Economic Affairs Intern at the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa

Economic Affairs Intern at the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa

The UNECA is mandated to promote the economic and social development of its member States, foster intra-regional integration, and promote international cooperation for Africa’s development.

Economic Affairs Intern at the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa

ECA’s mission is to deliver ideas and actions for an empowered and transformed Africa; informed by the 2030 SDGs and Agenda 2063.The mission is guided by ECA’s five new strategic directions which are:- advancing ECA’s position as a premier knowledge institution that builds on its unique position and privilege to bring global solutions to the continent’s problems and take local solution to the continent;- developing macroeconomic and structural policy options to accelerate economic diversification and job creation;- designing and implementing innovative financing models for infrastructure, and for human, physical and social assets for a transforming Africa;- contributing solutions to regional and transboundary challenges, with a focus on peace security and social inclusion as an important development nexus;- advocating Africa’s position at the global level and developing regional responses as a contribution to global governance issues.

The UNECA is mandated to promote the economic and social development of its member States, foster intra-regional integration, and promote international cooperation for Africa’s development. To find out more about UNECA, please go to

The internship is located in one of the Sections of the Subregional office for Southern Africa (SRO-SA) of the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa, based in Lusaka, Zambia. The Internship will be remote or physical. The duration of the internship is six months on a full-time basis. Interns work five days per week (35 Hours) under the supervision of a staff member in the department or office to which they are assigned. Have a demonstrated and keen interest in the work of the United Nations and have a personal commitment to the ideals of the Charter. An internship certificate will be awarded at the end of the assignment on the recommendation of the supervisor.Responsibilities

Under the direct supervision of a designated Economic Affairs Officer of a Section of SRO-SA, the intern will contribute to the work of the Office and in particular to the implementation of the technical assistance projects by SRO-SA.

Activities may vary by technical assistance project/assignment, but typical tasks include the following:

1. Prepare and update a calendar of activities for the project with timelines;
2. Prepare substantive documents and notes required for planned workshops/meetings including concept notes, agendas and other related documents;
3. Assist in the planning and organization of workshops and meetings and execute tasks as identified by the Economic Affairs Officer that will include drafting letters of invitation, following up on letters to ensure higher participation at the meetings, identifying suitable panelists and participants at the events and eliciting their participation at events, and drafting presentations.
4. Servicing workshops and meetings held in the course of the projects including taking notes at meetings and drafting inputs for speeches and statements;
5. Assist in the identification, selection and recruitment of consultants needed for the execution of project outputs;
6. Prepare substantive inputs for terms of reference of consultants;
7. Undertake literature reviews, research and analysis on inclusive industrialization and MSMEs to inform the development of office outputs, e.g., statistical database, reports;
8. Assist in data trawling exercises to track indicators for the inclusive industrialization database;
9. Contribute to develop and update country strategies and profiles;
10. Shadow the data and statistics focal point officer, supporting the function and contributing to briefs and reporting exercises;
11. Assist in the establishment of databases that may be needed for the project;
12. Assist in identifying sources of extra-budgetary funds for the office;
13. Participate in the mobilization of strategic partnerships for the office;
14. Contribute innovative and creative ideas to the delivery of project deliverables to enhance the quality of project outputs and impacts of results to be achieved;
15. Identify suitable methodologies to be employed in the course of output delivery;
16. Perform administrative tasks in relation to the project, in close consultation with the administrative staff of SRO-SA and ECA;
17. Assist in the preparation of communications materials needed to disseminate the project outputs including video scripts and tweets;
18. Perform any ad-hoc requests as required by the Economic Affairs Officer to ensure a high quality and timely delivery of project deliverables including setting up meetings.


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 the audience; demonstrates openness in sharing information and keeping people informed.

Teamwork – Works collaboratively with colleagues to achieve organizational goals; solicits input by genuinely valuing others’ ideas and expertise; is willing to learn from others; places team agenda before personal agenda; supports and acts in accordance with final group decision, even when such decisions may not entirely reflect own position; shares credit for
team accomplishments and accepts joint responsibility for team shortcomings.

Client Orientation – Considers all those to whom services are provided to be “clients” and seeks to see things from clients’ point of view; establishes and maintains productive partnerships with clients by gaining their trust and respect; identifies clients’ needs and matches them to appropriate solutions; monitors ongoing developments inside and outside the clients’ environment to keep informed and anticipate problems; keeps clients informed of progress or setbacks in projects; meets timeline for delivery of products or services to client.

Creativity – Actively seeks to improve programmes or services; offers new and different options to solve problems or meet client needs; promotes and persuades others to consider new ideas; takes calculated risks on new and unusual ideas; thinks “outside the box”; takes an interest in new ideas and new ways of doing things; is not bound by current thinking or traditional approaches.


To qualify for an internship with the United Nations Internship Programme, the following conditions must be met:

  1. Applicants must meet one of the following requirements:
    (a) be enrolled in a graduate school programme (second university degree or equivalent, or higher);
    (b) be enrolled in the final academic year of a first university degree programme (minimum Bachelor’s level or equivalent); or
    (c) have graduated with a university degree (as defined above) and, if selected, must commence the internship within a one year period of graduation;

    2. Be computer literate in standard software applications;

    3. Have a demonstrated ability to successfully interact with individuals of different cultural backgrounds and beliefs, which include willingness to try and understand and be tolerant of differing opinions and views.

Work Experience

No working experience is required to apply for the United Nations Internship Programme. Your training, education, advance course work or skills should benefit the United Nations during your internship.


English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the Internship Programme, fluency in English or French is required. Working knowledge of the other is desirable. Knowledge of another United Nations language is an advantage.

DEADLINE: 05 April 2024

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