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UN Junior Professional Officer Programme . Apply for this entry level job at United Nations

About the UN JPO Programme

The UN JPO Programme recruits Junior Professional Officers (formerly known as Associate Experts) for the UN Secretariat and associated entities. JPOs are recruited under bilateral agreements between the UN and donor countries. JPOs are generally nationals of donor countries, however some donors also finance nationals of developing countries. Candidates are young professionals, usually with an advanced university degree and minimum two years of professional experience. JPO positions are generally at the P2 level.

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The number of sponsored positions varies from year to year and by donor country. The assignment is intended for a minimum duration of 2 years. Initially JPOs are granted a one-year appointment which is renewal for a 2nd year, with the agreement of the donor country, and on the basis of good performance. There is 

How To Apply

Who is eligible to apply to this programme?

Most participating countries sponsor JPO positions addressed to nationals of their country, some also finance positions for nationals of developing countries. Candidates are young professionals usually with an advanced university degree and minimum two years of professional experience acquired after the first-level university degree.


Are you a National of a participating donor government?

Only a limited number of donor countries is currently participating in the programme and their nationals are eligible to apply to the UN JPO Programme. Selected donor countries also sponsor JPO positions for developing country candidates. If you are a national of one of the participating donor governments please consult the related JPO Programme website/s at the national level, often times advertised through the respective Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

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Is there an age limit for joining the programme?

While there is no general age limit, many donor countries require applicants to be under the age of 32 when applying to their JPO Programme, however the age limit varies depending on the donor countries, so please check their websites. 


Are you a National of a developing country?

Currently only selected donors (the Netherlands, Italy, Belgium and Switzerland) are also sponsoring developing country candidates. More information will be posted once available under JPO Vacancies. Please note that only for positions administered by UNDESA which are sponsored by the government of the Netherlands there is direct application procedure to the UN. In previous years Spain has sponsored candidates from developing countries as well.

Which United Nations Departments participate in this programme?

View the participating UN departments. *Note that these departments do not take direct applicatons, all applications are to be made directly to the sponsoring donor countries via their websites listed.

When is the deadline to apply?

Deadlines vary from vacancy to vacancy.

There are no JPO vacancies being advertised on the donors websites, what should I do? 

Please check the websites at national level and our vacancy announcements frequently for any openings in the future.

How long is an assignment as a JPO?

JPO assignments are foreseen for a minimum duration of 2 years. The appointment is initially for a period of one year, with a possibility of an extension, depending on the performance and available funding from donor countries.

What qualifications are required?

Normally, applicants are under 32 years of age, however age limits vary depending on the donor country. Please check their individual requirements on respective website of the national JPO Programmes of participating countries.  Candidates should have at least a Master’s degree (or equivalent combination of a degree and work experience) and a minimum of two years of relevant professional experience or a Bachelor’s degree and a minimum of 4 years of work experience acquired after the first-level university degree.

• English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. Depending on the duty station, excellent oral and written English or French is essential. Proficiency in another United Nations language may be required depending on the job description. Additional job specific requirements are included in the individual vacancy announcement.


To whom and where should I send my application to?

You can access JPO vacancies announcements and the application procedure on the sponsoring governments websites or on under vacancy announcements on this website. The preliminary assessment of candidacies is carried out, in most cases, by the respective donor governments who take into account language skills, academic background and professional experience. A short-list is then submitted by the donor government to the United Nations for further processing.


Where and when will the final interview take place?

Only short-listed candidates will be interviewed directly by the representatives of the various United Nations departments. 

How to apply

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