Strategy & Innovation Specialist - Aspire to Innovate (a2i) Programme

  • Added Date: Monday, 30 August 2021
  • Deadline Date: Sunday, 12 September 2021

UNDP is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality and culture. Individuals from minority groups, indigenous groups and persons with disabilities are equally encouraged to apply. All applications will be treated with the strictest confidence.

UNDP does not tolerate sexual exploitation and abuse, any kind of harassment, including sexual harassment, and discrimination. All selected candidates will, therefore, undergo rigorous reference and background checks.

The Aspire to Innovate (a2i) Programme builds on the Government of Bangladesh’s efforts to introduce a citizen-centric culture of innovation in civil service to improve service delivery and make services more inclusive, affordable, reliable and easier to access. This project will provide support to establish institutional mechanisms and improve accountability to accelerate SDG achievements in Bangladesh.

This project will have three components:
1. Institutionalizing Public Service Innovation and Improving Accountability
2. Catalyzing Digital Financial Services and Fintech Innovations
3. Incubating Private Sector-enabled Public Service Innovation

‘Aspire to Innovate (a2i) Programme’ is looking to recruit a Strategy & Innovation Specialist who will work closely with Programme Advisor to lead the Future of Work and South-South Cooperation initiatives of the project.

The project is funded by the Government of Bangladesh, UNDP and other development partners, and is implemented by ICT Division and Cabinet Division.


Under the direct supervision of the Programme Advisor the incumbent will perform the below-mentioned activities: 


 Duties and Responsibilities in brief:

 Coordinate 4th Industrial Revolution based initiatives with the government, private sector, and Academia

  • Arrange workshop with different Ministries, Industry Associations and Universities on 4IR.
  • Conduct Study/Survey on 4IR to identify the emerging occupations.
  • Provide advisory support to different Ministries, Industry Associations and Universities to take pilot projects on 4IR.
  • Provide strategic support to different Ministries, Industry Associations and Universities to scale up the pilot projects.
  • Support to Bangladesh Technical Education Broad (BTEB) to develop Competency Standards/Curricula on the new courses/occupations relevant to 4IR.
  • Ensure proper monitoring, mentoring and coordination of the 4IR projects.
  • Support Cabinet Division to arrange consultations with policy makers on 4IR.
  • Make liaison with World Economic Forum (WEF) and Nanyang Technological University, Singapore Polytechnic and Temasek Foundation Singapore to take strategic support on 4IR.

 Lead the National Intelligence for Skills, Education, Employment & Entrepreneurship (NISE)

  • Identify gaps between the supply and demand side.
  • Arrange workshops with 20+ Ministries and 40+ Associations on NISE.
  • Provide strategic guidance to vendor to design and develop demand specific modules in NISE for different Ministries and Industry Associations.
  • Ensure matchmaking among the unemployed youth, skills providers, and job providers through NISE.
  • Provide awards/incentives to the best performing Ministries, Industry Associations based on their performance in NISE.

 Ensure Access to Skills for the Cottage, Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (CMSMEs)

  • Establish partnership with relevant public-private organizations.
  • Identify skills demand from the CMSMEs and provide necessary skills in collaboration with SME Foundation, Bangladesh Small and Collage Industries Corporation (BSCIC), Department of Cooperatives and National Association of Small and Cottage Industries of Bangladesh (NASCIB).
  • Provide strategic support to public-private organizations to provide entrepreneurship skills for the unemployed youth.
  • Ensure Apprenticeship in Upazila level for the secondary school dropped out students/youth in CMSMEs.

 Implement Unemployment Free District (UFD) initiatives in collaboration with the Cabinet Division

  • Arrange matchmaking workshop in District level involving industries, skills providers, and youth with the support of field administration and Cabinet Division.
  • Provide strategic support to Deputy Commissioner’s Office to prepare district wise action plan.
  • Arrange job fairs in District and Division level in collaboration with industries.
  • Provide support to Cabinet Division to monitor and coordinate the district level progress.

 Ensure Innovations in the Skills Eco-System of Bangladesh

  • Lead the Future of Work Lab in collaboration with UNDP RBAP.
  • Lead Generation Unlimited (GenU)’s Youth Employment Portfolio in collaboration with ILO.
  • Coordinate the Skills Task Force of UNDP Bangladesh.
  • Act as the member of Youth Team of UNDP Bangladesh.
  • Arrange job fairs in collaboration with different Ministries and Industries to ensure Industry-Academia linkages.
  • Conduct studies/research on the job market to reshape the skills prorgamme market driven.

 Lead the South-South Cooperation initiatives of the Programme

  • Act as the lead of the Secretariat of South-South Network for Public Service Innovation (SSN4PSI).
  • Act as the lead of the Secretariat of Alliance for Asian Apprenticeship (AAA).
  • Act as the lead of the Secretariat of Global Apprenticeship Network (GAN).
  • Act as the focal point for Philippine, Somalia, Ethiopia, Jordan, Colombia, Fiji, Peru, Kosovo, Cambodia, Bhutan, Nepal and Maldives.
  • Organize matchmaking workshops/side events/seminars in different corners of the world.
  • Ensure proper monitoring and follow-up of the matches generated from the workshops/side events/seminars.
  • Facilitate international missions/visit fields to learn from the best practices. 
  • Ensure replication of best practice from one country to other countries.
  • Create knowledge products regularly.
  • Mobilize resources for South-South Cooperation.
  • Provide technical support to South-South Task Force of the Government and South-South Cell of Economic Relations Division (ERD).
  • Provide strategic support to the General Body Members of SSN4PSI.
  Institutional Arrangement 

Under the direct supervision of the Programme Advisor of a2i, the incumbent will perform above-mentioned activities and the Programme Advisor will be responsible for

Corporate Competencies:

  • Demonstrates integrity by modeling the UN’s values and ethical standards
  • Promotes the vision, mission, and strategic goals of UNDP
  • Displays cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability
  • Treats all people fairly without favoritism

Functional Competencies:

Knowledge Management and Learning

  • Share’s knowledge and experience
  • Seeks and applies knowledge, information, and best practices from within and outside UNDP
  • Actively works towards continuing personal learning and development in one or more practice areas, acts on learning plan and applies newly acquired skills

Development and Operational Effectiveness

  • Strong writing ability with exceptional communication skills, both written and oral
  • Strong computer skills with a knowledge of many desktop applications that will be useful for the position, such as Microsoft Word and Excel, e-mail, and all Internet browsers

Leadership and Self-Management

  • Highly organized with a keen eye for detail
  • Ability to multi-task under tight deadlines
  • Ability to think quickly and improvise when necessary
  • Creative self-starter with an ability to work independently and also as an integral part of a team to deliver results
  • Focuses on result for the client and responds positively to feedback
  • Consistently approaches work with energy and a positive, constructive attitude
  • Demonstrates openness to change and ability to manage complexity


  • Master’s Degree in Development Studies/Education/Sociology/Psychology or any other related subject.  


  • 3 years of work experience in the relevant field in national and international development organizations.
  • Overall 10 years of working experience in national/ international development organizations.
  • Excellent ICT and computer skills.
  • Fluency in written and spoken English and Bangla

Important applicant information

All posts in the SC categories are subject to local recruitment.

Applicant information about UNDP rosters

Note: UNDP reserves the right to select one or more candidates from this vacancy announcement.  We may also retain applications and consider candidates applying to this post for other similar positions with UNDP at the same grade level and with similar job description, experience and educational requirements.

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UNDP does not tolerate sexual exploitation and abuse, any kind of harassment, including sexual harassment, and discrimination. All selected candidates will, therefore, undergo rigorous reference and background checks.


Contract Duration: Initially for 1 year with possibility of extension based on performance and availability of fund

This vacancy is archived.

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