UNU-EHS: Project Assistant

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)

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 www.ehs.unu.edu. The Environmental Migration, Social Vulnerability & Adaptation Section – EMSVA– undertakes empirical research on social vulnerability and resilience as well as human mobility. The section also addresses climate change adaptation including a range of activities such as disaster risk reduction and insurance-related approaches to help vulnerable countries and communities.

Munich Climate Insurance Initiative (MCII)

is the leading innovation laboratory on climate change and insurance. It was launched in 2005 in response to the growing realization that insurance-related solutions can play a role in adaptation to climate change, as advocated in the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, the Paris Agreement and the UN Sustainable Development Goals. MCII, through its unique set-up, provides a forum and gathering point for insurance-related expertise on climate change impacts. The Initiative brings together insurers, experts on climate change and adaptation, NGOs and researchers intent on finding effective and fair solutions to the risks posed by climate change, as well as sustainable approaches that create incentive structures for risk and poverty reduction. MCII is hosted at the United Nations University Institute for Environment and Human Security (UNU-EHS).

From 2011 to 2014, MCII led and coordinated the Climate Risk Adaptation and Insurance in the Caribbean project to help target countries in the Caribbean address some of the challenges to sustainable development posed by a changing climate. Phase I developed and implemented two index-based insurance products to help vulnerable people in the low income segment of the population better recover from impacts of extreme weather events on their livelihoods. From 2017 to 2019, MCII will lead and coordinate Phase II of the project, with the aim to solidify the efforts of the first phase and to scale up into two additional countries to further develop, refine and enhance climate risk insurance products across the Caribbean region.


Under the authority of the Director of UNU-EHS and the overall guidance of the MCII Executive Director, the successful candidate will be entrusted with the following tasks:

  • Support the coordination and implementation of project activities in the project Climate Risk Adaptation and Insurance in the Caribbean and other MCII projects, under the guidance of the MCII Project Managers by providing effective administrative support;
  • Ensure the effective logistical coordination of workshops and meetings in relation to MCII’s projects; assist with guest-related event logistics to ensure hotel, transportations, and meeting needs are met; coordinate meeting requirements and communicate with meeting venue (as needed); maintain event databases such as invitee lists, RSVP’s, etc.;
  • Organize logistics for MCII team members at events (workshops, meetings, national and international conferences), including registration, event and bilateral meeting coordination, handling of dissemination materials and managing exhibits and other promotional spaces; ensure effective and efficient functioning of the project office by maintaining contact with visitors and staff, arrange appointments, including meeting room reservation;
  • Prepare, coordinate and process mission travels of MCII team members and ensure full administrative compliance;
  • Support the compilation and writing of project related publications (incl. copy editing, proof reading, formatting, etc.), or other project proceedings for MCII project newsletters, monitoring reports, workshop reports, fieldwork reports, etc.; prepare any needed background information on project-related stakeholders or any other topics of concern (e.g. through online & literature reviews, interviews, etc.); compile annual strategy and vision reports for the team;
  • Note-taking and preparing minutes for meetings, workshops, tele- and videoconferences;
  • Support the maintenance of the MCII project website and provide regular updates; provide social media support where appropriate;
  • Draft correspondence and invitations; handle routine correspondence and as necessary refer enquiries to appropriate team members for handling; develop and maintain contact lists, network lists;
  • Liaise with external vendors to ensure that high standards for service quality are met consistently, as needed by the team.

Required Qualifications and Experience

  • Completion of secondary education;
  • Degree in business administration, public administration or any related field is an asset;
  • 2 years of relevant work experience, preferably in an international environment;
  • Experience in event management, logistics and administrative tasks;
  • Organizational talent, strong process-, and team-orientation; personal dedication to contribute to organizational goals;
  • Experience in copy editing, proof reading and formatting of publications and other documents would be preferred;
  • Fluency in oral and written English; German is an asset;
  • Interest is desired in the fields of climate adaptation measures, disaster management and/or agricultural and weather index insurance; first work experience in both developing countries and developed countries is an asset.


Remuneration will be commensurate with qualifications and experience.

Duration of Contract

This is a full-time employment (40 hours per week) on a one (1) year Personnel Service Agreement (PSA) contract with the possibility of renewal subject to requirements and satisfactory work performance, 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 is he/she a “staff member” as defined in the United Nations Staff Rules and Regulations.

Starting Date

As soon as possible

Further information: https://ehs.unu.edu/about/vacancies/administrative/project-assistant.html#overview

Source: Website UNU-EHS, 16.03.2017