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National Programme Officer

Colombo (Sri Lanka)


This position is located in the UNODC Regional Office for South Asia (ROSA) in Colombo, Sri Lanka. Within the framework of the UNODC Regional Programme for South Asia (2018-2021) and more specifically to address Outcome 2 on trafficking in persons and the smuggling of migrants (under sub-programme 1 on countering transnational organised crime), the incumbent will work under the direct and substantive supervision of Trafficking in Persons Programme Coordinator based in UNODC ROSA/ New Delhi, and the overall guidance of the UNODC Regional Representative, and Deputy Representative for South Asia, as well as overall substantive guidance of GLOT59 Global Programme Coordinator based in UNODC HQ/ Vienna, Austria. 

Duties and Responsibilities

Within assigned authority, the National Programme Officer will assist in the implementation of the GLOT59 Global Programme Against Trafficking in Persons in India and Sri Lanka. In particular, the incumbent will be responsible for the following specific duties pertaining to the implementation of the programme in Sri Lanka.
  • Provide technical expertise to ensure coordination of project implementation and assessment, including the collection and compilation of relevant background data and information;
  • Undertake associated desk research and assessment missions;
  • Undertake activity monitoring and evaluation and prepare periodic project progress reports;
  • Attend and contribute to technical consultations with participating countries, donors and other actors on measures against trafficking in persons and/or smuggling of migrants; 
  • Facilitate and provide training and other capacity-building assistance for criminal justice actors, including the development of related technical material;
  • Undertake negotiations and consultations on anti-trafficking in persons and anti-smuggling issues (including those concerning criminal justice), with relevant government agencies, international bodies and organizations and NGOs, as required;
  • Prepare technical presentations on the project at related regional/international criminal justice and/or other events, as required;
  • Design and facilitate interregional, regional and national training activities targeted to criminal justice related to trafficking in persons and smuggling of migrants;
  • Design, prepare and/or facilitate standardized training materials, as an ongoing task; 
  • Contribute to updating, by reviewing and revising, relevant UNODC training and capacity-building tools; promote their use and application by respective target groups; compile information on best practices in the response to trafficking in persons and smuggling of migrants;
  • Coordinate with other intergovernmental organizations, relevant non-governmental organizations and institutions which are active in the provision of training on related issues at the regional or country level;
  • Prepare project proposals and concept notes as required;
  • Perform other duties as required.
Work implies frequent interactions with the following: 
  • Counterparts, officers and technical staff in relevant units and UN funds, programmes and other UN specialized agencies; senior level officers in national governments, international organizations, consultants, etc.
Results Expected:
  • Ensure programme implementation based on the agreed-upon timeline. Provides well-researched and sound analysis and advice on crime prevention and criminal justice related developments, in the specific areas of trafficking in persons and smuggling of migrants, with special focus on law enforcement and prosecution/criminal justice; delivers outputs in a timely manner; effectively implements and/or supports of programme activities; effectively disseminates best practices and methodologies. Organizes and participates in field missions. Delivers effective substantive and technical assistance in the organization and delivery of training for crime prevention and criminal justice administrators. Liaises effectively and in a timely manner and interacts with colleagues and concerned parties internally and externally.


  • Has in-depth knowledge and specialization in the field of human trafficking and/or migrant smuggling. Has knowledge of policies and practices in crime prevention and criminal justice, as well as the mandates of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. Has knowledge of and specialization in substantive and functional areas with very good research and analytical skills. Is able to identify and contribute to the solution of problems/issues. Has knowledge of various research methodologies and sources, including electronic sources on the internet, intranet and other databases. Shows pride in work and in achievements; demonstrates professional competence and mastery of subject matter; is conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, observing deadlines and achieving results; is motivated by professional rather than personal concerns; shows persistence when faced with difficult problems or challenges; remains calm in stressful situations. Takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work.
  • Speaks and writes clearly and effectively; listens to others, correctly interprets messages from others and responds appropriately; asks questions to clarify, and exhibits interest in having two-way communication; tailors language, tone, style and format to match audience; demonstrates openness in sharing information and keeping people informed.
  • Works collaboratively with colleagues to achieve organizational goals; solicits input by genuinely valuing others’ ideas and expertise; is willing to learn from others; places team agenda before personal agenda; supports and acts in accordance with final group decision, even when such decisions may not entirely reflect own position; shares credit for team accomplishments and accepts joint responsibility for team shortcomings. 
Client Orientation: 
  • Considers all those to whom services are provided to be “clients” and seeks to see things from clients’ point of view; establishes and maintains productive partnerships with clients by gaining their trust and respect; identifies clients’ needs and matches them to appropriate solutions; monitors ongoing developments inside and outside the clients’ environment to keep informed and anticipate problems; keeps clients informed of progress or setbacks in projects; meets timeline for delivery of products or services to client.

Required Skills and Experience

Education & Experience: 
  • Advanced university degree (Masters degree or equivalent) in criminal law, criminology, and/or related social science, international relations, political science, law, or public administration.
  • A minimum of seven years of relevant professional experience in crime prevention and criminal justice at national and international levels is required. Direct experience in the criminal investigation and/or prosecution of transnational organized crime, on cases of trafficking in persons and/or smuggling of migrants, or other roles concerning the response to trafficking in persons and/or smuggling of migrants at gradually increasing levels of responsibility is required. Experience in international criminal justice matters as well as familiarity with project formulation, implementation and monitoring, and exposure to international development cooperation is highly desirable. Living/working experience in developing countries and proven cross-cultural and gender sensitivity are highly desirable. 
  • Bachelor’s degree  in criminal law, criminology, and/or related social science, international relations, political science, law, or public administration with ten years experience as listed above.
  • English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the position advertised, fluency in English, i.e. oral and written proficiency, is required. Knowledge of Sinhala and/or Tamil would be an added advantage. 


Important applicant information

All posts in the SC categories are subject to local recruitment.

Applicant information about UNDP rosters

Note: UNDP reserves the right to select one or more candidates from this vacancy announcement.  We may also retain applications and consider candidates applying to this post for other similar positions with UNDP at the same grade level and with similar job description, experience and educational requirements.

Workforce diversity

UNDP is committed to achieving diversity within its workforce, and encourages all qualified applicants, irrespective of gender, nationality, disabilities, sexual orientation, culture, religious and ethnic backgrounds to apply. All applications will be treated in the strictest confidence.

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Before applying, please make sure that you have read the requirements for the position and that you qualify.
Applications from non-qualifying applicants will most likely be discarded by the recruiting manager.

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  • Organization: UNDP - United Nations Development Programme
  • Location: Colombo (Sri Lanka)
  • Grade: SB-5, Service Contract, Local Contractors Agreement - Mid level
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Operations and Administrations
    • Project and Programme Management
  • Closing Date: 2018-08-21

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