Consultancy Portfolio Strategist, Office of Global Innovation, New York

Organization: UNICEF - United Nations Children’s Fund

Country: United States

City: New York, USA

Office: UNICEF New York

Closing date: Sunday, 28 June 2020

Consultancy,Portfolio Strategist, 11.5 months ,full-time

Job no: 532045

Position type: Consultancy

Location: United States Division/Equivalent: Field Results Group

School/Unit: Office of Global Innovation

Department/Office: Office of Global Innovation, New York

Categories: Consultancy

UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest places, to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children. To save their lives. To defend their rights. To help them fulfill their potential.

Across 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, every day, to build a better world for everyone.

And we never give up.

For every child, innovate...

UNICEF has a 70-year history of innovating for children. We believe that new approaches, partnerships and technologies that support realizing children’s rights are critical to improving their lives.

The Office of Innovation is a creative, interactive, and agile team in UNICEF. We sit at a unique intersection, where an organization that works on huge global issues meets the startup thinking, the technology, and the partners that turn this energy into scalable solutions.

UNICEF’s Office of Innovation creates opportunities for the world’s children by focusing on where new markets can meet their vital needs. We do this by:

Connecting youth communities (or more broadly -- anyone disconnected or under-served) to decision-makers, and to each other, to deliver informed, relevant and sustained programmes that build better, stronger futures for children.

Provoking change for children through an entrepreneurial approach -- in a traditionally risk-averse field -- to harness rapidly moving innovations and apply them to serve the needs of all children.

Creating new models of partnership that leverage core business values across the public, private and academic sectors in order to deliver fast, and lasting results for children.

The Office of Innovation specifically looks to form partnerships around frontier technologies (like drones and UAVs, blockchain, 21st century skills, urban technologies, new banking tools, wearables and sensors, or 3D-Printing) that exist at the intersection of $100 billion business markets and 1 billion person needs and to identify how they can grow and scale profitably and inclusively.

Our team We’re an interdisciplinary team around the world tasked with identifying, prototyping, and scaling new technologies and practices. With our partners, we focus on convening and collaborating on new and different solutions, low- and high-tech, by:

Looking at the 2-5 year horizon to evaluate emerging and trending technologies and to see how UNICEF can work with the private sector on doing better business while improving essential services for children;
Investing in early stage solutions that show great potential to positively impact children in the 0-2 year future including the Venture Fund that invests in open source technology solutions from start-ups based in UNICEF’s programme countries;
Identifying proven solutions that can be implemented at national scale in multiple countries taking the ideas that help thousands in one country, bringing them to dozens of countries across multiple sectors, and impacting the lives of millions of children.‘Â
How can you make a difference?

The UNICEF Innovation Fund has been specifically designed to finance early stage, open-source technology that can benefit children. The core motivation of the Innovation Fund is to identify ‚clusters‘ or portfolios of initiatives around emerging technology - so that UNICEF can both shape markets and also learn about and guide these technologies to benefit children. We invest in solutions that can impact the lives of the most vulnerable children. We find these solutions clustered around $100 billion industries in frontier technology spaces, such as: UAVs, virtual and augmented reality, artificial intelligence, nano-satellites, and human dynamics.

With $29M raised to date, the Innovation Fund is scaling its investment portfolio with the aim of investing in 20 start-ups every year. The current portfolio of 50 companies consists of several cohorts of companies developing and piloting solutions in virtual and augmented reality, data science and artificial intelligence, blockchain, UAVs, IoT, and in assistive technology.

Your main responsibilities will be:

The Innovation Fund is looking for a full-time Portfolio Strategist to lead in scaling the portfolio and to bring strategic guidance and management to maximize the Fund’s return on investment. This role will manage and maintain a strategy to assess portfolio needs, manage technical assistance, identify opportunities, and guide cohorts and technical collaboration between companies.

Manage the overall portfolio management strategy, including necessary systems, partnerships, and technical assistance

Maintain portfolio management systems and processes, including tracking of milestones and companies‘ performance through metrics

Based on a robust needs assessment process, develop a technical assistance strategies for each portfolio company and cohort (including through external partnerships, a network of mentors, engagement of technical leads)

Identify and manage growth strategies for portfolio companies

To qualify as an advocate for every child you will have...

An advanced university degree in finance entrepreneurship, business administration or relevant field

A minimum of eight years of progressively responsible professional work experience in relevant field. 10 years of experience in lieu of an advanced degree.

Demonstrated management-level experience in managing portfolios of investments ideally in venture capital required

Tags artificial intelligence banking blockchain data science entrepreneurship needs assessment new technologies product development venture capital

Demonstrated experience in developing partnerships and entrepreneurial strategies

Experience in coordinating and monitoring complex projects, product development, business growth and ROI metrics

Experiences in coordinating teams to reach ambitious goals

Strong written and verbal communication skills required, including external representation and presentations, facilitation of networks of communities

Experience of managing networks and portfolios of consultants and technical advisors to deliver against agree objective required

Understanding of different contexts and experience working in developing countries desired

Ability to synthesize technical information and translate it into accessible products and systems

Knowledge of international development and key challenges affecting children in developing countries is desired

Fluency in English is required. Knowledge of another UN language is an asset.

For every Child, you demonstrate...

UNICEF’s values of Care, Respect, Integrity, Trust, and Accountability (CRITA) and core competencies in Communication, Working with People and Drive for Results.

The functional competencies required for this post are...

Entrepreneurial Thinking (2)

Working with People (2)

Planning and Organizing (2)

View our competency framework at

UNICEF is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages all candidates, irrespective of gender, nationality, religious and ethnic backgrounds, including persons living with disabilities, to apply to become a part of the organization.

UNICEF has a zero-tolerance policy on conduct that is incompatible with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and UNICEF, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination. UNICEF also adheres to strict child safeguarding principles. All selected candidates will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles and will therefore undergo rigorous reference and background checks. Background checks will include the verification of academic credential(s) and employment history. Selected candidates may be required to provide additional information to conduct a background check.

Payment details and further considerations

Monthly payment, based on monthly tasks and progress reports, approved upon monthly review with supervisor.

Consultant is responsible for his/her own health and travel insurance

Consultant is eligible for standard DSA for all work-related travel


Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advance to the next stage of the selection process.

Individuals engaged under a consultancy or individual contract will not be considered ‚staff members‘ under the Staff Regulations and Rules of the United Nations and UNICEF’s policies and procedures, and will not be entitled to benefits provided therein (such as leave entitlements and medical insurance coverage). Their conditions of service will be governed by their contract and the General Conditions of Contracts for the Services of Consultants and Individual Contractors. Consultants and individual contractors are responsible for determining their tax liabilities and for the payment of any taxes and/or duties, in accordance with local or other applicable laws.

Advertised: Jun 16 2020 Eastern Daylight Time Application close: Jun 28 2020 Eastern Daylight Time