Jobs at Universal Postal Union, Bern, Switzerland
Position: Legal Expert
The Universal Postal Union is the UN special agency that coordinates postal policies among member nations, in addition to the worldwide postal system. The UPU contains four bodies consisting of the Congress, the Council of Administration (CA), the Postal Operations Council (POC) and the International Bureau (IB). It also oversees the Telematics and Express Mail Service (EMS) cooperatives. Each member agrees to the same terms for conducting international postal duties. The UPU’s headquarters are in Bern, Switzerland.
Duties and responsibilities
Under the guidance and supervision of the Director of Legal Affairs, the Legal Expert will perform the following duties
- In accordance with predetermined guidelines, undertake studies, carry out research, prepare drafts and examine precedents on legal issues relating to the functions, structure, and activities of the UPU.
- Provide preliminary interpretation of legal instruments, such as constitutions, statutes, treaties, agreements, regulations and rules, resolutions or other legal materials relevant to the work of the UPU. Similarly, provide legal opinion or advice on issues of limited scope relating to the functions, structure, and activities of the UPU.
- Provide preliminary advice and assistance in resolving procedural and substantive legal questions at meetings.
- Assist in secretarial services to various committees and bodies dealing with legal matters falling within the competence of the UPU, including without limitation.
- Preparing background materials, reports, and papers.
- Preparing and formulating preliminary legal advice to members and secretariats of such bodies.
- Synthesizing member countries’ views and practices on particular legal issues.
- Preparing preliminary drafts of legal instruments, such as draft treaty texts, agreements, contracts, internal regulations, and rules or other legislative materials pertaining to the UPU.
- Within the framework of delegated duties, consulting with counterparts in other organizations, participating in negotiations with contractors and with representatives of member countries.
- Undertaking a preliminary review of the legal aspects of draft agreements, correspondence and other texts, which are relevant to the functions of the DAJ or have been passed to it for comments or clearance.
- Preparing preliminary briefs concerning proceedings before the competent appeals bodies and administrative tribunals (such as the ILO Administrative Tribunal – ILOAT), as well as any other judicial or quasi-judicial body.
- Within the framework of delegated duties, representing the DAJ at specialized meetings and on internal bodies, boards or committees.
Education and experience
- First-level university degree (Bachelor or similar) in law, preferably with a specialization in public international law or administrative law. However, an advanced university degree (Master or equivalent) is an asset.
- In addition to that, At least two years of professional experience in an international legal environment.
- Excellent knowledge of public international law and administrative law.
- Good knowledge of international intellectual property law and other legal issues associated with information and communication technology.
- Good knowledge of contract law and international commercial agreements. Similarly, good knowledge of the framework on privileges and immunities as applied to intergovernmental organizations.
- Excellent analytical and legal drafting skills.
- Ability to defend and explain difficult and sensitive issues to staff members (including senior officials), member country delegates as well as counterparts of United Nations system organizations and other intergovernmental organizations.
- Excellent conceptual thinking, as well as logical and analytical skills. Similarly, excellent negotiation skills with a heightened sense of impartiality and objectivity
- Flexibility to accommodate changes in circumstances, opinions, and priorities, often at short notice.
- Proven organizational skills with regard to the management of complex legal projects, attention to detail and good planning abilities.
- Strong interpersonal and team working skills
- Demonstrated communication skills in written and oral form as well as strong ethical awareness.
- Proficiency in French or English and good working knowledge of the other language. In addition to that, working knowledge of other United Nations languages is an advantage.