Job Number: Innovation Specialist | Vacancy Link
Work Type: Consultancy
Duration: 65 days over 11.5 months
Level: Individual contract, part time
Duty station: remote
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 (http://www.unicefstories.org/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:
- Building on the global framework for the role of Human Centred Design in UNICEF programmes, draft partnership activation model, delivery models, and document different approaches to scaling HCD across UNICEF 
- Draft strategic input to framework for UNICEF’s Approach to Digital Health and the Digital Health Deployment Toolkit 
- Develop draft documentation and framework for innovation in emergencies / humanitarian action that can be used by OoI as a solid starting point to move this work with EMOPS 
- Support drafting of key content and concepts for partnership proposals for UNICEF Scale 
- Contribute to development of an overall draft strategy document for Scaling Innovations For Every Child [10 days]
- Identify key, high-value knowledge placement opportunities and co-draft [5 days]
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 a relevant field; or related practical experience
- Eight years of experience supporting and coordinating project activities across a large organization and with other international development organizations. 10 years of experience in lieu of an advanced degree.
- Proven experience in translating complex ideas from various fields into unified, clear guidance.
- Progressively responsible professional work experience in relevant field, some of which should be in an international setting.
- A strong understanding of UNICEF programmes, policy, and principles, including knowledge of communication, technology, user-centered design.
- Proven ability to manage relationships with UNICEF programmes and partners, including government, universities, other UN organizations, donors, NGOs and the private sector.
- Proven skills in communication, networking, strategic thinking, advocacy, negotiation, and ability to relate this to new media and young people.
- Proven capacity to work with and lead collaborative teams across different locations and with different technical skills.
- Experience managing projects with strong technology components.
- Strong writing and communication skills and the aptitude to handle competing messages and priorities with multiple audiences.
- Experience working in complex, resource poor contexts is a plus.
- Fluency in both English and French is required.
Applications must include:
- Cover letter and
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 unicef.org can only be accessed during the application period.