Research Assistant

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United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia




Org. Setting and Reporting

The Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA) forms part of the United Nations Secretariat and, like the other regional commissions, operates under the supervision of the United Nations Economic and Social Council. ESCWA comprises 21 Arab countries in Western Asia and North Africa. ESCWA provides a framework for the formulation and harmonisation of sectoral policies for member countries, a platform for congress and coordination, a home for expertise and knowledge, and an information observatory.

ESCWA activities are coordinated with the divisions and main offices of the Headquarters of the United Nations, specialised agencies, and international and regional organizations, including the League of Arab States and its subsidiary bodies, and the Gulf Cooperation Council. This position is in Cluster 4 (Statistics, the information society and technology) which acts as a pioneer and multi-stakeholder regional platform for deliberation, consensus-building, peer learning, and policy solutions to strengthen the institutional framework for official statistics in the Arab region and enhance the production and use of harmonized, timely and reliable statistics for evidence-based policymaking; to enable the measurement of national and regional progress towards the implementation of the 2030 Agenda, and advance information society in the Arab region and promote the integration of technology and innovation for inclusive and sustainable development. The Research Assistant will report directly to the Cluster Lead.


Within delegated authority, the Research Assistant will be responsible for the following duties: • Contributes substantively to Cluster 4 projects related to the assessment of countries’ performance in digital transformation and/or SDG statistics. • Collects and validates data from countries in specific domains, prepares countries analysis, summarizes obtained results, briefs and presentations for substantive reports related to countries’ data availability and performance.

  • Sorts, consolidates, extracts and processes data and enters into relevant database.
  • Assists in monitoring developments/issues on subjects or areas assigned by collecting, selecting, analyzing and compiling materials from multiple sources, e.g., relevant databases, the library and the Internet.
  • Assembles original statistical material; adjusts reported data from different sources and loads data into a computerized database system.
  • Assists in the evaluation and examination of data sets for accuracy, clarity and validity.
  • Prepares a variety of reports, presentations, tables, lists, graphs, charts and/or diagrams for information and review by senior officers.
  • Prepares abstracts/bibliographic descriptions for inclusion in documents, articles, books and publications.
  • Reviews, stores, classifies, and maintains relevant computerized databases.
  • Takes notes and drafts executive summaries of meetings.
  • Collects, organizes and disseminates relevant UN and media information.
  • Co-ordinates and sets up press briefings, press statements, pamphlets or other public awareness campaigns to educate public on any specific issue.
  • Provides guidance/training to new/junior staff.
  • Assists with the collection and analysis of data as well as preparation of data presentations and reports for information sharing, responding to queries, knowledge management, planning and decision making.
  • Assists with visualizations and updating information material such as web pages or brochures.
  • Performs other related work as required.


  • High school diploma or equivalent is required.

Job – Specific Qualification

  • A first-level university degree (Bachelor’s degree or equivalent) in technology, computer science, engineering, statistics, economics or related field is desirable.

Work Experience

  • A minimum of 5 years of experience in collecting and researching data across various areas of social, economic and digital development and SDGs or related area is required. The minimum years of relevant experience is reduced to 3 for candidates who possess a first-level university degree or higher. Experience in the field of research and analysis in the Arab region is desirable. Proficiency in Microsoft office applications is desirable. Experience working with the United Nations or similar organizations is desirable.


  • English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. In addition, Arabic is a working language at ESCWA. For this position, fluency in English and Arabic is required. Note: “Fluency” equals a rating of ‘fluent’ in all four areas (speak, read, write, and understand) and “Knowledge of” equals a rating of ‘confident’ in two of the four areas.





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