Associate Programme Officer

UNU-WIDER is looking for outstanding individual with strong commitment and potential to support the programme management of the institute. The incumbent is a crucial team member of UNU-WIDER’s Partnerships & Programme Support Unit, responsible for delivering the institute’s work programme. Closing date: 26 February 2020, 23:59 UTC+2
About UN University

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United Nations University World Institute for Development Economics Research (UNU-WIDER)

UNU-WIDER is a leading international development economics think tank. The institute provides economic analysis and policy advice with the aim of promoting sustainable and equitable development for all. The Institute began operations in 1985 in Helsinki, Finland, as the first research centre of the United Nations University. Today it is a unique blend of think tank, research institute, and UN agency — providing a range of services from policy advice to governments, as well as original research that is open access. More information on UNU-WIDER’s current work programme is available on the institute's website.

UNU-WIDER is looking for outstanding individual with strong commitment and potential to support the programme management of the institute. The incumbent is a crucial team member of UNU-WIDER’s Partnerships & Programme Support Unit, responsible for delivering the institute’s work programme.


Under the supervision of the Partnerships & Programme Officer, the Associate Programme Officer:

  • Fulfils the function of team lead for UNU-WIDER’s Project Support Team within the Partnerships & Programme Support Unit, supervises and guides the project support staff in the day-to-day implementation of the UNU-WIDER work programme, its projects, and activities, and represents the Project Support Team in internal discussions on workflows and other institutional development projects.
  • Works with key internal and external clients to facilitate the development, implementation, and evaluation of the Institute’s projects; monitors and analyses specific aspects of the projects implementation; reviews relevant documents and reports; identifies problems and issues to be addressed and recommends corrective actions to UNU-WIDER’s management team; liaises with relevant parties; identifies and tracks follow-up actions.
  • Carries out basic research on selected aspects of the UNU-WIDER work programme, the institute’s operations and other activities, to include collecting, analysing and presenting statistical data and other information gathered from diverse sources for UNU-WIDER’s reports to its key stakeholders such as donors, Advisory Groups, United Nations University, and the United Nations.
  • Provides substantive support for policy co-ordination and evaluation functions related to the implementation of the work programme, including the review and analysis of emerging issues and trends.
  • Co-ordinates activities related to budget funding (programme/project preparation and submissions, progress reports, financial statements, financial monitoring of project expenses) and preparation of related reports (financial reports, project budget, etc.)
  • Assists in developing the institute’s biennium budget, analyses inputs, formulates resource allocations across the UNU-WIDER work programme, its projects, and activities, and monitors the implementation of the institute’s academic programme budget on a regular basis.
  • Participates in survey initiatives; assists with the design of data collection tools; issues data collection tools, reviews, analyses and interprets responses, identifies problems/issues and prepares preliminary conclusions.  
  • Contributes to the preparation of various written outputs; e.g., annual reports, project reports, project proposals, analytical notes.
  • Provides administrative and substantive support to consultative and other meetings, to include proposing agenda topics, identifying and proposing participants, preparation of background documents and presentations, handling logistics.
  • Develops training materials for onboarding new members to UNU-WIDER’s Project Support Team and takes responsibility for their onboarding process.
  • Performs other duties as required.
Required qualifications and experience
  • Advanced university degree (master’s degree or equivalent) in business administration, management, economics, social sciences, or a related field.
  • A minimum of two (2) years of progressively responsible experience in project/programme management, administration or related area.
  • Working experience in a supervisory role, in particular related to the planning, monitoring, and implementation of complex, multi-stakeholder programmes and projects, is an asset.
  • Working experience in project/programme management in the interface of research, capacity building, and policy engagement is an asset.
  • Experience with the United Nations system or similar international organization and with relevant policies, guidelines and procedures is an asset.
  • Excellent drafting skills with fluency in both oral and written English. Knowledge of other UN languages would be an asset.
  • Excellent team player with strong leadership and interpersonal skills and ability to work in a multi-cultural, multi-ethnic environment with sensitivity and respect for diversity.

UNU is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages all candidates, irrespective of gender, nationality, religious and ethnic backgrounds, including persons living with disabilities to apply and become part of the organization.

UNU has a zero-tolerance policy on conduct that is incompatible with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and UNU, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination. 


We offer a competitive net salary (tax-exempted) at P-2 level and allowances including post adjustment. Post adjustment is subject to change.

The post carries the standard set of United Nations benefits and entitlements for international positions in the UN Common Systems, including participation in the United Nations Joint Staff Pension Fund, the possibility of participation in a health insurance programme, education grant, removal expenses and home leave. For more information, please visit

The Rector reserves the right to appoint a candidate at a level below that advertised.

Duration of contract

This is a full-time fixed-term appointment. The initial appointment will be for a period of one (1) year with the possibility of renewal on a rolling fixed-term appointment basis, subject to satisfactory work performance. The mandatory age of retirement for United Nations staff is 65 years.

Staff members of the United Nations University are international civil servants subject to the authority of the Rector and may be assigned to any of the activities or offices of the United Nations University.

Starting date: As soon as possible.

Application procedure

Interested applicants should submit their applications online using the 'Apply here' link on the left side column and must upload the following:

  • A cover letter setting out how the qualifications and experience match the requirements of the position
  • A completed and signed UNU Personal History (P.11) downloadable from UNU website. Please avoid using similar forms provided by other United Nations organizations
  • An up-to-date CV
  • A copy of highest educational degree obtained

See full vacancy announcement