Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons vacancy search engine

Legal Adviser (Director) (D-2)




Directing, planning, and supervising the legal work of the Division by establishing the policy and the appropriate framework and providing the guidance necessary to ensure that the Organisation’s activities are appropriately carried out.


Providing legal advice on policy, programme, or other matters that have legal aspects or are related to the interpretation and application of legal instruments.


Advising Management on complex and sensitive legal issues relating to the functions, structure, and activities of the Organisation.


Providing centralised legal service for the Secretariat and for the OPCW Member States; advising and supporting Management, the Executive Council and the Conference of States Parties (and their constituent bodies), and substantive units of the Secretariat on legal matters; and proposing modifications, reviews, or improvements of legal issues to the Director-General, as appropriate. 


Directing the drafting of legal related instruments, such as contracts and agreements, rules and regulations, and other legislative documents. 


Representing the Organisation in litigation proceedings, administrative tribunals, and other judicial or quasi-judicial bodies. 


Manage the staff of the Office to ensure:

- the Office is correctly staffed and able to complete the planned Programme of Work;

- appropriate direction and guidance;

- cohesive team work; and

- necessary skills development and training in order to carry out the assigned tasks. 


Manage the Programme of Work and Budget for the Office within a framework of Results-Based Management and Results-Based Budgeting to ensure proper delivery of activities. 


As member of the Management Board, participate in the discussion and formulation of recommendations to the Director-General on policy and operational issues impacting on the administration of the Organisation. 


Represent the Office at meetings of the Executive Council and the Conference of States Parties, informal consultations with delegations, the Management Board, Management Committees, and other Internal Committees. 


Participate in official visits to Member States, meeting with Government Officials, and representatives of the National Governments.


Represent the Secretariat at international seminars, conferences, and meetings on issues particular to the Office.



Education (Qualifications):


Advanced university degree in law. A first level university degree in law with at least over 17 years relevant experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.




A minimum of over 15 years of progressively responsible experience in providing leadership, direction, and advice at the national or international levels dealing with extensive legal issues, a substantial part of which should be at the senior level in the private or public sector or in international organisations.


Knowledge and/or experience in the following would be an asset: international law, disarmament law, international administrative law, and/or the legal aspects of the United Nations common system or the OPCW.


Skills and Abilities (key competencies): 

Strong analytical and conceptual skills in analysing and interpreting operational issues, formulating options, and proposing and implementing solutions; 

Effective leadership skills and ability to take responsibility for key organisational issues, including ability to think strategically and achieve results which are aligned with the larger picture of the Organisation and its strategic goals;

Demonstrated understanding and exhibited behaviour of Knowledge Management leadership principles;

Well-developed diplomatic and policy skills, good judgement, and ability to communicate effectively both in writing and orally; 

Proven record of building and managing teams and creating an enabling work environment with people of different cultural and national backgrounds, including ability to effectively supervise, mentor, train, develop, and evaluate staff; 

Excellent and proven planning, organisation, coordination, negotiation, and problem-solving skills and the ability to coordinate the work of others, work to tight deadlines, and handle multiple concurrent conflicting activities, while assuring that required results are achieved;

Excellent interpersonal and communication skills with demonstrated ability to apply tact and accuracy and to present information clearly and logically both in writing and verbally; 

Proven ability to ensure an effective work structure to maximise productivity and achieve objectives;

The ability to learn quickly and thoroughly while continually recognising and adapting to changing conditions;

Proven ability to generate a strategic plan that integrates numerous organisational issues, functions, and resources for effective action;

Creates partnerships and collaborative endeavours within the Office or between Divisions/Offices.

Language Requirements:  Fluency in English and the ability to conduct negotiations in English are essential. A good working knowledge of and the ability to conduct negotiations in one of the other official languages of the OPCW (Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian, and Spanish) would be an asset.