JOB: United Nations University v Nemecku ponúka pracovnú pozíciu Research Associate

  • Kdekoľvek

United Nations University Objectives:

The United Nations University (UNU) is an international community of scholars, engaged in research, postgraduate teaching and capacity development and dissemination of knowledge in furthering the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations. The mission of UNU is to contribute, through research and capacity building, to efforts to resolve the pressing global problems that are the concern of the United Nations and its Member States. For more information, please visit

United Nations University Institute for Environment and Human Security (UNU-EHS) established in December 2003, is part of the UNU system, a worldwide network of Research and Training Institutes. Its mission is to advance human security through knowledge-based approaches to reducing vulnerability and environmental risks. For more information, please visit

Environmental Vulnerability & Ecosystem Services Section – EVES

EVES explores environmental deterioration processes such as water and land degradation. Particularly, the section looks at remedial measures, resources availability and robustness of ecosystem services, all within the context of socio-ecological systems affected by environmental hazards.

The WASCAL Project: “West African Science Service Center on Climate Change and Adapted Land Use”

WASCAL (West African Science Service Center on Climate Change and Adapted Land Use) is a large-scale research-focused program initiated to develop effective adaptation and mitigation measures to climate change. Its overall objective is to enhance the resilience of social-ecological systems to the impacts of climate change and increased climate variability. The geographical focus of WASCAL is on selected case study watersheds in West Africa.

WASCAL is based on three principle components: a Competence Center, a core Research Program and a Graduate Research Program. The Core Research Program relates to the scientific activities of the Competence Center, and is implemented by a network of German and West African research institutes. Within the core research program, UNU-EHS will analyze rural households’ vulnerabilities and risks to rapid onset and creeping hazards in the context of climate change and explore potential coping and adaptation strategies. Specifically, UNU-EHS deals with the identification, characterization and quantification of major climate change-related hazards to rural households/communities at different spatial and temporal scales, the assessment of the social-ecological system’s social, environmental and economic vulnerabilities as well as their resilience to multiple climate change-related hazards and consequent cascading effects. Furthermore, new algorithms for the fusion of remote sensing information and socio-economic statistical data to spatially and temporally characterize and deduce human and environmental exposure and sensitivity to various hazards will be developed.

DeltAdapt Project

The DeltAdapt project is a BMBF (German Federal Ministry of Education and Research) funded project aiming to explore the socio-ecological sustainability of coastal agro-ecosystems in the Mekong and Red River Delta, Vietnam and their adaptation options to increasing salinity intrusion. The main focus is on management shifts between paddy rice, rice-shrimp farming, and saline aquaculture and the consequences of these on-farm adaptation processes to salinity intrusion on soil quality, biodiversity, climate, and livelihoods. UNU-EHS leads work package 4 on “Pollution and food safety”. The work is based on the assumptions that salinity intrusion as well as directly or indirectly salinity-driven changes in land use and irrigation patterns will influence the application (amount, timing, and spatial distribution) of pesticides and antibiotics in the coastal areas. The different levels of salinity intrusion as well as the related land use may alter the soil properties, and consequently also modify the fate and bioaccumulation processes of these chemicals in the environment.

The successful candidate will support the project activities in both projects.


Under the authority of the Director of UNU-EHS and the Head of the EVES Section, the successful candidate will be entrusted with the following tasks:

  • Conduct background literature searches in the context of vulnerability and risk assessment;
  • Search for secondary data from various sources, data collection and mining (this applies to DeltAdapt, WASCAL, but also other projects);
  • Compile and edit data (field data, household surveys etc.);
  • Work with spatial data and prepare maps;
  • Contribute to a global review on soil selling for brick production (specific to the DeltAdapt)
  • Assist in the preparation of meetings, workshops and trainings;
  • Assist in the preparation of project reports, publications, where needed;
  • Any other duties may be assigned or required.

Required Qualifications and Experience:

  • Geography,  Environmental Sciences,  Agricultural Sciences (or equivalent);
  • Very good command of oral and written English and French; German would be an asset;
  • Experience in vulnerability and risk assessment (particularly indicator-based assessments);
  • Experience with data collection and management; Knowledge of the data collection schemes in West Africa would be an asset;
  • Excellent knowledge of GIS required;
  • Profound knowledge of remote sensing techniques required;
  • Research experience in the West African context is essential;
  • Knowledge of quantitative and qualitative data analysis tools would be desirable;
  • Good team player with strong interpersonal skills demonstrated by the ability to work in a multi-cultural environment.


Remuneration will be commensurate with qualifications and experience.

Duration of Contract:

This is a full-time employment on a 6 months Personnel Service Agreement (PSA) contract with the possibility of renewal subject to requirements and satisfactory work performance as well as availability of funds, with the combined duration of appointments not exceeding six (6) years.

This is a locally recruited post and no relocation allowances apply. The successful candidate will be employed under a local contract and will not hold international civil servant status nor is he/she a “staff member” as defined in the United Nations Staff Rules and Regulations.

Applications from suitably qualified women candidates are particularly encouraged.

Starting Date: January 2016

Application Procedure:

Interested applicants should submit their applications by e-mail (to, and must include the following:

  • a cover letter setting out how the qualifications and experience match the requirements of the position;
  • a curriculum vitae and a completed and signed UNU Personal History (P.11) form downloadable from the UNU website. Please avoid using similar forms provided by other United Nations organizations;
  • an indication of the reference number of the vacancy announcement (2015/UNU/EHS/PSA/RA/77).