Legal Officer P2 - Rome, Italy

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WFP - World Food Programme

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Application deadline 10 days ago: Monday 19 Sep 2022 at 23:59 UTC

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WFP celebrates and embraces diversity. It is committed to the principle of equal employment opportunity for all its employees and encourages qualified candidates to apply irrespective of race, colour, national origin, ethnic or social background, genetic information, gender, gender identity and/or expression, sexual orientation, religion or belief, HIV status or disability.

Are you interested in providing legal advice to our Headquarters, Regional Bureaux, and Country Offices on all aspects of the work of WFP and join its team of +16,000 employees? Are you passionate about helping those in need? Would you like to join a global organization investing in its people?

If so, an exciting & fulfilling career awaits you! Join our diverse and passionate team that works on varied and international projects directly contributing to saving & changing millions of lives around the globe.


Applications must be submitted by Monday, 19 September, 2022 (10:59 PM CET)


The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP), a highly prestigious, reputable & world’s largest humanitarian organization, operating in more than 120 countries and territories, bringing life-saving assistance in emergencies, building pathways to peace, stability and prosperity for people recovering from conflict, disasters and the impact of climate change and supporting sustainable and resilient livelihoods for a world with zero hunger.

At WFP, people are at the heart of everything we do and the vision of the future WFP workforce is one of diverse, committed, skilled, and high performing teams, selected on merit, operating in a healthy and inclusive work environment, living WFP's values (Integrity, Collaboration, Commitment, Humanity, and Inclusion) and working with partners to save and change the lives of those WFP serves.

To learn more about WFP, visit our website: UN World Food Programme (WFP) and follow us on social media to keep up with our latest news: YouTube, LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter.


  • WFP is a 2020 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate
  • WFP offers a highly inclusive, diverse, and multicultural working environment
  • WFP invests in the personal & professional development of its employees through a range of training, accreditation, coaching, mentorship, and other programs as well as through internal mobility opportunities
  • A career path in WFP provides an exciting opportunity to work across the various country, regional and global offices around the world, and with passionate colleagues who work tirelessly to ensure that effective humanitarian assistance reaches millions of people across the globe
  • We offer an attractive compensation package (please refer to the Terms and Conditions section)


The Legal Office (LEG) is responsible for providing support to WFP and its organizational units in order to ensure that the implementation of WFP’s activities is in compliance with the relevant legal framework and that any legal risks that arise are considered and managed.

LEG is seeking to fill three (3) Legal Officer positions at the P2 level. The advertised positions are located in our Maritime, Transport and Insurance Law Branch (LEGM) and our Contractual and Constitutional Law Branch (LEGC) branches, based at our Headquarters in Rome, Italy.

Depending on the position, one of these branches will be your base branch for this post.

The legal office is in the process of developing a pooled service arrangement for posts at this level aimed at promoting inter-branch engagement and expanding staff knowledge and skills. This includes an opportunity to undertake 50% of your work from other branches.


As the advertised positions are located in LEGM and LEGC branches, experience in any of the following areas will be considered an asset:

LEGC is responsible for:

  • advising on governance matters pertaining to the interpretation and application of the constitutional texts of WFP, including the General Regulations, General Rules, Financial Regulations and Rules of Procedure of the Executive Board of WFP, delegations of authority and other norms issued thereunder, and the decisions of the Executive Board;
  • negotiating, and advising on, Basic Agreements and other agreements concerning the status of WFP in the countries in which it has operations;
  • advising on the privileges and immunities of WFP, where appropriate in coordination with the UN Office of Legal Affairs and the Legal Office of FAO;
  • advising on all other matters of public international law, including but not limited to international humanitarian law, international human rights law, the law of treaties and other fields as appropriate;
  • advising and providing legal support on matters involving public and private sector (including private corporations and foundations) fundraising, partnership and communication;
  • advising and providing legal support on matters involving collaboration and partnerships with governments, UN system agencies, other intergovernmental organizations, and nongovernmental organizations;
  • advising on matters involving legal aspects of data protection, information technology, and intellectual property, including but not limited to protection of personal data, use of WFP’s names and emblems by third parties and including IT service contracts;
  • providing legal support to cash-based transaction programmes including in connection with contracts with financial service providers and merchants;
  • providing legal support with legal aspects of treasury and other finance operations;
  • providing support to innovation initiatives, such as introduction of new tools to provide food assistance to beneficiaries and fundraising; and
  • representing WFP in dispute resolution proceedings involving matters that fall under LEGC’s competence.

LEGM is responsible for matters arising in connection with WFP’s supply chain and common services operations, including:

  • providing legal support and advice in connection with contracts relating to procurement of food, goods and services, shipping, aviation, logistics, overland transport, service provision, construction, engineering, office and premises lease contracts, real estate property, and insurance;
  • providing advice on the interpretation of WFP norms pertaining to supply chain operations and service provision;
  • offering legal and technical support to mitigate legal risks arising from commodity loss, establish liability and pursue third parties to recover financial damages;
  • providing advice and participating in the preparation, pursuit, negotiation and settlement of claims and disputes with public and private entities; and
  • representing WFP in dispute resolution proceedings involving matters that fall under LEGM’s competence
  • Facilitating awareness of potential liability exposure and proactive minimization of risk within the organisation.

KEY ACCOUNTABILITIES (not all-inclusive)

Under the supervision of more senior Legal Officers, the P2 Legal Officers will be responsible for a variety of the following duties:

  • Undertake legal research and analysis, handle a range of multi-disciplinary legal matters including interpretation and application of various national laws and international legal instruments to facilitate the provision of quality and timely legal services.
  • Review and draft a variety of legal documents, to identify relevant legal issues and risks, propose mitigating measures and to ensure compliance with the applicable legal framework and jurisprudence.
  • Assist in preparing legal advice on the interpretation and application of WFP’s legal framework, both for HQ and Field offices.
  • Review legal documents, identify and analyze issues, presenting findings and recommendations.
  • Provide support towards the negotiation and settlement of claims and disputes involving WFP to meet unique client needs.
  • Identify potential liabilities, particularly vis-à-vis other parties, and assist in the management of risks in WFP’s activities to contribute to well-informed decisions.
  • Prepare and assess briefs of evidence to contribute to legal analysis and solutions.
  • Contribute to building productive partnerships within the legal team and with other Legal Offices across the UN system;
  • Assist more senior Legal Officers in servicing internal and external committees, task forces, expert working groups and other bodies with legal advice and preparation/review of legal documents to contribute to the formulation of WFP’s position.
  • Provide support towards dispute resolution, including liaising with external counsel or assisting in the representation of WFP in administrative or tribunal proceedings and arbitration as instructed;
  • Facilitate legal training sessions for other Units and Divisions
  • Perform other related duties as required by the Legal Office.



  • Advanced University degree in Law, or First University degree in Law with additional relevant experience and training.
  • Must be qualified to practice or admitted to practice law by a recognized national or state bar or law society, or have equivalent professional legal practice experience.


  • A minimum of three (3) years relevant progressively responsible experience in law or provision of legal services.


  • Fluency (level C) in the English language.
  • Intermediate knowledge (level B) of a second official UN language: Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian, Spanish, and/or Portuguese (A WFP’s working language.


You have:

  • Knowledge of, and ability to apply, legal principles, concepts, procedures and terminology for review, examination and processing of a range of legal documents;
  • Clear and concise thinking and drafting with attention to detail;
  • Strong negotiation skills and problem-solving approach;
  • Business acumen;
  • Excellent communication and interpersonal skills;
  • High standards of ethics and values;
  • Knowledge of various legal research sources, techniques and ability to interpret and apply legislative instruments and draft legal papers;
  • Tact, conscientiousness, and a high degree of discretion and confidentiality;
  • Willingness to take instruction and openness to feedback;
  • Ability to work harmoniously within a team and with people of different national and cultural backgrounds;
  • Ability to work with limited supervision; and
  • Ability to work under pressure within tight deadlines.


These are the common standards of behaviour that guide HOW we work together to accomplish our mission.

Leads by Example with Integrity Drives Results and Delivers on Commitments Fosters Inclusive and Collaborative Teamwork Applies Strategic Thinking Builds and Maintains Sustainable Partnerships Lives the WFP values and shows humanity and integrity by role modelling care for others

Delivers on commitments and adapts readily to change

Is inclusive and collaborative, and contributes to a culture of learning and personal growth

Demonstrates commitment to gather perspectives, analyse options and risks, and propose new ways of doing things

Builds and nurtures external partnerships and collaborates with partners to deliver common objectives

Different expectations of behaviour are defined depending on your grade and role/responsibilities within WFP.


  • This is an International Professional position (non-rotational) and is open to all nationalities.
  • Mobility is and continues to be a core contractual requirement in WFP. This position is however classified as "non-rotational" which means the incumbent shall not be subject to the regular reassignment process unless the position is reclassified as rotational. The selected candidate will be employed on a fixed-term contract with a probationary period of one year. This position is open to both internal and external candidates.
  • WFP offers an attractive compensation and benefits package in line with ICSC standards ( including basic salary, post adjustment, relocation entitlement, visa, travel and shipment allowances, 30 days’ annual leave, home leave, an education grant for dependent children, a pension plan, and medical insurance.
  • The selected candidate will be required to relocate to Rome, Italy to take up this assignment.


  • We strongly recommend that your profile is accurate, complete, and includes your employment records, academic qualifications, language skills and UN Grade (if applicable).
  • Once your profile is completed, please apply, and submit your application.
  • Please make sure you upload your professional CV in the English language
  • Kindly note the only documents you will need to submit at this time are your CV and Cover Letter
  • Additional documents such as passport, recommendation letters, academic certificates, etc. may potentially be requested at a future time
  • Please contact us at [email protected] in case you face any challenges with submitting your application
  • Only shortlisted candidates will be notified

All employment decisions are made on the basis of organizational needs, job requirements, merit, and individual qualifications. WFP is committed to providing an inclusive work environment free of sexual exploitation and abuse, all forms of discrimination, any kind of harassment, sexual harassment, and abuse of authority. Therefore, all selected candidates will undergo rigorous reference and background checks


WFP has zero tolerance for discrimination and does not discriminate on the basis of HIV/AIDS status.

No appointment under any kind of contract will be offered to members of the UN Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions (ACABQ), International Civil Service Commission (ICSC), FAO Finance Committee, WFP External Auditor, WFP Audit Committee, Joint Inspection Unit (JIU) and other similar bodies within the United Nations system with oversight responsibilities over WFP, both during their service and within three years of ceasing that service.

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