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Programme Management - Associate, Multiple positions

New York City

  • Organization: UNOPS - United Nations Office for Project Services
  • Location: New York City
  • Grade: LICA-6, Local Individual Contractors Agreement
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Project and Programme Management
  • Closing Date: 2022-09-28

Background Information - Job-specific

UNOPS supports partners to build a better future by providing services that increase the efficiency, effectiveness and sustainability of peace building, humanitarian and development projects.  Mandated as a central resource of the United Nations, UNOPS provides sustainable project management, procurement and infrastructure services to a wide range of governments, donors and United Nations organizations.

The New York Service Cluster (NYSC) supports the United Nations Secretariat, as well as other New York-based United Nations organizations, bilateral and multilateral partners in the delivery of UNOPS mandate in project management, infrastructure management, and procurement management. The Sustainable Development Cluster (SDC) supports diverse partners with their peacebuilding, humanitarian and development operations. It was formed by combining the following portfolios: Grants Management Services (GMS), UN Technology Support Services (UNTSS), Development and Special Initiatives Portfolio (DSIP) It provides Services to partners' programmes that are designed, structured, and managed with a global perspective and primarily serving partners that are headquartered in New York.  SDC has a footprint of approximately 125 countries. 

UNOPS has signed an agreement with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) to implement the project activities for the Global Programme on Nature for Development.

UNDP’s Global Programme on Nature for Development brings together several different initiatives including – the Equator Initiative, the National Biodiversity Initiative and Learning for Nature under one program in order to identify, foster, showcase and celebrate nature-based solutions that help achieve the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development at local, national, and international levels. The work of the Global Programme on Nature for Development contributes to UNDP's Strategic Plan by charting sustainable development pathways through the conservation, restoration and sustainable management of biodiversity and ecosystems; and by promoting inclusive and effective democratic governance in the area of natural resources. 

The Equator Initiative brings together the United Nations, governments, civil society, businesses and grassroots organizations to recognize and advance indigenous and local sustainable development solutions for people, nature and resilient communities. The Equator Initiative seeks to recognize the success of local and indigenous initiatives; create opportunities and platforms to share knowledge and good practice; inform policy to foster an enabling environment for local and indigenous community action; and develop the capacity of indigenous peoples and local communities to scale-up their impact.

The Equator Initiative is built upon three equally important pillars:

- The Equator Prize is awarded biennially to recognize and advance local sustainable development solutions for people, nature and resilient communities. As local and indigenous groups across the world chart a path towards sustainable development, the Equator Prize shines a spotlight on their efforts by honoring them on an international stage.

Equator Dialogues are an ongoing series of community-driven meetings and exchanges, held in conjunction with related international forums. Equator Dialogues provide opportunities for people to share experiences, develop capacities and influence policy.

Equator Knowledge is a research, documentation and learning program focused on local best practice in sustainable development. The Equator Initiative works with partners to identify, document, and analyze the success factors of local best practice, and to catalyze ongoing peer-to-peer learning, knowledge exchange and replication of best practice.

The National Biodiversity Initiative supports countries to manage their ecosystems and biodiversity in order to improve national planning and governance of biodiversity, ecosystems, and development, and to promote resilience for sustainable development. The National Biodiversity Initiative works in three project areas: National Biodiversity Strategies and Action Plans (NBSAPs) Support, National Reporting, and Capacity Building. The use of spatial data for spatial planning is a cross-cutting theme across these project areas.

Knowledge Sharing is a main goal of the Equator Initiative and the National Biodiversity Initiative. The Equator Initiative has a large series of research papers, books, and other publications focusing on local approaches to poverty reduction and conservation, informed by community-based initiatives. 180 case studies in over 30 languages have documented the Equator Prize Winners’ innovative practices that deliver the win-win-win solutions that ensure social, economic, and environmental sustainability. The National Biodiversity Initiative works in partnership with UN Environment’s MapX to share knowledge on the role of spatial data in biodiversity planning, policymaking, and reporting through story maps. Learning for Nature circulates knowledge and promotes best practices participants through Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs), webinars, self-paced e-learning modules, and private training courses.

Learning for Nature is a capacity-building offer provided by the Global Programme on Nature for Development, cutting across the three areas of work. This program connects biodiversity policymakers, change-makers, and on-the-ground subject matter experts to facilitate the delivery of the Convention on Biological Diversity’s Aichi Biodiversity Targets, and the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals. Access to the global multi-stakeholder networks mobilized by the Equator Initiative and the National Biodiversity Initiative allows Learning for Nature to circulate knowledge while promoting best practices. Building on our learnings on the ground, we seek synergies, build linkages, and engage thousands of course participants on their journey towards sustainable development solutions for people, nature, and resilient communities. Learning for Nature invites its audiences to explore opportunities for building capacity to scale up efforts for nature-based sustainable development through Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs), webinars, self-paced e-learning modules, and private training courses.

For further information please go to:, or  

This is a position to support a project which UNOPS is implementing for the United Nations Development Programme. The incumbent of this position will be personnel of UNOPS under its full responsibility.

Functional Responsibilities

The Programme Management - Associate facilitates the delivery of the programme activities with a focus on support with the implementation of the Equator Prize and related events and activities. The incumbent would coordinate the overall delivery and implementation of the Equator Prize work to allow the programme to effectively shine a spotlight on the success of local and indigenous groups that contribute to sustainable development at the grassroots level; to develop the capacities of local and indigenous peoples in the Equator Prize network; to inform policy and foster knowledge exchanges amongst local and national policy makers; and to document Equator Prize winners’ best practices. 

This role comprises management of the outreach and communications efforts, liaison with and support to organizations nominating for the Equator Prize, management of the selection process identifying the winners, and preparation of community representatives for their travels to New York to participate in the Equator Prize Award Ceremony and associated activities, among others. 

The Programme Management - Associate would also advance the NfD program by contributing to the development of knowledge products and by working on facilitating connections between Equator Prize winners and other stakeholder, to further promote nature-based solutions for sustainable development by improving the value chain and increasing livelihoods of local communities.

The assignment is supervised by the Manager of the Global Programme on Nature for Development.

Duties and responsibilities include:

  • Outreach support: Implement detailed outreach strategy for the Equator Prize (e-mail outreach, social media, research on additional contacts, liaison with previous winners etc.); provide technical support to nominations and management of inquiries; provide support to communications efforts such as creation and dissemination of social media materials.
  • Support to selection process: Handle nominations for the Equator Prize, provide technical support to the members of the Technical Advisory Committee (TAC); ensure nominations are evaluated correctly and in a timely manner; provide support to the organization of the Technical Advisory Committee meeting; manage translations.
  • Support to due diligence process: Conduct desk top review to verify information provided by shortlisted organizations and liaise with referees.
  • Support case studies production: liaise with case study writers, editors, and local communities to ensure the proper gathering of materials and feedback, and the finalization of case studies about nature-based solutions.
  • Support to travel preparations: Support Equator Prize winner representatives in their travel preparations for New York for the Award Ceremony or to other locations/venues to attend relevant events or international conferences.
  • Support the coordination related to ensuring the participation of Indigenous peoples and local communities (“IPLCs”) in national/regional and global policy events to make inroads in the UN system or other political bodies to advocate for human/civil/Indigenous rights, civil society engagement and inclusion, and nature-based solutions advancement for sustainable development.
  • Support IPLCs to actively participate in global conservation and development conferences and side events (e.g. by CBD, UNFCCC, WCC and UNCCD) by convening dialogue, identifying appropriate participants, summarizing key issues, providing supporting evidence and materials, preparing speakers for presentations, rehearsal of interventions, and supporting them for travel.
  • Support the organization and coordination of global and national or local Equator Prize ceremonies and other capacity-building events.
  • Support partnerships between the Equator Initiative and other international organizations, foundations, private sector companies, Indigenous groups, local communities, subject matter experts, UNDP offices worldwide, internal UNDP partners (GEF Small Grants Programme and other initiatives supporting local development initiatives) and other UN agencies.
  • Support to procurement processes to source external vendors for events, dialogues, workshops and to direct funds to Equator Prize winning communities.
  • Support to Equator Prize community dialogues: Help organize community dialogue workshops, including logistical support, volunteer management, interpretation, etc.
  • Support the drafting of written outputs and knowledge products: e.g., publications, newsletters, toolkits, sections of reports, concept notes, presentations, social media posts, interviews, podcasts, etc.
  • In partnership with the Learning for Nature team, support the production and full delivery of webinars, training, workshops and other learning or capacity-building events tailored to IPLC constituencies. Topics may include economical transformations, green entrepreneurship, supply chains, commodities, fundraising, private sector partnerships, MSME finance, basics of community video production, communications skills for IPLCs, nature-based solutions, advocacy for Indigenous peoples, mapping for biodiversity, land and tenure rights, community forestry, mangrove restoration, sustainable agriculture, local green energy, and others.  
  • Perform other duties as may be reasonably required and in line with the incumbent’s scope of services above.

Education/Experience/Language requirements


    • Secondary education/High school diploma is required.
    • University degree (Bachelor’s or Master’), preferably in international relations, sustainable development, environmental management/sciences, social/political science, business and management, or other related disciplines, will be considered an asset and may substitute for some of the required years of experience.
    Required Experience
    • Minimum six (6) years of experience working in business administration, legal, finance, project or programme management, human/civil/indigenous rights, local economic development, or civil society engagement and education, is required.
    • Strong computer literacy required as well as experience using software packages such as MS Office, internet research
    Desirable experience (the following experience is optional candidates who do not have it are welcome to apply):
    • Prior experience (e.g. through internships or voluntary work) in international affairs, supporting international events, communications and/or local development is considered a strong asset.
    • Prior experience working at the local level on sustainable development, indigenous and/or human rights issues in developing countries would be an asset.
    • Prior experience developing, coordinating, and convening large events such as award ceremonies, flagship events or capacity-building workshops would be an asset.
    • Prior experience in developing educational materials, webinars or training would be an asset.
    • Prior experience in international affairs, microfinance, communications and/or local development is considered an asset.
    • Fluency and excellent writing ability in English is required.
    • Fluency or proficiency in additional languages such as French and Spanish is considered a strong asset.


    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.

    Contract type, level and duration

    Contract type: Individual Contractor Agreement (ICA)  Contract level: Local Individual Contractor Agreement (L-ICA 6- ICSC6)
    Contract duration: Ongoing contract (subject to good performance, availability of funds, organizational requirements and project duration).

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

    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.
    • UNOPS embraces diversity and it is committed to the principle of equal employment opportunity for all its employees and encourages qualified candidates to apply irrespective of race, colour, national origin, ethnic or social background, genetic information, gender, gender identity and/or expression, sexual orientation, religion or belief, or disability.
    • UNOPS seeks to reasonably accommodate candidates with special needs, upon request.
    • 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
    • For retainer contracts, you must complete a few Mandatory Courses (around 4 hours) in your own time, before providing services to UNOPS.
    • The incumbent is responsible to abide by security policies, administrative instructions, plans and procedures of the UN Security Management System and that of UNOPS.  
    • All UNOPS personnel are responsible for performing their duties in accordance with the UN Charter, UN Staff Regulations and Rules, UNOPS Policies and Instructions, as well as other relevant accountability frameworks. In addition, all personnel must demonstrate an understanding of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in a manner consistent with UN core values and the UN Common Agenda.
    • 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.

    Background Information - UNOPS

    UNOPS – an operational arm of the United Nations – supports the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by successfully implementing its partners’ peacebuilding, humanitarian, and development projects around the world. Our mission is to help people build better lives and countries achieve peace and sustainable development.
    UNOPS areas of expertise cover infrastructure, procurement, project management, financial management, and human resources.

    Working with us
    We are proud of our people. With a wealth of knowledge and skills in various disciplines – engineering, finance, human resources, ICT, leadership, project management, procurement, and more – they help tackle some of the biggest challenges of our time. Their work around the world supports progress toward the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

    At UNOPS, we offer a range of short- and long-term opportunities in various environments and duty stations – from Denmark and Kenya to Mexico, Switzerland, Myanmar, Senegal, Uganda, and many more.

    With over 5,000 UNOPS personnel and approximately 7,400 personnel recruited on behalf of our partners, spread across 80 countries, our workforce represents a range of nationalities and cultures. We promote a balanced and diverse labor force — a strength that helps us better understand and address our partners’ needs. We continually strive to maintain our gender-balanced workplace. We encourage qualified underrepresented groups as per UNOPS Gender, Diversity, and Inclusion Strategy to apply for our vacancies.

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

    Background Information - Sustainable Development Cluster 

    Based in New York, the Sustainable Development Cluster (SDC) supports diverse partners with their peacebuilding, humanitarian and development operations.

    The SDC’s services include grants management, development and special initiatives support, and technology support to the UN and UN agencies.

    The SDC is part of the New York Service Cluster that supports the United Nations Secretariat, as well as a broadening community of other New York-based United Nations organizations, bilateral and multilateral partners in the delivery of UNOPS mandate in project management, infrastructure management, and procurement management.

    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.