Principal Adviser - Programme Division, Early Childhood Development, New York

Organization: UNICEF - United Nations Children’s Fund

Country: United States

City: New York, USA

Office: UNICEF New York

Grade: D-1

Closing date: Wednesday, 4 November 2020

Principal Adviser, Early Childhood Development (D-1), Programme Division, New York, USA

Job no: 535161

Position type: Fixed Term Appointment

Location: United States Division/Equivalent: Programme

School/Unit: Programme Division

Department/Office: Early Childhood Development

Categories: D-1, Early Childhood Development, Senior Leadership Vacancies

UNICEF works in 190 countries and territories to protect the rights of every child. UNICEF has spent 70 years working to improve the lives of children and their families. Defending children’s rights throughout their lives requires a global presence, aiming to produce results and understand their effects. UNICEF believes all children have a right to survive, thrive and fulfill their potential - to the benefit of a better world.

For every child, dedication

Early Childhood Development (ECD), as a multisectoral area, addresses children under 8 years of age, to give them the best start to life. ECD features as a transformative factor in the Global agenda for Sustainable Development (SDG), and UNICEF is recognized at global, regional and country levels as the reference agency for it. At global, regional and country levels, UNICEF is leading on this agenda, in active partnerships to scale up programmes, implement policies, and promote awareness on the importance of early years. A global call for action has been made to boost national investments and engage communities and families in the demand for integrated packages of interventions to ensure a fair start to all young children. There has been a steady increase in the inclusion of early stimulation, responsive care, early learning and pre-primary programmes and policies around the world.

The Principal Adviser position leads UNICEF’s work on ECD. Its purpose is to: Be responsible for providing intellectual and strategic vision, leadership, advisory support and guidance to ensure that the agenda for young children’s development is institutionalized, actively pursued and sustained in UNICEF’s advocacy, policy, programming and humanitarian work, and serves to achieve the organization’s Child Rights mission and Strategic Plan results.

The post is expected to provide intellectual, strategic, technical, managerial and advocacy leadership in the formulation and implementation of policies and programmes within UNICEF’s overall mission of child survival, growth, learning, protection and development.

The post also serves as a facilitator and pioneer of good practice and innovative action to ensure UNICEF’s fulfillment to promote, protect and help realize the rights of all children, especially the youngest to give them the best start in list. The post will serve to advise the Executive Director on related policy matters related to ECD and position UNICEF as a thought leader in this area.

The purpose of this job is to further strengthen UNICEF’s global credibility in ECD, translate strategies to achieve results in countries for children, undertake high level advocacy both within and outside the organization, lead on the establishment of strategic partnerships, stimulate the development of normative standards and guidance, mobilize resources and develop organizational and staff capacity at all levels of UNICEF. The partnerships cut across national and subnational governments, private sector, academia and the donor community.

This post should integrate ECD in all of UNICEF’s policy, advocacy, programing, humanitarian and communication work. In addition, this post is to continue to lead on the ECD agenda globally to build and strengthen UNICEF’s leadership and contribute to the SDG pertaining to young children, specifically SDG 4.2.1

How can you make a difference? The Principal Adviser - ECD’s key functional accountabilities include:

Global Leadership in ECD;
Relevant and Timely Technical Oversight and Management of Regional & Country ECD Programmes;
Leveraging and Mobilizing Resources and Strengthening Partnerships;
Knowledge Leadership, Multisectoral Programming and Capacity Development;
Strategy Planning, Monitoring and Implementation.

To qualify as a champion for every child you will have...


Advanced university degree (Master’s or higher) in Social Sciences, Early Childhood Development, Public Health, Education, or other relevant disciplines and/or in relevant field is required.

A minimum of 13 years of progressively responsible professional work experience at the national and international levels in social development, more specifically in the area of early childhood development policies formulation and programme implementation, management, monitoring and evaluation.

Proven international - ‚hands-on‘ programme management experience in different regions and countries is highly desirable.

Fluency in English (written and verbal) is required. Knowledge of another official UN language (Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian or Spanish) is an asset.

Person Profile

Excellent knowledge and familiarity with ECD programme strategy, planning, implementation guidance and evaluation.

Proven competencies in the management of multicultural teams oriented to the provision of technical support and analysis.

Experience responding to emergencies is desirable.

Tags capacity development child rights child survival early childhood development fundraising monitoring and evaluation programme implementation programme management social development social sciences sustainable development

Proven communication skills and proven record in interaction with donor community and fundraising.

For every child, you demonstrate...

Core Values






Leadership Competencies

Builds and maintains partnerships

Demonstrates self-awareness and ethical awareness

Innovates and embraces change

Drive to achieve results for impact

Manages ambiguity and complexity

Thinks and acts strategically

Nurtures, leads and manages people

Works collaboratively with others

This position is classified as ‚rotational‘ which means the incumbent is expected to rotate to another duty station upon completion of their tour of duty.

UNICEF is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce and encourages qualified candidates from all backgrounds to apply.

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, therefore, undergo rigorous reference and background checks, and will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles.


Advertised: Oct 12 2020 Eastern Daylight Time Application close: Nov 03 2020 Eastern Standard Time