Communications Associate

Applications procedure
Related Files
    Personnel Service Agreement (PSA)
    Helsinki, Finland
    UTC +3

    Organisational Unit: UNU World Institute for Development Economics Research (UNU-WIDER)

    About the United Nations University (UNU)

    For the past four decades, UNU has been a go-to think tank for impartial research on the pressing global problems of human survival, conflict prevention, development, and welfare. With more than 400 researchers in 13 countries, UNU’s work spans the full breadth of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals, generating policy-relevant knowledge to effect positive global change. UNU maintains more than 200 collaborations with UN agencies and leading universities and research institutions across the globe.

    UNU World Institute for Development Economics Research (UNU-WIDER)

    UNU-WIDER is a leading international development economics think tank. The Institute provides economic analysis and policy advice with the aim of promoting sustainable and equitable development for all. The Institute began operations in 1985 in Helsinki, Finland, as the first research centre of the United Nations University. Today it is a unique blend of think tank, research institute, and UN agency — providing a range of services from policy advice to governments, as well as original research that is “open access”. More information on UNU-WIDER’s current work programme, is available at

    UNU-WIDER is now looking for an outstanding communications professional with strong commitment and understanding of development issues to join the Institute’s Communications and Events team. The selected candidate will be a key member of varied research projects – responsible for uptake and impact of the project research with target audiences, as well as building and promoting the brand of UNU-WIDER.


    Under the supervision of the Communications Officer, the incumbent will:

    • assume strategic, tactical, and coordination responsibilities on assigned research and knowledge translation projects in line with the Institute’s communication goals and strategy
    • provide substantive support in the development and implementation of project-specific communication plans, including related effective dissemination techniques
    • draft, edit, design, and proof read the Institute’s research translation and dissemination products
    • provide writing and editorial support to members of the Institute’s research staff; edit texts of specialised or technical nature to promote impact with the intended audience
    • coordinate the production of policy and research briefs, reports, interviews, and other material
    • participate in the planning and organisation of events, including conferences, seminars, round-table discussions, WIDER Annual Lectures, press briefings, interviews etc., and produce associated communications components
    • spearhead media engagement in assigned research projects
    • develop and manage social media emanating from assigned projects
    • conceptualise and lead the creation of material for varied print and electronic media projects such as brochures, flyers, posters, and online newsletters
    • provide specialised input in preparing cost estimates for technical collaboration projects, draft specifications and terms of reference
    • perform other duties as assigned by supervisor

    Required qualifications and experience

    Required qualifications and experience include:

    • bachelor’s degree in communications, international relations, economics or equivalent field with at least three (3) years of relevant work experience preferably in an international organisation, or
    • completion of secondary school education with at least six (6) years of relevant work experience preferably in an international organisation
    • demonstrated ability to repackage and communicate economics and/or development research in an international multi-platform environment to target audiences around the world
    • outstanding command of English-language writing and editing for academic and non-academic target audiences; knowledge of other official UN languages would be an asset
    • demonstrable skills in graphic design, especially experience with Adobe Creative Suite (especially InDesign and Photoshop) is an advantage
    • experience in using Drupal (or other CMS), CiviCRM (or other CRM) and database tools is an asset
    • knowledge of the UN system is an advantage; previous experience of working in international development organisations would be an asset
    • excellent team player with strong communication and interpersonal skills, as well as an ability to work in a multicultural, multi-ethnic environment with sensitivity and respect for diversity
    • strong ability to establish priorities, multitask, and work within tight timelines
    • ability to work in under minimal supervision and with high level of resilience


    Remuneration will be commensurate with qualifications, experience, and level of responsibilities within the administration.

    This is a locally-recruited post; no relocation allowance applies. The post is limited to persons residing in Finland, including persons holding a valid work permit. The successful candidate will be employed under a local contract and will not hold international civil service status nor be a “staff member” as defined in the UN Staff Rules and Regulations.

    UNU has its own medical insurance for employees contracted under a Personnel Service Agreement (PSA).

    Duration of contract

    This is full-time employment on a one (1) year Personnel Service Agreement (PSA) contract with UNU-WIDER, with the possibility for renewal subject to requirements and satisfactory work performance. The combined duration of appointments shall not exceed six (6) years.

    Starting date

    As soon as possible.

  • Interested applicants should submit their applications online using this form and must upload the following:

    • a cover letter setting out how their qualifications and experience match the requirements of the position
    • a completed and signed UNU Personal History (P.11) form; please avoid using similar forms provided by other United Nations organisations
    • an up-to-date CV
    • a copy of highest educational degree obtained

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    The United Nations shall place no restrictions on the eligibility of men and women to participate in any capacity and under conditions of equality in its principal and subsidiary organs (Charter of the United Nations: Chapter 3, article 8).