The office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) was created in 1950, during the aftermath of the Second World War, to help millions of Europeans who had fled or lost their homes. Today, over 70 years later, the organization is still hard at work, protecting and assisting refugees around the world.


UNHCR’s primary purpose is to safeguard the rights and well-being of people who have been forced to flee. Together with partners and communities, the organization works to ensure that everybody has the right to seek asylum and find safe refuge in another country. They also strive to secure lasting solutions.


For over half a century, UNHCR has helped millions of people to restart their lives. They include refugees, returnees, stateless people, the internally displaced and asylum-seekers. UNHCR’s protection, shelter, health, and education has been crucial, healing broken pasts and building brighter futures.


UNHCR has 18,879 personnel working in 137 countries, with most operations based in the field. The worldwide operation has become highly complex, ranging from recruitment of new colleagues and ensuring their security in dangerous situations to the procurement of everything from medical supplies to aircraft charters. Specific departments, mostly based in the Geneva headquarters, oversee key areas, such as operations, protection, external relations, human resources and finances. A number of regional bureaux liaise between overseas offices and headquarters.


UNHCR’s partnerships range from governments to non-governmental organizations, the private sector, civil society and refugee communities. The organization raises funds through governments, foundations and private donors so that refugees can be assisted immediately with food, shelter and other essentials distributed by our implementing partners.


While UNHCR is directly concerned with the protection of refugees, their overall mission is to provide operational support and coordination to a wide range of private and public actors who work in the interest of refugees.


You can find further details on their website, https://www.unhcr.org/.


Role purpose

As a senior member in the Division of External Relations (DER), the incumbent will lead and supervise UNHCR's global Private Sector Partnerships team which is based in Copenhagen, Geneva, and in the Regions and a number of country offices around the world, including the National Partners of UNHCR. He/she will be responsible for the development and implementation of the Service's global private sector partnerships programmes and strategy worldwide.


He/she will have functional supervisory responsibility for all Chiefs of Section and Chiefs of Regions under his/her purview and report directly to the DER Director. S/he will be responsible for a budget of around 200 million USD, and over 700 staff (including affiliate workforce).


In close collaboration with the Director of DER, and other relevant senior stakeholders across the organization, including Bureaux and National Partners, the incumbent will be responsible for all of UNHCR's Private Sector Partnership efforts in line with the organization's strategic priorities, including Share Value Partnerships and Innovative Financing. To this end, the incumbent will lead global planning, budgeting and implementation of activities related to private sector engagement (individuals, foundations, corporates, faith, and community groups etc.). S/he will liaise, coordinate, decide, and negotiate with Headquarters and field-based staff at the senior management level, as well as with National Fund-Raising Partners, on all private sector income targets, strategies, and activities.


In support of UNHCR's Private Sector Strategy, the incumbent is responsible for building effective partnerships with a global network of relevant stakeholders, raising financial and non-financial support for initiatives that will protect and assist refugees, and allow UNHCR to implement multiyear strategies to provide solutions to problems faced by refugees and people of concern.


The incumbent works to ensure that UNHCR is widely perceived as an effective and trusted partner. S/he is responsible for creating effective private sector partnerships and synergies with supporters, relevant expert fora, civil society, persons of concern and other key actors.


In addition, in a complex and demanding political and operational environment, the Head of the Private Sector Fundraising Service strives to build a dynamic and sufficiently capacitated team. S/he devolves appropriate authorities, facilitates the sharing of expertise and best practice and creates a climate of collaboration, which aims to empower and motivate colleagues to approach challenges with insight and innovation and to work toward achieving measurable and effective results. S/he has a responsibility to inform the Director of DER of all operational developments in a timely manner.


Duties and Responsibilities

  • Ensure that UNHCR has a clearly articulated Global Private Sector Strategy for Private Sector Partnerships (PSP), which is successfully implemented.
  • Ensure that PSP targets and Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) are reached and income from the private sector continues to deliver solid growth.
  • Cultivate relationships with leadership partners (foundations, companies, wealthy individuals) providing substantive support is built expanded and cultivated.
  • Manage UNHCR's Global Private Sector Network, including National Partners and national fundraising programmes are built, expanded, and cultivated.
  • Ensure UNHCR¿s policies and standards are applied consistently within the PSP operations.
  • Coordinate and support all PSP activities at HQs and with National Partners and national fundraising programmes.
  • Liaise between the PSP Service and the rest of UNHCR to help ensure the implementation of the private sector partnerships strategy.
  • Oversee the proactive and strategic dispersal of the National Growth Funds and other budgets, so that they effectively contribute to the achievement of agreed fundraising targets
  • Manage and lead the PSP Service to ensure the strategy is implemented and approved objectives are reached.
  • Oversee the human resource and financial management and administration of the Service and provide guidance and oversight and implementation of UNHCR policies and administrative instructions, to ensure effective and efficient management of resources within the rules and procedures of UNHCR.
  • Work closely with other DER Heads of Service to collaborate on integrated planning, resource mobilization, communication, and campaigns.
  • Exercise effective managerial oversight, direction, guidance and support and conduct regular performance appraisals and coaching.
  • Perform other related duties as required.


Required Qualifications

  • For D1 Grade, 17 years relevant experience with Undergraduate degree; or 16 years relevant experience with Graduate degree; or 15 years relevant experience with Doctorate degree
  • Fields of Education: Public Relations, Marketing, Advertising, Business Administration, or other relevant field.



  • Extensive experience and proven track record in private sector fundraising with a comprehensive understanding of all main private sector partnerships techniques (digital, direct mail, legacies, advertising, major donors, private philanthropies, corporate and foundations fundraising, in-kind donations, innovative financing).
  • Extensive and proven experience of working in an international context, delivering fundraising programmes and/or campaigns across multiple countries – with demonstrable insights into regional and market opportunities and challenges – management of high-value, multi-stakeholder complex partnerships.
  • Proven managerial experience in leading large global teams.
  • Financial budgeting and reporting skills and experience overseeing budgets of this size essential.
  • Proven experience giving presentations to high level audiences crucial.
  • English is essential, and other relevant UN languages are desirable.



  • This job requires an extensive degree of work with high level partners in the private sector and the specialized private sector fundraising industry
  • Specific knowledge of fundraising networks such as the Resource Alliance or similar industry circles is an asset. Political sensitivity will be a plus as would negotiation skills.
  • Experience with branding and market research would be an asset.


Functional Skills

  • CO-Brand Management


Terms of Appointment

This is a fixed term appointment for one year initially, with renewal after the first year.



Copenhagen, Denmark (HQ)


How to Apply

If you wish to be considered for this position, please complete the Application Form below. In addition, we encourage you to please attach a copy of the most recent English version of your CV.  


All information will be treated in the strictest confidence.


If you have an initial query rather than an application, kindly email us at [email protected].


SRI Executive is exclusively retained by UNHCR to undertake this assignment.


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