National Professional Officers

National Professional Officers should be nationals of the country of their employment. NPOs perform work at the professional level and the same standards of recruitment qualifications and performance, required for International Professional staff.

Standard recruitment requirements

UNESCO applies the following standard recruitment requirements, as a general rule, for minimum educational requirements combined with a minimum number of years of relevant work experience. Although the qualifications required for each post are specified in the individual vacancy notices, the standard recruitment requirements for National Professional posts are as illustrated as follows:

- Professional experience

- Education

An advanced university degree (Master or equivalent) in education, culture, science, social and human sciences, communication, business administration or a related field.

- Languages

Excellent knowledge of English or French (the two working languages of UNESCO) is required. Good knowledge of the other languages is an asset. Knowledge of one of the official languages of UNESCO (Arabic, Chinese, Spanish or Russian) is an additional asset.


NPO staff members are paid on a local basis. The salaries, allowances and conditions of employment of locally recruited staff are established through periodic, comprehensive local salary surveys carried out at every duty station, normally every four or five years.

Local salary scales differentiated by grade and step and usually expressed in local currency. The NPO salary scales normally consist of four levels (A, B, C and D), although an E scale has been established in a small number of duty stations.

The eligibility for bonuses and specific allowances depends, in many cases, on staff’s personal circumstances. The benefits include family allowances, danger pay, depending of the duty station.

Pension and Insurance

UNESCO is a member of the United Nations Joint Staff Pension Fund that provides retirement, death, disability and related benefits for staff upon cessation of their services.

Staff are covered in case of death and disability from the beginning of their appointment and upon separation from service, they may be entitled to a lifetime pension benefit based on their age and length of contributory service.

See UNJSPF brochure for further information.

UNESCO also offers a medical benefits fund that provides medical insurance benefits to existing and former staff members and their eligible family members. Coverage is worldwide and provides for the reimbursement of a major portion of the expenses for medical health care.

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