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Communications and Design Internship at United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-HABITAT)

The United Nations Human Settlements Programme, UN-Habitat, is the UN agency for human settlements. It is mandated by the UN General Assembly to promote socially and environmentally sustainable towns and cities with the goal of providing adequate shelter for all. The Urban Economy Branch of UN-Habitat has the mandate to promote local capabilities of local governments to develop financial instruments to keep pace with the demands of rapid urbanization. The Urban Economy Branch has the mandate to promote plans and provide support for more efficient, socially inclusive, better integrated and connected cities that foster sustainable urban development.

The UN-Habitat Communications and Design internship is for 6 months.

The Internship is UNPAID and full-time.

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


Daily responsibilities will depend on the individual’s background; the intern’s assigned office as well as the internship period.

Under the direct supervision of the Unit Coordinator of the Innovation Unit in the External Relations, Strategy and Innovation Division, the intern will:

  • Familiarize with the UN-Habitat mandate, New Urban Agenda, Urban Targets of the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda, Paris and Sendai Frameworks among other global commitments as well as UN-Habitat Strategic Plan 2020 23 including the Flagship Programmes.
  • Support the organization, promotion and coordination of new innovation projects, events, partnerships, and other initiatives.
  • Support the development of the design and layout, including graphic design and illustrations, of publications, web articles, posters, infographics, presentations and other communication products to raise visibility of programme work.
  • Support the drafting of communication and promotional materials for outputs such as concept notes, background papers, technical papers, the innovation web page and other publications.
  • Assist in research, drafting and editing of content for newsletters, social media and UN-Habitat websites including UN-Habitat innovation web page, and follow up to ensure content is uploaded on time and is shared through the different social media platforms.
  • Support the design and development of the UN-Habitat innovation web page, update the website regularly and support its day-to-day operational maintenance including the COVID-19 Innovation inventory.
  • Assist in planning, promoting and organization of meetings or substantive presentations and the day-to-day operations and the preparation of special events.
  • Support any printing process, in coordination with the other relevant offices, for official publications, posters, presentation and other outputs.
  • Perform any other tasks as may be assigned from time to time by the team.


  • 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:

  • Be enrolled in a graduate school programme (second university degree or equivalent, or higher);
  • Be enrolled in the final academic year of a first university degree program (minimum Bachelor’s level or equivalent);
  • Have graduated with a Bachelor’s degree, Masters, Ph.D or equivalent

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.

Preferred Area of Studies; Communications, Strategic Design and Management, Information Design, Web Development, Media Studies, Journalism, Public Relations, Design Thinking or related areas. Any background in Urban Development or Innovation is a bonus.

Work Experience

Applicants are not required to have professional work experience for participation in the Programme. Are you a student in a Bachelor’s (final year), Master’s or Ph.D. Programme or equivalent, or have you completed a Bachelor’s degree, Masters, Ph.D or equivalent?

Languages: English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For this internship fluency in English is required; and knowledge of French, Spanish, Russian, Chinese or Arabic is desirable.


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

Special Notice

Your application for this internship must include:

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).

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

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

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

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