Senior Programme Specialist (Natural Sciences) Re-advertisement


Post Number : 4IDSC0015RP

Grade : P-5

Parent Sector : Natural Sciences

Duty Station: Jakarta, Indonesia

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) : 27-FEB-2024


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



Under the overall authority of the Assistant Director-General, Natural Sciences (ADG/SC) and direct supervision from the Director of the UNESCO Jakarta Office, the incumbent will lead the Water Sciences and Intergovernmental Hydrological Programme (IHP) activities, the Ecological and Earth Sciences programmes, activities/projects implemented in the Asia Pacific Region to develop, drive and ensure the delivery of a comprehensive Natural Science strategy and the design of relevant approaches, partnerships, policies, objectives and deliverables. In addition, s/he will lead and manage the Natural Sciences staff and multi-disciplinary teams to achieve priorities and policy development within the context of UNESCO’s Medium-term Strategy (C/4), the approved Programme and Budget (C/5), the global development plans such as 2030 agenda and related SDGs. Furthermore, the Senior Programme Specialist will be expected to perform the following responsibilities:

Long Description

  • Provide intellectual leadership to design, coordinate and monitor activities and projects under the water sciences portfolio, Intergovernmental Hydrological Programme (IHP), and the ecological and earth sciences of the office. Ensure their consistency with the national and regional priorities, as well as key United Nations (UN) development frameworks, such as the United Nations Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework (UNSDCF).
  • Direct the conceptualisation, design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of work plans and regular and extra-budgetary initiatives and activities whilst also considering the need to identify inter-sectoral opportunities to build synergies and maximise resources.
  • Participate in joint UN programming activities related to natural sciences and pursue and maintain strategic partnerships to promote the technical contribution of UNESCO to the UN Development Cooperation  Framework (UNSDCF), Common Country Analysis (CCAs), Country Programme Action Plans (CPAPs) and related UN Country Team working groups to advance programmatic work.
  • Establish and maintain professional networks and strategic partnerships with stakeholders, including donors, universities, development partners and National Commissions to promote collaboration and enhance visibility for the Organization.
  • Lead the resource mobilisation effort and foster funding alternatives for the Region and countries by developing concepts, project proposals and other agreements in line with the Natural Sciences programmatic agenda and the Regional strategies.
  • Ensure the efficient execution of budgetary resources allocated to the Natural Sciences portfolio of the Office, as well as lead and provide technical backstopping to Natural Sciences staff and supervision to other contracted personnel and temporary assistance engaged in the delivery of key programme outputs.

COMPETENCIES (Core / Managerial)

Communication (C)
Accountability (C)
Innovation (C)
Knowledge sharing and continuous improvement (C)
Results focus (C)
Teamwork (C)
Professionalism (C)
Building partnerships (M)
Managing performance (M)
Planning and organizing (C)
Driving and managing change (M)
Leading and empowering others (M)
Making quality decisions (M)
Strategic thinking (M)


For detailed information, please consult the UNESCO Competency Framework.



  • Advanced university degree (Master's or equivalent) in the field of water sciences or in another related field of natural sciences.

Work Experience

  • A minimum 10 years of progressively responsible, relevant professional experience in the areas of water resources, water resources research, hydrology, of which preferably, at least five years at the international level.
  • Solid work experience with water science education, training and/or research on water natural resource utilization and management.
  • Demonstrated partnership development, resource mobilization and fundraising experience.
  • Demonstrated experience in leading, managing and motivating staff and teams.


  • Strong conceptual, analytical and organisational skills.
  • Sound judgement and decision-making skills.
  • Proven ability in planning and setting up training courses, projects, and assisting in establishing international/regional water centers.
  • Ability to interact with a wide range of high-level partners.
  • Demonstrated ability to maintain effective working relations in a multicultural environment with tact and sensitivity to diversity.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills with a proven ability to prepare high-quality documents and reports.
  • Good IT Skills, including knowledge of office software.


  • Excellent knowledge of English (written and spoken).



  • Advanced university degree (Ph.D. or equivalent) in the field of hydrology, water resources engineering, environment, ecology or natural sciences.
  • Studies in water-related environmental, geophysics or physical geography.

Work Experience

  • High-level university teaching experience and/or service in developing countries.
  • Work experience within intergovernmental organizations and within government in the water and ecology sector in different regions of the world, particularly in the Asia-Pacific region.
  • Work experience with earth and water-specialized agencies of the United Nations System, professional NGOs and/or international organizations for technical cooperation.
  • Leading or managing international water networks worldwide.


  • Familiarity with the work and general functioning of international organizations and/or the United Nations System.


  • Knowledge of other official UNESCO languages (French, Arabic, Chinese, Russian, Spanish).


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.

The approximate annual starting salary for this post is 128 062 USD.

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.


UNESCO applies a zero tolerance policy against all forms of harassment.

UNESCO is committed to achieve and sustain 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. Individuals from minority groups, indigenous groups and persons with disabilities, as well as nationals from non-and under-represented Member States (last update here) 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.