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Programme Assistant


  • Organization: UNESCO - United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization
  • Location: Paris
  • Grade: Administrative support - GS-4, General Service - No need for Higher Education - Locally recruited position
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Administrative support
    • Project and Programme Management
  • Closing Date: Closed


Post Number : SC 199

Grade : G-4

Parent Sector : Natural Sciences Sector (SC)

Duty Station: Paris

Job Family: Natural Sciences

Type of contract : Fixed Term

Duration of contract : 2 years, renewable 

Recruitment open to : Internal and external candidates

Application Deadline (Midnight Paris Time) : 11-APR-2023


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

Only candidates who are entitled to work in France may apply to these positions


Under the overall authority of the Assistant-Director General of the Natural Science Sector, overall guidance of the Director of the Division for Science Policy and Basic Scieces (SC/PBS) and the direct supervision of the Chief of the Section of Science Technology and Innovation Policy (SC/PBS/STIP), the Programme Assistant shall provide support in the organization and delivery of programme activities, carry out a range of office support and administrative functions.


In particular the incumbent will perform the following duties:

Long Description
  • Provide general office assistance to the Section and secretarial functions to the Chief of Section: receive, analyze, sort, register and distribute correspondence and documents; update and maintain distribution lists and process requests for data and reports; draft correspondence and emails; review, proofread and edit correspondence.
  • Respond to enquiries and follow up routine outstanding matters; route information and queries as appropriate; provide information to supervisor(s) and colleagues; make appointments, receive visitors and take telephone calls, answering enquiries.
  • Maintain information systems and databases in both physical and electronic media by recording, updating and retrieving information, documentation and data and assist in the preparation of presentation and communication materials using appropriate technology/software.
  • Produce complete and finalize documents, publications and correspondence related to the work of the Section based on draft texts. Search, locate, compile, review and update information and data used in the development of documents, work plans, contracts and budgets.
  • Prepare administrative documents; initiate administrative procedures and ensure follow-up, including payment follow-up in collaboration with the Administrative Unit of the Sector. Inform team members of specific administrative processes and related procedures to support work planning and the timely and coordinated execution of work; follow-up and alert team members of outstanding payments, timeframes and bottlenecks.
  • Provide administrative support for events and organize official online, hybrid or in-presentia meetings, events and workshops by securing online channels, booking venues, equipment and providing other related logistical support. Organize official travel related to meetings, events and workshops; make travel arrangements; track and prepare itineraries and agendas; facilitate travel by providing/ clarifying information and preparing the necessary documentation such as visa applications.
  • Provide guidance to short-term/temporary staff on general office processes and procedures, automated systems, computer applications and Perform general administrative tasks such as leave and attendance management.
- For detailed information, please consult the UNESCO Competency Framework. COMPETENCIES (Core / Managerial) Accountability (C) Communication (C) Innovation (C) Knowledge sharing and continuous improvement (C) Planning and organizing (C) Results focus (C) Teamwork (C) Professionalism (C) REQUIRED QUALIFICATIONS


  • Completed secondary, technical or vocational education.


Work Experience

  • Minimum of three (3) years of relevant work experience in secretarial, and/or administrative support tasks or related tasks, preferably in an international environment.

Skills and competencies

  • Good interpersonal and communication skills, including good drafting skills in English and/or French.
  • Ability to draft correspondence and correct documents.
  • Good organizational and coordination skills.
  • Discretion and capacity to deal efficiently and tactfully with people of different cultural backgrounds.
  • Diplomacy and politeness in dealing with external and internal partners requesting information.
  • Flexibility to adjust work schedules and priorities and capacity to work effectively under pressure.
  • Good computer skills, proficiency in the use of MS Office (Word, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint, etc.).



  • Excellent knowledge of French or English and good knowledge of the other working language.


  • General clerical training and/or completed postsecondary education.


Work Experience

  • Experience in providing programme and administrative support services.
  • Relevant work experience in an international environment/organization/institution.
  • Experience in drafting communication materials.



UNESCO’s salaries consist of a basic salary and other benefits which may include if applicable: 30 days annual leave, family allowance, medical insurance, pension plan etc.


For full information on benefits and entitlements, please consult our Guide to Staff Benefits.


Please note that all candidates must complete an on-line application and provide complete and accurate information. To apply, please visit the UNESCO careers website. No modifications can be made to the application submitted.

The evaluation of candidates is based on the criteria in the vacancy notice, and may include tests and/or assessments, as well as a competency-based interview. 

UNESCO uses communication technologies such as video or teleconference, e-mail correspondence, etc. for the assessment and evaluation of candidates.

Please note that only selected candidates will be further contacted and candidates in the final selection step will be subject to reference checks based on the information provided.



Only candidates who are entitled to work in the E.U. may apply to these positions. Please note that for this position UNESCO will not reimburse expenses such as travel in connection with interviews, tests and relocation.


UNESCO recalls that paramount consideration in the appointment of staff members shall be the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, technical competence and integrity. UNESCO applies a zero-tolerance policy against all forms of harassment. UNESCO is committed to achieving and sustaining equitable and diverse geographical distribution, as well as gender parity among its staff members in all categories and at all grades. Furthermore, UNESCO is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality and culture. Candidates from non- and under-represented Member States (last update here) are particularly welcome and strongly encouraged to apply. Individuals from minority groups and indigenous groups and persons with disabilities are equally encouraged to apply. All applications will be treated with the highest level of confidentiality. Worldwide mobility is required for staff members appointed to international posts.

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

This vacancy is now closed.
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