UNDP plays an important and unique role in supporting high risk countries to achieve their development goals by reducing loss to life and assets, and by strengthening long term resilience. UNDP works with governments at international, national and local levels to ensure that disaster risk reduction (DRR) is a nationally-led and owned agenda, as well as integrated into national development planning. UNDP’s work focuses on resilience building and ensuring development remains risk-informed and sustainable. To do this we assist governments in systematically and comprehensively delivering on risk-informed development through the communication, reduction and management of risk.

UNDP’s country level DRR and recovery efforts have reached expenditures of USD 2.1 billion during the period 2005 – 2016 (more information on UNDP’s DRR portfolio can be accessed here). The Disaster Risk Reduction and Recovery for Building Resilience Team (DRT) currently manages a portfolio of global and regional projects amounting to approximately USD 60 million. Through enhanced integration with climate change adaptation and a firm focus on partnerships and mechanisms to deliver on Sendai, UNDP, during this reporting period, has:

  • helped 148 countries develop national and local DRR strategies and action plans;
  • supported 84 countries to understand and communicate risks through risk assessments;
  • worked with 90 countries to strengthen their legal and regulatory frameworks for DRM; and
  • supported 110 countries to develop post-disaster recovery capacities.

The DRT leads UNDP’s global practice in this field and provides policy advice and programmatic support to UNDP Regional Hubs and Country Offices in the design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of disaster risk reduction and recovery programmes. The team collaborates closely with other UNDP Global Policy Network (GPN) practices such as climate change, governance, conflict prevention, sustainable development and poverty eradication, towards a comprehensive and multi-dimensional approach to resilience building.

This position is specifically intended to support UNDP’s work on disaster early warning and preparedness as one of the key strategic work streams of DRT. The intern will support the team with research, knowledge management and communications tasks.

Duties and Responsibilities

Undertake research on cutting-edge topics of importance to UNDP

  • Undertake research and develop research outputs using qualitative and quantitative methodologies within thematic areas related to climate and disaster risk management, preparedness, early warning – early action;
  • Research topics may include, but not be limited to: technology-powered solutions for early warning and early action; digital solutions for DRR, preparedness, early action; methodologies, tools and approaches for foresight and anticipatory action for climate change and disaster risk management; capacity development approaches for preparedness in fragile settings; disability-inclusive climate and disaster risk reduction; gender-sensitive DRR and preparedness approached; youth and early warning and early action;
  • Map, categorize and upload various resources related to early warning, early action and preparedness in an internal database.

Turn research results into communication material for UNDP internal and external audience

  • Tailor and adapt research results as knowledge and communications products geared towards external audience such as blog stories, social media cards, briefs to be used for UNDP’s corporate website and UNDP’s presence at/ related to global events such as the UNFCCC Conference of the Parties 26, Global Platform for Disaster Risk reduction, Word Reconstruction Conference
  • Develop slide decks, MURAL Boards, and other interactive materials for presentations at UNDP internal events, workshops, webinars, etc.

Support the UNDP community of practice

  • Support the organization of events geared towards sustaining the UNDP community of practice bringing together practitioners from UNDP’s Country Offices, regional and HQ offices;
  • Help facilitate online practitioner engagements such as online dialogues, webinars, etc.


  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills in English;
  • Initiative taking;
  • Strong organization skills;
  • Great attention to detail and proven experience in proof reading;
  • Ability to work well in a team;
  • Demonstration of cultural sensitivity and appreciation for different cultures and practices;
  • Sound computer skills and experience using web-based applications, social media and data management systems.

Required Skills and Experience


  • Be enrolled in a post graduate degree programme (master programme or higher) in the area of disaster risk reduction, climate change adaptation, disaster management, environmental management, humanitarian affairs, international development; or
  • Be enrolled in the final academic year of a first university degree programme (bachelor degree or equivalent), in above relevant field; or
  • Have recently graduated with a university degree, as defined in the above field and, if selected, the candidate must start the internship within one-year of graduation.


  • Proficiency in English in both writing and speaking.

Institutional arrangements:

The intern will be part of UNDP’s Disaster Risk Reduction for Building Resilience Team based in Geneva. In the current context, the intern is expected to work from home, as travel may be restricted to/ from Geneva.

S/he will work under the direct supervision of the Global Disaster Preparedness Lead and under the overall strategic guidance of the Head of the Disaster Risk Reduction for Building Resilience Team.

Conditions of the internship

  • Interns are not considered staff members of UNDP and may not represent UNDP in any official capacity;
  • Interns are not financially remunerated by UNDP.  Where an intern is not financially supported by an institution, foundation or government through scholarship programme, a stipend may be paid by UNDP in accordance with the UNDP Internship Policies with the intention to help cover basic daily expenses related to the internship;
  • Interns are not covered by UNDP for medical, health or life insurance and have to have their own international medical and life insurance;
  • The purpose of the Internship Programme is not to lead to further employment with UNDP but to complement an intern’s studies. Therefore, there should be no expectation of employment at the end of an internship. Candidates are not eligible to apply for, or be appointed, to any post for a period of three months following the end of the internship;
  • The normal duration of an internship is from six weeks to 6 months (which is the maximum duration);
  • The intern will be evaluated at the end of the contract and due recognition of work will be issued in writing;
  • For more information about the application process and UNDP's internship terms and conditions, visit:

Application process:

Please submit your application by the deadline enclosing the following documents:

  • Curriculum vitae;
  • Letter of motivation.

Selected candidates must submit the following documents:

  • Letter confirming University enrolment;
  • Letter of endorsement from the University, or proof of (Master’s programme) graduation if within less than one year;
  • Scanned visa document/scanned passport document if no visa is required;
  • Documentation of health insurance coverage for duration of internship;
  • Medical Certificate of Good Health from a recognized physician.