event 02 Jan 2023

Job posting // Associate Academic Officer - Energy in Context of Water Energy and Food Nexus in Africa / Project Manager (PSA)

The United Nations University (UNU) is looking for an Associate Academic Officer to join their team in Bonn, Germany. The successful candidate will work on Energy in Context of Water Energy and Food Nexus in Africa under the direct supervision of the Head of the PACET (Pan African Cooperation and Educational Technologies) Programme. Apply before 22 January 2023.

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About UN University (UNU)

The United Nations University (UNU) is an international community of scholars engaged in policy-oriented research, capacity development and dissemination of knowledge, furthering the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations. UNU’s mission is to contribute, through research and capacity building, to efforts to resolve the pressing global problems that are the concern of the United Nations and its Member States.

For the past four decades, United Nations University (UNU) has been a go-to think tank for impartial research on human survival, conflict prevention, sustainable development and welfare. With more than 400 researchers in 12 countries, UNU’s work spans the 17 Sustainable Development Goals, generating policy-relevant knowledge to effect positive global change. UNU maintains more than 200 collaborations with UN agencies and leading universities and research institutions across the globe.

About the programme

The Pan African Cooperation and Educational Technologies (PACET) Programme at UNU-ViE aims to strengthen research, educational, and institutional capacities of UNU-EHS in global South with a focus on Africa. PACET fosters cooperation between UNU and African institutions in higher education, research, policy, and practice to develop innovative methods and appropriated solutions to address challenges particularly within the framework of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the Pairs Agreement, the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR) and the Agenda 2063 of the African Union.

Water-Energy-Food (WEF) in context of Climate Change addresses from a nexus standpoint represents a main research pillar at PACET. Activities and projects on the topic aim at generating new scientific and policy-relevant knowledge to support sustainable socio-economic, environmentally-friendly transformation and increase resilience against climate change in Global South with a focus on Africa.


Under the overall authority of the Vice-Rector in Europe and Director of UNU-EHS and the direct supervision of the Head of the PACET Programme the appointee will principally be responsible for the following tasks:

1. Coordinate activities and projects at PACET with regard to renewable energy in the frame of Water, Energy and Food Nexus and Green Hydrogen in Africa

2. Acquisition of third-party funding and fundraising

3. Project implementation

4. Contribute to capacity building.

5. Communication, media and outreach

6. Perform other duties as assigned by supervisor

Key performance indicators

  • Timely and quality development of relevant research activities and outputs on Energy in context of WEF and green hydrogen in Africa, publications in journals, policy reports and presentation to scientific audience
  • Successful resource mobilization for PACET research activities
  • Quality and level of engagement with research partners, related networks and collaboration partners worldwide.
  • Successful and timely management and reporting of ongoing projects (RETODOSSO) as well as to annual reports for PACET and UNU-ViE.
  • Successful and timely management of capacity building activities


Education and certification

  • Completed PhD or Master’s degree in environmental sciences, natural sciences, energy engineering or policy, geography, or another relevant field. PhD is required for consideration to Associate Academic Officer (PSA6 level).



  • Minimum 1 year of post-doctoral experience is required for Associate Academic Officer (PSA6 level), and for Project Manager (PSA5 level) at least three years of progressively responsible professional experience in research and academia related to Energy in context of WEF
  • Experience of successful fund-raising activities and Excellent skills in writing applications for research grants;
  • Strong research and publication profile in renewable energy in context of WEF is required;
  • Experience in scientific project management preferably in an international and multi-cultural environment is desirable


  • Ability to negotiate with partners and funding institutions;
  • Experience working with a wide array of software packages (e.g., HOMER, RETScreen, ArcGIS, SPSS, etc.) is essential;
  • Experience in quantitative and qualitative research methods including standard data collection tools (e.g., surveys, FDGs and stakeholder workshops), and analytical and modelling techniques;
  • Previous experience in teaching at MSc-level, including the supervision of MSc-theses;
  • Existing professional networks on Energy in Africa, Germany, international actors and institutions of higher education, research and development cooperation in/with Africa
  • Track-record of representing your organization at international fora with a specific focus on presenting research results to inter-disciplinary audiences
  • Strong team player with strong interpersonal skills committed to working in a multi-cultural, multi-ethnic environment with sensitivity and respect for diversity.
  • Applications from suitably qualified women candidates are particularly encouraged.

Language Requirements

  • Excellent writing, presentation and communication skills with a fluency in spoken and written English.
  • Additional languages such as French, German and Spanish or further UN languages are an asset;


The successful candidate will be employed under a national PSA contract. UNU offers an attractive compensation package including an annual net salary, commensurate with the experience and qualifications of the candidate. Benefits include 30 days annual leave and a health insurance scheme.

UNU is not liable for any taxes that may be levied on the remuneration you receive under this contract. Payment of any such taxes remains the sole responsibility of PSA holders.

Duration of contract

This is a full-time employment on a twelve (12) months Personnel Service Agreement (PSA) contract with possibility for renewal subject to requirements and satisfactory work performance, with the combined duration of appointments not exceeding six (6) years. The mandatory age of retirement for PSA holders is 65 years.

This post is open to applicants from all countries and UNU will aid the successful applicant in securing a work visa for Germany, as necessary. It is, however, a locally recruited post and no relocation allowances apply. The duty station will be Bonn, Germany.

Expected start date: As soon as possible

How to Apply:

To apply to UNU, you will not need an account. Instead, we ask that you:

  • Fill out the UNU P11 form (please avoid using similar forms provided by other United Nations organisations);
  • provide a motivation statement (in the P11 form);
  • provide a cover letter setting out how the qualifications and experience match the requirements of the position;
  • answer a few questions that are tailored to the position; and
  • apply via the apply link.

You may wish to refer to the UN Values and Behaviours Framework for more information.

Application Deadline: 22 January 2023

Further Information

Please find further information and more details in the offical job description.


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