Assistant Innovation Officer

United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees

Bangkok, Thailand

The post holder will frequently engage with country operations and other UNHCR stakeholders to enhance their delivery of their innovation projects by applying out-of-the-box-thinking, and connecting operations with non-traditional actors, including the private sector, academia, and other relevant thematic actors. The design and implementation of innovative projects in collaboration with communities is a core principle of the Innovation Service. Supporting operations to ensure user centered design and enabling meaningful participation of forcibly displaced people will be a priority.
To support delivery of the Asia and the Pacific regional portfolio, the post holder will be expected to support administrative and programmatic tasks, supporting building, and managing partnerships, engaging with partners, monitoring and evaluation activities and work to capture lessons learned and promising practices arising from the projects. The post holder will also lend support to ongoing initiatives led at the regional level. They will work in collaboration with the Asia Pacific regional bureau and country teams providing inputs from the innovation perspective.
The incumbent will be an integral part of the Innovation Service ensuring links between the global team and Asia and the Pacific. They will collaborate with all 5 Programme leads as needed and attend Innovation Team meetings as appropriate and liaise with other regional colleagues to ensure collaboration and alignment when needed.
Duties and Responsibilities will include:
  • Support to the UNHCR-Led and Refugee-Led Innovation Funds
  • Work with Innovation Service colleagues to assist in preparations for and the launching of the 2024 Innovation Funds at the regional level, as well as facilitating connections and communications with Bureau and Country Office colleagues.
  • Support the implementation of pilots endorsed in the 2023 round of the Innovation Funds by having regular follow ups and providing technical and programmatic input on innovation processes and relevant themes to implementing teams.
  • Collaborate with colleagues at the regional and global levels to coordinate further specialized support to pilot teams throughout implementation.
  • Conduct follow-ups on initiatives previously and currently supported by the Funds and assist operations in finalising end-of-project narrative and financial reports.
  • Provide assistance with processes for the implementation of pilots that may require support from Regional Bureau units to progress such as inputs on relevant systems, partnership arrangements, among others.
  • Undertake MEAL activities, particularly on capturing and sharing lessons and promising practices.
  • Support on Innovation across Asia and the Pacific
  • Maintain effective communication across operations on innovation initiatives and relevant thematic areas and opportunities to promote cross sharing and collaboration.
  • Contribute to fundraising activities.
  • In collaboration with Asia Regional Bureau focal points and technical leads, when requested, support the implementation of innovative initiatives in line with the region’s
  • priorities, including exploration of Disinformation, Misinformation and Hate Speech, the institutionalization of Accountability to Affected People Strategy and relevant activities under UNHCR’s Digital and Data Transformation Strategies.
Support to the Innovation Service’s work:
  • Work with the Innovation Officer to support the development or implementation of the Service’s Programme and initiatives from the perspective of the APAC region as required.
  • Collaborate with Innovation Service colleagues globally to ensure coordination of activities across regions and sharing of lessons/approaches.
Qualifications and Experience:
  • Undergraduate degree (essential) or Graduate degree (desired) in a related discipline (Politics, International Development, Human Rights, Telecommunications, Innovation, Technology, Environment, Computer Science, Engineering etc.)
Work Experience:
  • Minimum 1-year relevant experience with Undergraduate degree; or no experience with Graduate degree; or no experience with Doctorate degree.
  • Experience in a humanitarian aid or development context in humanitarian and/or innovation projects and programmes.
  • Experience in coordination and project implementation needed, with experience in the UN system and/or innovation programming a distinct advantage.
  • Experience in providing guidance on project management, donor reporting and financial management required with experience advising on innovation processes an advantage.
  • Experience in delivering projects related to Environmental Sustainability, Digital innovation, Data analytics/ AI, or community led innovation with diverse stakeholder networks is an advantage.
  • Prior experience in playing a supporting function to humanitarian field operations an advantage.
  • Prior experience working on issues of community participation, community-based approaches, and inclusion desired.
  • Prior experience working in forced displacement contexts desired.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
Key Competencies:
Skills and Competencies:
  • Excellent knowledge of English (both written and spoken) and local language as added advantage.
  • Advanced knowledge and competence in providing day to day support to project/Programme administration and management, including on communication, finance, monitoring and capturing and sharing of lessons.
  • Specific knowledge on innovation programming and managing pilot projects a distinct advantage.
  • Capacity to draft a variety of documents tailored to different audiences.
  • Experience with human centered design and participatory methodologies a distinct advantage
  • Highly organized and autonomous, able to multitask and prioritize workloads.
  • Excellent writing and documentation skills, demonstrating attention to detail.
Core competencies:
  • Innovation and Creativity – Generates innovative and creative solutions to problems that contribute to Organizational and inter-agency effectiveness. Tries different and novel ways of approaching work to create added value in the services provided.
  • Knowledge sharing – Actively develops and shares knowledge, leverages expertise to improve organizational learning.
  • Good interpersonal and networking skills, ability to establish and maintain effective working relations remotely, supports and encourages open communication in the team, and facilitates teamwork.
  • Consistently approaches work with energy and a positive, constructive attitude.