Economics Research Intern

United Nations Development Programme, New York, United States

Skill Required:, Finance and AccountsResearch and Analysis
Preferred Experience: 
Closing Date for Applications: 
19th August, 2019

Job Description

The UNDP Regional Bureau for Africa (RBA) team in New York provides overall strategic oversight, guidance and quality assurance, management support and broader regional analysis, including global issues.

RBA’s Strategy and Analysis Team (SAT) is seeking a highly-qualified graduate student to engage as an Economics Research Intern to support the team working for the completion of the 2019 Africa Sustainable Development Report, and support publication of the ongoing UNDP Africa Working Paper Series.

The Africa Sustainable Development Report 2019 reviews Africa’s performance on six goals, and related targets and indicators of the 2030 Agenda, taking into account their correspondence with Agenda 2063. The report uses the latest data from international sources to track performance and highlight lessons learned in the implementation of the two agendas. This year’s report is aligned with the theme, “Empowering people and ensuring inclusiveness and equality " and Goals 4, 8, 10, 13, 16 and 17 of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The intern will assist the creation of this report, and ancillary working papers, through literature reviews, analyzing case studies, drafting, editing, and proofreading, in collaboration with SAT.

The intern will report to the RBA Chief Economist and work closely with strategic advisors and the communication specialists. The internship is for a minimum of three months with an opportunity for extension to a maximum of six months.

The internship is unpaid and full-time. Interns work five days per week (35 hours).

Duties and Responsibilities

The Intern will contribute towards:

  • Conducting desk reviews of existing research and literature informed by the research questions and objectives
  • Compiling charts and tables, analyze research on thematic topics, review/revise chapters, listing of bibliography, and other tasks as required for the finalization of the report.
  • Analyzing survey results, case studies, and other existing data sourced from African countries
  • Drafting of report chapters and other knowledge products
  • Providing overall support of the mapping and research exercise, including logistical support for key meetings.


Research and analysis:

  • Excellent verbal and writing skills with strong academic background
  • Demonstrated research and analytical capacity as well as technical writing;
  • Excellent organizational, inter-personal, communication and administrative skills;
  • Proven ability to manage diverse and complex tasks, with tight deadlines;
  • Able to take initiative and work independently, with minimum supervision;
  • Highest standards of integrity, discretion and loyalty;
  • Commitment to the UNDP vision, mission, and strategic goals.

Interpersonal Communication:

  • 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 the 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.

Required Skills and Experience:


Applicants to the UNDP internship programme must at the time of application meet one of the following requirements:

  • Be enrolled in a graduate school programme (second university degree or equivalent, or higher);
  • Be enrolled in the final academic year of a first university degree programme (minimum Bachelor’s level or equivalent);
  • Have graduated with a university degree (as defined above) and, if selected, must start the internship within one-year of graduation;
  • Advanced studies in Economics, African Studies, History, Social Science, International Development or other relevant field is required.


  • Have demonstrated keen interest in the work of the United Nations and have a personal commitment to the ideals of the Charter;
  • Have demonstrated ability to successfully interact with individuals of different cultural backgrounds and beliefs, which include willingness to try and understand and be tolerant of differing opinions and views.
  • Preferably some relevant experience in international development or related area; Knowledge of the UN system is an advantage;
  • Excellent analytical skills are required and experience in research, drafting and editing documents is an advantage.


  • Fluency in oral and written English is required;
  • Knowledge of French is a major asset.


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