Job Number: 508972 | Vacancy Link
Locations: Headquarters Locations: United States of America
Work Type: Consultancy
Estimated Start Date: 10th December 2017
Duty Station: New York
Level: Individual contract (equivalent to P4)
Duration: 6 months (with optional extension up to 11.5 months based on performance, need and available funding)
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 60 years. Innovations support the organization’s 190 countries and territories where UNICEF has operations, 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 ecosystem. 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://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
Harnessing technology offers huge opportunities and promise to transform education and improve learning outcomes at all levels and for all children. According to the Education Commission, by 2020, virtually everyone will have a mobile phone, 2.6 billion people will have smart phones, and 56 percent of people will have Internet access. The promise of information and communication technology (ICT) and digital learning makes it possible to reach new and excluded learners, lower costs, enhance teaching, and offer new ways for all learners to gain skills.
For all the expected promise of ICT, evidence to date demonstrates that while ICT offers potentially significant gains for education, the effects of tested interventions have varied greatly. Despite such varied returns and the many challenges to implementation, investments in education technology are on the rise as countries, from the lowest- to the highest-income, increasingly seek to incorporate technology into their classrooms and education systems
The Challenge of Education for Children on the Move
Education is critical for children and youth in conflict settings, not only because it provides opportunities to acquire life-saving skills, but preserves hope by providing children with a sense of normality, which is imperative for alleviating the psychosocial impact of violence for individuals and whole communities. Education is also necessary to prepare individuals with the necessary knowledge and skills for eventual post-conflict reconstruction, and social and economic development of their societies.
Education technology can play an important role for children living in conflict settings, migrant children, and internally displaced children, because it could provide alternative delivery channels of relevant content, training opportunities for teachers/facilitators, and remote support to both children and teachers.
To respond effectively to the current refugee and migrant crisis and the needs of UNICEF country offices, UNICEF requires an open-source personalized learning digital platform. UNICEF therefore is seeking a consultant with significant experience in product management in the enterprise software space, with a specific focus on Education. The consultant will support the procurement process and oversee the technical development and coordination of a UNICEF learning platform, coordinate usability testing and pilot roll-outs of the learning platform and provide guidance and hands-on support to UNICEF country offices.
PURPOSE OF THE APPOINTMENT / MAIN ACTIVITIES
The consultant is expected to:
- Identify and draft technical requirements of the platform/product to guide partnership and/or procurement processes, including market sourcing and selection of the technical vendor.
- Support private sector consultation or outreach associated with partnership or procurement processes associated with the digital learning platform.
- Manage the overall product development of UNICEF’s learning platform and act as the link between UNICEF’s technical vendor and UNICEF Regional and Country Offices.
- Work with UNICEF Regional and Country Offices and UNICEF’s technical vendor to conduct user research and gather product requirements.
- Manage a product roadmap and product backlog to reach quarterly product milestones in partnership with UNICEF ‘s technical vendor.
- Track functional specifications and designs in collaboration with UNICEF’s technical vendor.
- Coordinate user research sessions, usability testing and product piloting between UNICEF country offices and UNICEF’s technical vendor.
- Communicate roadmaps to various stakeholders, technical and non-technical.
- Manage, track and record learning platform product releases.
- Provide regular reports to Education and Innovation sections on product updates.
MANAGEMENT AND COORDINATION OF ASSIGNMENT
The consultant will be supervised by the Education Specialist, Education Section, NYHQ and the Innovation in Education Lead, Education Section, NYHQ and will also work closely with the Ventures team, Office of Innovation, NYHQ
- Monthly payment, based on monthly tasks and progress reports, approved upon monthly review with supervising unit.
- Consultant is responsible for his own health insurance
- Consultant is eligible for standard DSA for all work-related travel.
- Consultants are responsible for assuming costs for obtaining visas and travel insurance.
QUALIFICATIONS AND EDUCATION
- Advanced degree in Education Technology, Instructional Design, Computer Science, Computer Engineering, or related technical discipline
- 8 years of relevant product management experience
- A track record of project delivery for large, cross-functional projects
- Experience developing products in UNICEF program countries
- Experience with product management on technical products with externally visible open source APIs, SDKs, protocols or other developer-facing product features
- Experience with professional software engineering practices and best practices for the full software development life cycle
- Experience with agile software development methodologies like scrum
- Experience conducting user research, testing and other design-based processes
- Experience with open-source technologies and cultivating open source communities
- Comfortable working and negotiating with others to manage dependencies and coordinate roadmaps
- Strong written and verbal communication skills, excellent technical communication with peers and non-technical stakeholders
- Experience working in Education Technology or Education highly preferred
- Experience working in international development context highly preferred
- Desire to work in a highly-collaborative environment
Fluency in English is required.
Applications must include:
- Cover letter
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.
 Christopher Talbot. “Education in Conflict: Emergencies in Light of the post-2015 MDGs and EFA Agendas”. January 2013. Network for International Policies and Cooperation in Education and Training. Working Paper #3. Pg. 5
To view our competency framework, please click here.
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: 04 December 2017
*Posting and application portal for this job on unicef.org can only be accessed during the application period.