Economic Affairs Officer, P4

UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs
  • Location
    New York, New York
  • Sector
    Non Profit
  • Experience
    Mid Career
  • Apply by
  • Posted
    Oct 23

Position description

Org. Setting and Reporting

This position is located in the Policy and Analysis Branch of the Division for Sustainable Development Goals (DSDG) in the Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA). The Economic Affairs Officer will report to the Chief of Policy and Analysis Branch. The Division for Sustainable Development Goals acts as the Secretariat for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), focusing on providing substantive support and capacity building to the 17 SDGs and their related thematic issues, including water, energy, climate, ocean, urbanization, transport, science and technology, the Global Sustainable Development Report (GSDR), partnerships and Small Islands Developing States (SIDS). The Division contributes to the intergovernmental processes on the 2030 Agenda, including those under the General Assembly, the Economic and Social Council and the High-level Political Forum, with its substantive analytical work on thematic issues of the Sustainable Development Goals. It coordinates substantive inputs for the deliberations on the review and implementation of the 2030 Agenda. The sub-programme serves as the departmental anchor on the 2030 Agenda. It organizes focal teams on the Sustainable Development Goals and their interlinkages, including UN-Ocean, UN-Water, UN-Energy, UN-Transport and UN-Climate. It also play a key role on the evaluation of system-wide implementation of the 2030 Agenda and on advocacy and outreach activities relating to Sustainable Development Goals.


Within delegated authority, the Economic Affairs Officer will be responsible for the following duties:

  • Monitors and researches economic and/or scientific and technological developments related to the SDGs, identifies issues and policy solutions, and communicates findings to a broader audience including government officials and decision-makers; Manages research tasks involving external collaborators (including networks of natural and social scientists) in preparation of reports and expert level consultations;
  • Manages research tasks involving external collaborators (including networks of natural and social scientists) in preparation of reports and expert level consultations;
  • Prepares reports on trends and develops policy options for the Science, Technology and Innovation Forum, the High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development, the Economic and Social Council, and the General Assembly, as required;
  • Interprets and applies results of quantitative modelling exercises to policy analysis related to Sustainable Development Goals;
  • Assists developing countries in strengthening their capacities to devise and implement policies and programmes for the implementation of the SDGs, through designing and monitoring of technical cooperation projects and training initiatives, including those around technology facilitation and innovation (both off- and online);
  • Undertakes background research and prepares briefing materials, talking points and speeches for senior officials, as requested;
  • Provides substantive servicing to the Science, Technology and Innovation Forum, the High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development and other intergovernmental fora and meetings, as required;
  • Organizes expert group meetings, seminars, briefings and other events;
  • Supports junior staff and represent the organization at meetings; and
  • Performs other related duties as required, including a variety of administrative tasks.


  • Professionalism: Knowledge of sustainability science and/or the economics of sustainable development; Ability to analyze complex issues and data to produce high-quality reports for policy makers, drawing upon multiple disciplines and perspectives; Ability to think strategically, to identify and analyze emerging issues and their policy implications; Ability to understand the various components of the economic and social affairs program of the United Nations, and of the United Nations System at large; Knowledge of Rio+20 follow-up process, UN sustainable development agenda; Ability to use quantitative decision-support tools (e.g., computer-based models, scenario analysis, statistics packages and Web tools, including GIS); Shows pride in work and in achievements; Demonstrates professional competence and mastery of subject matter; Is conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, observing deadlines and achieving results; Is motivated by professional rather than personal concerns; Shows persistence when faced with difficult problems or challenges; Remains calm in stressful situations; Takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work.
  • 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 audience; demonstrates openness in sharing information and keeping people informed.
  • Planning & Organizing: Develops clear goals that are consistent with agreed strategies; identifies priority activities and assignments; adjusts priorities as required; allocates appropriate amount of time and resources for completing work; foresees risks and allows for contingencies when planning; monitors and adjusts plans and actions as necessary; uses time efficiently.


Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent degree) in economics, policy analysis, science, engineering, sustainable development or a related field is required. A first-level university degree in combination with two additional years of qualifying work experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.

Work Experience

A minimum of seven years of progressively responsible experience in economic research, analysis, and application of sustainable development, policy formulation, technology and innovation related to sustainable development or related area is required. A minimum of 3 years of experience at the international level is desirable. Experience in substantive servicing of intergovernmental bodies is desirable.


English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the post advertised, fluency in oral and written English is required. Knowledge of other official UN languages is desirable.

Application instructions

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