Job Opportunity: Innovation Specialist - Scale, Office of Innovation
Job Opportunity: UPSHIFT Global Strategist & Lead - Scale, Office of Innovation

Job Role: Innovation Monitoring, Evaluation, and Learning Specialist | Vacancy Link
Duration: 120 days over 11.5 months
Level: Individual contract, part time
Duty station: remote
Work Type: Consultancy

If you are a committed, creative professional and are passionate about making a lasting difference for children, the world’s leading children’s rights organization would like to hear from you.

For 70 years, UNICEF has been working on the ground in 190 countries and territories to promote children’s survival, protection, and development. The world’s largest provider of vaccines for developing countries, UNICEF supports child health and nutrition, good water and sanitation, quality basic education for all boys and girls, and the protection of children from violence, exploitation, and AIDS. UNICEF is funded entirely by the voluntary contributions of individuals, businesses, foundations, and governments.


UNICEF has been innovating for children for more than 70 years. Innovations support the organization’s 157+ country offices in finding solutions for the world’s most vulnerable children. The UNICEF Innovation work includes both policy and practice of innovation in UNICEF, and the larger UN. Innovation in UNICEF is defined as “doing something new or different that adds value.” Innovation is a cross-sectoral function that enhances programme and development effectiveness as well as management and is guided in all contexts by UNICEF’s Innovation Principles ( UNICEF is engaged in testing and scaling up new partnerships, technologies, and collaborations in some of the world’s most difficult operating environments.

In January 2016, the Executive Director established UNICEF’s Office of Innovation in order to establish UNICEF’s innovation functions in one office and leverage the increasing initiatives across UNICEF.  Through this decision, the Executive Director’s vision is to scale up successes to achieve results for children across the organization. The Executive Director has asked the newly unified innovation team to develop a common, coordinated strategic plan that continues to support creativity and agility while addressing key operational risks and enhances efficiencies and enables increased access to innovations.  The newly established Office of Innovation combines:

  • The Global Innovation Centre (GIC) established in 2014, and focusing on Scale up which looks at expanding the application of proven solutions from one to several countries and regions by UNICEF and partners
  • Ventures in New York which looks at investing in new solutions with a 0-2 year horizon
  • Futures in San Francisco: focusing on what is coming in the 2-5 year horizon and works with big tech partners

UNICEF’s OI Scale team is functioning primarily through UNICEF’s Global Innovation Centre and identifies proven solutions with the potential to be implemented at national scale in multiple countries. The GIC provides the leadership and technical support to deploy and scale these up, expanding their application by UNICEF and others from one to several countries and regions, specifically in the following main areas: real-time information, youth engagement, and access to information and infrastructure.

In 2016, the Office of Innovation forged a new collaboration with Programme Division and ICT Division to support the mainstreaming of innovative tools for real-time information systems at the country level. This collaboration focuses primarily on the scaled deployment of RapidPro and transfer of capacity for, expertise in, and ownership of the deployment of RapidPro in support of improved programmatic outcomes.

In addition to these core areas of focus, the GIC / OI Scale team will expand its portfolio in 2017 to include the application of Human Centred Design, 21st-century skills development (through UPSHIFT), and innovations in humanitarian action. An Innovation Specialist is required to support the development of critical strategies, partnerships, and deployment models for these new areas of work, as well as the emerging management models for institutional mainstreaming of innovations at scale for every child.

Purpose of Assignment:

Under the management of the Senior Advisor on Innovation / Scale-up Lead, provide strategic guidance and support in the following areas:

    1. Support country offices in implementation of MEL pilots for U-Report, IoGT, EduTrac and UpShift innovations
    2. Revise existing MEL frameworks for U-Report, IoGT, EduTrac and UpShift innovations based on MEL pilot and feedback
    3. Finalise MEL frameworks for Digital Health innovations
    4. Develop any new MEL frameworks for newly identified areas of work by written request of Senior Advisor, Scale
    5. Be available to advise on and develop communication materials around MEL, impact and success stories as needed
    6. Support GIC scale in responding to evaluation questions from evaluation of innovation

Payment plan
Monthly payment, based on monthly tasks and progress reports, approved upon monthly review with supervisor.
*Consultant is responsible for his/her own health insurance
*Consultant is eligible for standard in- and out-of-country DSA for all work-related travel

Qualifications or specialized knowledge/experience required for the assignment:

  • Advanced university degree in Social Sciences, International Relations or a related field.
  • Eight years of professional work experience at national and international levels in metrics, business intelligence, performance management, monitoring and evaluation, program monitoring and reporting or related field. Or 10 years in lieu of an advanced degree.
  • Experience in metrics, M&E of ICT4D and/or innovations.
  • Experience in supporting monitoring and evaluation capacity, working with professional M&E associations and/or in M&E design within the UN system
  • Experience in working with multiple countries and with multiple stakeholders
  • Fluency in English is required, strong written and verbal competency is necessary
  • Working knowledge of another UN language an asset


  • Strong interpersonal skills. Quickly builds rapport with individuals and groups; maintains an effective network of individuals across organizations
  • Demonstrated ability to work effectively in a multi-cultural, multi-country environment
  • Communicates effectively to varied audiences, including writing and presenting
  • Analyzes and integrates diverse and complex quantitative and qualitative data from a wide range of sources
  • Demonstrates, applies and shares expert technical knowledge across the organization
  • Sets high standards for quality of work and consistently achieves goals
  • Able to work independently, a good self-manager, manages time to ensure deadlines are met without requiring constant oversight.
  • Able to prioritise appropriately and respond quickly to unexpected changes.
  • Comfortable with working remotely with immediate team located in various time zones and locations.

Applications must include:

  • Cover letter and
  • CV

To view our competency framework, please click here.

Please indicate your ability, availability and daily rate (in US$) to undertake the terms of reference above. Applications submitted without a daily rate will not be considered.

UNICEF is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages qualified female and male candidates from all national, religious and ethnic backgrounds, including persons living with disabilities, to apply to become a part of our organisation.

Closing Date: Sun 23 July 2017 – 23:55:00 GMT-0400 (EDT)

*Posting and application portal for this job on can only be accessed during the application period.

Job Opportunity: Innovation Specialist - Scale, Office of Innovation
Job Opportunity: UPSHIFT Global Strategist & Lead - Scale, Office of Innovation