Head, Policy, Strategy and Knowledge Unit
The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies
Panama, Panama
hace 1 día


The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) is the world's largest humanitarian organization, with .

As part of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement, our work is guided by seven fundamental principles; humanity, impartiality, neutrality, independence, voluntary service, unity and universality.

Organizational Context

The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies ( the Federation ) is the world’s largest volunteer-

based humanitarian network with 190 member National Societies. As part of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement, our work is guided by seven fundamental principles : humanity, impartiality, neutrality, independence, voluntary service, unity and universality.

The Secretariat of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies ( the IFRC ) works to a Business Model and has a Business Delivery Plan with key commitments that sharpen its focus, clarity, and efficiency and accountability results.

The Secretariat, headquartered in Geneva, has five decentralized regional offices : one of which is the Americas, guided by the Secretariat strategies for implementation and areas of focus that builds on the vision of strategy 2020.

  • The Americas’ region is organized in two main hemispheres : a group of service-based departments and geographical configurations of (i) Country Cluster Support Teams and (ii) Country Office(s), as well as the Deputy Regional Director, each of them led by the Regional Director;
  • and another hemisphere : six building blocks composed by (i) Partnerships and Resource Development, (ii) Policy, Strategy and Knowledge;
  • iii) Communication, (iv) Disaster and Crisis : Preparedness, Response, and Recovery, (v) Health and Water and Sanitation, (vi) Logistics, each of them led by the Deputy Regional Director.

    The Head of Policy, Strategy and Knowledge (PSK) unit reports directly to the Deputy Regional Director. The position is located at the Americas regional office in Panama and responsible for the overall management of the PSK department comprising of three regional reference centres in El Salvador, Barbados and Ecuador as well as the regional staff based in Panama and Costa Rica offices.

    Job Purpose

    The Head of Policy, Strategy and Knowledge (PSK) unit manages the areas of policy engagement, National Society development which includes : Organisational Development, Volunteer and Youth development, Learning and Innovation, and the existing regional reference centres, (CREPD in El Salvador and CREMYAP in Ecuador) and provides technical oversight to the CADRIM reference centre in Barbados.

    The Policy Strategy and Knowledge (PSK) unit of the IFRC Americas Regional Office (ARO) role is to ensure the coherent management of evidence-

    based knowledge and its effective capitalization towards developing, implementing and monitoring region-wide strategies based on peer-

    to-peer learning, and support mechanisms for organizational and programmatic enhancement of National Societies, fostering and facilitation of a vibrant innovation and research culture.

    The department guarantees that this process is advanced under the framework of global policies; as well as ensuring that these global policies are enriched with the outcome of the National Society development process.

    Job Duties and Responsibilities

    Under the overall direction of the Deputy Regional Director, the incumbent will provide guidance and leadership for the Secretariat’s work in Americas in the areas of policy, strategy and knowledge management.

    Specifically, the duties and responsibilities are outlined as follows :

    A. Facilitate effective policy dialogue region-wide, cascading down global policies that guide IFRC work to corresponding units in the ARO, supports National Society implementation and adaptation, gather collective learning on policy implementation from both internal and external partners, and advocates for policy improvement.

    B. Coordinate technical efforts and provide support to ARO leadership and National Societies in the design and implementation of IFRC Regional Strategy, including technical coordination of the Interamerican Conference, ensuring alignment between regional processes and IFRC Global Strategy (S2030).

    C. Oversee the National Society development, including Volunteer and Youth Development strategy in the Americas, in alignment with the global PSK strategic objectives, to enable National Societies to extend the scale, quality and impact of their work through organisational and performance development, capacity building and volunteer and youth development.

  • Support country cluster offices on their organisational development initiatives to self-assessment, development and improvement process for targeted National Societies.
  • Ensure that tailored support is provided to country cluster offices in implementing plans for volunteering and youth development based on the National Societies priorities and needs.
  • Support ongoing initiatives within National Societies to strengthen their structures on volunteering management and develop a solid and sustainable volunteer base at the branch level.
  • Ensure integrated approach to capacity building and volunteering development with other technical areas (programmes and services) in the region.
  • Promote learning at all levels in order to strengthen the individual competencies among volunteers, members and staff of the Red Cross in America.
  • Ensure that the Organisational Capacity Assessment & Certification (OCAC) process is implemented in the region’s NS and properly followed up.
  • D. Mainstreaming Learning and Knowledge Management strategies to enable National Societies in the Americas to extend the scale, quality and impact of their work through knowledge management, learning and innovation, capacity building, and standards and systems development.

    E. Lead regional effort to provide National Societies with relevant learning opportunities using innovative training and knowledge sharing platforms, optimisation of National Societies training centres and the promotion of alliances with private and academic institutions.

    F. Oversee and lead the two regional reference centres in the Americas (and coordinate with other centres of excellence that could be promoted by the National Societies) to contribute to the institutionalization of best practices and learning between National Societies and the Secretariat of the Federation.

    G. Develop and implement a humanitarian innovation strategy with a constant dialogue with National Societies and external actors on identification of innovative processes and technological solutions for humanitarian challenges.

    Promote identification of best practices, knowledge sharing, technical support and strategic alliances with academic and private sector.

    H. As a member of the extended Senior Management Team, the Head of Policy, Strategy and Knowledge (PSK) provides overall management and leadership to the Secretariat in the Americas Region and assists the Country Cluster offices in the region and IFRC Regional managers and coordinators in all matters related to National Society development, innovation, learning and knowledge development.

    I. General management and tasks

  • Sound management of direct line reports.
  • Ensure sound planning and financial management for areas under his / her responsibility.
  • Supervise the support to the monitoring and reporting on global performance indicators and promote a culture of performance and accountability.
  • Contribute to upholding the Secretariat s policies, procedures and management system within the Region, and support their improvement and review as necessary.
  • Support the Regional Director to monitor risks in the region and take proactive actions to contribute to secretariat's risk management processes.
  • Education

  • Advanced university degree in International Affairs, Political Science, Law, Economics, Public Policy, Social Studies, or other relevant areas of study. REQUIRED
  • Relevant graduate degree or (MBA) PREFERRED
  • Experience

  • 8+ years of working and management experience in the specialist area of expertise, including direct supervision of more than 5 people and the management of teams with more than 10 people
  • Demonstrated working experience in partnerships
  • Demonstrated professional experience in the International Federation or an organization within the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement, or in an international organization or NGO
  • Demonstrated success in project / programme planning, budgeting, management, reporting and evaluation
  • Good understanding of IFRC policies in the areas of National Society and Knowledge development (learning & organisational development, performance development, etc.)
  • 3+ years of working experience in the Americas region
  • Knowledge, skills and languages

  • Ability to build, lead, motivate and support effective teams
  • Ability to work in a multicultural environment
  • Good communication, negotiating and influencing skills
  • Ability to adapt leadership style according to the situation
  • Politically and culturally sensitive
  • Available to travel to other countries
  • Fluent spoken and written English
  • Fluent spoken and written Spanish
  • Good command of another IFRC official language or a language relevant in the region or country of assignment (i.e., French, Portuguese, etc.) PREFERRED
  • Competencies and values

    VALUES : Respect for diversity; Integrity; Professionalism; Accountability

  • CORE COMPETENCIES : Communication; Collaboration and Teamwork; Judgement and Decision Making; National Societies and Customer Relations;
  • Creativity and Innovation; Building Trust

    MANAGERIAL COMPETENCIES : Managing Staff Performance; Managing Staff Development; Strategic Orientation

    FUNCTIONAL COMPETENCIES : Building Alliances; Leadership; Empowering Others


    Applicants will need to send their applications together with a letter of motivation no later than the closing date. In order for us to assure a proper comparative evaluation of your application for this vacancy and to enable us to consider your profile against other similar current and future vacancies, we ask that you submit your application taking into account the following :

    Important Note :

  • Please note that the selected candidate will be hired through an international contract;
  • The incumbent is responsible to abide by Federation policies, procedures, plans and applicable international labor law;
  • The closing date is midnight Geneva time.
  • Only those candidates shortlisted for interviews will be notified.
  • The position will be based in Panama, Republic of Panama - the regional office.
  • The Federation is an equal opportunity employer.

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