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Senior Programme Assistant


Post Number : SC 328

Grade : G-6

Parent Sector : Natural Sciences Sector (SC)

Duty Station: Paris

Job Family: Programme Coordination

Type of contract : Fixed Term

Duration of contract : 2 years with possibility of renewal

Recruitment open to : Internal and external candidates

Application Deadline (Midnight Paris Time) : 02-June-2022


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



UNESCO works to advance and promote science in the interest of peace, sustainable development, human security and well-being, in close collaboration with its Member States and a wide variety of partners. It is a specialized Agency of the United Nations with specific mandate on Education, Natural and Social Sciences as well as Culture and Communication. The post provides guidance and verifies the contributions by colleagues to ensure the Sector’s quality delivery and relevance The functions of the post focus on a range of support services for information management, coordination and monitoring (programme/project). The work entails implementation of communication, documentation and internal managerial coordination support activities within the Unit.  


Under the overall authority of the Assistant Director-General for the Natural Sciences (ADG/SC), and the direct supervision of the Programme Coordinator in the Executive Office (SC/EO), the Senior Programme Assistant will support the Executive Office of the Natural Sciences by  assisting in the coordination of SC sector programme implementation activities. In particular, the incumbent will perform the following tasks:

Long Description

  • Assist in the coordination of the administrative aspects of the SC sector Priority Africa Activities, in particular Africa Flagship 5 programme, in consultation with Programme Specialists at Headquarters (HQ) and in the field, create and maintain a comprehensive database on all SC projects in Africa under Africa Flagship 5 Programme.
  • Ensure responsibility as the focal point for the Participation Programme in the SC sector, follow up on requests from the sector for Priority Africa and External Relations (PAX) and submit evaluations and inputs for the programme through SISTER.
  • Assist in the preparation of sectoral documents for the governing bodies – Executive Board, and General Conference sessions and contribute to gathering the relevant information for ADG’s interventions.
  • Collect, edit, compile for the preparation of briefings for the DG from the SC sector and liaise with divisions and sections at HQ and SC staff in field offices for timely contributions.

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)


For detailed information, please consult the UNESCO Competency Framework.




  • Completed secondary, technical or vocational school.

Work Experience

  • Minimum eight (8) years of relevant work experience in programme assistant positions, administration or related area.

Skills and competencies

  • Good interpersonal and communication skills; strong service orientation and ability to deal efficiently with partners at different levels.
  • Excellent skills in drafting reports and correspondence, with attention to detail.
  • Very good organizational and coordination skills with ability to take initiative, establish priorities and monitor own work plans.
  • Ability to work as part of a team, and provide efficient, quality and timely support and capacity to work efficiently under pressure.
  • Sense of integrity and confidentiality.
  • Ability to work in a multicultural environment and to establish good working relationships with external and internal partners.
  • Excellent knowledge of IT tools, with proficiency in the use of MS office (Word, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint) and database packages.


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




  • Specialized training or courses in administration

Work Experience

  • Experience within an international environment

Skills and competencies

  • Knowledge of ERP systems (Enterprise Resource Planning).


  • Knowledge of another official UNESCO language (Arabic, Chinese, Russian or 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 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.