Org. Setting and Reporting
The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) is the leading global environmental authority that sets the global environmental agenda, promotes the coherent implementation of the environmental dimension of sustainable development within the United Nations system and serves as an authoritative advocate for the global environment.
UNEP`s vision for the Digital Transformation of the organization is routed in responding to a changing digital development landscape and the evolving needs of our partners, including government, businesses, finance, and civil society. As such, UNEP continues to seek out and embrace existing and emerging digital technology in all aspects of its work to better serve its partners in their efforts to tackle the triple planetary crises of climate change, nature loss and pollution. Through a process of scanning, testing and scaling relevant digital technologies, UNEP aims to become an increasingly data-driven, agile, transparent and effective partner.
UNEP's approach to Digital Transformation is not only about digitalizing our products and services, but also using them to drive transformation changes in five areas: environmental decision-making, economic incentives and business models, human behaviors, and environmental governance. The focus of this job is to use internal and external data for evidence-based decision support by looking at trends, current data and predictions. The Data Scientist will support in accelerating and scaling environmental sustainability through digital transformation, and in the digital transformation of UNEP`s business processes and culture.
This position is located in the Chief Digital Office within the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) in Nairobi. The incumbent will report to the Chief Digital Officer and will be responsible for the following duties:
• Studies, explores, and evaluates new and existing data sources to determine their effectiveness and accuracy for use in decision making, and assess their suitability for actionable output. Provide data-driven recommendations to stakeholders.
• Develops, implements and evaluates assigned programmes, monitors and analyzes their development and implementation, and drafts and reviews relevant documents and reports.
• Designs and builds predictive data science products, such as visualizations, models or AI/ML algorithms for initial simulations or prototypes and subsequent ingestion into mainstream software applications.
• Liaises with technology stakeholders to access infrastructure, software and services needed to develop and deploy data science products.
• Promotes use of data science solutions by showcasing the products to stakeholders; disseminating of data products, and raising awareness of available data products.
• Develops products, tools and processes to periodically validate the effectiveness of data science products and their expected and observed benefits. Assesses impact on business defined key performance indicators; Iteratively improves products based on findings.
• Engages in complex research and analyses to develop data products; uses internal and publicly available data and information.
• Oversees and allocates resources to the building of analysis, reporting and quality control capabilities, contributes to short- and long-term planning of UNEP and assists in identifying threats and opportunities to the successful implementation of its mandate.
• Coordinates with different functional teams to implement models and monitor outcomes and translate organizational needs into analytics and reporting requirements to support decisions, strategies and workflows with data and information.
• Develops processes and tools to monitor and analyze model performance and data accuracy and conduct full data analytics lifecycle analysis, including data requirements, activities and design.
• Collects and analyzes data to identify trends or patterns and provide insights through graphs, charts, tables and reports using data visualization methods to enable data-driven planning, decision-making, presentation and reporting.
PROFESSIONALISM: Knowledge of data analysis life cycle from ingest and wrangling to analysis and visualization to present findings. Excellent analytical and problem-solving skills, ability to build new products and drive new approaches. Ability to convey complex / difficult data science topics to clients in a relatable manner. Takes pride in the work for the organization and understands the impact that can be brought into the organization by allowing data-driven and evidence-based decisions. Ability to apply judgment in the context of assignments given, plan own work and manage conflicting priorities. The ability to analyze and interpret data in support of decision-making and convey resulting information to management. Shows pride in work and in achievements. Demonstrates professional competence and mastery of subject matter. Is conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, observing deadlines and achieving results. Is motivated by professional rather than personal concerns. Shows persistence when faced with difficult problems or challenges; remains calm in stressful situations. Takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work.
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.
MANAGING PERFORMANCE: Delegates the appropriate responsibility, accountability and decision-making authority. Makes sure that roles, responsibilities and reporting lines are clear to each staff member. Accurately judges the amount of time and resources needed to accomplish a task and matches task to skills. Monitors progress against milestones and deadlines. Regularly discusses performance and provides feedback and coaching to staff. Encourages risk-taking and supports creativity and initiative. Actively supports the development and career aspirations of staff. Appraises performance fairly.
An advanced university degree (Master’s degree, or equivalent) in data science, computer science, information management, statistics, public administration, public information, management or a related field is required.
A first-level degree (Bachelor’s degree or equivalent) in the specified fields of studies with two (2) additional years of relevant work experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.
Successful completion of both degree and non-degree programs in data analytics, business analytics or data science programs is desirable.
A minimum of seven (7) years of progressively responsible experience in data science, data analytics, applied mathematics, information management or related area is required.
Experience in using data to advance decisions, strategies and execution is required.
Experience managing small teams is required.
Experience of working with international multi-agency projects, ideally in an environmental context, is desirable.
A minimum of two (2) years or more of experience in data analytics or related area is desirable.
English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the position advertised, fluency in English is required. Knowledge of another official United Nations language is desirable.
NOTE: ''Fluency'' equals a rating of ''fluent'' in all four areas (read, write, speak, understand) and ''Knowledge of'' equals a rating of ''confident'' in two of the four areas.
Evaluation of qualified candidates may include an assessment exercise which may be followed by competency-based interview.Special Notice
Appointment against this position is for an initial period of one (1) year and may be subject to extension.
Staff members are subject to the authority of the Secretary-General and to assignment by him or her. In this context, all staff are expected to move periodically to new functions in their careers in accordance with established rules and procedures.
The United Nations Secretariat is committed to achieving 50/50 gender balance and geographical diversity in its staff. Female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply for this position.
Internal Applicants – When completing the Candidate Profile form, ensure ALL fields, ALL professional experience and contact information are completed and up to date. This information is the basis for the hiring manager to assess your eligibility and suitability for the position and to contact you.
Individual Contractors and Consultants who have worked within the UN Secretariat in the last six months, irrespective of the administering entity, are ineligible to apply for or be appointed to any professional and higher temporary or fixed-term positions, within six months of the end of their current or most recent service. For such positions, at least six months need to have elapsed between the end of a consultancy or individual contract and the time of application and consideration for an appointment as a staff member under the Staff Rules and Regulations of the United Nations.
Applicants, who successfully go through a competitive recruitment process and are recommended for selection and/or inclusion in the roster of pre-approved candidates for subsequent job openings at the same level and with similar functions, may have their application information and roster status shared with other UN Organizations. Such applicants may be contacted by other UN Organizations for similar job openings, subject to the confirmation of their interest. Placement on the roster is no guarantee of a future selection.
At the United Nations, the paramount consideration in the recruitment and employment of staff is the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence and integrity, with due regard to geographic diversity. All employment decisions are made on the basis of qualifications and organizational needs. The United Nations is committed to creating a diverse and inclusive environment of mutual respect. The United Nations recruits and employs staff regardless of gender identity, sexual orientation, race, religious, cultural and ethnic backgrounds or disabilities. Reasonable accommodation for applicants with disabilities may be provided to support participation in the recruitment process when requested and indicated in the application.
On-line applications will be acknowledged where an email address has been provided. All applicants are strongly encouraged to apply on-line as soon as possible after the job opening has been posted and well before the deadline stated in the job opening. If you do not receive an e-mail acknowledgement within 24 hours of submission, your application may not have been received. If the problem persists, please seek technical assistance through the Inspira "Contact Us" link.
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.
Reasonable accommodation may be provided to applicants with disabilities upon request, to support their participation in the recruitment process.
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.
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.