Senior Specialist in International Labour Standards and Labour Law

  • Full Time
  • Lebanon

International Labor Organization

Senior Specialist in International Labour Standards and Labour Law

Grade: P5
Vacancy no.: RAPS/2/2023/AR/01
Publication date: 21 April 2023
Application deadline (midnight Geneva time): 23 May 2023

Job ID: 10740
Department: RO-Arab States/DWT-Beirut
Organization Unit: RO-Arab States/DWT-Beirut
Location: Beirut
Contract type: Fixed Term


The following are eligible to apply:

  • ILO Internal candidates in accordance with paragraphs 31 and 32 of Annex I of the ILO Staff Regulations.
  • External candidates.

Staff members with at least five years of continuous service with the Office are encouraged to apply.

Applications from candidates who have already separated from ILO service upon retirement or early retirement, will not be considered.

The ILO values diversity among its staff and welcomes applications from qualified female candidates. We also encourage applicants with disabilities. If you are unable to complete our online application form due to a disability, please send an email to

The ILO welcomes applicants with experience in working within ILO constituents (governments, employers’ and business membership organizations, and workers’ organizations).

Applicants from non- or under-represented member States, or from those member States which staffing forecasts indicate will become non- or under-represented in the near future would be particularly welcome. A list of these countries can be found here: ILO Jobs: Non- and under-represented Member States

In addition to the interviews and tests that any candidate may be required to take, successful completion of the ILO Assessment Centre is required for all external candidates and any internal candidate applying to a higher category.

Notwithstanding the general considerations set out in the ILO Staff Regulations, this vacancy announcement is the only authoritative document pertaining to the qualifications required for this position. The minimum required qualifications were determined in view of the specific duties and responsibilities of this position.

The specific language requirements for this position are detailed hereunder. However, candidates applying for the professional category vacancies who have not already successfully completed their probationary period within the ILO and whose mother tongue is not one of the working languages of the Office (English, French and Spanish), shall be required to possess a fully satisfactory working knowledge of at least one of the ILO working languages. If appointed they may be required to acquire a knowledge of a second working language of the Office during their initial years of service.

Please note that in the context of the new ILO organigram, the naming of the departments may be subject to change.


The position is located in the ILO Decent Work Technical Support Team for the Arab States (DWT-Beirut). DWT-Beirut covers the following countries and territories: Bahrain, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Occupied Palestinian Territory, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Syrian Arab Republic, United Arab Emirates and Yemen. DWT-Beirut provides technical support in the design and implementation of Decent Work Country Programmes (DWCPs) and other ILO country support activities within the framework of outcome-based work plans.

The Senior Specialist will provide technical advisory services to ILO constituents in the field of international labour standards and labour law. The incumbent will work in close collaboration with DWT-Beirut technical specialists and other staff from the Regional Office for the Arab States (ROAS), the International Labour Standards Department (NORMES) and the Governance and Tripartism Department (GOVERNANCE) at ILO headquarters, local counterparts and United Nations (UN) bodies in the region on issues pertaining to labour legislation and the ratification and application of Conventions, including ensuring integration of standard-related issues into ILO development cooperation activities, DWCPs and UN Cooperation Frameworks. The Senior Specialist will also work directly with colleagues who are responsible for employers’ and workers’ activities on the legal and practical aspects of social dialogue.

The position reports to the Director of DWT-Beirut and will receive technical guidance and support from the Director of NORMES on international labour standards-related matters, as well as from the Head of the Labour Law and Reform Unit in GOVERNANCE in relation to labour law and labour dispute resolution reforms.

The incumbent will collaborate with the ILO representatives in the region, technical counterparts in other regions and UN agencies at the country and regional levels. In the context of a broader Middle-East and North Africa focus (MENA) for the ILO, the Specialist will seek to collaborate with his/her counterpart in the ILO DWT for North Africa (DWT-Cairo).

Specific Duties

  1. Advise governments in all matters relating to meeting their obligations under the ratified Conventions or under the ILO Constitution in respect of international labour standards. This includes: assisting governments and the social partners with reporting obligations and procedures with respect to ratified Conventions as well as with unratified Conventions and Recommendations; providing technical advice and assistance on procedures relating to international labour Conventions and Recommendations; reporting on requirements and implementation issues taking into account the comments of the ILO supervisory bodies; providing advice concerning the procedures for the ratification of international labour Conventions and on the various complaint procedures under the ILO Constitution; and promoting and supporting social dialogue in matters relating to standards, in particular the establishment of procedures for tripartite consultations on standards-related issues in accordance with Tripartite Consultation (International Labour Standards) Convention, 1976 (No.144).
  2. Contribute to formulation and implementation of programmes and policies adopted by the ILO, including with respect to the agenda of the International Labour Conference in relation to the setting and supervision of international labour standards.
  3. Lead research and analytical work in the field of international labour standards, labour law and labour dispute resolution. Analyse and draft technical comments on draft labour legislation submitted by governments to the ILO. Provide advice and assistance to governments, employers’ and workers’ organizations on existing and proposed labour legislation. Provide substantive support and advice to labour law reform processes and assist governments and tripartite bodies in taking such processes forward, ensuring the alignment of draft legislation with relevant international labour standards, and best comparative practices for effective labour market regulation, including labour dispute resolution (both judicial and non-judicial).
  4. Lead research on legal frameworks, institutions and practices that may be useful for sound labour market governance and the promotion of mature social dialogue and negotiations, including amicable labour dispute resolution.
  5. Establish and maintain close relations with governments, employers’ and workers’ organizations, informing and advising them in matters relating to ILO standards and procedures. Provide advice to promote systems of collective bargaining and labour dispute settlement and on matters arising under the special complaints procedures in cases of alleged violations of trade union rights.
  6. Provide technical support on standard-related matters to tripartite committees established by the Governing Body or commissions of inquiry to examine alleged infringements of ratified Conventions.
  7. Participate as an expert/adviser in the various committees or other official meetings dealing with legal issues or international labour standards, including preparing background materials and documents and drafting records of meetings and reports. Provide regular reports concerning work carried out in the countries covered by the Regional Office as inputs for the work of the Committee of Experts on the Applications of Conventions and Recommendations.
  8. Ensure the integration of a standards-dimension in development cooperation projects and programmes carried out at the regional and country levels, including the DWCPs adopted or revised by individual countries.
  9. Perform other relevant duties as assigned.

These specific duties are aligned with the relevant ILO generic job description, which includes the following generic duties:

Generic Duties

  1. Lead, organize, plan, supervise and control the work of a technical unit (including managerial functions).
  2. Design and promote a wide range of special subject-matter-related programmes, This involves analysis of complex or conflicting data, statistics, information or policy guidelines in a manner requiring the advanced application of principles of a recognized technical specialization.
  3. Develop and review an institutional framework, in which social partners can best improve, implement and evaluate efficient and equitable ILO action programmes.
  4. Assume full responsibility for policy formulation and providing policy advice to ILO’s constituents on institutional strengthening, the application of ILO standards and the promotion of development cooperation activities.
  5. Develop project design, review proposals, formulate, revise and submit project proposals and negotiate funding.
  6. Evaluate the efficiency and effectiveness of the project activities.
  7. Lead technical advisory missions.
  8. Conduct seminars, workshops and technical meetings.
  9. Prepare recommendations and guidelines for discussion and adoption as ILO recommendations on related technical fields.
  10. Write manuals and training guides on related topics.
  11. Disseminate information on action programmes through publications and press releases as well as ensuring representation at donors’ meetings, international, regional and national fora and advocacy campaigns.
  12. Monitor and coordinate research carried out by junior technical officers and external collaborators.
  13. Provide technical inputs to office documents (sectoral meetings, technical committees, conference reports, Director General’s report to ILC).

Required qualifications
Advanced university degree (Master’s or equivalent) in law.

A first-level university degree (Bachelor’s or equivalent) in law with an additional two years of relevant experience, in addition to the required experience stated below, will be accepted in lieu of an advanced university degree.

At least ten years of relevant experience, including at the international level, in dealing with human rights, labour law and related issues. Demonstrated experience in high-level policy development, and providing high-level advisory and capacity-building services. Experience in managing and implementing development cooperation projects and collaborating across UN and development partners would be an advantage. A publication record in the fields covered by this position is required.

Excellent command of English is required. A working knowledge of Arabic would be an advantage.


In addition to the ILO core competencies, this position requires:

  • demonstrated and recognized technical and/or managerial leadership;
  • ability to coordinate and lead research activities of a work unit;
  • ability to formulate opinions on legal questions in areas where practices or precedents do not exist or are of a conflicting nature;
  • ability to provide authoritative advice to colleagues and constituents and lead meetings; tact and discretion;
  • the ability to provide seasoned advice on best practices, to address broader issues outside the field of specialization;
  • the ability to develop training materials, alternative courses of action, project proposals, policy, procedural matters and present them at high-level meetings; design and synthesize strategies for programme development in Member States;
  • the ability to produce reports (e.g. reports for regional conferences and the International Labour Conference, technical publications, training manuals and draft resolutions) and evaluate and monitor development cooperation activities and projects;
  • the ability to provide policy advice;
  • the ability to work in a multicultural environment and to demonstrate gender-sensitive and non-discriminatory behaviour and attitudes.

Conditions of employment

  • Any appointment/extension of appointment is subject to ILO Staff Regulations and other relevant internal rules. Any offer of employment with the ILO is conditional upon certification by the ILO Medical Adviser that the person concerned is medically fit to perform the specific inherent requirements of the position offered. In order to confirm an offer from the ILO the successful candidate will be required to undergo a medical examination.
  • The first contract will be issued for a twenty-four month period.
  • A successful external candidate will be on probation for the first two years of assignment.
  • Any extension of contract beyond the probation period is subject to satisfactory conduct and performance.

For more information on conditions of employment, please visit the ILO Jobs International Recruitment page.

Important Information

Any officials of the General Service category interested in applying to this position are hereby informed that, if selected, they will be offered the salary and allowances applicable to the grade of the position applied for, which may result in substantial changes in their take-home remuneration. In accordance with Article 3.4 of the Staff Regulations, the salary of an official, upon promotion, shall in no case be greater than the maximum salary of the grade to which he or she was promoted. For any questions or clarifications, please contact your HR partner at

Recruitment process

Please note that all candidates must complete an on-line application form. To apply, please visit the ILO Jobs website. The system provides instructions for online application procedures.

Evaluation (which may include one or several written tests and a pre-interview competency-based assessment centre) and the interviews will tentatively take place during the 3 to 4 months following the application deadline. Candidates are requested to ensure their availability should they be short listed for further consideration.

Depending on the location and availability of candidates, assessors and interview panel members, the ILO may use communication technologies such as Skype, Video or teleconference, e-mail, etc. for the assessment and evaluation of candidates at the different stages of the recruitment process, including assessment centres, technical tests or interviews.

The ILO has zero tolerance for acts of sexual exploitation and abuse (SEA) and is determined to ensure that all staff members and all beneficiaries of ILO assistance do not suffer, directly or indirectly, from sexual exploitation and abuse.
To ensure that individuals with a substantiated history of SEA, sexual harassment or other types of abusive conduct are not hired by the Organisation, the ILO may conduct a background verification of candidates under consideration.

Fraud warning

The ILO does not charge any fee at any stage of the recruitment process whether at the application, interview, processing or training stage. Messages originating from a non ILO e-mail account – – should be disregarded. In addition, the ILO does not require or need to know any information relating to the bank account details of applicants.

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