National Programme Officer (Human Trafficking and Migrant Smuggling)

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United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP)


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UNDP does not tolerate sexual exploitation and abuse, any kind of harassment, including sexual harassment, and discrimination. All selected candidates will, therefore, undergo rigorous reference and background checks.

The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) provides technical assistance related to combating transnational organized crime, including on trafficking in persons and smuggling of migrants, to requesting Member States. This assistance also aims to strengthening criminal justice systems of States and encourages ratification and successful implementation of international conventions and protocols, in compliance with the rule of law and human rights.

The Regional Programme for Southeast Asia and the Pacific 2022 – 2026 is designed to address both present and emerging needs within these regions, with the ultimate objective, namely to secure and reinforce the rule of law in Southeast Asia and the Pacific and ensure vulnerable groups and communities in the region are protected from crime.

Under the overall supervision of the UNODC Regional Representative of ROSEAP and the direct supervision of the Regional Coordinator for the Human Trafficking & Migrant Smuggling Programme based in Bangkok, the National Program Officer (NPO) will be responsible for the day-to-day implementation of ROSEAP projects called “Ensuring Decent Work and Reducing Vulnerabilities for Women and Children in the Context of Labour Migration in Southeast Asia” which aims to improve national and regional prevention and protection mechanisms to reduce violence and rights violations against vulnerable groups, especially women and children in the context of labour migration, including trafficking in human beings and smuggling, from a rights-based, gender-sensitive and child-responsive approach in Southeast Asia, with a particular focus on Cambodia, Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia.  The activities planned under this project fall under three main objectives:

  • Enhanced capacities of the institutions and organisations that are part of the criminal justice chain to prevent and prosecute trafficking in human beings and migrant smuggling cases
  • Improved quality of protection and assistance services for rights holders to recover psychologically, physically, legally and financially from the abuses suffered during the migrant smuggling process
  • Strengthened instruments and spaces for the design and implementation of regional cooperation mechanisms to effectively tackle trafficking in persons and smuggling of migrants in the Southeast Asia region

The National Programme Officer may also receive and act on requests for assistance from other UNODC initiatives having activities in Cambodia, as approved by the Regional Coordinator.

Duties and Responsibilities

Under the direct supervision of the Regional Coordinator for Human Trafficking and Migrant Smuggling (based in Bangkok, Thailand), the NPO will perform the following tasks:

Summary of Key Function:

A. Implementation of programme strategies and capacity building activities

B. Contribution to national partnerships and Stakeholder engagement

C. Management of the UNODC programme

Details of Key Functions:

A. Implementation of programme strategies and capacity building activities

  • Contribute to the planning, oversight, implementation, management and delivery of technical assistance activities under the project, “Ensuring Decent Work and Reducing Vulnerabilities for Women and Children in the Context of Labour Migration in Southeast Asia”, including through the organization and delivery of workshops, forums, and trainings as well as the preparation of substantive inputs for capacity development initiatives on various aspects of relating to human trafficking and migrant smuggling;
  • Keep abreast of the latest developments and trends regarding human trafficking and migrant smuggling in Southeast Asia, but specifically in Cambodia;
  • Produce relevant presentations, speeches, and materials (in Khmer and English), including the drafting of written outputs such as project progress reports, donor reports, background papers, letter of invitations, mission reports, briefing notes, web stories, op-eds, etc.;
  • Identify and document good practices, lessons learned, and relevant experiences that may be shared with key project stakeholders, including from across ASEAN member states.

B. Contribution to national partnerships and stakeholder engagement

  • Conduct regular dialogues and discussions with key national authorities to assess and monitor ongoing needs, map gaps and report back to the Regional Coordinator;
  • Establish and maintain close relationships other key stakeholders, including with ASEAN Member States, other UN agencies, donor governments, civil society organizations, universities, etc. in Cambodia and broadly across Southeast Asia region (when necessary);
  • Maintain regular communication with the Regional Coordinator in ROSEAP and the team;
  • Contribute to a visible and identifiable UNODC presence in Cambodia, including by representing UNODC at relevant events and meetings;
  • Ensure visibility of the project and its donors by using the relevant identifiers on all materials and publications as well as at workshops and events.

C. Management of the UNODC programme

  • Supervise national consultants to ensure timely delivery of activities in accordance to the project work plan;
  • Prepare terms of reference/requirements for sub-contractors and vendors to ensure qualitative and objective procurement of services, and support the identification of suppliers and their contracting;
  • Ensure adherence to UN rules and regulations for financial and administrative matters and ensure timely fulfilment of all obligations and delivery of expected results of the project activities;
  • Contribute to developing a filing system for the pro ject and maintain filing accordingly;
  • Undertake travel duties related to the project or broader programmatic objectives as required;
  • Support broader migrant smuggling and human trafficking Regional Programme implementation in Cambodia as required; and
  • Perform other duties to support national project implementation and regional TIPSOM programming as required.

Impact of Results

  • Smooth and timely planning, implementation and monitoring of the assigned project activities in coordination with the Bangkok-based colleagues;
  • Effective collaboration and communication with relevant national counterparts; and
  • Provision of quality inputs to project documents, reports and visibility initiatives.


Professionalism: Has knowledge and understanding of theories, concepts and approaches relevant to criminal justice, with a primary focus on mutual legal assistance, criminal asset management, prisons and gender-based violence. Has knowledge of policies and practices in the area of criminal justice, as well as of the mandates of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. Has very good research and analytical skills. Is able to identify issues, analyze and participate in the resolution of issues/problems. Is able to apply judgment in the context of assignments given, plan own work and manage conflicting priorities. Shows pride in work and in achievements; demonstrates professional competence and mastery of subject matter; is conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, observing deadlines and achieving results; is motivated by professional rather than personal concerns; shows persistence when faced with difficult problems or challenges; remains calm in stressful situations. Takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work.

Communication: Speaks and writes clearly and effectively; listens to others, correctly interprets messages from others and responds appropriately; asks questions to clarify and exhibits interest in having two-way communication; tailors language, tone, style and format to match audience; demonstrates openness in sharing information and keeping people informed.

Planning, organizing and managing performance: Develops clear goals that are consistent with agreed strategies; identifies priority activities and assignments; adjusts priorities as required; allocates appropriate amount of time and resources for completing work; foresees risks and allows for contingencies when planning; monitors and adjusts plans and actions as necessary; uses time efficiently.
Required Skills and Experience


  • Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent)  in political science, Law, Social Science, Public Policy, International Relations, criminology or a related field is required. OR
  • A first-level university degree (bachelor’s degree) in the above areas, in combination with an additional two years of qualifying experience will be given due consideration in lieu of the advanced university degree.


  • Minimum of two (2) years (with master’s degree) or four (4) years (with bachelor’s degree) of relevant experience in project management, coordinating and organizing workshops and trainings, particularly in the area of migrant smuggling, human trafficking or irregular migration;
  • Experience and knowledge and understanding of migrant smuggling and human trafficking in Cambodia;
  • Knowledge of the political and related dynamics in the ASEAN region;
  • Experience liaising with mid- to high-level government officials;
  • Strong inter-personal, diplomatic, coordination, organization and communication skills;
  • Experience in building and maintaining working relationships with different stakeholders;
  • Social, cultural, gender, religion, ethnic, and age sensitivity and adaptability;
  • Ability to work independently and within a team;
  • Excellent English drafting and communication skills;
  • Experience working with law enforcement and/or criminal justice practitioners in Cambodia would be considered a strong asset;
  • Experience working with the United Nations or other international organizations is desirable;
  • Knowledge of Cambodia government procedures and processes linked to technical assistance is desirable.

Language Requirements:

  • Fluency in spoken and written Khmer and English is required.
  • Knowledge of other United Nations official languages is an asset.


  • Experience in the use of computers and office software packages (MS Word, Excel, etc.) and knowledge of spreadsheet and database packages is required.
  • Experience in handling web-based management systems is desirable.
Under US immigration law, acceptance of a staff position with UNDP, an international organization, may have significant implications for US Permanent Residents. UNDP advises applicants for all professional level posts that they must relinquish their US Permanent Resident status and accept a G-4 visa, or have submitted a valid application for US citizenship prior to commencement of employment.
UNDP is not in a position to provide advice or assistance on applying for US citizenship and therefore applicants are advised to seek the advice of competent immigration lawyers regarding any applications.
Applicant information about UNDP rosters
Note: UNDP reserves the right to select one or more candidates from this vacancy announcement.  We may also retain applications and consider candidates applying to this post for other similar positions with UNDP at the same grade level and with similar job description, experience and educational requirements.
UNDP has a zero-tolerance policy towards sexual exploitation and misconduct, sexual harassment, and abuse of authority. All selected candidates will, therefore, undergo rigorous reference and background checks, and will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles.
UNDP is an equal opportunity and inclusive employer that does not discriminate based on race, sex, gender identity, religion, nationality, ethnic origin, sexual orientation, disability, pregnancy, age, language, social origin or other status.
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