Senior Legal Officer.

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ORGANISATIONAL SETTING & REPORTING

The post is located within the Office of the Legal Affairs at the Headquarters of the International Seabed Authority located in Kingston, Jamaica, and reports directly to the Deputy Secretary General and Legal Counsel.

RESPONSIBILITIES

Within delegated authority, the incumbent will be responsible for the following:

Substantive Legal Advice:

  1. Work in the area of international law, and independently handle a wide range of highly complex, and often sensitive legal matters involving issues relating to international, public, contract law and administrative law (which includes but is not limited to procurement; staffing; litigation; rules of procedure of various ISA bodies etc), to include interpretation and application of relevant instruments in that area.
  2. Draft rules, regulations and procedures for implementation of Part XI of the Convention and the 1994 Agreement.
  3. Provide authoritative legal advice on diverse range of highly complex or novel substantive and procedural questions of law, in particular, legal advice, assistance and support to the Authority and governing bodies, in connection with the interpretation and implementation of their mandates and operational arrangements in furtherance of such mandates; operational arrangements for the establishment of programmes of cooperation for development and technical assistance; and other issues concerning intellectual property rights and confidentiality procedures related to Article 168 of the Convention.
  4. Make recommendations to senior officials of substantive units on actions to be taken.
  5. Provide secondary oversight of contracts issued by the Authority for activities in the Area.

Management and Supervisory:

  1. Coordinate and direct teams of legal officers, guides and supervises the work of junior legal officers; assists the Deputy to the Secretary-General / Legal Counsel in general management and administration of the department, including budgetary documents and recruitment of staff, organizes and prioritizes the workload and provides general coordination and supervision of assignments relating to the legal and contractual work of the Authority.
  2. Organize and supervise research studies and the preparation of legal opinions, as well as perform extensive legal research and analysis on highly complex or novel legal issues/questions and prepares legal opinions, briefs, reports, and correspondence.

Administration:

  1. Provide legal advice and supervises the review, negotiation and drafting of agreements, contracts, and other legal instruments, including trust fund, contribution and pro bono and cooperation agreements, advice on legal and operational issues arising in connection with the contractors, and advice on matters relating to the status and mandate of the Authority, its governing and subsidiary bodies; and institutional and operational modalities for activities of ISA and other subsidiary organs.
  2. Supervise the defense of claims, and disputes and negotiates settlement of claims, including  intellectual property rights infringement claims, breach of confidentiality procedures and prepares legal documentation relating to such settlements.
  3. Provide legal advice, as appropriate, to senior officials and governing bodies on the interpretation of regulations and rules of the Authority.
  4. Serve on standing boards, committees, governing bodies, ad hoc working groups and task forces, as required; promotes the work of the Authority and represent the organization at meetings, conferences, seminars, etc
  5. Contribute to review and drafting of new, or new applications of, legal instruments, policy, guidelines, systems, rules of procedure including the Staff and Financial Regulations and Rules of ISA or associated bodies.
  6. Represent the Secretary-General of the Authority before the Joint Appeals Board and the United Nations Appeals Tribunal.
  7. Perform other duties as requested by the Secretary-General.

COMPETENCIES

Professionalism: In-depth theoretical knowledge of, and extensive experience in, the practical application of International Law, including the Law of the Sea, the Law of Contract, and the Law of International Organizations. Excellent analytical, negotiating and drafting skills, including the ability to deliver final drafts of legal opinions on complex matter under pressure. Thorough knowledge of the systems of the Authority and that of the United Nations and interrelationships. Ability to explain/defend issues and positions to Deputy to the Secretary-General/Legal Counsel, and the Secretary-General.

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; Takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work.

Communication:  Speaks and writes clearly and effectively; listens to others, correctly interprets messages from others and responds appropriately; asks questions to clarify, and exhibits interest in having two-way communication; tailors language, tone, style and format to match audience; demonstrates openness in sharing information and keeping people informed.

Teamwork: Works collaboratively with colleagues to achieve organizational goals; Solicits input by genuinely valuing others’ ideas and expertise; is willing to learn from others; Places team agenda before personal agenda; Supports and acts in accordance with final group decision, even when such decisions may not entirely reflect own position; Shares credit for team accomplishments and accepts joint responsibility for team shortcomings.

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.

Judgement / Decision-Making: Serves as a role model that other people want to follow; Empowers others to translate vision into results; Is proactive in developing strategies to accomplish objectives; Establishes and maintains relationships with a broad range of people to understand needs and gain support; Anticipates and resolves conflicts by pursuing mutually agreeable solutions; Drives for change and improvement, does not accept the status quo; Shows the courage to take unpopular stands; Provides leadership and takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work; demonstrates knowledge of strategies and commitment to the goal of gender balance in staffing.

Leadership: Serves as a role model that other people want to follow; Empowers others to translate vision into results; Is proactive in developing strategies to accomplish objectives; Establishes and maintains relationships with a broad range of people to understand needs and gain support; Anticipates and resolves conflicts by pursuing mutually agreeable solutions; Drives for change and improvement, does not accept the status quo; Shows the courage to take unpopular stands; Provides leadership and takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work; demonstrates knowledge of strategies and commitment to the goal of gender balance in staffing.

EDUCATION

Advanced university degree in law (Master’s degree or equivalent), preferably in the International Law, the Law of the Sea, and the law of International Organizations.

A first level university degree with a relevant combination of academic qualifications and experience in the practice of law may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.

Admitted to the bar of a member State of the Authority, or otherwise qualified to practice law is preferable.

WORK EXPERIENCE

Minimum of 10 years of progressively responsible professional legal experience in the practice of law is required, preferably in the legal office of an international organization or the legal office of a Government.

Substantial experience in international law and the law of the sea, contract law, international organizations law, international administrative law (including staff regulations and rules) is desirable.

Proven track record in handling major legal projects and advising senior officials independently are required.

Demonstrated experience is in supervising and guiding the work of more junior legal officers and in advising senior officials independently and at short notice is required.

Experience in presenting and representing the work of an organization both in writing and orally is required.

Experience in strategic formulation in an international public sector organization is required. Five years of field experience obtained outside the applicant’s country of nationality in a transitional, developmental, conflict or post conflict setting is highly desirable.

Experience in liaising with Member States, Corporate, UN agencies, UNAT, Foundations is highly desirable.

Experience working with the status and the privileges and immunities of International Organizations is desirable.

LANGUAGES

English and French are the working languages of ISA. For this post, fluency in written and oral English is required. Knowledge of other United Nations official languages is highly desirable.

ASSESSMENT METHOD

Candidates may undergo a substantive and a competency-based interview. Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.

SPECIAL NOTICE

Staff members are subject to the authority of the Secretary-General and to assignment by him or her. In this context, all staff are expected to move periodically to new functions in their careers in accordance with established rules and procedures.

OTHER INFORMATION

  1. The selected candidate will be subject to a reference verification process in accordance with the ISA policy. The process will include but is not limited to, verification of the information provided in the personal history form and a criminal record check. All candidates should be in a position to submit electronic copy of their passport and all diplomas listed on their profile when requested;
  2. Applicants may check the status of vacancies on ISA web-site;
  3. Only nationals of ISA Member States are eligible for consideration;
  4. Consideration is given to achieving diverse gender, geographical and economic representation at the ISA, to the extent possible;
  5. The ISA reserves the right to not make any appointment to the vacancy, and/or to make an appointment at a lower level from the one advertised.

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