1963-2018 - 55 years of Research for Social Change

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Research Coordinator: Gender and Development (P3)

  • Closing date: 13 Oct 2013
  • Vacancy number: RC 006

The United Nations Research Institute for Social Development (UNRISD) is an autonomous research institute within the UN system that undertakes multidisciplinary research and policy analysis on the social dimensions of contemporary development issues. Through our work, we aim to ensure that social equity, inclusion and justice are central to development thinking, policy and practice.

UNRISD seeks an outstanding researcher in the field of gender and development to coordinate its programme of work in this area.

UNRISD has long been recognized for its high-quality research on gender and development. Its research has had significant influence on academic debates in the field, and is widely used within the UN, policy making and advocacy communities. Within the context of the institute’s overall research agenda, which focuses on the social dimensions of economic and sustainable development, the Gender Programme addresses the gendered content and impacts of economic and social policies and processes, the gendered politics of policy making, including the role of women’s movements and organizations, and gender and sustainable development.

The Research Coordinator will join a small team committed to producing high-quality research that contributes to the realization of equity and social justice. Building on prior and ongoing research, s/he will lead the development of new research projects, identifying critical areas of concern for the UN system within the framework of the overall research strategy of the Institute. (Visit www.unrisd.org for details.)

The ideal candidate will have proven experience in conceptualizing, developing and implementing research programmes, with field research experience in developing countries. S/he will have a record of high-quality research outputs and experience in communicating research to diverse audiences, particularly in policy communities. S/he should be familiar with UNRISD research; some knowledge of the UN system would be an advantage.

Functions: Under the general supervision of the Director of UNRISD, the Research Coordinator will be responsible for the following tasks.
  • Conceptualize, develop and manage the Institute’s research programme in the area of Gender and Development, ensuring its integration within the Institute’s overall institutional strategy and research agenda.
  • Act as the focal point for UNRISD in its engagement with the UN system on gender-related issues.
  • Design and manage research programmes, including identification of research partners, organization of meetings and conferences; supervision of staff and consultants involved in the projects; and ensuring the quality of outputs produced.
  • Produce high-quality publications, including articles in peer-reviewed journals and edited volumes; policy briefs and other outputs for a range of audiences
  • Contribute to fundraising activities for the research programme, and assist in the fundraising activities of the Institute.
  • Contribute to Institute-wide flagship publications, research programmes and special activities.
  • Build and maintain regular contacts within the United Nations system, governments, multilateral donors and the international research community.
  • Based on UNRISD research, provide policy advice and technical assistance to United Nations departments and agencies, national and local policy makers, civil society organizations, academic or other institutions.
  • Represent UNRISD in international meetings and academic conferences.
  • Periodically report on progress to the Director, the UNRISD Board and donors.
  • Carry out other activities as agreed within the Institute or assigned by the Director.

Work implies frequent interaction with the following: Counterparts, senior officers and technical staff in relevant Secretariat units and in UN funds, programmes and specialized agencies. Representatives and officials in national governments, other international organizations, civil society organizations, academic networks and consultants.

Results expected: Develops, implements, monitors and evaluates assigned research programme/projects. Provides thorough, well-reasoned written contributions, e.g., background papers, analysis, sections of reports and studies, inputs to publications, etc. Develops and maintains effective working relationships with researchers in UNRISD networks and staff. Contributes to internal discussions and debates on development issues and UNRISD research strategy. Provides inputs to enhance communications and outreach.

  • Professionalism: Demonstrates professional competence as a researcher in the field of gender and development.
  • Communication: Excellent oral communication and writing skills. Ability to communicate effectively with different target audiences regarding substantive issues.
  • Teamwork: Works collaboratively with colleagues to achieve organizational and project goals. Builds consensus for project objectives with colleagues.
  • Leadership: Takes intellectual leadership in substantive areas of work and demonstrates good management skills.
  • Judgement/Decision-Making: Identifies critical issues for research relevant to the work of the UN; develops appropriate research methods and analyses data, drawing policy recommendations in accordance with the norms and objectives of the United Nations.


Education: A Master’s Degree in social science, with a focus on gender and development. A PhD is strongly desirable.

  • A minimum of five years of experience in development research at an academic or research institution. Up to two years research towards a PhD can be recognized as relevant experience.
  • A proven publication record in the field of gender and development, and expertise in at least one of the priority areas of interest to the Institute.
  • Research experience in developing countries.
  • Experience in fundraising for research projects, and in the management and supervision of projects.

  • Fluent English with proven writing and editing skills; ability to work in other UN languages highly desirable.

Application process:
  • Candidates from developing countries are particularly encouraged to apply.
  • If you are interested in the work elaborated above and fulfil the required qualifications, please apply online by clicking the button below.
  • Please use the “Motivation” section of the online application form for your cover letter.
  • Shortlisted applicants will be contacted by end-October.
  • Due to limited staff resources only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.

Closing date: 13 October 2013 (Midnight, Central European Time)