Team Leader in Basra/ Consultancy

Job Overview


1.    Background

In 2019, UNESCO and the European Union signed the project “Reviving Mosul and Basra Old Cities”, recognizing the power of culture as a driver of social and economic development. This project aims to support urban recovery and reconstruction through a participatory approach to skills development and job creation to foster social cohesion and community reconciliation through restoration and critical reconstruction of Mosul’s historic urban landscape and urban conservation in Basra.

The scope of the project is to foster resilience, cultural identity, social cohesion and inter-community reconciliation through the creation of job opportunities and the development of youth skills among IDPs/returnees of the Old City of Mosul’s local communities, as well as applying the same approach to the recovery of urban cultural heritage through skills development and job creation for urban youth in Basra. The overall objective is to promote the stability and socio-economic development of Iraq.

The specific objective for the urban recovery of Mosul and Basra’s Old Cities is to foster and improve community resilience and livelihood with the main outputs of the proposed project to encompass:
1.1 Job and skills opportunities for vulnerable youth in the rehabilitation sector of the urban infrastructure of the old cities of Mosul and Basra to have increased.
1.2 Recovery of the historic urban landscape of Mosul and Basra re-established,
1.3. Social cohesion and identity around urban cultural heritage fostered.
The priority areas for support are twofold; youth livelihoods in historic urban areas and the rehabilitation of cultural heritage assets, resources, skills and knowledge. The approach and actions to be taken address and support both areas simultaneously and produce mutually enriching results.

Long Description

Scope of the Assignment:

2.    Purpose and Objectives of the Assignment:
In the framework of this project and under the overall authority of the Director of the Office for Iraq and the direct supervision of the Head of Culture Programme, the incumbent shall assume technical and management responsibilities and ensure onsite presence across multiple projects. The Team Leader will be responsible for the UNESCO team based in Basra and will be working in close collaboration with the project team in Baghdad.


3.    Duties and responsibilities:

–    Provide operational guidance and technical support for UNESCO’s Basra activities related to the conservation and rehabilitation of the Al-Ashar Canal and the historical urban fabric of the Old City of Basra such as damage assessments, conservation and rehabilitation projects including all the necessary components, as the intervention may require (water and sanitation, mechanical, electrical, civils works, upgrading of secondary infrastructure, etc.).

–    Liaise with project partners and stakeholders. Attend required meetings, advocate on behalf of UNESCO, inform stakeholders as necessary of the progress of the projects and of the works and ensure all that necessary signatures and approvals are received from the relevant counterparts in a timely manner.

Long Description

–    Establish and maintain smooth and respectful relationships with beneficiary communities and relevant local authorities and partners.

–    Manage the day-to-day activities of the UNESCO Basra team (planning, implementation, quality monitoring & management of construction contracts). Delegate tasks and set deadlines for the timely execution of activities as indicated by the UNESCO project officer.

–    Provide consolidated technical support to contractors and implementing partners, by identifying problems and issues to be addressed, proactively initiating corrective actions in coordination with other senior UNESCO staff and Project Officer and ensure timely follow-up whenever necessary.

–    Oversee and provide support to technical assessments carried out on historical elements of the Old City and ensure that the work is executed to the required quality.

–    Review project documentation is complete to ensure that the construction components of conservation or rehabilitation projects can be correctly carried out.

–    Organise the technical supervision and monitoring of construction works; oversee the performance of implementing partners and third-party contractors on site, to ensure quality that work output is quality-driven, efficient, and provides a timely execution of the planned urban recovery activities in adherence with site safety practices, and within the limits of the allocated resources.

–    Monitor the evolution of the construction market, the availability of locally sourced materials, and any relevant changes in labour construction costs.

–    Create an inspiring team environment with an open communication culture and motivate the team to achieve organisational goals. Mentor and empower team members; improve team confidence, knowledge, and communication skills.

–    Facilitate field visits by the Project Officer and senior colleagues from UNESCO, or visitors from other agencies, donors, and stakeholders.

–    Report and manage potential project risks. Inform the UNESCO project office of every incident or potential risk.

–    Submit progress reports on project activities in Basra according to a reporting template agreed upon with the Project Officer. Monitor attendance and leave of the UNESCO Basra team members and ensure that they submit reports and timesheets.

–    Perform any other duties assigned by the UNESCO Project Officer or by the Head of the UNESCO Culture Unit.

Long Description

4.    Deliverables and timeline:

Monthly reports, with all deliverables enclosed as annexes. Deliverables may include, but are not limited to:
–    reviews of the reports submitted by contractors, consultants or staff working on UNESCO Basra projects;
–    technical documentation packages relevant to project implementation, including bid documents, Bills of Quantities, Specifications, and Drawings as required;
–    stakeholder liaison and documentation, such as meeting minutes, press clips, articles, conferences, presentations, joint visits, etc., allowing the Iraq Office to keep abreast of the evolution of relationships with stakeholders, authorities, and beneficiaries
The individual consultant shall submit to UNESCO within the written proposal a clear timeline with the deliverables for each month.
Duty station: Basra\Iraq

COMPETENCIES (Core / Managerial)

Accountability (C)
Communication (C)
Innovation (C)
Knowledge sharing and continuous improvement (C)
Planning and organizing (C)
Results focus (C)
Teamwork (C)

For detailed information, please consult the UNESCO Competency Framework.


Required Education:

Advanced university degree in Architecture, Conservation Architecture, Urban Planning, Landscape Architecture, Civil Engineering, Urban Anthropology/ Sociology/ Economy, Urban Studies or a related field.

Required Work experience:

(i) At least 7 years of general relevant experience in the field of urban planning, construction management, construction engineering or related field. (Mandatory).
(ii) Demonstrable experience of having developed fluid working relations with the Basra Governorate and Basra Authorities in the execution of past assignments. (Mandatory).


Desirable work Experience:


Experience in heritage conservation and/or the rehabilitation of historical urban areas and landscapes.
(iv) Previous experience in participatory planning, community led interventions, or similar processes having involved community actors.
(v) Previous work experience with multilateral or international organizations in the Basra Governorate.


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Please note that all candidates must complete an on-line application and provide complete and accurate information. To apply, please visit the UNESCO careers website. No modifications can be made to the application submitted.

The evaluation of candidates is based on the criteria in the vacancy notice, and may include tests and/or assessments, as well as a competency-based interview.

UNESCO uses communication technologies such as video or teleconference, e-mail correspondence, etc. for the assessment and evaluation of candidates.

Please note that only selected candidates will be further contacted and candidates in the final selection step will be subject to reference checks based on the information provided.

UNESCO applies a zero tolerance policy against all forms of harassment.

UNESCO is committed to achieve and sustain gender parity among its staff members in all categories and at all grades. Furthermore, UNESCO is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality and culture. Individuals from minority groups, indigenous groups and persons with disabilities, as well as nationals from non-and under-represented Member States (last update here) are equally encouraged to apply. All applications will be treated with the highest level of confidentiality. Worldwide mobility is required for staff members appointed to international posts.

UNESCO does not charge a fee at any stage of the recruitment process.

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