Senior Technical Officer, Rome, Italy

Organization: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO)

Country: Italy

City: Rome

Office: FAO Rome

Closing date: Friday, 24 September 2021


Senior Technical Officer

Job Posting: 06/Sep/2021

Closure Date: 24/Sep/2021, 9:59:00 PM

Organizational Unit : OIN

Job Type: Staff position

Type of Requisition : Professional

Grade Level : P-5

Primary Location: Italy-Rome

Duration : Fixed term: 2 years with possibility of extension

Post Number : 2007887

CCOG Code : 1A11

FAO is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality, background and culture

Qualified female applicants, qualified nationals of non-and under-represented member nations and person with disabilities are encouraged to apply

Everyone who works for FAO is required to adhere to the highest standards of integrity and professional conduct, and to uphold our values. FAO has a zero-tolerance policy on conduct that is incompatible with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and FAO, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination.

All selected candidates will undergo rigorous reference and background checks

All applications will be treated with the strictest confidentiality

The incumbent may be re-assigned to different activities and/or duty stations depending on the evolving needs of the Organization.

"This is a re-opening of the vacancy announcement. Applicants who have applied, do not need to reapply again"

Organizational Setting The Office of Innovation (OIN) has been established as an important new unit within the FAO organizational structure to provide strategic direction and help drive and coordinate innovation across the work of the Organization, and to consolidate and strengthen FAO’s innovative spirit, including innovation of approach and cooperation models and capacity development. The Office will identify, strengthen and complement priority areas for programmatic action; ensure that FAO mainstreams innovation in its programmes; facilitate collaboration among the relevant FAO units; and assist in forging and reinforcing transformative partnerships.

Reporting Lines The Senior Technical Officer reports to the Director OIN/Chief Innovation Officer.

Technical Focus Policy and technical advice on innovations in agri-food systems.

Key Results Leadership and technical expertise for the planning, development and implementation of programmes of work, projects, and relatedproducts and services in accordance with FAO Strategic Objectives.

Key Functions

Leads the development, implementation and evaluation on technical issues of assigned programmes/projects; directs the review of relevant documents and reports; identifies priorities, liaises with relevant parties; identifies and initiates follow-up actions;
Coordinates programmes and reviews the assessment of issues and trends for the implementation of programmes and projects as well as the preparation of impact evaluation or equivalent studies;
Supervises preparation of various written outputs, e.g. background papers, analysis, substantial sections of reports as well as studies, and inputs to publications;
Directs substantive support to consultative meetings and conferences, to include the proposition of agenda topics, identifying participants, preparation of documents and presentations;
Manages outreach activities; designs and conducts training workshops, seminars; and makes presentations on assigned topics/activities;
Leads field missions, including provision of guidance to external consultants, government officials and other parties;
Provides advice to develop policies and strategies as well as national protocols and guidelines for projects with specific domains related to FAO’s work.

Specific Functions

Provides coordination support to the Office of Innovation in order to scale up the innovative work across the Organization and for the development and implementation of the Organization’s innovation of macro policies, technology integration and management models;
Provides critical review, analysis and advice on innovations in agri-food systems with focus on poor rural areas;
Monitors and advises on global challenges and trends affecting agri-food systems and identifies strategic opportunities in innovations;
Contributes to the development of innovative programmes and initiatives in support of agri-food systems, and promotes synergies and coordination of innovation activities with FAO’s Hand-in-Hand Initiative (HIHI);
Develops and monitors Office of Innovation’s innovations portfolio; and supports resource mobilization efforts including coordinating and overseeing activities related to budget management;
Develops, maintains and strengthens strategic partnerships with UN system organizations, , research institutions, extension agencies, private innovation hubs, and universities at the forefront of innovation and digital solutions including digital extension and best practices in support of FAO’s mandate and priorities.

Coordinates and facilitates the implementation, monitoring and formulation of the Office of Innovation’s Programme of Work and Budget, according to programmes and committed work plans, results and milestones;
Provides technical and policy advice to relevant divisions in implementation of FAO’s strategic framework 2022-31 and MTP 2022-25 with innovation as a major accelerator;
Oversees administrative and budgetary support in the Office of Innovation,

Participates in other FAO activities and performs additional relevant tasks as needed.


Minimum Requirements

Advanced university degree in agricultural economics, development economics, rural sociology, food security, nutrition, sustainable agriculture (including livestock, forestry and fisheries), information and communication technologies for development, or related field

Ten years of relevant experience in policy and strategy advice and analysis relating to innovation and digital solutions applied to, or relevant to, food and nutrition security, agriculture and rural development

Working knowledge of English and limited knowledge of another FAO official language (Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian or Spanish)


Results Focus

Leading, Engaging and Empowering


Partnering and Advocating

Knowledge Sharing and Continuous Improvement

Strategic Thinking

Technical/Functional Skills

Work experience in more than one location or area of work, particularly in field positions is essential

Extent and relevance of experience in strategic guidance and policy advice in areas related to designing, planning and deployment of innovative solutions within the food and agriculture sectors, food and nutrition security, sustainable agriculture and rural development

Extent and relevance of experience in establishing and maintaining partnerships with UN agencies, research institutions, academia, NGOs as well as donors and government institutions and agencies.

FAO staff are expected to adhere to FAO Values of Commitment to FAO, Respect for All and Integrity and Transparency.


Extension of fixed term appointments is based on certification of performance and availability of funds

FAO reserves the right not to make an appointment.


A competitive compensation and benefits package is offered. For information on UN salaries, allowances and benefits, click on the following link: allowances/salary.htm Other benefits, subject to eligibility, include:

Dependency allowances

Rental subsidy

Education grant for children

Home leave travel

30 working days of annual leave per year

Pension fund entitlements under the UN Joint Staff Pension Fund

International health insurance; optional life insurance

Disability protection

FAO encourages a positive workplace culture to increase inclusivity and diversity within its workforce. FAO applies measures in which all staff members contribute equally and in full to the work and development of the Organization. This includes:

elements of family-friendly policies

flexible working arrangements

standards of conduct.


To apply, visit the recruitment website at Jobs at FAO and complete your online profile. We strongly recommend that your profile is accurate, complete and includes your employment records, academic qualifications and language skills.

Candidates are requested to attach a letter of motivation to the online profile;
Once your profile is completed, please apply and submit your application;
Your application will be screened based on the information provided on your online profile;
Please note that FAO only considers higher educational qualifications obtained from an institution accredited/recognized in the World Higher Education Database (WHED), a list updated by the International Association of Universities (IAU) / United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). The list can be accessed at

Candidates may be requested to provide performance assessments and authorization to conduct verification checks of past and present work, character, education, military and police records to ascertain any and all information which may be pertinent to the employment qualifications;
Incomplete applications will not be considered;
Only applications received through the FAO recruitment portal will be considered;
We encourage applicants to submit the application well before the deadline date.

If you need help, or have queries, please contact:

Link to the organization’s job offer: