Job Opening

Posting Title: INTERN - ENVIRONMENT AFFAIRS, I (Temporary Job Opening)
Department/Office: United Nations Environment Programme
Duty Station: GENEVA
Posting Period: 08 November 2021 - 22 November 2021
Job Opening Number: 21-Environmental Affairs-UNEP-167880-J-Geneva (O)
Staffing Exercise N/A
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity
Sorry, this job opening is no longer available.

Org. Setting and Reporting

The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) is the leading global environmental authority that sets the global environmental agenda, promotes the coherent implementation of the environmental dimension of sustainable development within the United Nations system and serves as an authoritative advocate for the global environment.

The overall objective of UNEP’s Economy Division is to encourage decision-makers in government, local authorities and industry to develop and adopt policies, strategies and practices and technologies that promote sustainable patterns of consumption and production, make efficient use of natural resources, ensure safe management of chemicals and contribute to making trade and environment policies mutually supportive. It promotes the development, use and transfer of policies, technologies, economic instruments, managerial practices and other tools that assist in environmentally sound decision making and the building of corresponding activities.

The Chemicals and Health Branch of the Economy Division leads UNEP's sub-programme on Chemicals, Waste and Air Quality. UNEP’s programme of work centers around assistance to countries and multilateral environmental agreement (MEA) secretariats to assist in technical-scientific issues related to priority chemicals and implementation of the United Nations Environment Assembly and Governing Council resolutions.

GEF--The GEF Unit of the Chemicals and Health Branch is responsible for the development and management of all GEF projects implemented by UNEP in the Chemicals and Wastes focal area. To date, the team has a portfolio of 100 projects represented over $200 mil of GEF investment supporting countries in their implementation of the Stockholm Convention, the Minamata Convention and SAICM. During the next 6 months, a key task of the team is also the negotiation of the portfolio opportunities for the next cycle of GEF.
KRU--The Knowledge and Risk Unit of the Chemicals and Health Branch promotes scientific approaches and knowledge for the sound management of chemicals including through implementation of UNEA resolutions.
The Knowledge and Risk Unit gathers, compiles and analyses state of the art information and data, including through monitoring activities, inventories and assessments, to allow policymakers to make informed decisions on the sound management of chemicals and waste. The Unit executes projects and covers topics related to lead in paint, persistent organic pollutants, highly hazardous pesticides, chemicals in products, among others.
The Unit also addresses issues of concern highlighted by governments, such as antimicrobial resistance, and assists in implementing mandates received through the United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA) on the GCO-II, sustainable chemistry and the Sustainable Development Goals.
PHU--The Pollution and Health Unit, which is part of the Chemicals and Health Branch, leads the operationalization of the Implementation Plan “Towards a Pollution-free Planet” and provides a coordinating hub within UNEP for addressing environment and health nexus issues. The Unit also coordinates the Air Quality Programme of UNEP. In its coordination role, the Unit promotes a common narrative, enhanced visibility and prioritization of action to address pollution and the environment and health nexus to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. The Unit also manages projects addressing knowledge and implementation gaps in air quality and environment and health and selected areas of pollution prevention.
SAICM--The Strategic Approach to International Chemicals Management is an inclusive, voluntary global policy framework on the sound management of chemicals and waste and is hosted by UNEP, Chemicals and Health Branch in Geneva. Currently, the SAICM Secretariat is implementing Resolution IV/5 of the fourth session of the International Conference of Chemicals Management, including the intersessional process to prepare recommendations regarding the Strategic Approach and the sound management of chemicals and waste beyond 2020.


Under the supervision, guidance and mentoring of the Programme Management Officer, the Intern will carry out the following duties (specific responsibilities will depend on the individual's background as well as the internship period).

GEF Chemicals and Waste Unit:
--Participate in GEF8 pipeline development meeting
--Assist in the collection and curation of project baseline information (literature research and review)
--Assist in the development of project concepts (including Theory of Change, development of projects logical framework and identification of co-financers)
--Assist tasks managers in projects implementation, review of quarterly progress and financial reports, attend virtual steering committee meetings.

Knowledge and Risk Unit: Intern 1
--Assist in the collection of information (literature research and review) to develop technical documents, project proposals, briefing notes, presentations.
--Contribute to the preparation of webinars and side events on antimicrobial resistance and environment, and One Health related topics.
--Contribute to the development of communication materials.
--Participate in team meetings, UNEP One Health working group and other relevant meetings.

Knowledge and Risk Unit: Intern 2
--Assist in sectoral work on chemicals in products, including in the development and implementation of projects.
--Assist in the preparations for and follow up work from the second segment of the fifth session of the United.
--Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA-5.2) on chemicals and waste related topics, which may include Green and Sustainable Chemistry or the Assessment Report on Issues of Concern.

Knowledge and Risk Unit: Intern 3
--Assist the work of the UNEP Global Mercury Partnership (, including in awareness raising activities, such as online information-sharing events on mercury-related topics.
--Assist in the development of technical assistance and capacity-building projects on mercury pollution reduction and the sound management of chemicals, including through the conduct of desk research.

Knowledge and Risk Unit: Intern 4
--Assist on the capacity building and awareness raising activities under the GEF ID 9884 “Integrated SC toolkit to improve the transmission of information under Articles 07 and 15”and the Global component of the GEF NIPs update projects.

Pollution and Health Unit
--assist in the assessment of social costs of pollution and of pollution reduction efforts.
--assist in the identification and development of indicators to measure such impacts and communities’ and public engagement.
--assist in the development of guidance on strengthening the role of the public in curbing pollution.
--contribute to the review and finalization of pollution-related reports.

SAICM Secretariat – Intern 1
--Support the implementation of the Intersessional Process online work that is been discussed at the Bureau meetings.
--Analyse decisions that will inform the design of future work for the intersessional process until the time when face-to-face meetings are feasible.;
--Assist the preparation of various written outputs, e.g. draft background papers, analytical notes, sections of reports and studies, inputs to publications, etc.; and
--Assist with other related tasks as appropriate.

SAICM Secretariat – Intern 2
--Support SAICM’s policy support work, including SAICM emerging policy issues, waste, sectoral and stakeholder engagement, including private sector and youth engagement, etc.;
--Support the organization of on-line webinars and events linked to chemicals and waste, including the SAICM communities of practice;
--Assist the preparation of various written outputs, e.g. draft background papers, presentations, analytical notes, sections of reports and studies, inputs to publications and other communications, etc.; and
--Assist with other related tasks as appropriate.

SAICM Secretariat – Intern 3
--Support SAICM’s policy support work, including SAICM emerging policy issues, waste, sectoral and stakeholder engagement, including private sector and youth engagement, etc.
--Support the organization of on-line webinars and events linked to chemicals and waste, including the SAICM communities of practice.
--Participate in the planning and implementation of communication and outreach activities to showcase the outcomes of the SAICM GEF Project - Global Best Practices on Emerging Policy Issues of Concern under the Strategic Approach;
--Contribute to content curation and resource additions to the SAICM KM platform;
--Assist the preparation of various written outputs, e.g. draft background papers, presentations, analytical notes, sections of reports and studies, inputs to publications and other communications, etc.
--Assist with other related tasks as appropriate.


--Shows pride in work and in achievements;
--demonstrates professional competence and mastery of subject matter;
--is conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, observing deadlines and achieving results;
--is motivated by professional rather than personal concerns;
--shows persistence when faced with difficult problems or challenges;
--remains calm in stressful situations;
--commitment to implementing the goal of gender equality (by ensuring the equal participation and full involvement of women and men in all aspects of work).

--Speaks and writes clearly and effectively;
--listens to others, correctly interprets messages from others and responds appropriately;
--asks questions to clarify, and exhibits interest in having two-way communication;
--tailors language, tone, style and format to match audience;
--demonstrates openness in sharing information and keeping people informed.

--Works collaboratively with colleagues to achieve organizational goals;
--solicits input by genuinely valuing others' ideas and expertise; is willing to learn from others;
--places team agenda before personal agenda;
--supports and acts in accordance with final group decision, even when such decisions may not entirely reflect own position;
--shares credit for team accomplishments and accepts joint responsibility for team shortcomings.


--International Relations or Environmental Science. Preference may be given to Masters candidates.
--Communications. International Relations or Environmental Science. Preference may be given to Masters candidates.
--Fully proficient computer skills and use of web based platforms and relevant software e.g. word processing, PowerPoint, excel, internal databases, Internet etc.

Work Experience

No working experience is required to apply for the United Nations Internship Programme. Your training, education, advance course work or skills should benefit the United Nations during your internship.

Is your field of study closely related to the type of internship you are applying for? Please explain.


English is one of the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. Fluency in English is required for the Internship Programme.
Knowledge of one of the following UN language is an advantage (Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian, Spanish).


Applicant must meet one of the following requirements:
(a) be enrolled in, or have completed, a graduate school programme (second university degree or equivalent, or higher);
(b) be enrolled in, or have completed, the final academic year of a first university degree programme (minimum Bachelor's level or equivalent).

Special Notice

Your application for this internship must include:

1. A Completed application (Personal History Profile) and Cover Note, through the UN careers Portal. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed.

The Cover Note must include:
--Title of the degree you are currently pursuing
--Graduation Date
--IT skills and programmes you are proficient in
--Explain why you are the best candidate for this specific internship

Explain your interest in the United Nations Internship Programme, ensure to include all past work experience (if any).

2. Proof of enrolment from current University (if not graduated).
3. A copy of degree certificate (if you have already graduated).

Due to a high volume of applications received, ONLY successful candidates will be contacted

Interns work five days a week under the supervision of a staff member in the Branch.

The internships will be within the Economy Division, Chemicals and Health Branch with the CAVEAT: In the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, internships will be undertaken remotely in view of constraints regarding, international travel and access to UN premises.

Interns are not financially remunerated by the United Nations.

United Nations Considerations

According to article 101, paragraph 3, of the Charter of the United Nations, the paramount consideration in the employment of the staff is the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity. Candidates will not be considered for employment with the United Nations if they have committed violations of international human rights law, violations of international humanitarian law, sexual exploitation, sexual abuse, or sexual harassment, or if there are reasonable grounds to believe that they have been involved in the commission of any of these acts. The term “sexual exploitation” means any actual or attempted abuse of a position of vulnerability, differential power, or trust, for sexual purposes, including, but not limited to, profiting monetarily, socially or politically from the sexual exploitation of another. The term “sexual abuse” means the actual or threatened physical intrusion of a sexual nature, whether by force or under unequal or coercive conditions. The term “sexual harassment” means any unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature that might reasonably be expected or be perceived to cause offence or humiliation, when such conduct interferes with work, is made a condition of employment or creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment, and when the gravity of the conduct warrants the termination of the perpetrator’s working relationship. Candidates who have committed crimes other than minor traffic offences may not be considered for employment.

Due regard will be paid to the importance of recruiting the staff on as wide a geographical basis as possible. The United Nations places 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. The United Nations Secretariat is a non-smoking environment.

The paramount consideration in the appointment, transfer, or promotion of staff shall be the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity. By accepting an offer of appointment, United Nations staff members are subject to the authority of the Secretary-General and assignment by him or her to any activities or offices of the United Nations in accordance with staff regulation 1.2 (c). In this context, all internationally recruited staff members shall be required to move periodically to discharge new functions within or across duty stations under conditions established by the Secretary-General.

Applicants are urged to follow carefully all instructions available in the online recruitment platform, inspira. For more detailed guidance, applicants may refer to the Manual for the Applicant, which can be accessed by clicking on “Manuals” hyper-link on the upper right side of the inspira account-holder homepage.

The evaluation of applicants will be conducted on the basis of the information submitted in the application according to the evaluation criteria of the job opening and the applicable internal legislations of the United Nations including the Charter of the United Nations, resolutions of the General Assembly, the Staff Regulations and Rules, administrative issuances and guidelines. Applicants must provide complete and accurate information pertaining to their personal profile and qualifications according to the instructions provided in inspira to be considered for the current job opening. No amendment, addition, deletion, revision or modification shall be made to applications that have been submitted. Candidates under serious consideration for selection will be subject to reference checks to verify the information provided in the application.

Job openings advertised on the Careers Portal will be removed at 11:59 p.m. (New York time) on the deadline date.

No Fee


Sorry, this job opening is no longer available.
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