INTERN - Sustainable Agriculture, I (Temporary Job Opening)

  • United Nations Environment Programme
  • Montreal, QC, Canada
  • Jan 08, 2020
Internship Fellowship / Internship

Job Description

The UN Environment Programme (UNEP) is the leading global environmental authority that sets the global environmental agenda, promotes the coherent implementation of the environmental dimension of sustainable development within the United Nations system and serves as an authoritative advocate for the global environment. At the 1992 Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro, world leaders agreed on a comprehensive strategy for 'sustainable development'. One of the key agreements adopted at Rio was the Convention on Biological Diversity. The Convention establishes three main goals: the conservation of biological diversity, the sustainable use of its components, and the fair and equitable sharing of the benefits from the use of genetic resources. The Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity is located in Montreal and is administered by UNEP. This internship is located at the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity, under the direct supervision of the Programme Officer on Agro-Biodiversity, and the overall supervision of the head of the Biodiversity Science, Policy and Governance Unit.

The Sustainable Agriculture internship has a start date of January 2020 for a duration of three (3) months with a possibility of an extension up to a maximum of six months, depending on the needs of the Organization.

The Internship is UNPAID and full time.

Interns work five days per week (35 to 40 hours) under the supervision of a staff member in the department or office to which they are assigned.


Under the direct supervision of the Programme Officer on Agro-Biodiversity, and the overall supervision of the head of the Biodiversity Science, Policy and Governance Unit, the intern will provide support to the work of the Convention on issues related to agricultural biodiversity, sustainable agriculture, the role of the agricultural sector in the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity and other issues such as sustainable use of biological diversity and the development of the post-2020 global biodiversity framework. Tasks may include:

• Undertake research, analyze data and provide overall support for the development of official documents, knowledge products, briefings, etc. related to agricultural biodiversity, soil biodiversity, Aichi Biodiversity Target 7, Sustainable Development Goal 2 (End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture); and the sustainable use of biological diversity;
• Assist in the preparation of official documentation for the 24th meeting of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice (SBSTTA) related to agricultural biodiversity and the International Initiative for the Conservation and Sustainable Use of Soil Biodiversity (for more information:
• Analyze and synthetize information contained in National Reports and National Biodiversity Strategies and Action Plans (NBSAPs) of the Convention on Biological Diversity with a particular focus on sustainable agriculture and soil biodiversity;
• Provide support to the organization of intergovernmental and technical meetings and meetings related to the consultations to develop a post-2020 global biodiversity framework, as appropriate;
• Provide support for knowledge management, outreach, communication and liaising with partner organizations in the United Nations such as FAO and UN Environment; and
• Other duties as required.


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.


Applicants must at the time of application 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 program (minimum Bachelor's level or equivalent);
c. Have graduated with a university degree and, if selected, must commence the internship within a one-year period of graduation.

Be computer literate in standard software applications.

Have demonstrated keen interest in the work of the United Nations and have a personal commitment to the ideals of the Charter.

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.

Graduate or higher diploma (preferred) in fields related to natural sciences, agricultural engineering, natural resources management, including biodiversity, sustainability, international relations, social sciences. Knowledge and familiarity with any of the following: intergovernmental processes, Convention on Biological Diversity, United Nations, Aichi Biodiversity Targets, Sustainable Development Goals, is a strong asset.

Work Experience

Applicants are not required to have professional work experience for participation in the Programme.


English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For this internship, fluency in oral and written English is required. Knowledge of another UN Language, French, is desirable.


Potential candidates will be contacted by hiring manager directly for further consideration.

Special Notice

Your application for this internship must include:
1. A Completed application (Personal History Profile) and Cover Note, through the UN careers Portal. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed.

The Cover Note must include:
- Title of the degree you are currently pursuing
- Graduation Date
- IT skills and programmes you are proficient in
- Explain why you are the best candidate for this specific internship

Explain your interest in the United Nations Internship Programme, ensure to include all past work experience (if any).

2. Proof of enrollment from current University (if not graduated).

3. A copy of degree certificate (if you have already graduated).

Due to a high volume of applications received, ONLY successful candidates will be contacted.

Organization Type

Nonprofit,   Governmental  

Organization Size



Ecosystems & Biodiversity, Supporting Catalysts