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Chief Risk Officer


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Job Description

  • Country: Switzerland
  • Vacancies No: N/A
  • Salary: N/A 
  • No of Jobs: N/A
  • Education:
  • Experience:
  • Gender: Both


  • Provide overall vision, leadership and direction for enterprise risk management in UNHCR, providing authoritative guidance to UNHCR’s senior management and all personnel in this area.
  • Lead and directly supervise the ERM team at HQ. Functionally supervise and coordinate the network of Senior Risk Management Advisers in UNHCR, based both in country operations and in the Regional Bureaux, ensuring continuous skills development and proactive, effective and harmonized implementation of ERM in UNHCR.
  • Support managers and risk management focal points at all levels of the organization to discharge their responsibilities with respect to UNHCR’s ERM policy and framework.
  • Ensure the maintenance and enhancement of a comprehensive ERM framework across the organization, supporting senior management in their efforts to embed and sustain risk management in UNHCR’s daily operations.
  • Promote the application of strong risk management processes, culture and practice and provide oversight and support for the implementation of related activities within UNHCR.
  • Maintain the Strategic Risk Register, owned by the High Commissioner, and monitor and report on the implementation of mitigation strategies approved by the Senior Executive Team. Oversee and coordinate the bottom-up corporate risk management process.
  • Provide regular updates, analysis and reports both internally and externally on matters related to risk, including on emerging risks and opportunities. Ensure critical and emerging risks are systematically escalated to the appropriate management level.
  • Support the dissemination of information, best practices and lessons learnt with regard to risk management principles and practices across the organization. Develop and deliver, as appropriate, communication and training programs to enhance UNHCR’s risk management culture. Lead risk assessments and other risk discussions with both UNHCR staff as well as external parties, as required.
  • Implement and maintain the necessary ERM systems, tools and data management capabilities to properly support risk management. Ensure enhanced use of data as part of the risk management process.
  • Lead the efforts to embed risk management and integrity considerations more consistently into strategic discussions, policy development, planning, decisions on resource allocation and other organizational processes across all three levels of the organization.
  • Promote collaboration of different functions and / or entities within UNHCR to address cross cutting risks and issues. Support the organization’s efforts to strengthen the culture of integrity and accountability.
  • Represent UNHCR in relevant internal and external meetings on risk management related matters.
  • Ensure, through coordinating the functional clearance process for the risk management positions and participating in the interview processes, that the incumbents hired for the risk positions possess the required technical and soft skills.
  • Lead risk assessments and discussions with team(s) to proactively manage risks and seize opportunities impacting objectives. Ensure that risk management principles are integrated in decision-making both at strategic and operational levels. Allocate resources for planned treatments with resource requirements in Strategic Plans. Ensure that risks are managed to acceptable levels and escalate, as needed. As a Risk Owner, designate the Risk Focal Point and certify that the annual risk review is completed and ensure that the risk register is updated during the year, as needed.
  • Perform other related duties as required.

Minimum Qualifications

Years of Experience / Degree Level

For D1 – 17 years relevant experience with Undergraduate degree; or 16 years relevant experience with Graduate degree; or 15 years relevant experience with Doctorate degree

Field(s) of Education

Business Administration;                   International Affairs;

Political Science;                                Risk Management;                             or other relevant field.

Certificates and/or Licenses

*Risk Management – Other

Prince2-Project Management or other project management certification

(Certificates and Licenses marked with an asterisk* are essential)

Relevant Job Experience


At least 8 years of experience in senior managerial/leadership positions, involving direct responsibilities in designing and implementing enterprise risk management frameworks and providing authoritative guidance to senior management in this area. Experience in liaising with governmental and / or diplomatic authorities as well as international institutions and partner organizations. Experience in decision making that requires excellent judgement with proven ability to deal with complex interrelated issues and strong analytical and problem-solving skills to develop solutions that address root causes.


Experience in high level communication with strong interpersonal and writing skills, including demonstrated ability to speak in public in a credible manner. Proven experience in management, collaboration, team building, capacity development and with ability to deliver quality results on time. Exposure to and understanding of UN or humanitarian operations. Demonstrated high level of integrity, objectivity, impartiality and fairness. Demonstrated in-depth technical expertise in risk management.



Good working knowledge of UNHCR’s mandate, field operations, organizational structure, and policies & procedures. Experience from leading change management projects and building and leading effective networks. Experience from facilitating senior level discussions, including risk assessments.


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