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Unesco is hiring Remote Research Consultants Apply

Against this background, the UNESCO Institute for Lifelong Learning (UIL) and Shanghai Normal University (SHNU) have initiated a project titled “Teachers as Lifelong Learners: International Research, Policy, and Practice on Lifelong Learning for Teacher Education (2023-2026).” Phase 1 of this project seeks to generate evidence for policies and practices of developing and preparing teachers as lifelong learners and identify relevant implications for policy, practice, and research.

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To support these efforts, UIL is currently searching for an experienced and qualified individual research consultant to conduct and prepare a systematic literature review.

Work Assignment:

The Consultant will work under the general guidance of the UIL Director and be managed by the Team Leader of the Quality Learning Ecosystems Programme at UIL.

Long Description

Main tasks and responsibilities include:

Conduct a comprehensive, systematic literature review by:

  • Defining the objectives and key questions guiding the review;
  • Creating a search strategy tailored to the defined objectives;
  • Conducting a thorough literature search;
  • Selecting studies based on inclusion/exclusion criteria;
  • Performing data extraction and interpretation to derive meaningful insights from the gathered literature (using relevant data analysis tools/ methods).

Submit a comprehensive, systematic literature review report by:

  • Organizing the report structure/outline, including an executive summary, introduction, research methodology, including inclusion and exclusion criteria, main analysis of findings, key themes under the theme of โ€œteachers as lifelong learners,โ€ discussions of findings, implications for further research, references, and relevant annexes (incl. tables and figures);
  • Developing the initial draft of the literature review report, maximum 25 pages single space, excluding references;
  • Revising and improving the initial report based on feedback from UNESCO/UIL and expert members;
  • Preparing presentation slides on the key findings of the report for the International Expert Workshop in June 2024;
  • Revising and producing the final report based on the discussions and feedback received during the international expert workshop in June;
  • Submitting the report by following the Harvard Referencing Style guide on the bibliography and in-text citations.

Long Description

In line with UNESCOโ€™s overall gender mainstreaming strategy, the Consultant is expected to integrate a gender perspective in all activities and apply gender mainstreaming concepts whenever feasible.

Work Schedule and Expected Deliverables

The Consultant shall submit to UIL the following deliverables on the specified dates unless agreed by both parties:

1. Deliverable: A brief outline of the report with a draft literature review methodology and a list of sample literature 

Timeline: 22 April 2024

2. Deliverable: Initial draft of the report on literature review

Timeline: 20 May 2024

3. Deliverable: Final draft of the report on literature review (including the revision based on the feedback and full references and annexes)

Timeline: 15 July 2024
All deliverables shall be submitted to UIL in English. The feedback from the consultations with different stakeholders in this project will be managed and consolidated by UIL for the consultant to incorporate into the final report.

Duration of contract:
The Consultant will be required to work during the period 22 April and 1 August 2024.

Location and travel:
The consultancy assignment will primarily be home-based in any location and can be done by working remotely. The Consultant should be available to meet with the UIL team (online) during office hours of Hamburg, Germany. Subject to the agreements between the partners of this research project, the Consultant may be required to travel to Shanghai, China. In this case, the expenses will be borne by the partners of this project (i.e. UIL and SHNU).


The consultancy is open to suitably qualified individuals.

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COMPETENCIES (Core / Managerial)

Accountability (C)

Communication (C)

Innovation (C)

Knowledge sharing and continuous improvement (C)

Planning and organizing (C)

Results focus (C)

Teamwork (C)

Professionalism (C)

For detailed information, please consult the UNESCO Competency Framework.


Education: Doctorate degree and empirical research experience in the fields of teacher education, adult education, and lifelong learning.

Expertise in the field of teacher policy and education research

  • Expertise in specific areas of teacher education, such as pre-service/initial teacher training, in-service teacher education and continuing teacher professional development, as well as in lifelong learning policies.
  • A proven record of research and publications in the leading international journals on this subject matter, with at least 3 journal articles or book chapters.

Work experience

  • At least 5 years of research experience in designing, conducting and leading research projects in different country contexts on this subject matter.
  • At least 5 years of teaching experience in teaching training institutes or other higher education institutes with a focus on teacher training programmes, teacher learning and professional development.
  • Have well-established professional and academic networks within the field of teacher education, teacher policies and lifelong learning/adult education.

Skills and Competencies

  • Ability to understand the broader social, cultural, and political contexts that impact teacher policies and education and lifelong learning at global, regional, and national levels.
  • Ability to design both quantitative and qualitative research methodologies and tools.
  • Strong analytical and critical thinking skills to evaluate existing teacher and lifelong learning policies, teacher training and education programmes, identify areas for improvement, and propose evidence-based recommendations.
  • Strong analytical writing skills in English.
  • Ability to work under pressure, manage heavy workloads and meet tight deadlines.

Language competencies

Advanced language proficiency in English. Intermediate language proficiency levels in French or any other UN languages are desirable.



Submission of Application 
Interested individuals are invited to submit the application and requirements through the UNESCO Careers website.
Interested candidates should click on โ€œApply Nowโ€ and download and complete the Employment History form (Word document) in โ€˜Employment History Form / My Documentsโ€™. In the Employment History Form, please also include the following in the same document as additional pages:

  • An updated Curriculum Vitae (CV)
  • A short response (500 words) to the question: What makes you the ideal candidate for this position? Please be specific with relevant examples from your experience that illustrate your skills and motivation for the enumerated tasks of this assignment.
  • Literature review methodology (maximum 2 pages) with a few examples where possible.
  • Consultancy fee, quoted in US dollars as a lump sum with breakdown according to level of effort/ time-on-task or per output.

UNESCO places great emphasis on ensuring that the objectives of the work assignment, as described in the Terms of Reference, are met. Accordingly, in evaluating the proposals for the assignment, attention will focus primarily on the technical elements. From those proposals deemed suitable in terms of the criteria in the Terms of Reference, UNESCO shall select the proposal that offers the Organization the best value for money.  

The complete application shall be submitted on or before 23:59 CET, 15 April 2024. Please note that only pre-selected candidates will be contacted.

Any questions may be directed to: uil-learningecosystems@unesco.org


Please note that all candidates must complete an on-line application and provide complete and accurate information. To apply, please visit the UNESCO careers website. No modifications can be made to the application submitted.

The evaluation of candidates is based on the criteria in the vacancy notice, and may include tests and/or assessments, as well as a competency-based interview. 

UNESCO uses communication technologies such as video or teleconference, e-mail correspondence, etc. for the assessment and evaluation of candidates.

Please note that only selected candidates will be further contacted and candidates in the final selection step will be subject to reference checks based on the information provided.

Apply here

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