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  • Organization: UNOPS - United Nations Office for Project Services
  • Location: Multiple locations
  • Grade: LICA-6, Local Individual Contractors Agreement - Administrative support
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Communication and Public Information
    • Documentation and Information Management
    • Translations and Languages
  • Closing Date: 2019-03-31

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Japanese - English Interpreter (Retainer), Multiple positions

Multiple locations (Various)

Background Information - Job-specific

African peace-keeping locations are increasingly remote, often requiring considerable preparation efforts to enable mission start-up. “Horizontal” engineering activities which include site clearance, levelling and security measures, airfields, roads, both internal and external and helipad construction activities are often one of the initial major challenges in the establishment of peace-keeping missions. 

The Triangular Partnership Project was created as an engineering education programme, bringing United Nations Member States skilled military engineering expertise to provide training to Troop Contributing Country military personnel. Training focuses on practical field skills aimed to assist Troop Contributing Countries in creating and/or improving their own capabilities for supporting peace-keeping missions. The project has been running since 2015 and plans are in place for continued operations in 2019. 

UNOPS engagement in the project has two main aspects scheduled for 2019:

  1. Support training activities
  2. Support course development
The first training activity of Japanese interpretation will be required from May and completed in October. The second activity is on-demand throughout the year.

This position is based on a family duty station.

Functional Responsibilities

Reporting to the Training Manager, the Japanese Interpreter will provide translation services between Japanese and English.  Whilst it is anticipated that training will be conducted in Nairobi, Kenya, there are possible requirements to travel to provide translation services to support activities in other regions. The Interpreter will provide competent delivery of verbal translation services to the Japanese Instructors and experts.

The duties include;

  • Verbal translation between Japanese Instructors and trainees for onsite training, national field trips, regional assessments, ceremonies and public presentations as directed.
  • Verbal translation of training schedules, lesson and safety plans and powerpoint presentations as directed.
  • Translation support to Training Needs Assessment requirements
  • Liaison between Instructors and Trainees, soliciting feedback from both parties, highlighting issues and difficulties and making recommendations based on trainee responses and feedback.
  • Liaison and support to non English speaking Japanese personnel involved.
  • Participation in After Action Review meetings.
  • Writing Daily Reports if requested by Instructors.


  • Secondary education is required. 
  • Technical/Professional Diploma in the relevant field  is an advantage. 
  • A Bachelor degree University in the relevant field  is an asset.


  • Minimum of six years of relevant experience working as a Japanese English translator and/or an interpreter is required;
  • Prior technical translation experience in heavy machine operation is advantageous;
  • Experience working with Japanese culture is advantageous;


  • Fluency in oral Japanese is required
  • Fluency in written and oral English is required
  • Fluency in written and oral Swahili is advantageous
  • Fluency in written and oral French is advantageous 


Treats all individuals with respect; responds sensitively to differences and encourages others to do the same. Upholds organizational and ethical norms. Maintains high standards of trustworthiness. Role model for diversity and inclusion.
Acts as a positive role model contributing to the team spirit. Collaborates and supports the development of others. For people managers only: Acts as positive leadership role model, motivates, directs and inspires others to succeed, utilizing appropriate leadership styles.
Demonstrates understanding of the impact of own role on all partners and always puts the end beneficiary first. Builds and maintains strong external relationships and is a competent partner for others (if relevant to the role).
Efficiently establishes an appropriate course of action for self and/or others to accomplish a goal. Actions lead to total task accomplishment through concern for quality in all areas. Sees opportunities and takes the initiative to act on them. Understands that responsible use of resources maximizes our impact on our beneficiaries.
Open to change and flexible in a fast paced environment. Effectively adapts own approach to suit changing circumstances or requirements. Reflects on experiences and modifies own behavior. Performance is consistent, even under pressure. Always pursues continuous improvements.
Evaluates data and courses of action to reach logical, pragmatic decisions. Takes an unbiased, rational approach with calculated risks. Applies innovation and creativity to problem-solving.
Expresses ideas or facts in a clear, concise and open manner. Communication indicates a consideration for the feelings and needs of others. Actively listens and proactively shares knowledge. Handles conflict effectively, by overcoming differences of opinion and finding common ground.

Additional Considerations

  • Please note that the closing date is midnight Copenhagen time
  • Applications received after the closing date will not be considered.
  • Only those candidates that are short-listed for interviews will be notified.
  • Qualified female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply.
  • Work life harmonization - UNOPS values its people and recognizes the importance of balancing professional and personal demands. We have a progressive policy on work-life harmonization and offer several flexible working options. This policy applies to UNOPS personnel on all contract types
  • For staff positions only, UNOPS reserves the right to appoint a candidate at a lower level than the advertised level of the post
  • The incumbent is responsible to abide by security policies, administrative instructions, plans and procedures of the UN Security Management System and that of UNOPS.  

It is the policy of UNOPS to conduct background checks on all potential recruits/interns. Recruitment/internship in UNOPS is contingent on the results of such checks.

Contract type, level and duration

Contract type:Local Individual Contractor Agreement (LICA)
Contract level: LICA 6
Duty Station: Multiple countries (Kenya and other countries are possibilities) 
Contract duration: 

Short-term ICA Retainer – Maximum duration 12 months
This position is based on a family duty station

This is a local position, therefore it is open to the nationals of  Kenya and applicants who have a valid residency work permit to work in Kenya.

For more details about the ICA contractual modality, please follow this link: 

Background Information - UNOPS

UNOPS is an operational arm of the United Nations, supporting the successful implementation of its partners’ peacebuilding, humanitarian and development projects around the world. Our mission is to help people build better lives and countries achieve sustainable development.

UNOPS areas of expertise cover infrastructure, procurement, project management, financial management and human resources.

Working with us

UNOPS offers short- and long-term work opportunities in diverse and challenging environments across the globe. We are looking for creative, results-focused professionals with skills in a range of disciplines.


With over 4,000 UNOPS personnel and approximately 7,000 personnel recruited on behalf of UNOPS partners spread across 80 countries, our workforce represents a wide range of nationalities and cultures. We promote a balanced, diverse workforce — a strength that helps us better understand and address our partners’ needs, and continually strive to improve our gender balance through initiatives and policies that encourage recruitment of qualified female candidates.

Work life harmonization

UNOPS values its people and recognizes the importance of balancing professional and personal demands.

Background Information – Kenya Multi Country Office (KMCO)

Located in Nairobi, Kenya, the Kenya Multi Country Office manages a growing portfolio of engagements, including associated strategic and operational risks. The KMCO sub-region currently consists of an established Operation Centre in Nairobi/Kenya which manages a portfolio of engagements in multiple countries in East and South Africa. This includes primarily transactional projects in partnership with the Nairobi based UN Agencies, UN-Habitat and UNEP, and multiple ‘operational’ projects in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania and several island states.

Through a Nairobi based Technical Services Unit (TSU) UNOPS provides assessment, design and technical oversight services for a range of UNOPS internal and external clients.

We do our best to provide you the most accurate info, but closing dates may be wrong on our site. Please check on the recruiting organization's page for the exact info. Candidates are responsible for complying with deadlines and are encouraged to submit applications well ahead.
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.

What does it mean?

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