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Research Associate


Through a series of different projects, the Poverty, MDGs and Human Development Unit aims at improving MDG tracking through enhanced national capacity to generate and use indicators and disaggregated data for vulnerable and excluded groups, at strengthening capacities of national institutions to integrate social and economic policies for the reduction of poverty and inequality, and at identifying and addressing key areas of policy intervention in different countries of Latin America and the Caribbean in collaboration with Country Offices and other RBLAC thematic units.

Each of the aforementioned three broad areas the Unit is in charge of requires substantial support to ensure quality and timely delivery. It is in this context that UNDP would like to recruit a Research Associate, to assist the Unit and its projects with substantive background qualitative as well as quantitative research.

Duties and Responsibilities

Under the guidance of and reporting directly to the RBLAC Chief Economist and the Unit´s Programme Specialist, the Research Associate will be responsible for the following:

  • Perform strategic diagnostic research to identify poverty traps and specific groups of the population that require targeted and specific policy interventions (labour and social protection policies). 
  • Identify best practices in subjects related to female labour participation, youth unemployment, education and training programs, conditional cash transfers and different types of targeted and universal social protection programs.
  • Performing background research (qualitative and quantitative) on project activities.
  • Provision of technical support and strategic advice on key project interventions, which includes overseeing the research processes of the national and sub-national Human Development Reports, MDG reports and any other publications of the Unit.
  • Supporting survey design, implementation and analysis for diverse projects in the unit and specific requests country offices
  • Provision of research assistance activities for all Unit initiatives.
  • Provision of support on preparation of different types of executive documents derived from the advisory activities provided by the Unit to the Directorate.


Corporate Competencies:

  • Demonstrates integrity by modelling the UN’s values and ethical standards;
  • Promotes the vision, mission, and strategic goals of UNDP;
  • Displays cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability;
  • Treats all people fairly without favouritism.

Functional Competencies:

  • Highly developed qualitative and quantitative research skills; ; knowledge of household surveys (Questionnaire design, sampling methodology and data analysis) is an additional asset
  • Strong analytical skills, and ability to rapidly analyze and integrate diverse information from varied sources;
  • Computer literate; must be able to use the Internet and other research and applied econometric software’s such as STATA effectively.
  • Identifies priority activities and assignments;
  • Teamwork - excellent interpersonal, organizational and management skills and ability to work within multi-disciplinary teams.

Development and Operational Effectiveness:

  • Able to manage complex problems proactively and effectively, including responses to field based emergencies;
  • Ability to operate effectively in a changing and complex environment, and to produce results under stress;
  • Consistently approach work with energy and a positive, constructive attitude;
  • Proven organizational and communication skills;
  • Demonstrate strong oral and written communication skills;
  • Demonstrate openness to change and ability to manage complexities.
  • Strong analytical capabilities.
  • Strong interpersonal and communication skills

Required Skills and Experience


  • Master’s degree in Economics or related development field. PhD is an additional asset.


  • At least 3 years of relevant work experience.
  • Prior knowledge and experience in research and research methodology.
  • Knowledge of political and economic context in Latin America and the Caribbean. 
  • Knowledge of UNDP work in the region and operational procedures is desirable.

Language requirements: 

  • Excellent oral and written communication skills in English and Spanish are essential. Working knowledge of another UN language (e.g. French) would be an asset.
Submission of application

Please send the following documents:

  • Duly accomplished Letter of Confirmation of Interest and Availability using the template provided by UNDP;
  • Personal CV or P11,
  • Financial Proposal that indicates the all-inclusive fixed total contract price, supported by a breakdown of costs, as per template provided.

Please visit the following link for detailed TORs and formats:

Qualified candidates who are interested in the above position are invited to submit their application, in English, attaching the documents listed above no later than 1st January  2013 COB, to; indicating in the subject:  Ref. 159  “Research Associate, Poverty, MDGs and Human Development Unit".

Find the P11 Form for Service Contract  & SSA Holders on this link:


Women are strongly encouraged to apply.
Please note that only applicants who are under serious consideration will be contacted.

Tags: Associate, New, Research, UNDP, York

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