Chief Water, Sanitation & Education

United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF)

Denmark 🇩🇰

UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest places, to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children. To save their lives. To defend their rights. To help them fulfill their potential.

Across 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, every day, to build a better world for everyone.

And we never give up.

For every child, Results

The Supply Division is responsible for overseeing UNICEF’s global procurement and logistics operation. The Division supports UNICEF Country Offices and partners in achieving UNICEF’s priorities by procuring supplies that meet high standards for quality and value and then ensuring their timely delivery. It also ensures that procurement by every UNICEF office follows organizational regulations and ethical standards. As well as supporting UNICEF’s ongoing programmatic activities and procurement and supply of essential commodities on behalf of governments, the supply function provides rapid supply response to emergencies. Ensuring the global availability of essential supplies through influencing markets for lifesaving commodities such as vaccines, essential medicines and health products, and implementing a range of supply chain models to ensure these supplies are delivered to children, are two overarching focuses of the Division.

The Water, Sanitation & Education Centre, provides leadership in the procurement of WASH and Education commodities for country programmes and procurement partners, both via Long-Term Agreements and ad-hoc tenders. The unit is also involved in capacity building, market shaping and innovation projects related to WASH and Education.

How can you make a difference?

You will be accountable for: 

You will be directing the activities and responsible for the wide range of services and procurement conducted by the Centre to ensure that the appropriate products for UNICEF assisted programmes in education as well as water, sanitation are identified and procured (estimated procurement value of $130M per annum).

Under the general guidance of Deputy Director, Supply Programme, D-1.

  • Plan and direct procurement and supply matters in the areas of education, water, sanitation, in support of UNICEF Country Programmes and in collaboration with Programme Division, WHO, other agencies, NGOs and industry.
  • Ensure procurement is conducted in compliance with UN Financial Rules and Regulations and Divisional Procedures.
  • Develop and implements procurement strategies for the materials responsible for in close collaboration with Chief, Contracting. The future of UNICEF supply engagement linked to education, technology and globalization is currently very high on Supply Division’s agenda and a key accountability in this position. 
  • Advise and supports country programmes and HQ divisions on supply issues relevant to water, sanitation and education and helps develop supply analysis and strategies of country programmes and procurement services. 
  • Recommend policy changes related to supply and services. In collaboration with regional offices assures high quality supply by establishing priorities and evaluation of services provided in context of regional supply strategies.
  • Represent UNICEF at major meetings and conferences relating to strategy and policy development for the supply of products and services, including market influencing, innovation and supply chain strengthening.
  • Work closely with Programme Division and other centres in SD to develop strategies and guidance linked to private sector engagement and market shaping for WASH and education.
  • Guide market research and facilitates communication to and from programmes, industry and partners in a manner consistent with public procurement principles.
  • Support innovation projects in the water, sanitation and education areas through close communication with programme colleagues and direct collaboration with the SD Product Innovation Centre.
  • Review new technologies related to WASH, education and project support, assesses their relevance for country programmes and develops appropriate strategies to test. Works closely with the Markets, Supply, Financing Center to influence market shaping for new strategic products and the Product Innovation Center on bringing innovations to scale.
  • Actively monitors water, sanitation and education products that are sent to the field to ensure that they are appropriate and of sufficient quality for their intended use.
  • As a part of UN Reform and the pursuit of operational efficiency, continuously drives a review of work-flow and practices to ensure efficiency, effectiveness and compliance. Including monitors performance utilizing divisional KPIs.
  • Participates as member of SD management team and ensure close working relationships with other Centre Chiefs as well as shares in the responsibility for achieving divisional objectives. 
  • Assumes additional work tasks as assigned by SD Directors Office.
  • Supervises a team of officers and assistants; responsible for setting goals and directions for the work of the Centre.

To qualify as an advocate for every child you will have…


Advanced university degree in Business/Management, Engineering or other disciplines related to the managed procurement groups (WASH, Education) is required.

Work Experience

  • A minimum of 10 (ten) years of work experience at the national and international levels in international business or UNICEF programmatic setting with knowledge of products is required.
  • Proven management experience at the international level is required.
  • Senior experience in public procurement or direct UNICEF field programme.
  • Prior knowledge in Water, sanitation and/or education programmes and of worldwide markets is essential. 
  • Experience in digital solutions and/or evaluating new technologies for education programming is desirable.


Fluency in English is required. Knowledge of another UN language (French (desirable), Russian, Arabic, Chinese or Spanish) is an asset.

For every Child, you demonstrate…

UNICEF’s values of Care, Respect, Integrity, Trust, and Accountability (CRITA) and core competencies in Communication, Working with People and Drive for Results.

To view our competency framework, please visit here.

Click here to learn more about UNICEF’s values and competencies.

Core Competencies:

  • Demonstrates Self Awareness and Ethical Awareness
  • Works Collaboratively with others
  • Builds and Maintains Partnerships
  • Innovates and Embraces Change
  • Thinks and Acts Strategically
  • Drives to achieve impactful results
  • Manages ambiguity and complexity

Functional competencies:

  • Applying Technical Expertise (Level 3)
  • Leading and Supervising (Level 3)
  • Deciding and Initiating (Level 3)
  • Planning and Organizing (Level 3)
  • Following Instructions and Procedures (Level 3)


UNICEF is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages all candidates, irrespective of gender, nationality, religious and ethnic backgrounds, including persons living with disabilities, to apply to become a part of the organization.

UNICEF is committed to achieving gender balance at P5 level by end 2021 and will prioritize eligible and suitable female candidates, especially from programme countries.

UNICEF has a zero-tolerance policy on conduct that is incompatible with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and UNICEF, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination. UNICEF also adheres to strict child safeguarding principles. All selected candidates will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles and will therefore undergo rigorous reference and background checks. Background checks will include the verification of academic credential(s) and employment history. Selected candidates may be required to provide additional information to conduct a background check.


  • This vacancy announcement is open to all internal and external candidates.
  • For UNICEF FT staff, the 1-year time in post must be observed in order to apply for another position.
  • This position is classified as “rotational” which means the incumbent is expected to rotate to another duty station upon completion of their tour of duty.
  • UNICEF only considers higher educational qualifications obtained from an institution accredited/recognized in the World Higher Education Database (WHED), a list updated by the International Association of Universities (IAU) / United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). The list can be accessed at:
  • Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advance to the next stage of the selection process.
  • Female candidates, especially from programme countries, are highly encouraged to apply for this role and will be prioritized.

Advertised: 12 Jul 2021 Romance Daylight Time
Deadline: 01 Aug 2021 Romance Daylight Time