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Senior Adviser Innovation (PCS - Portfolio, Culture and Scale), P5, FTA, Office of Innovation, Stockholm, Sweden (# 00089335)

New York City (United States of America)

  • Organization: UNICEF - United Nations Children’s Fund
  • Location: New York City (United States of America)
  • Grade: P-5, International Professional - Internationally recruited position - Senior level
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Innovations for Sustainable Development
    • Social Affairs
    • Culture and Sport
    • Social Entrepreneurship
    • Project and Programme Management
  • Closing Date: 2022-01-29

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The Senior Adviser (Portfolio, Culture and Scale) is the Offic of Innovation Lead for global standards, world-class practice and performance management for innovation governance, portfolios, the innovation pipeline, and principles, standards and performance across Innovation Hubs. S/he takes actions to nurture and strengthen a culture of innovation across UNICEF, and especially to build the capacities across staff and partners to innovate more effectively and widely with and for children.

UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest places, to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children. To save their lives. To defend their rights. To help them fulfill their potential.

Across 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, every day, to build a better world for everyone.

And we never give up.

For every child, hope

The Office of Innovation (OoI) works to catalyse UNICEF's and all its partners’ expertise and resources against key children-outcomes
bottlenecks, with a view to continuously ideate and scale the most effective solutions with transformational potential at scale to achieve the child-related SDGs.
The office is doing this by continuously exploring new ways of accelerating results for children, investing across a range of early stage solutions, and harnessing internal and external expertise towards continuously iterating and finetuning the most promising solutions for children through a systematic portfolio management approach, and leveraging all stakeholders’ innovation energy, knowhow and resources from intergovernmental, multilateral, private sector and non-governmental fora (think tank, academia).

How can you make a difference?

Under the general guidance and direction of the Director, and in close collaboration with relevant OoI teams and global innovation hubs leads, the post is responsible for:
1. Setting UNICEF’s global standards and oversight on how to build, source, curate, invest in and successfully scale up smart, world class portfolios of innovation solutions and act as custodian of the innovation pipeline and its phases.
2. Responsible for overall global innovation governance and its mechanisms.
3. Performance management including creation, refinement, monitoring, corrective action, and reporting for portfolio-related KPIs from global SP (H6.1), to OOI OMP PCS, innovation Hub and portfolios.
4. Design, implement and iterate mechanisms of collaboration, convergence, coordination and rapid sharing and learning across Global
Innovation Hubs and Portfolios to avoid fragmentation and silos.
5. Provide leadership for thought leadership on the above aspects of innovation practice.
6. Business owner and steward of the INVENT platform.
7. Manage evidence generation around innovation portfolios and related areas.
8. Build UNICEF’s culture and organizational capacity to innovate and to absorb new innovations.

To qualify as an advocate for every child you will have…

  • An advanced university degree (Master’s or higher) in one of the following fields is required: Social Science or Humanities, Innovation-related field, International Relations, Business Administration, or another relevant technical field.
    *A first University Degree in a relevant field combined with 3 additional years of professional experience may be accepted in lieu of an Advanced University Degree.
  • A minimum of 10 years of relevant professional experience in the areas of innovation and/or social and economic development and cooperation.
  • Demonstrated expertise in innovation practice, spanning start-up to scaling innovations, especially in the social and/or development sectors.
  • Experience and in strategic planning, developing and executing strategies in large multilateral/development sector ecosystems. In-depth knowledge of decision-making and planning processes within UNICEF an asset.
  • Experience in building partnerships and expertise engagements is highly desirable.
  • Experience in public advocacy, media engagements, and ability to produce intellectual leadership assets on innovation is highly desirable.
  • Developing country work experience and/or familiarity with emergency is considered an asset.
  • Fluency in English is required. Knowledge of another official UN language (Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian or Spanish) or a local language is an asset.

For every Child, you demonstrate...

UNICEF's values of Care, Respect, Integrity, Trust, and Accountability (CRITA).

The UNICEF competencies required for this post are...

  • Nurtures, Leads and Manages People (2)
  • Demonstrates Self Awareness and Ethical Awareness (2)
  • Works Collaboratively with others (2)
  • Builds and Maintains Partnerships (2)
  • Innovates and Embraces Change (2)
  • Thinks and Acts Strategically (2)
  • Drive to achieve impactful results (2)
  • Manages ambiguity and complexity (2)

To view our competency framework, please visit here.


UNICEF 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 to become a part of the organization.

UNICEF has a zero-tolerance policy on conduct that is incompatible with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and UNICEF, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination. UNICEF also adheres to strict child safeguarding principles. All selected candidates will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles and will therefore undergo rigorous reference and background checks. Background checks will include the verification of academic credential(s) and employment history. Selected candidates may be required to provide additional information to conduct a background check.


Mobility is a condition of international professional employment with UNICEF and an underlying premise of the international civil service.

This position is not considered an elevated risk role. However, UNICEF reserves the right to conduct further vetting/assessment within the scope of child safeguarding as appropriate.

UNICEF 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 at

Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advance to the next stage of the selection process.

The VA is open to all (internal and external) candidates.


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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