Job Opening

Posting Title: Sustainable Urban Expert (Research and Training)
Department/Office: United Nations Human Settlements Programme
Duty Station: NAIROBI
Posting Period: 01 January 2019 - 20 January 2019
Job Opening Number: 18-United Nations Human Settlements Programme-109236-Consultant
Staffing Exercise N/A
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity
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Result of Service

The consultant's services will contribute to improved knowledge and understanding of urban stakeholders on the key commitments of NUA and enhanced capacity of city leaders, decision makers, technical cadres of local and national governments as well as private and non-governmental organizations that are involved in the implementation of the New Urban Agenda and the SDG11 to translate the NUA commitments to their work programmes, plans and initiatives. Ultimately the outcomes of the consultancy will support the implementation of the New Urban Agenda as well as contribute to the reporting process on the progress of the said agenda.

Work Location


Expected duration

8 months (15 February-14 October 2019)

Duties and Responsibilities

Organizational Setting

The Research and Capacity Development Branch at UN-Habitat Headquarters is responsible for UN-Habitat’s urban research and capacity development activities. It aims to strengthen monitoring of the state of urbanization globally and the dissemination of knowledge on sustainable urbanization issues, building on the lessons learned from the implementation of the UN-Habitat portfolio. It aims to ensure a coherent, adequate and integrated implementation of the UN-Habitat capacity development strategy at the international, national and local levels to improve the formulation and implementation of policies and programmes on sustainable urbanization that are aligned with the New Urban Agenda (NUA) and the Sustainable Development Goals, particularly the SDG11.

The adoption of the NUA in 2016 following the Third United Nations Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development (Habitat III) was a major milestone in global urban policy. The NUA charts the course and provides an action-oriented roadmap to guide sustainable urban development globally over the next 20 years. The NUA together with the Sustainable Development Goals, which include an urban goal — SDG 11 to make cities and human settlements safe, inclusive, resilient, and sustainable — firmly place urbanization at the forefront of the international development policy. The NUA is the accelerator of the SDGs in cities. UN-Habitat in close collaboration with other relevant entities of the United Nations system will, every four years, submit a report on the progress of the implementation of the NUA to the General Assembly. The first Quadrennial Report was published in 2018 and the second Quadrennial Report on the implementation of the New Urban Agenda will be published in 2022.

Within the Research and Capacity Development Branch, the Capacity Development Unit (CDU) transforms knowledge into capacity building products, including practical and problem-solving tools that respond to the needs of governments, cities, partners, technical cadres, urban practitioners and policy makers alike. CDU undertakes capacity building needs assessments and delivers a wide range of strategies, trainings and technical support for the implementation of the NUA and SDG11. The Unit also contributes to the Quadrennial Reports and coordinates the Secretariat of UN-Habitat Global University Partnership, HABITAT UNI, a platform that aims to bridge the arena of research and academia to that of practitioners, urban governance and policies.

The “New Urban Agenda Illustrated”

The NUA Illustrated shall translate the propositions and commitments contained in NUA into an action-oriented publication and training companion. The publication shall be accompanied by graphic illustrations and practical guides and case studies for their realization on the ground. It will serve as a basis for the development of a full training toolkit suitable for different contextual realities.
By providing a systematic empirical evidence and documentation of experiences through case study analyses which demonstrate progress in the achievement of the NUA and the SDG 11, the NUA Illustrated will support the capacity building efforts in the implementation of the two global agendas, as well as provide information for the forthcoming Quadrennial reports.


The consultant will be responsible for the production of 2 outputs for which the consultant will be required to undertake desk research, as well as ensure synergies with the work undertaken by UN-Habitat and its partners on the New Urban Agenda:
1. The conceptualization, development and publication of the “New Urban Agenda Illustrated”, a report containing examples, case studies, graphic illustrations, practical guides and approaches that best illustrate the implementation of the propositions and recommendations contained in the NUA. This report unpacks the text of the NUA and transform it into a practical guide for its implementation. In this report, importance should be given to the use of visuals over text.

2. The development and publication of an advanced draft of a training toolkit with a series of sessions, exercises, presentations and background materials with references associated to all the case studies. The toolkit will be drawn on the NUA Illustrated and will support the multiplication of capacity building efforts to enhance implementation, monitoring and reporting on NUA.
The consultant will work under the supervision and guidance of the Chief and relevant task managers of the Capacity Development Unit.

Qualifications/special skills

Academic Qualifications: An advanced university degree (Master's degree or equivalent) in Urban Planning, Urban Development, Urban Geography, Economics, Social Sciences, Development Studies, Urban Governance, Regional Planning, Civil Engineering, Architecture, or any other related field, is required.
Experience: The consultant is required to have at least seven years of progressive experience as a researcher/analyst and/or practitioner working on a range of urban and human settlements issues at the local, national and international levels; experience with adult-learning and design, planning, management and delivery of training courses; experience of working effectively in a multi-cultural environment; experience in conducting policy reviews and preparation of policy recommendations for decision makers; and experience with graphic design. Knowledge of international academic networks related to sustainable urbanization is highly desirable.
Language: Fluency in written and oral English is required for this position. Knowledge of another UN official language would be an advantage.

No Fee


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