Research support and data specialist

United Nations Conference on Trade and Development , Geneva, Switzerland

Skill Required:, Research and Analysis
Preferred Experience: 
3 Years
Closing Date for Applications: 
5th August, 2021

Job Description



  • The work of the consultant will contribute to the successful implementation of programmed activities of the SMEP programme. Specifically, the provision of technical expertise will support and enhance the expansion of the trade-pollution data dashboard, the webinars organized and the associated visual communication materials developed to enhance outreach and dissemination efforts on sustainable manufacturing and reduction of plastic pollution.


  • The Trade, Environment, Climate Change and Sustainable Development (TED) Branch of the Division on International Trade and Commodities of UNCTAD assists developing countries in strengthening their capacity to design and implement mutually supportive trade, environment, climate change and sustainable development objectives in development strategies at all levels.
  • UNCTAD, through its participation in the Sustainable Manufacturing and Environmental Pollution (SMEP) Programme, is implementing activities linking trade with sustainable manufacturing in Sub Saharan Africa and South Asia countries. Activities are focused on coordination and facilitation efforts to ensure that key stakeholders seize and capitalize on trade opportunities by linking research and evidence produced under the SMEP programme with relevant policy fora, at international and national levels, for advancing the implementation of SDG 12.

The implementation of the programme is guided by the SMEP Steering Committee and UNCTAD’s MoU with the programme donor, UK-FCDO. The work of UNCTAD in the current phase of the SMEP programme focuses on the following:

  •  Coordination and knowledge sharing support to SMEP contributors;
  •  High-level policy alignment with similar multilateral initiatives focusing on sustainable manufacturing and reduction of plastic pollution at the national and international levels;
  •  Preparation of visual communication materials to assist output dissemination and prepare for technical assistance activities in the next financial year (2022-2023).
  •  Development of a manufacturing pollution dashboard for 13 SMEP target countries, including data analysis for manufacturing pollution, plastics and alternative materials to plastics.
  • In implementing activities under Outcomes 1-4, a consultant is needed to perform the following duties:
  • Liaise with SMEP contributors in reviewing outputs and examining quality of proposals submitted, with special attention to context and national aspects of relevance.
  • Support the development of policy briefs, research notes and commentaries derived from commissioned research under SMEP.
  • Help access technical proposals from prospective SMEP contributors.
  • Provide inputs to the drafting of UNCTAD and FCDO annual reports against the SMEP Programme.
  • Assist with substantive and logistics support in the organization of webinars or physical events to disseminate UNCTAD and/or SMEP research outputs of relevance to international trade practitioners.
  • Provide expert support to the expansion of a data dashboard on manufacturing pollution related to export flows from SMEP-target countries.
  • Assist in the revision of academic outputs derived from SMEP contributors’ reports.


Academic Qualifications: Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in Environmental Sciences, Economics, Environmental Technology or related field.


  • At least 3 years' work experience in conducting research on circular economy, plastics pollution or manufacturing pollution issues is desired.
  • Experience undertaking quantitative research on plastic pollution is desired
  • Experience in supporting projects on trade and sustainable development in Africa or South Asia is an advantage.


  • Fluency in oral and written English is required. Knowledge of Akan or Swahili is an asset.


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