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Programme Assistant


Post Number : PAX 006

Grade : G-4

Parent Sector : Priority Africa and External Relations Sector (PAX)

Duty Station: Paris

Job Family: General Administrative Support

Type of contract : Fixed Term

Duration of contract : 2 years

Recruitment open to : Internal and external candidates

Application Deadline (Midnight Paris Time) : 18-DEC-2020


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



(Only candidates who are entitled to work in France may apply to this position).




Under the authority of the  Assistant Director-General of the Sector for Priority Africa and External Relations, and the direct supervision of the Programme Specialist for Partnerships, the incumbent provides support in the organization and delivery of regular and extrabudgetary programme activites, carrying out office support and administrative functions to support the Unit for Relations with African Member States and Partnerships (PAX/AFR/ASP).

The incumbent will, in particular:

  • Provide secretarial services to the Unit for Relations with African Member States and Partnerships, to ensure the timely preparation and dispatch of correspondence, reports, briefing notes, external communications and presentations (in English and/or French).
  • Assist with the preparation of documents and the organization of meetings with Member States and other partners, and documents related to the UNESCO Executive Board and General Conference.
  • Whenever necessary, informally translate correspondence from either French/English into the other language.
  • Provide general information related to the Unit for Relations with African Member States and Partnerships.
  • Prepare and ensure the timely execution of contracts, including all measures concerning payments and human resources related to the Unit.
  • Ensure planning and travel arrangements for missions, training sessions or expert meetings organized by the Unit.
  • Establish and maintain the Unit's physical and electronic filing and reference systems, including for correspondence, contracts, agreements and any related payments.


COMPETENCIES (Core / Managerial)
Accountability (C)
Communication (C)
Innovation (C)
Knowledge sharing and continuous improvement (C)
Planning and organizing (C)
Results focus (C)
Teamwork (C)
For detailed information, please consult the UNESCO Competency Framework.



  • Completed secondary, technical and/or vocational education.


Work Experience

  • Minimum of three (3) years of work experience in office management or administrative/secretarial tasks.


Skills & Competencies

  • Excellent coordination skills.
  • Good interpersonal and communication skills, including ability to draft correspondence and correct documents.
  • Discretion, initiative and a service-oriented attitude to provide quality and timely support and services.
  • Ability to identify and negotiate best conditions for travel.
  • Excellent IT skills with proficiency in the use of MS Office (Outlook, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc.).



  • Excellent knowledge of English or French (oral and written) and good knowledge of the other language.




  • General secretarial training/certificate.


Work Experience

  • Relevant experience in providing programme or administrative support at international level or within the United Nations system or in an international organization/institution.


Skills & Competencies

  • Knowledge of UNESCO’s policies and practices.
  • Knowledge of African Member States and related networks.
  • Knowledge of UNESCO’s business applications/systems/tools (IRIS, SISTER, DUO, etc.).



  • Knowledge of another official language of UNESCO (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.


For more information in benefits and entitlements, please consult ICSC website.


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.