Senior Economist

Contract duration: 12 months (with possibility of renewal) Under article 4.2, paragraph (e) of the Staff Regulations, the filling of vacancies in technical cooperation projects does not fall under Annex I of the Staff Regulations and is made by direct selection by the Director-General. In order to support the best informed process in the filling of the present vacancy by direct selection, the ILO invites interested candidates to submit their candidature online by the above date. Technical cooperation appointments are not expected to lead to a career in the ILO and they do not carry any expectation of renewal or conversion to any other type of appointment in the Organization. A one-year fixed-term contract will be given. Extensions of technical cooperation contracts are subject to various elements including the following: availability of funds, continuing need of the functions and satisfactory conduct and performance. The following are eligible to apply:
  • ILO Internal candidates in accordance with paragraphs 31 and 32 of Annex I of the Staff Regulations.
  • External candidates.


The position is located in the Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work Branch (FUNDAMENTALS) of the Governance and Tripartism Department (GOVERNANCE) and is subject to confirmation of funding. GOVERNANCE provides advice on labour laws based on ILO conventions and recommendations, state-of-the-art technical support and capacity-building to labour ministries and assists labour inspectorates to build capacity and develop strategies to achieve compliance with labour laws. It advocates and helps constituents to build strong and functional institutions and processes for social dialogue and to realize fundamental principles and rights at work. The FUNDAMENTALS Branch carries out technical cooperation, research, statistical and advocacy functions to assist ILO member States to respect, promote and realize fundamental principles and rights at work, which are: freedom of association and the effective recognition of the right to collective bargaining; the elimination of all forms of forced or compulsory labour; the effective abolition of child labour; and the elimination of discrimination in respect of employment and occupation. The Research and Evaluation Unit of the Branch works on four tracks:
  • It provides technical support to National Statistical Offices in their data collection efforts related to child labour and forced labour, and to various research projects linked to technical assistance. This includes works related to the estimate of prevalence of decent work deficits in global supply chains.
  • It produces global research products, in particular related to the economics of child labour and forced labour
  • It designs and implements training courses for academic and national stakeholders.
  • It develops new tools for research and statistics on the four principles.
The incumbent is responsible for providing support to these four tracks, in particular the projects related to the economics of forced labour and the support to the statistical work on child labour and forced labour. These activities take place in the framework of various development cooperation projects. Under direct supervision and within the policy and procedural requirements established by the ILO and the FUNDAMENTALS branch, the Senior Economist will assist in the overall activities of the above projects by providing technical support to the projects to attain the expected outcomes.

Reporting Lines

The incumbent will report to the Head of the Research and Evaluation Unit within FUNDAMENTALS.

Description of Duties

  1. Lead the research on the economics of forced labour: identify international lead experts and commission background papers, lead the ILO research on stolen wages and cost and benefits analysis of the elimination of forced labour, be responsible for the final comprehensive report on the economics of forced labour.
  2. Lead the research related to the publication of the revised version of the survey guidelines “Hard to see, harder to count”. In particular, lead the revision of the forced labour survey tools and the technical work on sampling techniques specific to forced labour.
  3. Support national stakeholders in the design and implementation of the surveys on child labour and forced labour in selected supply chains.
  4. Prepare training materials and participate in trainings on child labour and forced labour statistics for NSO and ministries of labour stakeholders.
  5. Provide administrative and technical backstopping, guidance and advice to other ILO technical departments; field experts and constituents of the Organization in the planning, operation and evaluation of statistical programmes.
  6. Organize seminars, workshops, training sessions, expert meetings etc. within and outside the Organization. Represent the Organization at various meetings. Prepare relevant reports.
  7. Promote cooperation and maintain liaison with other related fields within the organization and with relevant statistical agencies, both national and international.
  8. Carry out any other relevant duties requested by the Chief of FUNDAMENTALS.

Required qualifications

Advanced university degree in economics, public policy, statistics, survey methodology or related field with demonstrated expertise.
Seven years of progressively responsible professional experience in the fields of labour economics and/or statistics, global supply chains and/or social protection of which at least three years at the international level carrying out project management, supervision, administration and implementation of technical assistance projects. Sound knowledge of ILO policies, administrative procedures and practices as well as experience working with officials of Ministries of Labour and/or National Statistical Offices would be an advantage.
Excellent command of English. Knowledge of a second official language (French, Spanish) is an advantage.


  • Experience conducting household and/or establishment surveys,
  • Technical expertise in working on child labour and forced labour issues is an advantage;
  • Knowledge on sampling techniques such as networking sampling or hard-to-reach populations is an advantage
  • Experience in international trade issues, including Global Supply Chains, is an advantage;
  • Experience conducting or managing rigorous impact evaluations is an advantage;
  • Excellent drafting skills, negotiation skills, and organisational and management skills with proven capacity to initiate and implement technical co-operation programmes and activities with constituents, UN Agencies, NGOs, and others, including mobilizing support from international donor agencies.
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills;
  • Ability to draft policy-relevant papers of high quality, technically sound with conclusions leading to an action plan and/or programme development as well as technical publications and training materials;
  • Ability to conceptualize statistical problems and find solutions;
  • Ability to draft and revise survey reports;
  • Ability to synthesize technical work and reach evidence-based conclusions on related subjects;
  • Excellent analytical skills and knowledge of analytical tools and qualitative and quantitative techniques;
  • Proficiency of the statistical software STATA;
  • Excellent troubleshooting and problem solving skills;
  • Ability to negotiate sensitive issues;
  • Ability to represent the organization;
  • Ability to formulate new concepts and methodologies;
  • Ability to evaluate and monitor technical cooperation activities and projects and supervise the work of junior staff;
  • Ability to work within a team environment as well as;
  • Ability to work in a multicultural environment and to demonstrate gender-sensitive and non-discriminatory behaviour and attitudes.

Conditions of employment

  • Any appointment/extension of appointment is subject to ILO Staff Regulations and other relevant internal rules. Any offer of employment with the ILO is conditional upon certification by the ILO Medical Adviser that the person concerned is medically fit to perform the specific inherent requirements of the position offered. In order to confirm an offer from the ILO the successful candidate will be required to undergo a medical examination.
  • Any extension of technical cooperation contracts are subject to various elements including the following: availability of funds, continuing need of the functions and satisfactory conduct and performance.
For more information on conditions of employment, please visit:

Recruitment process

Please note that all candidates must complete an on-line application form. To apply, please visit ILO Jobs. The system provides instructions for online application procedures. Applicants will be contacted directly if selected for a written test and/or an interview. Depending on the location and availability of candidates, assessors and interview panel members, the ILO may use communication technologies such as Skype, Video or teleconference, e-mail, etc for the assessment and evaluation of candidates at the different stages of the recruitment process, including technical tests or interviews.

Fraud warning

The ILO does not charge any fee at any stage of the recruitment process whether at the application, interview, processing or training stage. Messages originating from a non ILO e-mail account - - should be disregarded. In addition, the ILO does not require or need to know any information relating to the bank account details of applicants.   Location: Geneva, Switzerland Deadline: 14/12/2020 Application link: Candidates have to confirm having received the recruitment information through the recruiting channel NGO Recruitment in the application letter for this position

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