Urban Programme Consultant, Rome, Italy

Organization: United Nations World Food Programme (WFP)

Country: Italy

City: Rome, Italy

Office: WFP Rome

Closing date: Friday, 22 January 2021

WFP seeks candidates of the highest integrity and professionalism who share our humanitarian principles

Selection of staff is made on a competitive basis, and we are committed to promoting diversity and gender balance

Job Title: Urban Programme Officer

Type of Contract: Consultancy

Division: PRO-P (Programme, Humanitarian and Development Division / Emergencies and Transitions Unit)

Duty Station (City, Country): Rome, Italy

Duration: 11 months


Urbanization is an important global mega-trend of increasing relevance to WFP. Global urban populations now surpass rural and urban growth is projected to be highly concentrated in low- and middle-income countries across Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa. As populations urbanize, so does food insecurity. While WFP capacities and operational footprint in urban areas has significantly expanded over the past decade, the frequency and scale of crisis that significantly impact urban areas is increasing, including the global COVID-19 crisis, it is an operational and strategic imperative for WFP to strengthen and systematize its ability to contribute to achieving sustainable food security outcomes within urban environments.

Recognizing that addressing urban food security requires holistic and interconnected approaches, WFP has established a formal committee structure / architecture to bring Country Offices, Regional Bureaus and Head Quarter Units together to unite in the search for forward thinking, effective, innova5tive approaches that advance WFP engagement in the Urban Environment. A Steering Committee and four Outcome Groups have been identified. They are led by Chairs from the Regional Bureaus and the Emergencies and Transitions team.

The Urban Programme Officer will work within a small dedicated team to provide secretariat support to the committee structure; facilitating the work of specific, cross-functional outcome groups to achieve their goals and implement the priorities identified. Specifically the post holder will, as directed by their line manager undertake necessary actions to support effective coordinated, collaborative working arrangements, building connectivity and consensus between and across WFP offices and functional areas, so that emerging strategies and guidance are consistent, standardized and comparable across the urban context, and that same approaches are effectively disseminated and understood within the organization, specifically between HQ and field operations.

Under direction from the Senior Urban Programme Officer and alongside committee chairs the Urban Programme Officer will contribute to the formulation of WFP-Urban strategies and provide technical inputs for RB or HQ level. With a knowledge of urban programming the post holder will contribute to strategic, policy and operational discussions considering the practical realities of operating in the field.

The Urban Programme Officer will support the Senior Urban Programme Officer in advocating for resources for a broad portfolio of WFP urban projects, including clearly articulating the need for food assistance and related programme opportunities and contribute to the management of operational research and evidence building on issues relevant to urban assistance.


Held 2 online seminars to support the development of programmatic guidance

Be an active member of WFP’s urban community of Practice;
Tags architect covid food insecurity food security operational research sub saharan africa urban areas urban environment urban population

Developed effective working relationships across the WFP functions and offices relevant to urban food security

Contributed to Global WFP Urban strategy

Thematic operational guidance documents relevant for urban programming



Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in a relevant discipline. A first level university degree in combination with two additional years of qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of an advanced university degree.


Minimum four years of professional experience in international/humanitarian /development or relevant sector, at least 2 of which was spent in a field location. Prior experience working with WFP advantageous.


Fluency in English; knowledge of a second UN language is an advantage.


The consultant will be based in Rome, Italy, with travel to the field as required. May occasionally be required to work from home.

Terms and Conditions

WFP offers a competitive compensation package which will be determined by the contract type and selected candidate’s qualifications and experience.

Please visit the following websites for detailed information on working with WFP.

http://www.wfp.org Click on: "Our work" and "Countries" to learn more about WFP’s operations.

Deadline for applications: 22 January 2021

Ref.: VA No. 133202

Qualified female applicants and qualified applicants from developing countries are especially encouraged to apply

WFP has zero tolerance for discrimination and does not discriminate on the basis of HIV/AIDS status

No appointment under any kind of contract will be offered to members of the UN Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions (ACABQ), International Civil Service Commission (ICSC), FAO Finance Committee, WFP External Auditor, WFP Audit Committee, Joint Inspection Unit (JIU) and other similar bodies within the United Nations system with oversight responsibilities over WFP, both during their service and within three years of ceasing that service.