Associate Academic Officer (E-Learning)

UNU Institute for Environment and Human Security (UNU-EHS)

Bonn, Germany 🇩🇪

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 furthering 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. 

United Nations University-Institute for Environment and Human Security (UNU-EHS): UNU-EHS, established in December 2003, is part of the UNU system, a worldwide network of Research and Training Institutes. Its mission is to advance human security through knowledge-based approaches to reducing vulnerability and environmental risks. For more information please visit

 Environmental Vulnerability & Ecosystem Services (EVES) Section: The EVES section at UNU-EHS conducts original, policy relevant research addressing the vulnerability and resilience of social-ecological systems. Specifically, EVES aims to understand how social ecological systems are affected by environmental hazards of diverse nature such as water and land degradation, floods, droughts, and other hazards. EVES not only considers the impacts of single hazards, but also investigates multiple hazard situations, identifying cumulating or cascading impacts and feedbacks between hazards of contrasting nature such as floods and droughts. The concept of ecosystem services is of central importance in most of the research conducted by EVES researchers.


UNU-EHS is looking for an experienced E-Learning expert to coordinate and manage eLearning contributions to the BMBF-funded GlobeDrought project (2017-2020) and other eLearning activities at the institutes, as well as to develop an overall e-learning strategy for UNU-EHS.  The institute develops open educational resources for use and sharing with educators, students and self-learners to use, reuse and adapt them in teaching, learning and research. Information Communications Technologies (ICT) play a key role in the activity of the institute with regard to eLearning/distance education, open source technologies and new media in context WEB 2.0 technologies to facilitate communication and knowledge sharing, to enhance project work, and to design and deliver learning materials.

With projects such as Higher Education Cooperation with PAUWES, WESA (Water  and  Energy  Security  in Africa) and RARSUS (Risk  Assessment  and  Reduction  strategies  for  Sustainable  Urban  Resource  Supply  in Sub-Saharan  Africa) and other projects,  the institute is supporting the institutional development of partners with regard E-Learning by enhancing their teaching and research activities, design  and development of ICT based solutions to support teaching, research, social and professional networking.

GlobeDrought Project:

GlobeDrought aims at developing, testing and implementing a drought information system to characterize drought events and their impact on water resources, crop productivity, food trade, food security and the demand for international food aid. Within this scope, the Institute for Environment and Human Security (UNU-EHS) will analyze vulnerabilities and risks with regard to meteorological, hydrological and agronomic droughts at global and regional levels (incl. South Africa).


Under the authority of the Director of UNU-EHS/Vice-Rector in Europe and the overall supervision of the Head of the Environmental Vulnerability and Ecosystem Services (EVES) section and the E-Learning Program manager the successful candidate will be entrusted with the following tasks:

  • Management of resources and scientific coordination of activities with regards to design and development of eLearning courses , development and implementation of an communication and outreach strategy for the GlobeDrought project;
  • Conceptualization, organization and management of  eLearning strategy at  UNU-EHS, notably design of eLearning modules related to the core competency of UNU-EHS;
  • Supervise the design and development and delivery of eLearning courses and programs at EHS (Online Block Courses, Online summer School, MOOCs);
  • Writing application for project grants to ensure financial sustainability of E-Learning activities at EHS ; Contribute to the acquisition of third party funding at UNU-EHS in general and particularly in the frame of eLearning;
  • Coordination of workshops, webinars and online lectures  in the frame of eLearning projects at EHS
  • Contribute to research and teaching in the field of educational technologies in context of climate changes;
  • Design, evaluation, selection,  and configuration of IT platforms for educational purposes and up-to-date knowledge management and dissemination systems;
  • Support the organize educational events: semester and block courses, seminars, workshops, summer schools in Germany and abroad;
  • Take up related duties as required.

Qualifications and Experience Requirements: 

  • PhD in Engineering, Natural Sciences, Education, Social Sciences or other relevant field;
  • Minimum four (4) years of professional experience in research and academia of which part should have been in a teaching position;
  • Excellent skills in writing applications for research grants;
  • Experience in fund raising for research projects from German and international donors
  • Proven experience in the design and development of eLearning systems and ICT based learning materials and modules; strong knowledge in instructional design and educational technologies;
  • Good Knowledge in multimedia and authoring software and tools for eLearning course; development (Articulate, Adobe Creative Suite and Captivate, CourseLabs, Camtasia Studio, etc.)
  • Proven experience in the design, development and administration of Learning Content Management Systems;
  • Experience in management and administration of online Community of Practice;
  • Proven skills in organizing conferences and educational events within the international context;
  • Good didactic skills and proven experience in teaching and supervising students, particularly within the international context;
  • Knowledge in area of Environmental Vulnerability & Ecosystem Services  will be considered as an asset;
  • Fluency in both oral and written English is required. French and German language capacity will be considered a strong asset;
  • Outstanding presentation, writing and reporting skills; Ability to communicate clearly and efficiently with high level stakeholders;
  • Proven interpersonal skills demonstrated by the ability to work well in a multi-cultural, multi-ethnic environment with sensitivity and respect for diversity.

Remuneration: Remuneration will be commensurate with qualifications and experience.

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

This is a locally recruited post and no relocation allowances apply. The successful candidate will be employed under a local contract and will not hold international civil servant status nor be a “staff member” as defined in the UN Staff Rules and Regulations.

Starting date: As soon as possible