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Team Leader

Geneva (Switzerland)

  • Organization: WHO - World Health Organization
  • Location: Geneva (Switzerland)
  • Grade: P-5, International Professional - Internationally recruited position - Senior level
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Managerial positions
  • Closing Date: 2021-08-03

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The Department of Global Infectious Hazards Preparedness (GIH) advances global efforts to prevent and control existing and emerging infectious diseases by increasing access to evidence-based interventions; fostering impactful innovation; and leveraging technical, operational and strategic partnerships. In addition, GIH develops global mechanisms to facilitate coordination and collaboration between countries and multi-sectoral partners for catastrophic events of natural, accidental or deliberate origin. The department is committed to delivering GPW13 Outcome 2.2 Epidemics and pandemics prevented, through: delivering risk assessment, technical guidance, interventions and control strategies for country impact; Promoting innovation and adoption of new technologies; Aligning and coordinating international action through trusted partnership; Ensuring vulnerable populations have access to life-saving interventions and supplies. The High Impact Events Preparedness (IEP) unit provides leadership and coordination for cross-sector partnerships in the development of global preparedness mechanisms for epidemics and pandemics, thereby reducing their impact on affected populations and limiting their international spread. For example, a global supply chain & deployment mechanism to ensure equitable and timely access to life-saving interventions and biological materials during an outbreak; the establishment of the WHO information network for epidemics (EPI-WIN) and for Infodemic management during epidemics and pandemics, as well as the effectiveness and impact of public health and social measures (PHSM).


Generic duties:

- Provides technical leadership and managerial support within the Department, in the area of PHSM ensuring that activities in this area are carried out efficiently and effectively.

- Develops and proposes technical health policies and strategies for implementation through collaboration with Regional and Country Offices and provides advice in developing further the PHSM for strengthening and improving technical capacity of target clienteles.

- Manages the programme area in delivering its objectives through efficient managing a small team of technical staff, financial resources and effective work planning to optimize the programme's deliverables in line with the mandate of the Organization.

- Leads and conducts research on best practices in implementing programmes and activities and dissemination of information for capacity building in the respective area of work.

- Manages the monitoring and evaluation and reporting of the subject area of work of key performance indicators and reporting requirements and mechanisms to optimize performance of Programme deliverables.

- Serves as the technical reference among the peer community, UN Agencies and other stakeholders at the technical levels in the respective area of expertise.

- Liaises with and utilizes partnerships in other UN Agencies, Donor, or research institutions in the PHSM to position the technical area of work and implementation into Global and/or National policies.

- Represent the programme area of work at various meetings to advocate for PHSM.

- Perform all other related duties as assigned.

Specific duties:

- Review of PHSM in view of the needs in the post pandemic world and the use of new tools and technologies that are available and improve the global monitoring system to facilitate the assessment of the effectiveness of PHSM (linking epidemiology and societal impact).

- Establish a public health research agenda to understand the impact of PHSM during the COVID-19 pandemic and future epidemics and pandemics.

- Framework for intervention trials and other investigative method design, ethical, legal and other approvals to make them ready for national contextualization and application during the outbreak to strengthen evidence of impact.

- Cost-benefit analysis of each of the interventions used i.e. social distancing, border closure and travel restrictions, partial social shutdowns/partial or complete school shutdowns etc. Can we achieve the same with interventions that have lesser intervention burden?

- Innovative and development of improved tools, such as improved masks; improved contact transmission prevention (hand washing, etc.) and digital tools for contact tracing as well as measuring the impact of the various tools like on people's mobility, AI for local decision making.

- Provide guidance and recommendations for the development of PHSM monitoring system at country level, so that countries can adapt the measures to their context and epidemiological situation and detect early when adaptation of the response is needed and support countries to include PHSM in their preparedness plans and develop networks among countries so they can learn from each other when developing these plans.




  • An advanced level university degree in public health or medicine or social science related to the functions of the position.


  • PhD in one of the above



  • At least 10 years' international experience in managing projects in the related areas of work in policy development or guideline development for infectious diseases prevention and treatment.

  • At least 5 years working on either infectious disease and/or public health non-pharmaceutical measures, and demonstrated experience managing human and financial resources. Demonstrated experience at the international level.


  • Proven primary responsibility for managing cross-cutting initiatives involving different departments or organizational entities in a multinational context such as the UN, WHO or similar.


--> Expert level knowledge of evidence synthesis, or design of epidemiological/social studies, or economic/mathematical modelling including the use of data/evidence for policy development for infectious diseases or PHSM.

--> Solid managerial skills including proven ability to move from design of a strategic conceptual framework for developing tools and its operational implementation.

--> Demonstrated effectiveness in building sustained partnerships and working with others in international settings.

--> Strong skills in the area of developing and establishing polices and strategies.

--> Excellent skills and ability in managing diverse teams and financial resources.

--> Good skills in mobilizing resources.

--> Ability to engage and communicate effectively and diplomatically with external partners including Ministries of Health, Donor institutions, Civil Society, and other stakeholders.

--> Commitment to collaborate effectively with other key partners in the Health Subject area.

--> Experience in understanding and interpreting GRADE tables.

WHO Competencies

Respecting and promoting individual and cultural differences
Producing results
Building and promoting partnerships across the organization and beyond
Creating an empowering and motivating environment

Use of Language Skills


  • Expert knowledge of English.


  • Intermediate knowledge of French.

  • Intermediate knowledge of WHO Language.


WHO salaries for staff in the Professional category are calculated in US dollars. The remuneration for the above position comprises an annual base salary starting at USD 89,837 (subject to mandatory deductions for pension contributions and health insurance, as applicable), a variable post adjustment, which reflects the cost of living in a particular duty station, and currently amounts to USD 6536 per month for the duty station indicated above. Other benefits include 30 days of annual leave, allowances for dependent family members, home leave, and an education grant for dependent children.


  • This vacancy notice may be used to fill other similar positions at the same grade level
  • Only candidates under serious consideration will be contacted.
  • A written test may be used as a form of screening.
  • In the event that your candidature is retained for an interview, you will be required to provide, in advance, a scanned copy of the degree(s)/diploma(s)/certificate(s) required for this position. WHO only considers higher educational qualifications obtained from an institution accredited/recognized in the World Higher Education Database (WHED), a list updated by the International Association of Universities (IAU)/United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). The list can be accessed through the link: Some professional certificates may not appear in the WHED and will require individual review.
  • Any appointment/extension of appointment is subject to WHO Staff Regulations, Staff Rules and Manual.
  • Staff members in other duty stations are encouraged to apply.
  • WHO is committed to workforce diversity.
  • WHO has a smoke-free environment and does not recruit smokers or users of any form of tobacco.
  • WHO has a mobility policy which can be found at the following link: Candidates appointed to an international post with WHO are subject to mobility and may be assigned to any activity or duty station of the Organization throughout the world.
  • Applications from women and from nationals of non and underrepresented Member States are particularly encouraged.
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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