Vacancy Announcement – Internship/Traineeship - Communications, Office of the Executive Director

Organizational Unit: Office of the Executive Director

Duration of contract: 4 - 6 months

Indicative starting date: May 2018

Duty Station: Geneva, Switzerland

Deadline for Application: 13 April 2018

General objectives

The United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) maintains an internship/traineeship programme for students/recent graduates interested in gaining professional experience in a multicultural environment and enhancing their understanding of the United Nations system.

The United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) is the training arm of the United Nations System, serving over 40,000 beneficiaries annually by conducting over 500 capacity development training activities around the world.

The Mission of UNITAR is to develop capacities of individuals, organizations and institutions to enhance global decision-making and to support country-level action for shaping a better future.   Training targets two key groups of beneficiaries: the delegates to the United Nations and public policy officials.

UNITAR offers various training and capacity-development activities in the thematic areas of:

  • Capacity for Agenda 2030;
  • Strengthening Multilateralism;
  • Promotion of economic development and social inclusion;
  • Advancement of environmental sustainability and green development;
  • Promotion of sustainable peace;
  • Research and Technology Applications.

UNITAR welcomes qualified candidates interested to work for a period of four to six months, on an unpaid basis, at UNITAR headquarters in Geneva. They will receive a monthly lump-sum to cover transportation.

In line with the Institute’s mandate and global outreach, the Office of the Executive Director is developing various new means, avenues and channels for communication, coordination and consultation.

As UN Member States turn their attention towards the implementation of key decisions taken in 2015 on Agenda 2030, Financing for Development, Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change, UNITAR is being spotlighted and called to action. In order to support UN Member States in their tasks ahead, UNITAR must reach-out to ensure that those responsible for turning commitments into change, have the correct skills, knowledge and capacities to act towards transformative change. 

At UNITAR, we are committed to taking significant steps forward, reaching the furthest first, and leaving no one behind, with special attention to Least Developed Countries (LDCs), Small Island Developing States (SIDS) and other groups and communities who are most vulnerable. 

In this context, the Office of the Executive Director is amplifying its outreach campaign, including the use of new social medias, communication channels with International Geneva and worldwide, and the organisation of high-profile events, conferences and roundtable dialogues. 

Overview of responsibilities

Under the supervision of the Special Assistant to the Executive Director, the intern/trainee will assist in the development of communication, coordination and outreach tasks, including the organisation of events and the drafting of content for publications, reports, online media and other channels. 

The intern/trainee would assist in, inter alia, communications and outreach activities and will adapt content to quality standards. Typical tasks assigned to the intern/trainee may include the following:

  • To support colleagues in the development of new brochures, flyers, concept notes, or other communications materials;
  • Work closely with UNITAR’s Communications Unit, to ensure that all new materials comply with UNITAR standards and quality guidelines;
  • To support colleagues in the development of new social media content for the Office of the Executive Director;
  • To support colleagues in drafting of briefing notes / packages in advance of key events, meetings, conferences, or missions;
  • To conduct research on key topics according to strategic priorities;
  • To liaise with internal colleagues to ensure communications material is up-to-date and relevant;
  • To draft documentation, research articles, communication material and reports for publishing externally;
  • To maintain and develop UNITAR’s communication database to ensure the efficient and effective dissemination of information and coordination amongst the global diplomatic community.

The tasks assigned may be reviewed during contract period to reflect changes in programme needs and priorities.


Candidates should be enrolled in or hold a university-level programme (Bachelors degree, licence or other) or a graduate programme (Master) either in communications, marketing, political science, international relations, history, languages, law or a related subject.

Please note that the status of intern is granted to candidates still enrolled in a graduate or undergraduate programme, while candidates having completed their education are considered as trainees. 

Candidates should also have:  a good knowledge of the United Nations; demonstrated interest in capacity building and training; ability to write in a clear and concise manner; analytical and research skills; administrative and organizational skills to assist in the organization of events and activities; computer skills (to deal with online communication tools, word processing, excel, power point, internet search, etc.) and a high level of individual responsibility, commitment and initiative.


Proficiency in English. A good level of French and/or any other UN language will be an asset.

How to apply

Send your CV and motivation letter to quoting “Internship – Office of the Executive Director” in your subject line.

Interns/Trainees are not financially remunerated by UNITAR. They receive a monthly lump-sum to cover transportation.