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Director of UNESCO International Bureau of Education

Geneva (Switzerland)

  • Organization: UNESCO - United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization
  • Location: Geneva (Switzerland)
  • Grade: D-2, Director - Internationally recruited position - Senior Executive level
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Education, Learning and Training
    • Managerial positions
  • Closing Date: 2020-09-30

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Post Number : 1CHED0039IB

Grade : D-2

Parent Sector : Education Sector (ED)

Duty Station: Geneva

Job Family: Education

Type of contract : Fixed Term (Maximum term of six (6) years)

Duration of contract : 2 years

Recruitment open to : Internal and external candidates

Application Deadline (Midnight Paris Time) : 30-SEP-2020


UNESCO Core Values: Commitment to the Organization, Integrity, Respect for Diversity, Professionalism




UNESCO, as the lead agency for Sustainable Development Goal 4 on Quality Education, is currently seeking a pro-active, visionary Director for the International Bureau of Education (IBE). The right candidate will be a seasoned leader, able to foster trust through an inclusive approach and inspire others.


Guided by the Council of IBE and under the direct supervision of the Assistant Director-General for Education, the Director of IBE provides intellectual leadership and strategic vision to IBE’s programme and staff. The incumbent is responsible for leadership of the Institute as well as for planning, implementing and reporting on its Programme and Budget. S/he will oversee the preparation of the Institute’s annual Draft Programme and Budget for submission to the Council and upon approval, draw up a detailed plan of activities, direct their implementation, and report on progress and results.

Long Description

Specifically, the incumbent shall:


  • Provide intellectual, strategic and operational leadership for the Institute in the pursuit of its goals. Develop activities to strengthen cooperation in the area of capacity-building and technical support for the development of curricular frameworks in Member States, management of data banks, analyses of trends and dissemination of new knowledge, and promotion and renewal of the policy dialogue on curriculum-related issues, internationally;
  • Lead the planning, execution and reporting of IBE’s programme;
  • In close cooperation with the appropriate units of the Secretariat at Headquarters and in the field, the incumbent ensures that the IBE contributes fully to the achievement of UNESCO’s objectives;
  • Manage and design operational mechanisms and/or action plans, required to support and ensure efficiency and effectiveness of the Institute’s operations;
  • Ensure close cooperation with UNESCO's Education Sector and other Sectors, Field Offices, UNESCO's specialized Institutes, and services and units concerned;
  • Oversee the resource mobilization for the Institute’s programmes;
  • Maintain a motivated and effective staff for the purpose of formulating, planning, implementing, monitoring and evaluating the programmes of the Institute.
COMPETENCIES (Core / Managerial) Communication (C) Accountability (C) Innovation (C) Knowledge sharing and continuous improvement (C) Planning and organizing (C) Results focus (C) Teamwork (C) Building partnerships (M) Driving and managing change (M) Leading and empowering others (M) Making quality decisions (M) Managing performance (M) Strategic thinking (M) - For detailed information, please consult the UNESCO Competency Framework. REQUIRED QUALIFICATIONS



  • A PhD in education, sciences or other related social science fields.


Work Experience

  • Minimum 15 years of progressively responsible relevant professional experience in the field of education.
  • Experience in developing and organizing education research and training programmes, as well as in analysing education and international cooperation policies.
  • Experience in strategic planning, change management and leading teams.
  • Experience in resources mobilization and partnership development.
  • Strong global professional network.


  • Commitment to the Organization’s mandate, vision and strategic direction, as well as to its priorities.
  • Excellent knowledge of curriculum development and education policies at a global level and good understanding of global trends and developments in curriculum related issues. 
  • Proven leadership and managerial skills, a broad general culture and sound analytical capacities, high sense of objectivity, professional integrity and political astuteness.
  • Ability to identify key strategic issues, objectives, opportunities and risks.
  • Demonstrated strategic planning and management abilities, including capacity to manage extensive programmes, financial resources and exercise appropriate supervision and control.
  • Organizational skills, including in establishing plans and priorities, as well as in implementing them effectively, and devising implementation strategies.
  • Ability to direct change processes at the management level, and familiarity with the leadership of an institution accountable to governing bodies.
  • Sound judgment and decision-making skills.
  • Ability to engage in networking with diplomacy, tact and a sense of political astuteness.
  • Demonstrated interpersonal skills and ability to provide intellectual leadership and motivate multidisciplinary teams in a multicultural environment, as well as ensure coaching and development of staff.
  • Ability to communicate effectively and persuasively, orally and in writing, with strong representational abilities.


  • Excellent knowledge (written and spoken) of English or French and good working knowledge of the other. 



  • Other degrees or short to medium-term training in disciplines relevant to the post.



  • Excellent interpersonal skills and ability to take initiative and maintain effective working relationships with partners of different nationalities and cultural backgrounds.
  • Understanding of UNESCO’s strategic direction and familiarity of UNESCO’s operations.



  • Knowledge of other official UNESCO languages (Arabic, Chinese, Russian or Spanish).

UNESCO's salaries are calculated in US dollars. They consist of a basic salary and a post adjustment, which reflects the cost of living in a particular duty station, as well as exchange rates. Other benefits include: 30 days annual leave, family allowance, home travel, education grant for dependent children, pension plan and medical insurance. More details can be found on the ICSC website . Please note that UNESCO is a non-smoking Organization.


ASSESSMENT Evaluation of qualified applicants may include an assessment exercise and a competency-based interview. Footer


UNESCO applies a zero tolerance policy against all forms of harassment

UNESCO is committed to promoting geographical distribution (last update) and gender equality within its Secretariat. Therefore, women candidates are strongly encouraged to apply, as well as nationals from non- and under-represented Member States. Persons with disabilities are also encouraged to apply. Worldwide mobility is required for staff members appointed to international posts.

UNESCO does not charge a fee at any stage of the recruitment process.

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.

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