ICT Specialist

UNOPS, New York, United States

Skill Required:, IT and ICT
Preferred Experience: 
5 years
Closing Date for Applications: 
6th August, 2020

Job Description

Background Information - Job-specific

Global Pulse is a flagship innovation initiative of the United Nations Secretary-General on big data. Its vision is a future in which big data and AI are harnessed and used responsibly as a public good. Its mission is to accelerate discovery, development and scaled adoption of data innovation for sustainable development and humanitarian action. To this end, Global Pulse will work to promote awareness of the opportunities Big Data presents for sustainable development and humanitarian action, forge public-private data sharing partnerships, generate high-impact analytical tools and approaches through its network of Pulse Labs, and drive broad adoption of useful innovations across the UN System.

Global Pulse implements data innovation programs through its Pulse Labs to provide UN and development partners with access to the data, tools and expertise required to discover new uses of big data and AI for development. Global Pulse develops policies, toolkits, applications and platforms to improve data-driven decision-making and support the evaluation of promising solutions.

This is a position in UNOPS for supporting projects carried out for UN Global Pulse. The incumbent of this position will be a personnel of UNOPS under its full responsibility.

Functional Responsibilities

Under the guidance of the Senior Programme Manager and Chief Data Scientist, the contractor will design and build back-end frameworks and associated software design paradigms for complex data analysis based on natural language processing to support the monitoring and achievement of the Global Goals.
Specific duties include:

  • Develop the server-side logic as well as the development and maintenance of the central database, ensuring high responsiveness and performance to requests from the frontend;
  • Integration of user-facing elements developed by a front-end developer with server-side logic;
  • Build reusable code and libraries for future use;
  • Optimization of applications for maximum speed and scalability;
  • Implementation of security and data protection;
  • Design and implementation of data storage solutions and the integration of multiple databases and data sources into a single system;
  • Develop new features, identify and fix bugs, improve the user experience, and commit code as directed by the project leads;
  • Tune performance and assist in scaling the data platform, including transitioning to new caching and indexing technologies like MongoDB and redis;
  • Increase test coverage and performance of backend APIs and backend modules.

Education/Experience/Language requirements



  • Advanced Degree preferably in Computer Science, Engineering or related field.
  • Two (2) additional years of relevant work experience, in combination with a relevant first level university (bachelor’s degree or equivalent), may substitute for the requirement of a master’s degree.

Required experience:

  • Minimum of five (5) years of demonstrated software development experience with back-end programming language (such as PHP, Ruby Java, Django, Apache, Linux, .NET, JavaScript, d3, leaflet, crossfilter, Node/React, HTML, etc.) is required;
  • Proficiency in Python is required;
  • Experience working with cloud providers and products including Amazon Web Services (AWS) and others (Azure, Rackspace, etc.) is required;

Desirable experience (the following experience is optional candidates who do not have it are welcome to apply)

  • Proficient understanding of code versioning tools, such as Git and of main web-based security principles is an asset;
  • Experience integrating diverse applications using integration frameworks, web services and APIs is an asset;
  • Experience with signal processing/ speech processing and Natural Language Processing (NLP) is desired;
  • Capable of deploying and maintaining software remotely on a Linux or UNIX-like server is desired;
  • Experience with data management and basic visualization is an asset;
  • Experience with open source technology is desired;
  • Proven ability to understand business requirements and translate them into system requirements is an asset;
  • Ability to work with a team as well as independently is an asset;
  • Ability to interface, collaborate with technical staff and designers is an asset.


  • Fluency in English (written and oral) is required.
  • Knowledge of French or Arabic language is an advantage.


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