Research Associate (Pan African University)

United Nations University (UNU)

Bonn, , DE

United Nations University objectives

The United Nations University (UNU) is an international community of scholars engaged in research, postgraduate teaching and capacity development, and dissemination of knowledge in furtherance of the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations. The mission of UNU is to contribute, through research and capacity building, to efforts to resolve the pressing global problems that are the concern of the United Nations and its Member States.

UNU Vice-Rectorate in Europe (UNU-ViE)

UNU-ViE concentrates on relationships between advancing science and technology for human security. In addition to its scientific core mandate, it administers the central units providing service to UNU entities in Bonn.The central administration units include Finance, Human Resources, Information Communication Technology, Communication Services, and Procurement and General Administration. These units also assist with the administration of new UNU initiatives in Europe and Africa. For more information on the organization, please visit

PACET (Pan African Cooperation and Educational Technologies)

PACET aims to strengthen research, educational, and institutional capacities of UNU-EHS in Africa. The programme fosters the cooperation between UNU and African institutions in higher education, research, policy, and practice to develop innovative methods and appropriated solutions to address challenges particularly in the frame of the Agenda 2063 of the African Union and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The cooperation with the Pan African University is a culmination of continental initiatives of the African Union Commission to revitalise higher education and research in Africa represents a main aspect of the programme. The programme particularly supports the institutional development of the Pan African University Institute for Water and Energy Sciences (incl. Climate Change – PAUWES) in Algeria by enhancing its teaching and research activities in water, energy, and climate change thanks numerous projects (Water and Energy Security in Africa – WESA; Risk Assessment and Reduction strategies for Sustainable Urban Resource Supply in Sub-Saharan Africa – RARSUS; Higher Education Cooperation with PAUWES, etc.).

Pan African University Institute of Water and Energy Sciences (including Climate Change) (PAUWES)

PAUWES is hosted at the University of Tlemcen, Algeria. The institute is part of the Pan African University – a project initiated by the African Union to revitalise higher education and research in Africa. It is a project that will exemplify excellence, enhance the attractiveness and global competitiveness of African higher education and research, and establish the Pan African University at the core of Africa’s development as part of a broad, integrated system of higher education across the African continent.

Germany supports as the “Key Thematic Partner” of the Pan African University Institute of Water and Energy Sciences (PAUWES) the establishment of the PAU hub in Tlemcen. The support is based on a trilateral agreement between the African Union Commission (AUC), the Algerian Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research (MESRS), and the Federal Republic of Germany. The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) is supporting PAUWES in founding the research dimension of the institute.

In the frame of the projects “Water and Energy Security in Africa (WESA)” and “Risk Assessment and Reduction strategies for Sustainable Urban Resource Supply in Sub-Saharan Africa (RARSUS)”, the aim is to support the development of PAUWES by enhancing its research activities in water and energy sciences. Results of the projects are the first steps towards the implementation of a research agenda at PAUWES. Support of young scientists plays a central role in the PAUWES research agenda with the goal to develop and implement scientific results.

Beside the institutional and scientific objectives, the integration of PAUWES into scientific networks and the establishment of PAUWES as Pan African (and beyond) hub/platform on the topic of Energy, Water and Climate Change is another important objective of the project.

For  the  creation  of  a  favorable  research  environment  and  the  coordination  of  research projects/activities, PAUWES  has  established  this  position  funded  by  the  German  Federal  Ministry  of Education and Research and the research associate position announced is to support the PAUWES research coordinator in his activities.


Under the overall authority of the Director of UNU-EHS/Vice-Rector in Europe, and the co-supervision of the Director of PAUWES and the research coordinator at PAUWES the successful candidate will:

  • support activity for the implementation of the research agenda at PAUWES
  • support to the creation the appropriate framework for research at PAUWES, which includes the establishment of the legal framework for research at PAUWES (PAU statutes)
  • support the integration PAUWES in African and international research networks
  • support the development of PhD programmes of PAUWES
  • support the development of  concepts for the acquisition of third-party funding
  • support capacities building activities in the area of research management
  • organise scientific meetings, seminars, and conferences
  • support outreach activities to relevant stakeholders in research and research policy
  • prepare status and management reports and other information as required by the donors
  • take up other related duties as required

Qualifications and experience requirements

Required qualifications and experience include:

  • master’s degree with minimum of two (2) years of working experience in environmental sciences, natural sciences, research, or educational management, preferably in an international and multicultural environment
  • experience in networking with research and research policy stakeholders
  • administrative and financial management skills
  • ability to build good working relationships with individuals of different national and cultural backgrounds
  • excellent interpersonal skills and an ability to approach relevant stakeholders, team leaders, and donors
  • excellent written and verbal communication skills in English and French
  • working experience in Africa
  • willingness to be based in Tlemcen

 Applications from suitably qualified women candidates are particularly encouraged.


Remuneration will be commensurate with qualifications and experience, using local salary scales for Algeria as a basis.

Duration of contract:

This is full-time employment on a one (1) year Personnel Service Agreement (PSA) contract, with the possibility of renewal subject to satisfactory work performance and availability of funds. The combined duration of appointments shall not exceed six (6) years.

This is a locally recruited post; no relocation allowances apply. The duty station for this position is Tlemcen, Algeria, which is deemed as a non-family duty station. The successful candidate will be employed under a local contract and will not hold international civil servant status nor is he/she a “staff member” as defined in the United Nations Staff Rules and Regulations.

Starting date

As soon as possible