Intern - Economic Affairs






Job Summary

Org. Setting and Reporting

The Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) was established by the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) of the United Nations (UN) in 1958 as one of the United Nations five regional commissions. Its mandate is to promote ...

Skills and Qualifications

Org. Setting and Reporting

The Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) was established by the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) of the United Nations (UN) in 1958 as one of the United Nations five regional commissions. Its mandate is to promote the economic and social development of its member States, foster intra-regional integration, and promote international cooperation for Africa's development. Made up of 54 member States, and playing a dual role as a regional arm of the UN and as a key component of the African institutional landscape, ECA is well positioned to make unique contributions to address the Continent's development challenges. The strategic objective of ECA is framed around delivering ideas and actions for an empowered, inclusive and transformed Africa in the framework of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and Agenda 2063 of the African Union through its three core functions, namely, its function as a think tank, its convening function and its operational function.The internship positions are located in the Sub-regional Office for Southern Africa (SRO-SA) of the Economic Commission for Africa (ECA), Lusaka, Zambia. The internship is designed to provide mentorship, and exposure to young scholars and practitioners to work in a multicultural international environment of the UN.The interns will work under the overall supervision and guidance of the Director of SRO-SA and the direct supervision of the Chiefs of the Inclusive Industrialization Section, and Sub-Regional Initiatives Section or any unit they may be deployed to. For more information, please visit our website: www.uneca.orgThe internship is for 3 months with an opportunity for extension, depending on the needs of the office.The internship is unpaid and full-time. Interns work five days per week under the supervision of a staff member in the Section to which they are assigned.


Depending on their level of experience and training, interns in the SRO-SA will:Research and analyze topics relating to sustainable economic development, governance, planning and poverty reduction in Africa;Draft and edit publications, papers and other documents;Liaise with SRO-SA stakeholders on key development topics for Africa;Support the organization during meetings and events;Assist with outreach and communication activities of the Office;Participate in day-to-day operational tasks of SRO-SA. This may include servicing requests for information; support for developing presentations; liaison with partner organizations, etc.;Prepare a research paper on a topical issue to be identified in consultation with their assigned supervisor;Write and submit a close-out report by the end of their internship, as feedback to ECA; andPerform administrative and other tasks as assigned.


Professionalism: 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. Commitment to implementing the goal of gender equality by ensuring the equal participation and full involvement of women and men in all aspects 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 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.


To qualify for an internship with the United Nations Internship Programme, the following conditions must be met:Applicants must meet one of the following requirements:(i)be enrolled in a graduate school programme (second university degree or equivalent, or higher) whose requirements include internship; or(ii)be enrolled in the final academic year of a first university degree programme (minimumBachelor's level or equivalent); or(iii)have graduated with a university degree preferably in the social sciences including economics, development studies, policy studies, political science, communication science/studies, or related fields and, if selected, must commence the internship within a two-year period of graduation.Be computer literate in standard software applications;Have a demonstrated keen interest in the work of the United Nations and have a personal commitment to the ideals of the Charter; andHave a demonstrated ability to successfully interact with individuals of different cultural backgrounds and beliefs, which includes willingness to try and understand and be tolerant of differing opinions and views.

Work Experience

Applicants are not required to have professional work experience for participation in the United Nations programme.


English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the internship advertised, fluency in English language is required and knowledge of the French is an advantage. Knowledge of another official United Nations language is an advantage.


Applicants are encouraged to clearly indicate their areas of interests and highlight their specific skills and/or experience in their cover note. They are asked to do so carefully in order to enhance the value of the internship for both themselves and the receiving United Nations department.Potential candidates will be contacted by the hiring manager for further consideration.

Special Notice

To apply:A complete online application (Cover Note and Personal History Profile) is required. To complete an online application, please create and complete a personal history profile (PHP) and a cover letter in the UN e-Recruitment system (careers.un.org).Please note that incomplete applications with not be reviewed.The cover note should include:(i)Title of the degree obtained or currently being pursued by the applicant and the discipline of the study or degree;(ii)Expected graduation date if pursuing post-graduate studies;(iii)List computer skills and software programmes that you are proficient in;(iv)Explain how an internship at ECA fits within your career plans and why you would be the best candidate for this team.In your Personal History Profile, be sure to include all past work experiences (if any), education, computer skills, languages and three references.Please note that due to high volume of applications received, ONLY successful candidates will be contacted.

United Nations Considerations

According to article 101, paragraph 3, of the Charter of the United Nations, the paramount consideration in the employment of the staff is the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity. Candidates will not be considered for employment with the United Nations if they have committed violations of international human rights law, violations of international humanitarian law, sexual exploitation, sexual abuse, or sexual harassment, or if there are reasonable grounds to believe that they have been involved in the commission of any of these acts. The term “sexual exploitation” means any actual or attempted abuse of a position of vulnerability, differential power, or trust, for sexual purposes, including, but not limited to, profiting monetarily, socially or politically from the sexual exploitation of another. The term “sexual abuse” means the actual or threatened physical intrusion of a sexual nature, whether by force or under unequal or coercive conditions. The term “sexual harassment” means any unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature that might reasonably be expected or be perceived to cause offence or humiliation, when such conduct interferes with work, is made a condition of employment or creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment, and when the gravity of the conduct warrants the termination of the perpetrator’s working relationship. Candidates who have committed crimes other than minor traffic offences may not be considered for employment.Due regard will be paid to the importance of recruiting the staff on as wide a geographical basis as possible. The United Nations places no restrictions on the eligibility of men and women to participate in any capacity and under conditions of equality in its principal and subsidiary organs. The United Nations Secretariat is a non-smoking environment.Applicants are urged to follow carefully all instructions available in the online recruitment platform, inspira. For more detailed guidance, applicants may refer to the Manual for the Applicant, which can be accessed by clicking on “Manuals” hyper-link on the upper right side of the inspira account-holder homepage.The evaluation of applicants will be conducted on the basis of the information submitted in the application according to the evaluation criteria of the job opening and the applicable internal legislations of the United Nations including the Charter of the United Nations, resolutions of the General Assembly, the Staff Regulations and Rules, administrative issuances and guidelines. Applicants must provide complete and accurate information pertaining to their personal profile and qualifications according to the instructions provided in inspira to be considered for the current job opening. No amendment, addition, deletion, revision or modification shall be made to applications that have been submitted. Candidates under serious consideration for selection will be subject to reference checks to verify the information provided in the application.Job openings advertised on the Careers Portal will be removed at 11:59 p.m. (New York time) on the deadline date.

Skill tags



Want to apply?

Employer's Details are only open to members only. Sign in or register to see see application details or visit the employer's website.

Register to apply

Already a member? Sign in

United Nations




Similar Jobs