UN University Volunteer in Civil Engineer (ESCAP)

United Nations Volunteers (UNV)

Bangkok, Thailand 🇹🇭


Description of assignment title: UN University Volunteer in Civil Engineer

Assignment country: Thailand

Expected start date: 01/03/2023

Sustainable Development Goal: 6. Industry, innovation and infrastructure

Volunteer category: International UN University Volunteer

DoA reserved for persons with disabilities: No

Host entity: ESCAP

Type: Onsite

Duration: 6 months

Number of assignments: 1

Duty stations: Bangkok


Mission and objectives
ESCAP’s mission on energy is to ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable, and modern energy for all in Asia and the Pacific; and to enhance energy security and connectivity by promoting regional cooperation, using the means of intergovernmental process, research, and capacity building. ESCAP leads programmes aimed at helping member states to advance energy access, renewable energy, and energy efficiency in line with SDG 7 targets. ESCAP fosters the transition to a sustainable energy system through regional cooperation on energy and promoting enhanced energy connectivity.

The mandate of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) is to promote regional cooperation for inclusive economic and social development in the Asian and Pacific region. ESCAP’s role as a regional development arm of the United Nations Secretariat is to support its membership, through its analytical, normative and technical cooperation, to respond to the development priorities and changing needs of the Asian and Pacific region.
This position is located at the Seismic Mitigation Project (SMP) Project Management Office within Division of Administration (DA) the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), Bangkok, Thailand. The UN University Volunteer in Civil Engineer works under the direct supervision of the Project Engineer of the SMP.

The Seismic Mitigation Project (SMP) is a multi-dimensional renovation project that will transform the UN ESCAP premises in Bangkok, Thailand, into a safe, accessible, sustainable and modern workplace for all. The scope of the SMP covers seismic reinforcement works in the Secretariat and Service buildings, to ensure life safety and seismic code compliance. The Secretariat building will also undergo the replacement of major building systems that have reached their useful lives, interior renovation works and the removal of any hazardous materials.

To deliver the project’s mandate of accessibility, the interiors will be re-designed to create a truly inclusive environment for all, including persons with disabilities. Additionally, the SMP aims for increased sustainability through design and construction elements as well as the use of sustainable materials. The renovation will increase energy efficiency, reduce dependency on artificial cooling and lighting and minimize ESCAP’s environmental impact. The SMP will also transform the existing office spaces into activity-based work environments, supporting the way the UN works, connects and collaborates.

The UN General Assembly (in its resolution A/RES/71/272) approved the project in December 2016, with an overall budget of $40.019m.

The project consists of 5 phases including the Planning, Design, Tendering, Construction and Close-out Phases. It was officially established on 1 January 2017 and works are expected to be completed by 31 December 2023.

Task description
Under the direct supervision and guidance of (Project Engineer of the SMP), the UN University Volunteer will support in the following tasks:

  1. Understand the seismic objectives, new waste-water sewage tanks and new rainwater
    harvesting system and associated design work;
  2. Monitor changes to designs, assess the effects on cost and measure and value variations to
  3. Analyze project requirements and prepare required technical papers and recommend
    modifications and changes if required and participate in various design meetings;
  4. Evaluate all civil processes and ensure efficient quality control on all projects and pro-vide
    support to engineering team at all times to maintain work schedule.
  5. Liaise with other engineers and mission specialists responsible for related specialized
    phases to arrive at mutually satisfactory approaches to problems by exchanging and
    comparing data.
  6. Analyze project proposals to ensure technical feasibility and to ensure that project
    objectives are attainable within prescribed resources.
  7. Conducts research technical systems proposed by contractor’s.
  8. Coordinate with the UN stakeholder’s and project Seismic and Structural Engineers.
  9. Perform other related duties as required.

Furthermore, UN Volunteers are required to:

  • Strengthen their knowledge and understanding of the concept of volunteerism by reading
    relevant UNV and external publications and take active part in UNV activities (for instance in
    events that mark International Volunteer Day);
  • Be acquainted with and build on traditional and/or local forms of volunteerism in the host
  • Reflect on the type and quality of voluntary action that they are undertaking, including
    participation in ongoing reflection activities;
  • Contribute articles/write-ups on field experiences and submit them for UNV
    publications/websites, newsletters, press releases, etc.;
  • Assist with the UNV Buddy Programme for newly-arrived UN Volunteers;
  • Promote or advise local groups in the use of online volunteering, or encourage relevant
    local individuals and organizations to use the UNV Online Volunteering service whenever
    technically possible.

Results/Expected Outputs

  1. Review and understand the SMP structural and civil design scope, provide a summary.
  2. Review existing building information and extract information requested [as required]
  3. Review submittal by the contractor and provide comments [as required]
  4. Prepare a quality assurance and control checklist for the structural / civil works.
  5. Prepare and provide minutes of meetings [as required]
  6. Provide substantive advice [as required]
  7. Performs other duties [as required]
  8. Exit report detailing knowledge and experience gained from this volunteering experience

Eligibility criteria

Age: 18 – 26

Additional eligibility criteria
This assignment is funded by the Agency for Voluntary Services (AVS) Hong Kong, therefore specific criteria apply:
Only candidates nominated by the participating universities and endorsed by the Steering Committee can be considered.

Nationality: Candidate must be a national of a country other than the country of assignment.

Donor priorities:


Required experience
0 years of experience in or interested in architecture and human settlements, civil engineering, computer sciences, development studies or similar area of study.

Applicants must at the time of application be enrolled in a university degree program.

Area(s) of expertise: Engineering and construction , Information technology, Architecture and settlements

Driving license:

Languages: English, Level: Fluent, Required

Required education level: Secondary education

Competencies and values
• Integrity and professionalism: demonstrated expertise in area of specialty and ability to apply good judgment; high degree of autonomy, personal initiative and ability to take ownership; willingness to accept wide responsibilities and ability to work independently under established procedures in a politically sensitive environment, while exercising discretion, impartiality and neutrality; ability to manage information objectively, accurately and confidentially; responsive and client-oriented.
• Accountability: mature and responsible; ability to operate in compliance with organizational rules and regulations.
• Commitment to continuous learning: initiative and willingness to learn new skills and stay abreast of new developments in area of expertise; ability to adapt to changes in work environment.
• Planning and organizing: effective organizational and problem-solving skills and ability to manage a large volume of work in an efficient and timely manner; ability to establish priorities and to plan, coordinate and monitor (own) work; ability to work under pressure, with conflicting deadlines, and to handle multiple concurrent projects/activities.
• Teamwork and respect for diversity: ability to operate effectively across organizational boundaries; ability to establish and maintain effective partnerships and harmonious working
relations in a multi-cultural, multi-ethnic environment with sensitivity and respect for diversity and gender;
• Communication: proven interpersonal skills; good spoken and written communication skills, including ability to prepare clear and concise reports; ability to conduct presentations, articulate options and positions concisely; ability to make and defend recommendations; ability to communicate and empathize with staff (including national staff), military personnel, volunteers, counterparts and local interlocutors coming from very diverse backgrounds; ability to maintain composure and remain helpful towards the staff, but objective, without showing personal interest; capacity to transfer in-formation and knowledge to a wide range of different target groups;
• Flexibility: adaptability, and ability and willingness to operate independently in austere, remote and potentially hazardous environments for protracted periods, involving physical hardship and little comfort, and including possible extensive travel within the area of operations; willingness to transfer to other duty stations within area of operations as may be necessary;
• Genuine commitment towards the principles of voluntary engagement, which includes solidarity, compassion, reciprocity and self-reliance; and commitment towards the UN core values.

Other information

Living conditions and remarks
Thailand is located in Southeast Asia. The climate is tropical, with the monsoon season running from May/June through October/November. Bangkok is the capital of Thailand, and it is also the most populated city in the country. It is located in the Chao Phraya River delta in the central part of the country. Bangkok has an estimated population of 8.75 million as of 2017 (13% of Thailand’s total population), based on data from the 2010 census. Over the past decades, Bangkok has grown rapidly with little urban planning or regulation. This has led to traffic congestion and air pollution, and there is frequent flooding of streets during the rainy season in the City’s low-lying areas.

The cost of living in Thailand is relatively low, as compared to many other capitals in Southeast Asia. Housing is widely available in various sizes and at various price points. Private healthcare in Thailand is of excellent standard, and there are numerous top hospitals in Bangkok, which fall far below countries like the US in terms of price. There are numerous high-quality international schools available in Bangkok, with English as the language of instruction. Bangkok has different public transportation options, including the BTS Skytrain and MRT Underground, metered taxis, mobile-based ride-hailing services (Grab, All Thai Taxi, etc.), tuk tuks, motorbike taxis, buses and boats.

Inclusivity statement
United Nations Volunteers is an equal opportunity programme that welcomes applications from qualified professionals. We are committed to achieving diversity in terms of gender, care protected characteristics. As part of their adherence to the values of UNV, all UN Volunteers commit themselves to combat any form of discrimination, and to promoting respect for human rights and individual dignity, without distinction of a person’s race, sex, gender identity, religion, nationality, ethnic origin, sexual orientation, disability, pregnancy, age, language, social origin or other status.

Note on Covid-19 vaccination requirements
Selected candidates for certain occupational groups may be subject to inoculation (vaccination) requirements, including against SARS-CoV-2 (Covid-19) in line with the applicable host entity policy




IHE Delft MSc in Water and Sustainable Development