA) Region is host to a population of 354 million living in 20 countries. The region enjoys a rich cultural heritage, geographic proximity to important global markets, and is endowed with 2/3 of the world oil and gas reserves. At the same time, MNA faces difficult challenges, including high unemployment (notably among youth), severe water scarcity, human and social development outcomes below that achieved by countries at similar levels of income, and con-going and recent conflicts. The region is diverse, with mainly middle-income countries, but also two IDA countries and several high-income non-borrowing countries, particularly in the Gulf. The Sustainable Development Department in MNA (MNSSD) is responsible for 7 business lines: agriculture and rural development, environment, energy, social development, transport, urban development, and water, organized under four Washington-based Sector Managers responsible for: (i) agriculture and rural development and environment; (i) urban and social development; (iii) water and (iv) energy and transport. The department has a portfolio of 85 on-going operations valued at about $6 billion, and processes 15-20 new operations every year. In addition, the department delivers about 35 AAA every year, and has a growing business of Reimbursable Technical Assistance (RTA), fee-based services. The urban and social development unit comprises about 32 staff (including ETC, STC, Co-term, JPA). The urban unit delivers lending operations, including SILs and DPLs, manages a growing program of RTAs, and undertakes strategic AAA with an increased focus on issues related to urban-environment, municipal development and finance and urban competitiveness and growth. The social unit development unit focuses its thematic work in three main areas: (i) governance and accountability; (ii) youth; and (iii) conflict. This work is carried out in close cooperation with the HD and PREM departments, as well as with other parts of the Bank and external partners. It also manages operations, including the flagship CDD project in Morocco, (INDH), several post-conflict operations focusing on restoring basic service delivery, a displaced program, and increasingly operations to address youth inclusion and employment. Increasing operations and task team leadership is a priority in the group. Social safeguards and sustainability is also a prominent part of the social development unit’s work-program, and is increasing with the increase in overall lending that the region is experiencing. The MNA region attaches particular importance to creating supportive work environment, based on values of team-work, transparency, trust, client service, and professional excellence. MNA staff are expected to be guided by these values as well as to possess the following attributes:
  • Collegiality, creativeness, resourcefulness.
  • Good listening and communication skills.
  • Intellectual and personal integrity and competence.
  • Willingness and ability to work in teams.
  • Commitment to clients.

Duties and Accountabilities
  • The urban and social unit is looking to add a Senior Social Development Specialist to its team. The duties and responsibilities include:
  • Provide technical leadership on the social development and social safeguards content of operations (investment lending and budget support).
  • Engage with clients on social safeguards in conjunction with operations, but also more broadly on social development and country social assessment.
  • Engage with internal clients (TTLs, CDs, CMs, CMUs) to advocate for social development, raise awareness of social safeguards and create space to work on social development challenges.
  • Provide operational cross support to select country operations on diverse sectors.
  • Contribute to the debate on social safeguards, its applicability, its potential reform and bring best practice to MNA.
  • Contribute to the unit’s work-program in one of the 3 main areas of thematic focus outlined above or develop a program in other areas of interest such as gender, CDD.
  • Design and lead new innovative ESW on issues related to social development and social sustainability.
  • Participate in social development family events, including staff contributions to the newly formed social sustainability and safeguards practice groups.
  • Mentor more junior staff. The aspects of the work related to safeguards above will be done in coordination with the Safeguards Secretariat and under the oversight of the MNA Regional Safeguards Advisor.

Selection Criteria
  • Advanced degree (minimum Masters degree and 8 years) in one of the following disciplines: anthropology, sociology, economics, political science or related social sciences.
  • A track record of assisting country and task teams in (i) identifying social development opportunities and integrating them into the design and implementation of strategies and operations; (ii) identifying and mitigating social risks; and (iii) applying the Bank’s social safeguards policies throughout project preparation and implementation.
  • In-depth understanding of OP4.12 and OP4.10 and their practical application.
  • In-depth knowledge of operations (SILs, DPLs) and macro-strategy and policy instruments (PRSPs, CPSs).
  • Demonstrated experience working with government, academia, and civil society organizations in developing countries.
  • Experience working in cross-sectoral teams, mentor junior staff, and set clear deliverables and deliver on work-programs.
  • Excellent written and oral communications skills. Fluency in French a plus. 

The World Bank Group is committed to achieving diversity in terms of gender nationality, culture, and educational background. Individuals with disabilities are equally encouraged to apply. All applications will be treated in the strictest confidence.

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