Senior Statistician, Rome, Italy

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

Country: Italy

City: Rome

Office: FAO Rome

Closing date: Friday, 21 January 2022


Senior Statistician

Job Posting: 07/Jan/2022

Closure Date: 21/Jan/2022, 10:59:00 PM

Organizational Unit : ESS

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 : 2008764

CCOG Code : 1M02

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 Members and persons 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 FAO’s values

FAO, as a Specialized Agency of the United Nations, has a zero-tolerance policy for conduct that is incompatible with its status, objectives and mandate, 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

FAO staff are subject to the authority of the Director-General, who may assign them to any of the activities or offices of the Organization.

Organizational Setting The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) contributes to the achievement of the 2030 Agenda through its Strategic Framework by supporting the transformation to More efficient, inclusive, resilient and sustainable agrifood systems, for Better production, Better nutrition, a Better environment and a Better life, leaving no one behind. The Statistics Division (ESS) develops, and advocates for implementation of, methodologies and standards for data collection, validation, processing and analysis of food and agriculture statistics. In these statistical domains, it also plays a vital role in the compilation, processing and dissemination of internationally comparable data, and provides essential capacity building support to member countries. In addition, the Division disseminates many publications, working papers and statistical yearbooks, that cover agricultural and food security relevant statistics (including prices, investments, production, trade and agri-environmental statistical data). Under the general supervision of the Director, ESS, the incumbent will lead a team tasked with planning and implementing a programme of work in support of Food Security and Nutrition Statistics, including the periodic review and assessment of the world food security and nutrition situation as well as country assessments for the extent of food insecurity in the population using available national information on access to food, food consumption and other relevant data. The post is located in the Statistics Division (ESS) at FAO headquarters in Rome, Italy.

Reporting Lines The Senior Statistician reports to the Director, ESS.

Technical Focus Food Security and Nutrition Statistics.

Key Results Leadership and conceptual thinking for the development and implementation of comprehensive technical, statistical and/or analytical frameworks to support the programme of work and related products, projects and services in accordance with the FAO Strategic Framework.

Key Functions

Leads and manages highly specialized or multi-disciplinary teams and short term working groups, providing strategic vision and technical leadership; coordinates and/or participates on Divisional teams, Organization-wide committees, project teams, and working groups, and/or provides leadership/secretariat services to international technical networks and/or technical policy and standard setting bodies;
Analyzes global and country specific requirements as well as agricultural, economic, social, environmental factors to provide critical input into the FAO Strategic Framework, Programme of Work as well as Detailed Work Plans and the supporting budgets and/or resourcing strategies;
Designs, implements and monitors work programmes including the conception and development of comprehensive short, medium and long term plans and strategies for the development of statistics and/or analytical frameworks;
Leads the design development of edge tools, methods, systems and databases, the conception and implementation of critical indicators, and/or policy models;
Leads and reviews research, data collection, validation, analysis and/or reporting to support the development of technical standards, international instruments, innovative tools and methodologies to be used within the Organization or by external stakeholders;
Leads the production of a variety of technical reports and oversees the provision of inputs for flagship publications, technical documents, divisional publications and/or web pages;
Leads and provides response to requests and provides technical/policy advice, assistance and solutions to Regional, Sub-Regional, and Country Offices including technical backstopping to field projects;
Leads, organizes and participates in the provision of capacity development services, which include the planning and organization of training workshops and seminars, and oversees the preparation of related information, materials, on-line tools and information kits;
Represents the Organization at international/inter-governmental meetings and conferences, advocates strategic partnerships, best practices, and increased policy dialogue, and develops and negotiates effective working relationships/consensus and agreements with international and national partners;
Leads and/or participates in resource mobilization activities in accordance with Corporate strategies and Divisional plans.

Specific Functions

Leads the Food Security and Nutrition Statistics Team of ESS, effectively managing the staff and the financial resources assigned to the Team and effectively planning and implementing the biennial plan of the Team.

Leads methodological and conceptual developments in the area of food security and nutrition measurement; develops and maintains food security and food-based nutrition indicators and related statistical methodologies for the assessment of the food and nutrition situation, including Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) Indicators 2.1.1 (Prevalence of Undernourishment) and 2.1.2 (Prevalence of moderate or Severe Food Insecurity based on the Food Insecurity Experience Scale) for global and national food security monitoring.

Leads the process of annual updates of FAO food security assessments for the ‚State of Food and Nutrition Security in the World‘ in coordination with other FAO Divisions and partner agencies, leads updates of FAO maintained data and parameters and draft contributions for the publication.

Provides guidance in the development and management of the household survey analysis programme related to food consumption measurement.

Participates in joint projects with other Divisions in FAO, UN agencies, national food security authorities and recognized private institutions to develop additional indicators to be included in a suite of FAO endorsed indicators of food security.

Promotes the development of country capacity to produce and analyse food security statistics; assesses statistical capacity building needs and develops strategies to address these needs; formulates technical assistance projects in the field of food security statistics.

Coordinates and collaborates with senior officials of other FAO Divisions on matters relating to food and nutrition security statistics, for the preparation of reports or printed publications.

Liaises with senior officials from other UN and international agencies on food security and nutrition , in particular for the maintenance of the SDG Indicators database and the production of associated Reports.

Prepares technical articles, working papers, books and training materials and documents best practices on food security and nutrition indicators.

Oversees the organization of international workshops, seminars and/or events on food security and nutrition assessments; and represents FAO in international meetings;
Undertakes fund raising activities in coordination with ESS management and other relevant FAO Divisions and senior officials.

Participates in the planning and management of the Division’s work programme;
Performs other related duties as required.


Minimum Requirements

Advanced university degree in statistics, mathematics, economics, agricultural economics, or a related field

Working knowledge of English (proficient - level C) and limited knowledge (intermediate - level B) of another FAO official language (Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian or Spanish)

Ten years of relevant experience in conceptual and methodological development, compilation and analysis of food and agricultural statistics in national or international organizations.


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Results Focus

Leading, Engaging and Empowering Others


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.

Strong command of statistical methods including: data presentation, analysis and descriptive statistics; main continuous and discrete random variables (binomial, normal, standard normal, log-normal) and their properties; probability distributions; conditional probability, probabilities of intersections of events, Bayes‘ theorem; correlation and rank correlation; sampling and sample size: simple, stratified, and multistage random sampling; Inference, confidence intervals, hypothesis testing and significance; linear regression (single and multiple) comparison of population means and variances, ANOVA; Chi-square and goodness of fit tests; nonlinear models: maximum likelihood estimation; elements of survey and questionnaire design.

Extent and relevance of experience and knowledge of statistics-related issues.

Extent and relevance of experience in planning and implementation of programmes related to statistics in development countries.

Extent and relevance of knowledge and experience in collecting, compiling and disseminating food security, and nutrition statistics.

Extent and relevance of experience in conducting quantitative analyses, analytical studies and methodological research in agricultural/economic statistics.

Demonstrated ability to mobilize resources.

Extent and relevance of experience in organizing and undertaking international meetings, seminars and training courses.

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: