Programme Officer

Bonn, Germany 🇩🇪

Special Notice

Extension of the appointment is subject to extension of the mandate and/or the availability of the funds.

Staff members are subject to the authority of the Secretary-General and to assignment by him or her. In this context, all staff are expected to move periodically to new functions in their careers in accordance with established rules and procedures.

Org. Setting and Reporting

Created in December 1999, the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) is the designated focal point in the United Nations system for the coordination of efforts to reduce disasters and to ensure synergies among the disaster reduction activities of the United Nations and regional organizations and activities in both developed and less developed countries. Led by the United Nations Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Disaster Risk Reduction (SRSG), UNISDR has over 100 staff located in its headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland, and in regional offices. Specifically, UNISDR guides, monitors, analyses and reports on progress in the implementation of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030, supports regional and national implementation of the Framework and catalyses action and increases global awareness to reduce disaster risk working with UN Member States and a broad range of partners and stakeholders, including civil society, the private sector, parliamentarians and the science and technology community. 

Under the overall guidance of the Director of the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) and the Special Representative of the Secretary General for Disaster Risk Reduction, and the direct supervision of the Senior Programme Officer, UNISDR Office in Bonn, the incumbent oversees and supports the development and implementation of the online monitoring system to track progress in the implementation of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, on the basis of the online Data Readiness Review and the Sendai Framework Monitor Prototype. Provides expert technical advice, develop technical documentation and training modules in support of the Sendai Monitoring System.


The incumbent will be responsible for the following duties:

Develops, implements and evaluates assigned systems programmes/projects of significant importance for the Department; monitors and analyses programme/project development and implementation; reviews relevant documents and reports; identifies problems and issues to be addressed and initiates corrective actions; liaises with relevant parties; ensures follow-up actions. In particular, oversees and supports the development and implementation of the online monitoring system to track progress in the implementation of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, on the basis of the online Data Readiness Review and the Sendai Framework Monitor Prototype. Tracks and monitors project progress against plans, requirements, quality measures, standard processes; liaises with users on all aspects and during all phases of development and implementation.

Provides expert advice on complex systems analysis and design; identifies the need for new systems (or modifications to existing systems) or responds to requests from users; develops plans for feasibility assessment, requirements specification, design, development and implementation, including project plans, schedules, time and cost estimates, metrics and performance measures. Provides expert advice and technical support to the development, enhancement, implementation and monitoring of Disaster Loss and Risk Databases in all Member States, including data standards, baseline, technical specification of new or updated information systems, etc. Keeps abreast of developments in the field and determines the need for testing and evaluating new products and technologies.

Organizes and prepares written outputs, e.g. draft background papers, analysis, sections of reports and studies, inputs to publications, technical reports, etc. Develops, implements and monitors application of standards and guidelines, including testing paradigms. Oversees the preparation of technical and user documentation for entire systems; prepares training materials and detailed technical presentations including technical guidelines to support the reporting against the indicators to assess progress towards the targets of Sendai Framework, as recommended by the open-ended intergovernmental expert working group on indicators and terminology. Works in close collaboration with the UNISDR Global Education and Training Institute (GETI) in Incheon and contributes to the development of training modules on Sendai Monitoring systems. Collaborates and coordinates closely with UNISDR Regional Offices in support of strengthening the capacity of Member States to use the online Sendai Monitoring system and their ability to report against the indicators.

Provides substantive backstopping to consultative and other meetings, conferences, etc., to include proposing agenda topics, identifying participants, preparation of documents and presentations, etc.

Leads and/or participates in large, complex field missions, including provision of guidance to external consultants, government officials and other parties and drafting mission summaries, etc.

Participates in planning and preparation of the budget, work program and spending plan of the Section and of the Branch. Contributes to activities related to budget funding (programme/project preparation and submissions, progress reports, financial statements, etc.) and prepares related documents/reports (pledging, work programme, programme budget, etc.). Develops cost proposals for contractual services, oversees the technical evaluation of proposals received and manages the contract service. Provides professional leadership and work direction to assigned project teams, and/or mentors and supervises the work of new/junior officers, contract staff, etc.

Performs other duties as required.


– Knowledge and understanding of theories, concepts and approaches relevant to disaster risk reduction, climate change adaptation and other risk management topics;
– Ability to identify issues, analyze and participate in the resolution of issues/problems.
– Ability to conduct data collection using various methods and to draw conclusions;
– Ability to analyse and present complex data in a manner which is understandable to broad audiences;
– Conceptual analytical and evaluative skills to conduct independent research and analysis, including familiarity with and experience in the use of various research sources, including electronic sources on the internet, intranet and other databases;
– Ability to apply judgment in the context of assignments given, plan own work and manage conflicting priorities;
– Ability to work within geographically dispersed teams;
– Shows pride in work and in achievements;
– Demonstrates professional competence and mastery of subject matter;
– Is conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, observing deadlines and achieving results;
– Is motivated by professional rather than personal concerns;
– Shows persistence when faced with difficult problems or challenges;
– Remains calm in stressful situations;
– Takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work.

– 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

– Develops clear goals that are consistent with agreed strategies
– Identifies priority activities and assignments; adjusts priorities as required
– Allocates appropriate amount of time and resources for completing work
– Foresees risks and allows for contingencies when planning
– Monitors and adjusts plans and actions as necessary
– Uses time efficiently

– Takes ownership of all responsibilities and honours commitments;
– Strong drive for results;
– Delivers outputs for which one has responsibility within prescribed time, cost and quality standards
– Operates in compliance with organizational regulations and rules
– Supports subordinates, provides oversight and takes responsibility for delegated assignments
– Takes personal responsibility for his/her own shortcomings and those of the work unit, where applicable.


Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent degree) in social sciences, management, economics, statistics, or related field. A first-level university degree in any of these fields, in combination with two additional years of qualifying work experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.

Work Experience

A minimum of seven years of progressively responsible experience in project planning, implementation and monitoring or related area. A minimum of two years experience in disaster risk assessment and monitoring, and disaster risk reduction is required, Experience in data management and statistics is desirable. Experience supporting countries through technical cooperation and capacity development programmes is desirable.


English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the position advertised, fluency in English is required; knowledge of French is desirable. Knowledge of another UN official language is an advantage.


Evaluation of qualified candidates may include an assessment exercise which will be followed by competency-based interview.

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, including but not limited to, respect for international human rights and humanitarian law. Candidates may be subject to screening against these standards, including but not limited to, whether they have committed or are alleged to have committed criminal offences or violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law.

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.

Applicants are urged to follow carefully all instructions available in the online recruitment platform, inspira. For more detailed guidance, applicants may refer to the At-a-Glance on “The Application Process” and the Instructional Manual for the Applicants, which can be accessed by clicking on “Manuals” hyper-link on the upper right side of the inspira account-holder homepage.

The screening and 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, including but not limited to, their education, work experience, and language skills, according to the instructions provided on inspira. Applicants will be disqualified from consideration if they do not demonstrate in their application that they meet the evaluation criteria of the job opening and the applicable internal legislations of the United Nations. Applicants are solely responsible for providing complete and accurate information at the time of application: 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 a reference-checking process to verify the information provided in the application.

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