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Digital Technologies, Innovation and Smart Cities Intern [Temporary]

Barcelona

  • Organization: UN
  • Location: Barcelona
  • Grade: Internship
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Infrastructure and Urban-Rural development
    • Information Technology and Computer Science
    • Nutrition
    • Monitoring and Evaluation
    • Refugee rights and well-being
    • Urban Development, planning and design
    • Innovations for Sustainable Development
  • Closing Date: 2022-05-30

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Org. Setting and Reporting

The United Nations Human Settlements Programme, UN-Habitat, is the agency for human settlements. It is mandated by the UN General Assembly to promote socially and environmentally sustainable towns and cities with the goal of providing adequate shelter for all (www.unhabitat.org). The Knowledge and Innovation Branch (K&I) of UN-Habitat has the mandate to promote local capabilities of local governments to develop innovative instruments in a variety of areas to keep pace with the demands of rapid urbanization.

For UN-Habitat, innovation means embracing new ideas, up-to-date means, and fresh approaches to our work. It is based on horizontal and collaborative working practices that consider diverse contexts and perspectives. Innovation can be digital or non-digital, and take shape as a process, a practical tool or application or as a culture. The Innovation Unit hosts the United Nations Innovation Technology Accelerator for Cities (UNITAC), leads the agency’s work on digital cooperation, provides technical support to UN-Habitat flagship programme People-Centered Smart Cities and is developing UN-Habitats Innovation Challenges, an approach to urban innovation based on open and challenge-driven innovation that can help cities and human settlements effectively engage with innovators. It also provides innovation support to the Improved Quality of Life in Datacenter Communities project, implemented in collaboration with Microsoft.

UN-Habitat’s Programme Development Branch (PDB) and People-Centered Smart Cities programme: PDB develops new programmes and ensures coherent coordination between normative approaches at HQ and operational work in regional and field offices. It also leads on the development of five global flagship programmes. Flagship programme two focuses on people-centered smart cities to act as an umbrella and enabler for mainstreaming the approach across all UN-Habitat work. This programme has a clear mandate to support colleagues in the delivery of their operational and normative work. The programme will be supported by committed and mandated smart city focal points with dedicated resources and time. The objective of this flagship programme is to ensure that the smart cities field is focused on ensuring sustainable development outcomes aligned with human rights, ensuring that no one and no space is left behind, and that cities reduce carbon emissions. PDB is also currently leading the establishment of UNITAC as an outposted office in Hamburg.

External Relations, Strategy and Innovation Division/Innovation internship is for three (3) months with a possibility for an extension depending on the needs of the Organization.

In the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, applicants may be requested to undertake the internship remotely in view of constraints regarding visa issuance, international travel and access to UN premises. Applicants must be willing and prepared to undertake the internship remotely for a part or the entirety of the internship. The work hours during the internship shall be determined based on individual discussion between the intern and the supervisor(s) taking into consideration the minimum requirements of the Organization and the time difference between the hosting office and the location of the intern.

The Internship is UNPAID and full-time.

Interns work five days per week under the supervision of a staff member in the department or office to which they are assigned.

Responsibilities

Daily responsibilities will depend on the individual's background; the intern's assigned office as well as the internship period.

Under the direct supervision of the Programme Management Officer, the intern will:
- Familiarize with the UN-Habitat mandate, New Urban Agenda, Urban Targets of the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda, Paris and Sendai Frameworks among other global commitments as well as UN-Habitat Strategic Plan 2020 - 2023 including the Flagship Programmes.
- Support UN-Habitat’s normative and operational initiatives and strengthening of innovation and technology capacity of UN-Habitat to respond to the challenges of the 21st century and accelerate towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, including the expansion of partnerships.
- Support UN-Habitat’s Flagship Programme on "People-Centered Smart Cities" including exploring funding opportunities, partnerships and new methodologies and assist in building capacity of local government to effectively procure, test and implement frontier technologies.
- Support the development of new innovation projects, partnerships and initiatives building on methodologies such as open and challenge driven innovation, design thinking and innovation mapping.
- Support preparation of outputs e.g. concept notes, background papers, technical papers, and other documentation that may be necessary, drafts communications related to these, and substantively editing of key documents prepared by team members.
- Assist in the preparation, implementation, monitoring and reporting of projects and programmes within the Global Solutions Division/ Programme Development Branch and External Relations, Strategy and Innovation Division/ Innovation Section in support of regional and country offices as well as UN-Habitat branches in integrated project/programme development, particularly related to the Flagship Programme on “People-Centered Smart Cities”.
- Assist in planning and organization of meetings and substantive presentations.
- Perform any other tasks as may be assigned from time to time by the team.

Competencies

Communication: 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 the audience. Demonstrates openness in sharing information and keeping people informed.

Teamwork: 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.

Education

Applicants must at the time of application meet one of the following requirements:

a. Be enrolled in a graduate school programme (second university degree or equivalent, or higher);
b. Be enrolled in the final academic year of a first university degree program (minimum Bachelor's level or equivalent);
c. Have graduated with Bachelor's degree, Masters, PhD or equivalent

Be computer literate in standard software applications.

Have demonstrated keen interest in the work of the United Nations and have a personal commitment to the ideals of the Charter;

Have demonstrated ability to successfully interact with individuals of different cultural backgrounds and beliefs, which include willingness to try and understand and be tolerant of differing opinions and views.

Publication in learned journal as evidence for strong research skills is highly desirable.

Strong drafting skills in English; knowledge of another language (e.g. Portuguese, French, Russian, Chinese, Arabic, Spanish) is desirable.

Preferred area of studies:
Graduate or post-graduate studies related to smart cities, data science, digital rights, digital policy and governance, programming, digital transformation of government, open data, (digital) urban planning, architecture, smart mobility, design thinking, international relations, political science or related areas.

Work Experience

No working experience is required to apply for the United Nations Internship Programme. Your training, education, advance course work or skills should benefit the United Nations during your internship.

Understanding of technology and innovation is desirable. How do you see technology and innovation contributing to sustainable urbanization?

Understanding of smart cities is desirable. How do you define smart cities?

Languages

English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For this internship, fluency in oral and written English is required. Knowledge of another UN language is an desirable.

Assessment

Potential candidates will be contacted by hiring manager directly for further consideration.

Special Notice

Your application for this internship must include:

1. A Completed application (Personal History Profile) and Cover Note, through the UN careers Portal. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed.

The Cover Note must include:

- Title of the degree you are currently pursuing
- Graduation Date
- IT skills and programmes you are proficient in
- Explain why you are the best candidate for this specific internship

Explain your interest in the UN-Habitat Programme, ensure to include all past work experience (if any).

2. Proof of enrollment from current University (if not graduated).
3. A copy of degree certificate (if you have already graduated)

Due to a high volume of applications received, ONLY successful candidates will be contacted.

“In the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, applicants may be requested to undertake the internship remotely in view of constraints regarding visa issuance, international travel and access to UN premises. Applicants must be willing and prepared to undertake the internship remotely for a part or the entirety of the internship.”

United Nations Considerations

According to article 101, paragraph 3, of the Charter of the United Nations, the paramount consideration in the employment of the staff is the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity. Candidates will not be considered for employment with the United Nations if they have committed violations of international human rights law, violations of international humanitarian law, sexual exploitation, sexual abuse, or sexual harassment, or if there are reasonable grounds to believe that they have been involved in the commission of any of these acts. The term “sexual exploitation” means any actual or attempted abuse of a position of vulnerability, differential power, or trust, for sexual purposes, including, but not limited to, profiting monetarily, socially or politically from the sexual exploitation of another. The term “sexual abuse” means the actual or threatened physical intrusion of a sexual nature, whether by force or under unequal or coercive conditions. The term “sexual harassment” means any unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature that might reasonably be expected or be perceived to cause offence or humiliation, when such conduct interferes with work, is made a condition of employment or creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment, and when the gravity of the conduct warrants the termination of the perpetrator’s working relationship. Candidates who have committed crimes other than minor traffic offences may not be considered for employment.

Due regard will be paid to the importance of recruiting the staff on as wide a geographical basis as possible. The United Nations places no restrictions on the eligibility of men and women to participate in any capacity and under conditions of equality in its principal and subsidiary organs. The United Nations Secretariat is a non-smoking environment.

The paramount consideration in the appointment, transfer, or promotion of staff shall be the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity. By accepting an offer of appointment, United Nations staff members are subject to the authority of the Secretary-General and assignment by him or her to any activities or offices of the United Nations in accordance with staff regulation 1.2 (c). In this context, all internationally recruited staff members shall be required to move periodically to discharge new functions within or across duty stations under conditions established by the Secretary-General.

Applicants are urged to follow carefully all instructions available in the online recruitment platform, inspira. For more detailed guidance, applicants may refer to the Manual for the Applicant, which can be accessed by clicking on “Manuals” hyper-link on the upper right side of the inspira account-holder homepage.

The evaluation of applicants will be conducted on the basis of the information submitted in the application according to the evaluation criteria of the job opening and the applicable internal legislations of the United Nations including the Charter of the United Nations, resolutions of the General Assembly, the Staff Regulations and Rules, administrative issuances and guidelines. Applicants must provide complete and accurate information pertaining to their personal profile and qualifications according to the instructions provided in inspira to be considered for the current job opening. No amendment, addition, deletion, revision or modification shall be made to applications that have been submitted. Candidates under serious consideration for selection will be subject to reference checks to verify the information provided in the application.

Job openings advertised on the Careers Portal will be removed at 11:59 p.m. (New York time) on the deadline date.

No Fee

THE UNITED NATIONS DOES NOT CHARGE A FEE AT ANY STAGE OF THE RECRUITMENT PROCESS (APPLICATION, INTERVIEW MEETING, PROCESSING, OR TRAINING). THE UNITED NATIONS DOES NOT CONCERN ITSELF WITH INFORMATION ON APPLICANTS’ BANK ACCOUNTS.

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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