Org. Setting and Reporting
The United Nations Human Settlements Programme, UN-Habitat, is the agency for human settlements. It is mandated by the UN General Assembly to promote socially and environmentally sustainable towns and cities with the goal of providing adequate shelter for all. UN-Habitat is the lead agency within the UN system for coordinating activities in the field of human settlement development and the UN leading the collaboration with local and regional governments and their networks.
During the 70th session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York in 2015, 193 Member States, convened at the Global Summit on Sustainable Development to adopt the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the related 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The SDGs are universal and relevant to all Member States, from both the global north and global south. As demonstrated in the past years of implementation, it is widely acknowledged that the local level and local action are critical for the overall success of the 2030 Agenda – the SDGs need to be localized. The COVID-19 pandemic highlighted even further the critical role of local governments in responding to the immediate health emergency and in planning the long-term recovery. In this context, to complement national SDG review processes including the Voluntary National Reviews, cities have been developing and increasingly using Voluntary Local Reviews (VLRs) as the main tool to monitor and report on their own SDG progress. The VLR global movement has grown exponentially and VLRs are emerging as critical instruments to accelerate the SDG localization process and to amplify the voice of local governments within international and UN-led fora.
As the UN Agency focal point to work with local and regional governments, UN-Habitat has supported VLRs through different workstreams and by intervening at different levels - local, national, and global: i) UN-Habitat has established strategic partnerships with the main UN and international partners working on VLRs and SDG localization, such as UNDESA, UN Regional Economic Commissions, as well as member states and local and regional governments globally; ii) UN-Habitat technically supports local governments across diverse regions to develop their VLRs; iii) as of knowledge development, UN-Habitat works alongside partners to provide local and regional governments with cutting-edge knowledge and learning opportunities on VLRs and SDG localization; iv) UN-Habitat advocates and builds capacities on sustainable local development and VLRs by organizing international events and peer learning opportunities. Finally, Voluntary Local Reviews are the cornerstone of UN-Habitat's comprehensive approach to SDG localization, anchored on three intertwined pillars on: the Global Urban Monitoring Framework; Voluntary Local Reviews; and SDG Cities Flagship Programme.
Moreover, UN-Habitat was appointed to be the permanent Chair of the Local2030 Coalition. The Coalition is a platform and network designed to support and accelerate local level delivery of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable by co-creating and harnessing actions to achieve local level progress on the SDGs. It aims to offer a common space to mobilize, engage and empower every local actor, everywhere.
The present internship is aimed at supporting the activities of the UN-Habitat and the Urban Practices Branch on advancing the work on local governments and SDG localization and the Local2030 Coalition. The selected candidate will be involved in the production of research and knowledge material; in the creation and consolidation of partnerships with local governments and their associations worldwide; in policy development efforts; in advocacy and communication activities such as meetings, global events and campaigns; and in providing technical support to project formulation and implementation.
The UN-HABITAT Urban Practices Branch internship is for 6 months.
In the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, applicants may be requested to undertake the internship remotely in view of constraints regarding visa issuance, international travel and access to UN premises. Applicants must be willing and prepared to undertake the internship remotely for a part or the entirety of the internship. The work hours during the internship shall be determined based on individual discussion between the intern and the supervisor(s) taking into consideration the minimum requirements of the Organization and the time difference between the hosting office and the location of the intern
The Internship is UNPAID and full-time.
Interns work five days per week under the supervision of a staff member in the department or office to which they are assigned.
Daily responsibilities will depend on the individual's background; the intern's assigned office as well as the internship period.
Under the Supervision of the technical focal point for Local Governments and VLRs, the intern will:
- Assist in developing normative tools and guidelines on SDG Localization and Voluntary Local Reviews
- Assist the development of policy briefs, positions paper and concept notes.
- Assist in planning, preparing, and implementing events (meetings, workshops, conferences, Expert Group Meetings, etc.) and support the implementation of specific recommendations arising from these events.
- Assist in the design of training programs and materials related to local governments, SDG localization and Voluntary Local Reviews, especially in partnership with local governments associations.
- Assist with outreach activities and the production of advocacy material.
- Assist in planning and reporting on meetings with key partners and stakeholders.
- Assist in the coordination of the activities of the Local2030 Coalition secretariat by engaging with relevant partners, organizing meetings and events, and developing the content of the Local2030 Coalition platform.
- Assist on communication efforts related to the activities of the Branch on SDG Localization, local governments, and Voluntary Local Reviews.
- Assist on administrative tasks and duties linked to the work of the Branch (development of ToRs; contracts etc.)
- Perform any other tasks relevant to the candidate and UPB, as jointly determined with the supervisor.
Communication: Speaks and writes clearly and effectively. Listens to others, correctly interprets messages from others and responds appropriately. Asks questions to clarify, and exhibits interest in having two-way communication. Tailors language, tone, style and format to match the audience. Demonstrates openness in sharing information and keeping people informed.
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.
Applicants must at the time of application meet one of the following requirements:
a. Be enrolled in a graduate school programme (second university degree or equivalent, or higher);
b. Be enrolled in the final academic year of a first university degree program (minimum Bachelor's level or equivalent);
c. Have graduated with Bachelor's degree, Masters, PhD or equivalent
Be computer literate in standard software applications.
Have demonstrated keen interest in the work of the United Nations and have a personal commitment to the ideals of the Charter;
Have a demonstrated ability to successfully interact with individuals of different cultural backgrounds and beliefs, which include willingness to try and understand and be tolerant of differing opinions and views.
Preferred area of study:
The candidate(s) must be currently pursuing or have recently attained an advanced university degree in one of the following fields: Social and Political Sciences, International Relations, Development Economics, Urban/Public Policy, Governance, Legislation, Urban Development, Project Development or Management, or other related fields etc.
No working experience is required to apply for the United Nations Internship Programme. Your training, education, advance course work or skills should benefit the United Nations during your internship.
Which is the added value you could bring to the work of the team?
Why do you think localizing the SDG is important and the main challenges that local and regional governments are facing to implement the SDGs?
English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For this internship, fluency in oral and written English is required. Knowledge of Spanish and French is desirable.
Potential candidates will be contacted by the hiring manager directly for further consideration.
Your application for this internship must include:
1. A Completed application (Personal History Profile) and Cover Note, through the UN careers Portal. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed.
The Cover Note must include:
- Title of the degree you are currently pursuing
- Graduation Date
- IT skills and programmes you are proficient in
- Explain why you are the best candidate for this specific internship
Explain your interest in the United Nations Internship Programme, ensure to include all past work experience (if any).
2. Proof of enrollment from current University (if not graduated).
3. A copy of degree certificate (if you have already graduated).
Due to a high volume of applications received, ONLY successful candidates will be contacted.
“In the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, applicants may be requested to undertake the internship remotely in view of constraints regarding visa issuance, international travel and access to UN premises. Applicants must be willing and prepared to undertake the internship remotely for a part or the entirety of the internship.”
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.
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.