26 Aug
Senior Social Development Specialist
District of Columbia,

Senior Social Development Specialist

Job #: req8398 Organization: World Bank Sector: Social Development Grade: GG Term Duration: 3 years 0 months Recruitment Type: International Recruitment Location: Washington, DC,United States Required Language(s): English Preferred Language(s): French, Spanish Closing Date: 9/11/2020 (MM/DD/YYYY) at 11:59pm UTC


Do you want to build a career that is truly worthwhile? Working at the World Bank provides a unique opportunity for you to help our clients solve their greatest development challenges. The World Bank consists of two entities – the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) and the International Development Association (IDA). It is a global development cooperative owned by 189 member countries. As the largest development bank in the world, the World Bank provides loans, guarantees, risk management products, and advisory services to middle-income and creditworthy low-income countries, and coordinates responses to regional and global challenges. Visit http://www.worldbank.org/


The World Bank's Grievance Redress Service (GRS) provides an accessible way for individuals and communities to complain directly to the World Bank if they believe that a World Bank financed project had or is likely to have adverse effects on them or their community. The GRS enhances the World Bank's responsiveness and accountability by ensuring that grievances are promptly reviewed and responded to, and problems and solutions are identified by working together. This assignment on the Grievance Redress Service will provide an opportunity to develop leadership and gain broad exposure to strategic and operational issues, across all Regions of the Bank, and the opportunity to develop a deeper understanding of the business and functioning of the Bank.

Operations Policy and Country Services (OPCS) plays a pivotal role in achieving the World Bank Group's mission. OPCS assists frontline staff in delivering results to clients through sound operations policy and strong country support. In the World Bank Group structure, OPCS is at the center of operations and delivery, and serves as the link between the Global Practices and the Regions. OPCS develops and oversees the Bank's operational policies for country strategies, lending operations, advisory services and analytical support, financial management, procurement, and environmental and social risk management. It oversees the Bank Group's Corporate Scorecard; manages interactions with the Bank's oversight units; and co-leads the results measurement and evaluation stream in the Bank Group. OPCS teams provide advice and support to World Bank management and staff as well as hands-on assistance to help teams leverage the Bank's policies, processes, and risk management tools for our country clients. Working in OPCS helps World Bank professionals gain broad exposure to strategic operations issues and develop a deeper understanding of the Bank's business. The Grievance Redress Service is housed within OPCS. OPCS's staff are organized in three departments:

  • Standards, Procurement, and Financial Management (OPSPF, where this position is located) is responsible for ensuring technical excellence in the financial management, procurement, and environment and social (E&S) risk management functions across the Bank, and manages selected aspects of the anticorruption in operations agenda, the UN agencies engagement in operation program and the Grievance Redress Service (GRS);

  • Operations Policy (OPSPO) consolidates the corporate support and oversight of country strategies and all financing instruments as well as the Operations Help Desk; and

  • Strategy, Risk, Results, and Learning (OPSRL) supports Bank staff and Management in strengthening the focus on results and risk to achieve the Bank's strategic objectives and managing operational learning.

Under the overall Managerial leadership of the OPSPF Director, the technical leadership of the Chief Environmental and Social Standards Officer, and two E&S Managers, the OPSPF department includes Environmental and Social (E&S), Procurement, and Financial Management units. The environmental and social team oversees compliance with the Bank's E&S policies in the design and implementation of Bank-supported operations; advises and promotes harmonization in implementation of E&S policies across the Bank, and reports to Senior Management on compliance and high-risk E&S policy issues. The team collaborates closely with OPSPO and OPSRL, regional and global departments (particularly Environment and the Social Development staff in those departments), the Regions, the ESF Implementation Support Unit and the Legal and External and Corporate Relations units within the Bank.

Duties and Accountabilities

The Grievance Redress Service (GRS) is seeking to incorporate a highly motivated Senior Social Development Specialist as a core member of its team with proven ability to carry out complex tasks as part of multi-disciplinary teams, capacity to work under pressure, meet strict deadlines; and ability to work with and advise task teams and key stakeholders on social risks and impacts. He/she will support the development and strengthening of the GRS and collaborate with task teams to address complaints received directly by task teams or through the GRS.

His/her specific duties include:

  • Manage processing, monitoring and closing of GRS cases

  • Conduct case evaluations of issues and risks

  • Facilitate the problem-solving processes by working jointly, as appropriate, with complainants and relevant Bank project teams

  • Provide expert advice and guidance to Task Teams on complaints handling and tips to management high-risk cases

  • Identifying international best practice in grievance redress, dispute resolution and case management and contribute to further strengthening of GRS procedures and protocols improve effectiveness

  • Contribute to analytical and advisory work relating to grievance redress and grievance mechanisms

  • Lead and/or contribute to the design and delivery of GRS training, workshops and other learning events

  • Mentor junior staff and supervise consultants

Selection Criteria

The Senior Social Development Specialist must be a team-oriented professional with proven ability to carry out complex tasks as part of multi-disciplinary teams, capacity to work under pressure, meet strict deadlines; and ability to work with and advise task teams and key stakeholders on complaints handling and problem solving.

  • Advanced degree (Masters or PhD) in social sciences, law, or political science, environmental or natural sciences or other relevant discipline

  • At least 8 years of full-time relevant experience with a sustained record of achieving high quality substantive results. Experience in dispute resolution and grievance redress highly desirable

  • Experience in social risk management, preparation and/or review of project social risk and impact assessments, social management plans, capacity assessments and institutional strengthening measures

  • Demonstrated maturity and sound judgment, attention to detail, and proven track record in conveying complex messages succinctly and diplomatically to diverse stakeholders

  • Strong interpersonal skills and demonstrated ability to work in multi-disciplinary/multi-cultural teams

  • Highest personal integrity and ethical standards, with demonstrated ability to handle confidential matters in a discreet and respectful manner

  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills in English; French or Spanish desirable

  • Knowledge of the World Bank's E&S policies and standards, and social safeguard policies

  • Proven capacity to work with a wide range of stakeholders, and ability to represent the Department with internal and external partners and interact effectively with Senior Management

  • Ability to coach/mentor more junior staff

Required Professional Competencies

  • Social Development Policy, Strategy and Institutions - Solid understanding of social development policies, strategies, institutions, and regulations

  • Social Sciences and Law – Demonstrates strong knowledge of one relevant thematic areas of social development, and social risk management; deep experience in applying knowledge to policy-related decisions and advice

  • Policy Dialogue Skills – Possesses political judgement, diplomatic acumen and negotiating skills; builds and sustains key stakeholder relationships with government and other key stakeholders

  • Integrative Skills – Demonstrates ability to think and work across WBG practices and sectors; integrates divergent viewpoints of multiple external and internal stakeholders into a coherent strategy/program/project

  • Knowledge and Experience in Development Arena – Fully understands the Bank's development initiatives and policies and practices related to lending and non-lending; Guides research and translates technical and cross-country knowledge into practical applications and contributions to country and sector strategies; interacts with clients at the policy level

WBG Core Competencies

  • Lead and Innovate - Develops innovative solutions with others.

  • Deliver Results for Clients - Achieves results and identifies mission-driven solutions for the client.

  • Collaborate Within Teams and Across Boundaries - Initiates collaboration across boundaries and broadly across the WBG and brings differing ideas to the forefront.

  • Create, Apply and Share Knowledge - Creates, applies and shares knowledge from across and outside WBG to strengthen internal and/or external client solutions.

  • Make Smart Decisions - Recommends and takes decisive action.

Poverty has no borders, neither does excellence. We succeed because of our differences and we continuously search for qualified individuals with diverse backgrounds from around the globe.

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