Secretary-General, Canadian Commission for UNESCO

Competition : 5000 (Internal/ External)
Status : Regular Full-time
Salary Scale : $119,600 to $140,700
Closing date : April 29, 2016

About the Canadian Commission for UNESCO
Join our team and play a role in supporting the mission of UNESCO, an international organization whose mission is peace, equity and a sustainable future for the world. The Canadian Commission for UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) acts as a forum for governments and civil society and mobilizes the participation of Canadian organizations and committed individuals, in UNESCO’s mandated areas: education, natural and social sciences, culture and communication and information. With the aim to inspire people and effect change, the Commission provides advice to governments, influences UNESCO’s agenda and ensures the voice of Canadians is heard on the international scene. The Canadian Commission for UNESCO operates under the Canada Council for the Arts.

About the Canada Council for the Arts
The Canada Council is a dynamic, highly-respected federal Crown corporation with a mandate to foster and promote the study and enjoyment of, and production of works in, the arts for the benefit of all Canadians.  We offer competitive salaries and benefit package.  For more information about the Canada Council for the Arts, please visit our website at

About the role
Under the direct supervision of the Director and CEO of the Canada Council for the Arts, the Secretary-General, Is accountable for providing executive leadership, providing policy advice to the Government of Canada, provincial and municipal governments on matters related to UNESCO’s mandate, is responsible for the formulation and implementation of approaches and initiatives to enhance UNESCO’s position  in Canada with respect to international cooperation in fostering and promoting the intellectual and moral solidarity of peoples of the world in securing the lasting support for peace, and participates in Canada’s contribution to UNESCO’s activities internationally.

As the Secretary-General of the Canadian Commission for UNESCO, you will:

  • provide executive leadership and a national focal point for the development and implementation of strategies, approaches and initiatives to enable the Commission to act as a catalyst in engaging the participation of Canadian government entities and non-governmental organizations in a broad range of programs and initiatives to foster and advance UNESCO’s ideals in Canada;
  • provide overall policy focus and strategic leadership for the negotiation and implementation of collaborative agreements with Canadian partners and stakeholders for the development and delivery of UNESCO programmes in Canada;
  • provide executive leadership for consultation and liaison to the Commission’s Executive Committee and Sectoral Commissions, to bring pan-Canadian expertise to global initiatives when addressing issues associated with UNESCO’s mandate and programmes;
  • provide executive leadership for the development and implementation of a global advocacy strategy to foster and promote public support for UNESCO and the organization’s initiatives through lectures and articles as well as contact with senior levels of government, civil society and the media;
  • provide strategic advice to the Global Affairs, and other government departments, provincial and municipal governments on UNESCO matters on both the domestic and international levels;
  • coordinate and administer a variety of programmes, funds and awards for individuals to enable them to enhance their contribution to UNESCO’s work worldwide;
  • lead the process to prepare agendas, documentation and logistics for the meetings of the Executive Committee, Sectoral Commissions and the Annual General Meeting of the Commission;
  • be accountable to the Director and Chief Executive Officer of the Council and the Executive Committee of the Canadian Commission for UNESCO for all matters related to the work of the Canadian Commission for UNESCO;
  • manage the Commission’s human, financial and material resources in an efficient and effective manner and with economy, probity and prudence; and perform other related duties.

The duties of this position require the direct supervision of three (3) employees.  You will be required to travel up to 60 days per year and on occasion, work irregular hours.

For more information about the Canadian Commission for UNESCO’s priorities, consult the Strategic Plan 2014-2021.

Basic requirements of the position


  • An undergraduate degree from a recognized institution with acceptable specialization in one of the related fields or an equivalent combination of education and experience


  • Ten (10) years of experience directly related to the principal responsibilities of the position or Ten (10) years of experience dealing with major international bodies (such as United Nations bodies, international non-governmental organizations, etc.)  in a Canadian context
  • Five (5) years of significant management experience including leading and supervising employees, financial and budget management
  • Significant experience providing strategic and operational advice to senior management
  • Significant experience interacting with civil society


  • Knowledge of the Government of Canada international policies and procedures and their relationship to UNESCO and the Commission
  • Knowledge of the Canadian and international contexts in which the Commission operates
  • Knowledge of the Canadian Commission for UNESCO’s mandate, activities and programs, and relationship with the Canada Council for the Arts, governmental and non-governmental organizations, and international organizations within the United Nations system
  • Extensive knowledge of project and program management, communication strategies and policy analysis and implementation
  • Knowledge of social ethical and legal issues both within Canada and internationally, as well as an awareness of major protocols and international agreements affecting the work of the Commission

Skills & Competencies

  • An open, flexible and collegial approach, integrity, and excellent communication and interpersonal skills are the hallmarks of your leadership style
  • Demonstrated diplomacy, professionalism, judgment and tact
  • Ability to identify key strategic issues, opportunities and risks and to clearly communicate links between the Commission’s strategy and UNESCO’s goals
  • Ability to analyze and synthesize large amounts of information and use it to develop strategic advice or to present it in a concise manner
  • Ability and skills required to build consensus on sensitive issues
  • Ability to work independently
  • Excellent writing and editing skills across a variety of communication formats such as communications products for print, on the web, public presentations (e.g. media releases, questions and answers; briefing notes, brochures
  • Strong organization, coordination, multitasking and time management skills
  • Ability to manage a variety of projects, maintaining quality and meeting client needs, deadlines and budget requirements
  • Ability to measure and communicate key results, including high-quality reporting
  • Excellent planning, analytical, facilitation, problem solving, organization, team‐building, multi‐tasking skills and negotiating skills
  • Ability to motivate staff by successfully delivering the vision and objectives of the Commission

Bilingual Requirements

  • This position requires the use of both official languages. The requirements in the second official language are: an advanced level in oral and reading comprehension and an intermediate level in writing.

This position is located in Ottawa.

How to apply
Send the complete Application Form quoting the competition number listed above and a copy of your resume to the attention of Mylène Mougeot, Human Resources, prior to the closing date by email

For more information please contact Mylène Mougeot at 613-566-4414 or 1-800-263-5588, extension 4124 or by e-mail at

We thank all applicants for their interest; only those selected for an interview will be contacted.

We value diversity in our workforce and encourage candidates to self-identify as members of the following designated groups: women, visible minorities, Aboriginal peoples and persons with disabilities.

We are committed to providing a workplace that is inclusive and accessible to all.  Should you require accommodation during the staffing process, please do not hesitate to contact a member of our Human Resources team.

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