Senior Advisor, Innovation (UNICEF-Sweden)

UNICEF Stockholm, Sweden


Headquartered in New York City, the United Nations Children’s Fund is a United Nations (UN) program that provides humanitarian and developmental assistance to children and mothers in developing countries. It is a member of the United Nations Development Group.

UNICEF was established on December 11, 1946 by the United Nations in response to the emergency needs of children in post-war Europe and China. In 1950, its mandate was broadened to address the long-term needs of children and women in developing countries everywhere. UNICEF became a permanent part of the United Nations system in 1953.

Today, UNICEF’s work is carried out in more than 190 countries, territories and areas through country programs and National Committees. Some 88 per cent of the organization’s posts are located in the field. There are seven regional offices, numerous country offices worldwide, as well as a research center in Florence, Italy, a supply operation in Copenhagen, Denmark, and other Headquarter offices in Geneva, Tokyo and Brussels.
UNICEF believes that all children have a right to survive, thrive and fulfill their potential – to the benefit of a better world. UNICEF was created with this purpose in mind – to work with others to overcome the obstacles that poverty, violence, disease and discrimination place in a child’s path to dignity and well-being. UNICEF advocate for measures to give children the best start in life because proper care at the youngest age, and continuing through childhood and adolescence, form the strongest foundation for a healthy future.

UNICEF upholds the Convention on the Rights of the Child. It works to assure equality for those who are discriminated against, girls and women in particular. UNICEF works for the Millennium Development Goals and for the progress promised in the United Nations Charter. UNICEF strives for peace and security and works to hold everyone accountable to the promises made for children.

You can find further details on their website https://www.unicef.org/


Senior Adviser Innovation

Under the general guidance and direction of the Director, the Senior Adviser will lead strategy development and execution for early-stage innovation that explores the use of frontier technology solutions. The current portfolio – supported mainly through the Innovation Fund - makes explorations in areas of drones, AI/ ML and blockchain across programmatic applications, with the aim of extending into new areas within these technologies as well as exploring new ones that are emerging, such a quantum computing and trends in finance, data, security and automation. This role will lead strategic and technical engagement in this area as well as the launch and acceleration of promising solutions and new platforms and initiatives.
Duties and Responsibilities
Key functions, accountabilities and related duties/tasks:

1. Set strategy for early-stage, open source explorations that leverage frontier technology, in line with UNICEF’s Innovation Strategy
  • Oversee the development of research, market analysis and guidance on opportunities for UNICEF priority areas
  • Maintain network of external partners and advisers
  • Assess changing needs and advise on OOI capacity on emerging technologies across Ventures, core and hub teams
  • Identify new areas of exploration and developing relevant capacity and understanding on the team
  • Oversee Innovation Fund and other relevant platforms to enable relevant pilots
2. Guide the portfolio of early-stage pilots to maximise return, sustainability and acceleration of promising solutions
  • Develop partnership strategy to leverage resources in support of portfolio
  • Ensure alignment with OOI and organizational strategies and priorities
  • Assess and manage any organisational risks
3. Management of Ventures team and collaboration across OOI teams and hubs to implement OOI’s Ventures strategy
  • Provide leadership at the IMT level to ensure coordination across hubs and core teams in relevant areas and outputs

  • Management of Ventures staff and consultants across diverse areas of technical expertise and functions
4. Provide thought leadership and external positioning of OOI in the priority areas, such as governance and standards for emerging tech areas in relation to rights of children and UNICEF’s priorities
  • Develop and maintain network of key stakeholders in each emerging technology area
  • Create positioning and key messages for engagement
  • Represent OOI in relevant global fora and advocate
  • Oversee external engagement in relevant technical and strategic engagements on Ventures’ priority areas, including the Digital Public Goods Alliance
5. Assess technical and financial resource needs and provide technical leadership to related partnership development
  • Define needs and identify priorities for fundraising and partnership development to support Innovation Fund and Ventures work
  • Contribute to the development of donor and partner prospects with relevant focus areas
  • Represent Ventures at relevant outreach and engagement opportunities
  • Establish and maintain strong relationships with relevant partners and networks to ensure strong positioning of Ventures’ results and priorities
6. Lead engagement with Divisions across UNICEF
  • Coordinate early-stage explorations to improve internal efficiency and effectiveness
  • Identify relevant opportunities for early-stage explorations and represent OOI in relevant strategic discussions on open source, digital public goods and frontier technologies
  • Support integration of early stage explorations in frontier technology into relevant annual and office planning and strategies

Required Competencies

Core Values
  • Care
  • Respect
  • Integrity
  • Trust
  • Accountability
Core Competencies (For Staff with Supervisory Responsibilities)
  • Nurtures, Leads and Manages People (2)
  • Demonstrates Self Awareness and Ethical Awareness (2) Works Collaboratively with others (2)
  • Builds and Maintains Partnerships (2)
  • Innovates and Embraces Change (2)
  • Thinks and Acts Strategically (2)
  • Drive to achieve impactful results (2)
  • Manages ambiguity and complexity (2)

Education, Qualifications & Experience

  • An advanced university degree (Master’s or higher) in one of the following fields is required: Political Science, International Relations, Economics, Business Administration, or another relevant technical field.
  • A minimum of ten (10) of relevant professional experience is required at national and international levels
  • Experience in strategy development and execution in the field of early-stage innovation
  • Experience in establishing, growing and guiding global teams, including starting up and launch of new platforms and initiatives
  • Experience in setting and guiding investment strategies, including the use of innovative financing and crypto-based models
  • Knowledge of key trends in open source and frontier technologies
  • A strong network of contacts within a range of relevant partners is an asset.
  • Fluency in English is required. Knowledge and fluency of another UN language is an asset.

Terms of Appointment

This is a permanent contract. Salary is competitive and commensurate with qualifications and experience.

Location: Stockholm, Sweden

How to Apply

If you wish to be considered for this position, please complete the Application Form below on or before 7th February 2022. In addition, we encourage you to please attach a copy of the most recent English version of your CV.
All information will be treated in the strictest confidence as we pride ourselves on our professional service.
If you have an initial query rather than an application, kindly email us at [email protected]
SRI Executive is exclusively retained by UNICEF  to undertake this assignment.



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