Apply for UNDP Graduate Programme: (UNDP is looking for candidates to join the 2023 Graduate Programme Pool)

The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) is establishing a second cohort of its two-year Graduate Programme and is looking for candidates to join the 2023 Graduate Programme Pool.

The purpose of the Programme is to provide excellent young graduates with the skills and experience needed to begin a career in international development, accelerate progress toward the Sustainable Development Goals, build better futures, and make a positive difference in the world!

  • Do you have a Master’s degree with a maximum of two years of relevant work experience? Or do you have a Bachelor’s degree with between 2 and maximum 3 years of relevant work experience?
  • Do you dream of working in international development with UNDP? Are you ready to contribute to sustainable development and the eradication of poverty?
  • Are you ready to live and work for two years in a challenging context and in another country than your home country?
  • Are you a national of a country in which UNDP works to promote the Sustainable Development Goals?
  • Do you have experience in one or more of the following areas: sustainable development, business operations, project management, partnerships, innovation, digitalization, data analysis and management?

If you replied YES! to all of the following questions, UNDP encourages you to apply to the UNDP Graduate Programme using the link provided below.

UNDP encourages women, people from minority groups, indigenous peoples, and people with disabilities to apply in particular. Graduates who are the first in their family to attend university are also highly urged to apply.

What do the UNDP Graduate Programme offer?


The Graduate Programme offers a unique opportunity to contribute to UNDP’s mandate. It is a 2-year assignment with one of our country, regional, or headquarter offices. Assignments are in areas related to the Sustainable Development Goals with a focus on two streams:

  • Programme and Policy: In this stream you will contribute to UNDP’s programmes and project activities.
  • Corporate Operations: In this stream you will contribute to management services that support effective implementation of UNDP programmes, or work in the area of organisational policies, processes, and oversight.

Successful applicants will be included in the Graduate Programme Pool and offered an assignment with a UNDP office in any of UNDP’s 170 locations around the world.

UNDP Graduate Programme Personal Growth

UNDP offer participants a customised Formation journey. This learning path provides an opportunity to enhance your knowledge, stretch your capabilities and give you real-world experience alongside some of the brightest minds in the development world.

As a pathway into the world of development, the Graduate Programme offers talented graduates excellent exposure to multilateral cooperation and sustainable development, while providing a valuable entry point into UNDP and the wider UN system.

UNDP Graduate Programme Benefits

  • A one-year international professional entry-level contract (renewable for a second year on demonstrating good performance and on availability of funding).
  • A competitive entry-level salary.
  • Ticket for travel between your location and your duty station.
  • Paid annual leave.
  • Paid sick leave.
  • Health and disability insurance.
  • Pension contributions.

Who UNDP is looking for?

UNDP is looking for candidates who are available to join UNDP from first quarter of 2023 onwards and who meet the following requirements:

UNDP Graduate Programme Education

  • A completed Master’s degree in a relevant field (with not more than 2 years of work experience) or
  • A completed Bachelor’s degree in a relevant field (with a minimum of 2 years and not more than 3 years of relevant, paid work experience)

UNDP encourage applications from a wide range of relevant degree courses:

  • To be eligible for the Programme and Policy stream, you will likely have graduated in one or more of the following areas: political science, public administration, international relations, development studies, economics, statistics, data management, environmental science or a related field. Please review UNDP’s areas of work.
  • To be eligible for the Corporate Operations stream, you will likely have graduated in one or more of the following areas: business or public administration, finance, law, procurement or supply chain management, human resources management, economics, data management, or a related field.

UNDP Graduate Programme Experience

UNDP is looking for engaged young individuals whose values match those of UNDP

  • Integrity
  • Accountability
  • Transparency
  • Professionalism
  • Mutual Respect
  • Results Orientation (through Principled Performance)

You will have some experience in one or more of the following areas: UNDP programme areas (poverty and inequality, governance, resilience, environment, energy, gender equality), business operations, project management, partnerships, innovation, digitalization, or data analysis and management.

You will preferably have worked to make an impact at community, provincial or national level (including in civil society, government, NGOs, IGOs or individually).

UNDP Graduate Programme Other

You must be a national of one of the countries where UNDP works to support the Sustainable Development Goals.

Nationals from the countries listed below are particularly encouraged to apply: Angola, Antigua & Barbuda, Azerbaijan, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bolivia, Cambodia, Cape Verde, Central African Republic , Chad, Comoros, Congo, Cook Islands, Costa Rica, Cuba, Djibouti, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Guinea Bissau, Guyana, Haiti, Iran, Kiribati, Korea DPR, Kosovo, Libya, Marshall Islands, Morocco, Nauru, Nicaragua, Niue, Palau, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Rep. of Montenegro, Saint Lucia, Samoa, Sao Tome and Principe, Serbia, Seychelles, Solomon Islands, Somalia, Suriname, Timor-Leste, Tonga, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, Uruguay, Vanuatu.

UNDP Graduate Programme Language ability

You must be able to demonstrate that you are fluent in English and able to work effectively in a professional context.

For some positions, a working knowledge of French, Arabic or Spanish may be a strong asset.

Please note that the application and selection process will be conducted in English. You are required to complete your full application in English unless stated otherwise.



Competencies and skills

When joining UNDP, you are:

  • Lending your time and skills toward building a more prosperous, fair and inclusive world for people in need around the world.
  • Choosing a community of collaboration and mutual care, of people working together with a shared sense of purpose.
  • Joining a mission that demands and encourages innovative thinking and provides space for creative input.
  • Joining a community that aims to elevate and empower every employee to grow not only professionally but also personally.

For these reasons, you must demonstrate drive to effect positive change, strong innovative thinking, learning agility, resilience, and ability to collaborate with people from diverse backgrounds.

You will be assessed on the following competencies and skills during the selection process.


  • Analytical skills and judgement
  • Communicate with clarity and impact
  • Adapt with agility
  • Enable diversity and inclusion
  • Achieve results
  • Engage and partner teamwork and collaboration
  • Think innovatively
  • Act with determination

Selection process

If you are interested in joining the UNDP Graduate Programme and you meet the above personal, educational, and professional requirements, UDP look forward to receiving your application. Please click on the button below.

UNDP collaborates with Cappfinity on the recruitment process for the Graduate Programme. Cappfinity is a leading Company, specialised in graduate recruitment and strengths-based assessment. If your application meets the requirements set out in this vacancy announcement and is of interest to UNDP, you will be invited to take online tests aimed at assessing the above competencies. Unless otherwise indicated, the tests can be taken using a computer or a mobile device.

If you are successful in the assessment, you will be invited to the final selection stage which consists of a virtual assessment centre. Details of the assessments will be provided to those who are invited to take part.

Successful candidates will be included in the 2023 Graduate Programme Pool. This pool will be used to fill entry-level positions that may become available in the course of 2023.

The deadline for receipt of applications is 12 October 2022 (Midnight GMT)


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