Partnerships Specialist

United Nations Development Programme, France

Skill Required:, Business Development/ Resource Mobilization
Preferred Experience: 
7 to 10 Year
Closing Date for Applications: 
19th July, 2019

Job Description


UNCDF makes public and private finance work for the poor in the world’s 47 least developed countries. With its capital mandate and instruments, UNCDF offers “last mile” finance models that unlock public and private resources, especially at the domestic level, to reduce poverty and support local economic development.

UNCDF’s financing models work through two channels: financial inclusion that expands the opportunities for individuals, households, and small businesses to participate in the local economy, providing them with the tools they need to climb out of poverty and manage their financial lives; and by showing how localized investments — through fiscal decentralization, innovative municipal finance, and structured project finance — can drive public and private funding that underpins local economic expansion and sustainable development. By strengthening how finance works for poor people at the household, small enterprise, and local infrastructure levels, UNCDF contributes to SDG 1 on eradicating poverty and SDG 17 on the means of implementation. By identifying those market segments where innovative financing models can have transformational impact in helping to reach the last mile and address exclusion and inequalities of access, UNCDF contributes to a number of different SDGs.

UNITLIFE is an innovative financing instrument hosted by the United Nations dedicated to the fight against chronic childhood malnutrition (stunting) in two priority areas: (1) reducing child stunting and other immediate effects of malnutrition; and (2) closing the gender gap in climate-smart agriculture. UNITLIFE plans to introduce an innovative financing approaches and instruments including, but not limited to developing a voluntary micro-donations platforms for payment transactions, leveraging sports events and star power to drive social giving, and devising creative donation matching and revenue-sharing schemes with private partners. This is the underlying concept behind the application of innovative finance for UNITLIFE — shaving small amounts off targeted transactions and channel them towards development actions that respond to chronic malnutrition needs in developing countries. The funds raised through these instruments will be directly channeled to funding in high impact projects addressing the immediate effects and root causes of chronic malnutrition. Recognizing UNCDF’s expertise in development impact investments and partnerships in digital and traditional financial partners in both the public and private sector, UNCDF has been requested to host the Secretariat function of UNITLIFE in Paris, France in its initial phase of three years.

Working under the supervision and guidance of UNITLIFE Programme Manager, P-5 and in close collaboration with UNCDF Policy, Partnerships and Communications (PPC) Unit, the UNITLIFE Partnerships Specialist will help weave collaborative relations that enable UNITLIFE to effectively fulfil its mission and specific objectives. He/she will identify and nurture such relations focusing primarily on funding, programme development and communications.

The position will be based in Paris, France.

Duties and Responsibilities

Summary of key functions:

  • Responsible for generating, sustaining and growing programme funding and developing innovative partnerships and financing streams with corporations and organizations, foundations, and major donors, in alignment to UNITLIFE’s objectives.
  • Develop and understand UNITLIFE’s partnership needs and opportunities based on its annual plan and programme needs.
  • Lead the development and implementation of UNITLIFE partnership strategy, together with the programme team and UNCDF management.
  • Effective Internal and external partner relations;
  • Facilitation of knowledge building and knowledge sharing.

Lead innovation and public/private partnerships, reaching into the private and philanthropic and technology spheres to develop new ways of working and mobilize funding for development.

  • Suggest and implement strategies to secure funding. Produce fundraising plans, quality proposals, budgets, and reports collaboratively with the PPC team.
  • Lead and implement partnerships resource mobilization and engagement efforts. Oversee new resource mobilization efforts to ensure identification and sourcing of new partners and funders using innovative financing mechanisms and tehcnologies.
  • Prospect for potential new partnership opportunities, analyzing their feasibility, shaping specific opportunities, presenting recommendations internally, and preparing funding agreements.
  • Suggest and implement creative, relational strategies for activating new funders and partners, working collaboratively with the PPC Unit to create partnerships that maximize support.
  • Support the UNITLIFE Programme Manager in championing crowdfunding, digital and other innovative funding user experiences and liaising with partners to ensure the new funding mechanisms are established and work effectively.
  • Provide strategic advice and policy recommendations with a view to positioning UNITIFE strongly.
  • Define and regularly ‘connect’ UNITLIFE value propositions in the developing countries in alignment, and when possible, in anticipation of the changing aid architecture and evolving resource mobilization drivers;
  • Identification of opportunities for UNITLIFE programme in its relationship with other UN Agencies, IFIs, private partners, etc.

Lead the development and implementation of UNITLIFE programme partnership strategy, together with the UNITLIFE programme team and UNCDF management.

  • Implementation of UNITLIFE partnerships strategy for partnering with relevant stakeholders and partners.
  • Identification of specific areas for support, building on UNITLIFE comparative advantages and UNITLIFE programmatic objectives aligned to its workplan.
  • Assist in building and maintaining relations with other UNCDF programmes, UN agencies, private partners, and other relevant donors and stakeholders.
  • Provides technical support during negotiation processes at the corporate level (HQ) with key partners.
  • Analyze public and private trends in the UNITLIFE funding landscape.
  • Provides timely and professional response to requests for support on matters of partnerships-building.
  • Enhances collaboration to capitalize on strategic partnerships and resource mobilization opportunities.
  • Coordination of UNITLIFE’s Executive Committee and Advisory Council’s meetings.
  • Effective Internal and External Relations;
  • Based on in-depth knowledge of national environments, identify targeted interventions to mobilize support for UNITLIFE.
  • Build relationships with key partners so they are aware of chronic malnutrition and its impact in the development context.
  • Proactively work to influence positively partner’s decision-making processes in relation to UNITLIFE’s funding;
  • Build and maintain UNITLIFE’s visibility and reputation at relevant partner conferences, financial conferences and investor events at regional and global levels;
  • Build, nurture and maintain effective internal and external working relations, including with relevant UN Offices (Global or locally) and Practice Area Leaders responsible for specific donor countries and/or partners in the private sector.

Facilitation of knowledge building and knowledge sharing.

  • Identification and formulation of lessons learned and recommendations to be integrated into broader UNITLIFE knowledge management efforts;
  • Work with the UNITIFE Management team to design and implement a peer learning agenda and a knowledge sharing strategy across the programme team.
  • Build knowledge generation into all aspects of the UNITLIFE programme.
  • Lead development and implementation of strategy for increasing networking and lateral learning at the global, regional and country levels;
  • Manage internal and external learning events relevant to the UNITLIFE mission and workplan (i.e. team meetings, retreats, partner meetings etc.)
  • Assist UNITLIFE programme team in developing and maintaining list serves and contact databases for new partners and other stakeholders

Impact of Results: The work of the Partnership Specialist, P4 will have a significant impact on the ability of the UNITLIFE programme team, to make informed decisions about programme’s direction and sustainability. The position will enhance the programme -wide capacity to identify, pursue and capitalize on strategic partnerships and innovative resource mobilization opportunities at global level and enhance UNITLIFE programme’s ability to raise sufficient levels of funds and resources, from diversified set of partners and funders to the programme. The position will also enhance UNITLFE’s visibility, brand recognition and positioning among key development partners

Required Skills and Experience:

Education: Advanced university (Masters equivalent) degree in economics, public/business administration, development, social sciences, international relations or related fields.


  • Minimum of seven (7) years of experience in progressively responsible positions in the development field,
  • Demonstrable experience, especially in complex multi-stakeholder programme/fund management is preferred.
  • Strong presentation, writing and negotiation skills, including the ability to elaborate partnership projects and grant proposals is preferred.
  • Ability to handle multiple tasks and deadlines and work well with others in a fast-paced environment, organize and prioritize own work with limited supervision preferred.
  • Ability to think strategically and the knowledge to develop a competitive advantage with the UNITLIFE programme through innovative partnerships.
  • Good ability to gain the trust of others and foster collaborative relationships. Proven ability to build collaborative, impactful relationships with a diverse group of internal and external stakeholders.
  • Knowledge of the global development financing system, capital investments, results-based financing and official development assistance, is strongly preferred.
  • Established track record in fund raising and working with and public-private partnerships.
  • Proven experience in utilizing digital channels for new digital funding options for continuous expansion of UNITLIFE’s resource base.
  • Solid knowledge of relevant technological solutions and systems, including the use of web-based solutions, crowd-funding and digital funding solutions, as well as innovative schemes that leverage sports events and star power to drive social giving, and other donation matching and revenue-sharing approaches with private partners.
  • Keen sense of initiative, discretion, mature judgment, and entrepreneurial spirit is desired.
  • Innovation and strategic thinking background or experience in an innovative environment is preferred.
  • Previous professional experience in a developing country is preferred.

Languages: Full professional level fluency in both English and French languages is required.


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