The UNDP Strategic Plan embraces the complexity of development and commits the organization to helping countries find faster, more durable solutions to achieve Agenda 2030. Important development trends like urbanization, climate change, and rising inequalities pose significant challenges on our path to achieve the 2030 agenda of achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
UNDP has begun incubating several strategic initiatives aimed at ensuring UNDP is ‘fit for purpose’ to deliver a new generation of solutions in line with the challenges the world faces. One such key strategic initiatives is the UNDP Accelerator Lab Network which operates as part of UNDP’s sustainable development offering.
The initiative is a recognition that increasingly interrelated development challenges require going beyond business as usual and single point, linear and silver bullet responses to development. Instead, they call for interdisciplinary approaches and non-linear solutions that crowd in the collective efforts of a wide variety of partners and tap into local insights and contextual, sticky knowledge of citizens. The initiative is also a recognition and an investment in the emerging momentum among a growing number of UNDP Country Offices for marrying disruptive, cutting edge methodologies with contextual, country-based insights and expertise to accelerate learning, progress and impact toward the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
With this in mind, the UNDP intends to build the largest and fastest learning global network of Accelerator Labs (initially setting up 60 labs in 78 countries) embedded within UNDP’s global architecture and country platforms that embody the new organizational offering to transform the collective approach to development.
The network will surface and reinforce locally sourced solutions at scale while mobilizing a wide and dynamic partnership of actors contributing knowledge, resources and experience. The initiative is meant to transform our collective approach by introducing new protocols, backed by evidence and practice, which accelerate the testing and dissemination of solutions within and across countries. This will enable the global community to collectively learn from local knowledge and ingenuity at a speed and at a scale that our societies and planet require. This will be achieved by: Building on locally sourced solutions, finding things that work and expanding on them;
Rapid testing and iteration to implement what works and go beyond the obvious solutions; Combining the best understanding, ideas and expertise to generate collective knowledge;
Accelerating progress by bringing expertise, creativity and collective intelligence to address the complex development challenges.
DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES
- Support in identification of innovative solutions and updating the National solutions database;
- Support the Accelerator lab team in crafting innovative methods to obtain solutions to complex development challenges;
- Participate in all field activities of the accelerator lab;
- Profile the different solutions and develop compelling stories for some of the interesting solutions and give them visibility before partners and the country office.
- Intelligence for the Lab through identification of intervention opportunities and emerging trends through reviewing literature, and other data sources;
- Conduct research and desk reviews to gather statistics on frontier challenges as well as ground truth the problem and package the findings into accessible and comprehendible ways to enable sensemaking and analysis for the Lab;
- Tap into usual and unusual data sources on frontier challanges and package these into insights for the accelerator Lab;
- Be part and parcel of the team in analyzing and visualizing data to uncover signals of change and points of interventions within systems.
- Co-create learning questions with the Lab Team to guide in the choice of experiments;
- Support the testing of the portifolio of Experiments to allow learning to happen in short cycles;
- Tap into social innovation approaches such as collective intelligence to design quick learning interventions.
Working out Loud:
- Support the development of blog posts and social media to share insights, attract partners and help position Accelerator Lab at the forefront in tackaling development challenges;
- Support the Lab in profiling achievements into reports and fact sheets that can be shared with partners;
- support other activities related to the design and operation of the Lab;
- Work together with your Accelerator Lab colleagues and experts to codify and advance the Accelerator Lab practice;
- Support in the day to day operational activities of the lab.
- Capacity development through on the job-training, mentoring while working with the accelerator lab team and the entire UNDP country office;
- Report on the activities carried out, lessons learnt and future goals as a result of being part of the program.
- Demonstrate commitment to UNDP mission, vision and values;
- Display cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability.
- Interest and motivation in working in an international organization
- Good analytical skills in gathering and consolidating data and research for practical implementation
- Outgoing and initiative-taking person with a goal-oriented mind-set
- Communicates effectively when working in teams and independently
- Good in organizing and structuring various tasks and responsibilities
- Responds positively to feedback and differing points of view
- Consistently approaches work with energy and a positive, constructive attitude
- Willingness to travel to the field when required.
REQUIRED SKILLS AND EXPERIENCE
The applicant must meet at least one of the below educational requirements:
- Be enrolled on a tertiary institution programme (university degree or equivalent, or higher from a recognized institution) in Environmental Science/Climate Change or other relevant fields;
- Be enrolled in the final academic year of a tertiary institution level in any of the fields listed above; and
- Have graduated with a university degree (as defined in (a) and (b) above) and, if selected, must start the internship within one-year of graduation.
- Candidates must be able to adapt to an international, multicultural, multilingual environment, have good communication skills and can work in a team;
- Previous experience from volunteering or extra-curricular activities linked to the Vision and Mission of the UN would be considered an asset.
- Excellent writing and communication skills in English.