Programme Coordinator (Water for Sustainable Development)

Tokyo, , JP

About the United Nations University (UNU)

For the past four decades, UNU has been a go-to think tank for impartial research on the pressing global problems of human survival, conflict prevention, development, and welfare. With more than 400 researchers in 13 countries, UNU’s work spans the full breadth of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), generating policy-relevant knowledge to effect positive global change. UNU maintains more than 200 collaborations with UN agencies and leading universities and research institutions across the globe.

UNU Institute for the Advanced Study of Sustainability (UNU-IAS)

UNU-IAS is a UNU institute based at UNU Headquarters in Tokyo. The mission of UNU-IAS is to serve the international community through policy relevant research and capacity development focused on sustainability, including its social, economic and environmental dimensions. UNU-IAS builds on a strong tradition of UNU research and capacity development in Japan, undertaken in collaboration with a global network of professionals and scholars, particularly in Africa and Asia. For more information please visit

Water for Sustainable Development (WSD)

The Water for Sustainable Development (WSD) programme contributes to developing policy simulation models for achieving the water-related SDGs in Asia. The primary goals of the planned project are to (i) identify socio-economic scenarios to realise the sustainable water environment that the 2030 Agenda envisages and (ii) provide analytical tools for necessary policy options and a roadmap for actions.


Under the overall supervision of the UNU-IAS Director and the direct guidance and supervision of the WSD project manager, the Programme Coordinator shall perform the following tasks:

  • undertake the strategic planning and implementation of the overall WSD project activities
  • assume overall management of project activities including budgetary and human resources management, coordination with external partners, and reporting to the project donors
  • lead and coordinate in planning and organising of workshops, seminars, conferences, symposiums, and other events as well as publications of the project
  • design and implement capacity development and networking in partnership with researchers and institutes in developing countries as well as relevant UN and international organisations
  • perform any other duties requested by the UNU-IAS Director

Required qualifications and experience

Required qualifications and experience include:

  • master’s degree or equivalent in a field related to Sustainable Development, Social Sciences, Development Studies, Environment, or Education
  • at least seven (7) years of progressively responsible in an international environment
  • knowledge and experience of coordination and organisation of conferences, logistical and financial arrangements, and (ideally) sustainable development-related issues
  • knowledge of the UN governance structure will be considered an added advantage
  • strong research management skills and experience in environmental policy development are desirable
  • excellent communication skills with fluency in both oral and written English and Japanese, Fluency in English is essential
  • good computer and organisational skills
  • a good team player with strong interpersonal skills demonstrated by the ability to work in a multicultural, multi-ethnic environment with sensitivity and respect for diversity


Remuneration will be commensurate with qualification and experience. There are no other fringe benefits.

Duration of contract

This is full-time employment on a Personnel Service Agreement (PSA) with UNU-IAS. Initial appointment will be for one (1) year, with the possibility of renewal subject to satisfactory work performance. The combined duration of appointments shall not exceed six (6) years.

This is a locally recruited post; no relocation expenses or 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 United Nations Staff Rules and Regulations. UNU does not sponsor a working visa for this position.

Starting date

1 May 2018

Application Procedure

Interested applicants should submit their applications by email (to [email protected]), and must include the following:

  • a cover letter setting out how the qualifications and experience match the requirements of the position
  • a curriculum vitae and a completed and signed UNU Personal History (P.11) form; please avoid using similar forms provided by other United Nations organisations
  • an indication of the reference number of the vacancy announcement (2018/UNU/IAS/PSA/PC/27)

Please note that applications received after the closing date will not be considered.