Program Lead SDG16+ (Researcher): Pathfinders for Peaceful, Just and Inclusive Societies

For more than two decades, the Center on International Cooperation (CIC) has been a leader in applied policy that links politics, security, justice, development, and humanitarian issues. The CIC co-founded and currently hosts the Pathfinders for Peaceful, Just and Inclusive Societies, a multi-stakeholder partnership that brings together 39 UN member states, international organizations, civil society, and the private sector to accelerate delivery of the SDG targets for peace, justice, and inclusion.

CIC, as part of NYU, is at the heart of a leading research university that spans the globe. We seek researchers and policy experts of the highest caliber, who embody the diversity of the global society in which we live. We strongly encourage applications from women, racial and ethnic minorities, and other individuals who are under-represented in the profession, across color, creed, race, ethnic and national origin, physical ability, gender and sexual identity, or any other legally protected basis.

Position Summary

The Program Lead SDG16+ (Researcher) will lead the work on building peaceful, just and inclusive societies and international action for the achievement of Sustainable Development Goal 16, as part of the Pathfinders for Peaceful, Just and Inclusive Societies team in NYU CIC.

The Program Lead will work under supervision of the Director of the Center on International Cooperation (CIC) and in close collaboration with the Pathfinders’ program leads for the grand challenges on halving global violence, reducing inequality and exclusion and providing justice for all.

The Program Lead SDG16+ is expected to work independently, take the lead on knowledge/research development on SDG16+ cross-cutting issues as well as in areas of policy formulation, fundraising and lead the overall program implementation for Pathfinders SDG16+ international action program.

International action for SDG16+

  • Coordinate and facilitate joint efforts of the Pathfinders member countries and partners, including through research activities, such as the research and writing of policy briefings and articles, the preparation of research materials and convening of ad hoc meetings on topics related to SDG16+ at the request of Pathfinder countries, and the coordination of joint statements and other shared inputs to intergovernmental processes related to SDG16+.
  • Lead the Pathfinders’ cross-cutting mobilization for the SDG Summit in 2023, accompanied by relevant research to support all Pathfinders programs.
  • Prepare for major events and milestones in 2022 and 2023, in particular HLPF, as well as the SDG Action Platform, the Summit of the Future, Peace One Day events, Global Citizen concerts, and other events during the UNGA high-level week, including by researching and writing about relevant topics and discussions in the UN and the SDG16+ community more broadly, and shaping our understanding of the strategic opportunity at these events internally, as well as mobilizing of the SDG16+ community.

Coalitions for accelerating action on SDG16+

  • Sustain and deepen Pathfinders’ role in the SDG16+ Coalition, research into and develop the necessary partnerships and alliances to build effective collaborations on SDG16+ and support civil society engagement and leadership on peace, justice and inclusion at all levels.
  • Develop joint work with partners who are leading the SDG mobilization – such as the SDG Strategy Hub, the SDG Action Campaign, the United Nations Foundation, the One Campaign, UN2020 partners etc. – ensuring that Pathfinders is seen as their primary interlocutor for SDG16+.
  • Support ongoing mobilization of young voices for SDG16+ drawing on existing networks and movements, and in close collaboration with initiatives on the context of the grand challenges.

Campaigns, events and mobilization opportunities

  • Research and identify international and regional opportunities to influence international norms and strategies, in close coordination with the other Pathfinders’ program leads.
  • In support of the Pathfinders work on national action, work with Program Leads to research, identify and amplify SDG16+ actions from countries/partners in preparation for the SDG Summit in 2023.
  • Design events for the SDG Action Zone and for the SDG Media Zone, and other relevant initiatives, in close coordination with the grand challenges.


  • Build and manage a team of staff and consultants and investigate and report on impact and value for money to donors.
  • Fund-raise to secure the continued financial sustainability of the Pathfinders’ international action program and Pathfinders’ cross-cutting work.
  • Work with the other Pathfinders’ program leads to ensure the effective alignment of the Pathfinders research programs including other programs across CIC.
  • Take responsibility for cross-cutting Pathfinders’ management issues, in agreement with the other Pathfinders’ program leads, such as team development, team meetings, and training.
  • Occasional, domestic and international, travel to conferences and events required.


Required Education

Master's Degree or other post-graduate degree in a relevant field, combined with relevant practical experience.

Required Experience

10+ years’ experience working on research and action to promote peace, justice, or inclusion. Experience working with many types of (research) partners and stakeholders (governments, multilateral organizations, and civil society) in different regions, including the Global South.

Required Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities

  • Experience on the United Nations, the 2030 agenda and SDG16 in particular.
  • Ability to maintain an overview of a broad policy agenda.
  • Strategic skills to direct and develop a program and to align efforts to other programs.
  • Networking skills to manage a positive relationship with member states, international organizations, civil society, and donors.
  • Experience in fundraising and grant management, and in managing complex budgets.
  • Proven ability to manage and develop a team.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills.
  • Experience with quantitative and qualitative data analysis.
  • Fluency in English and one additional language, with a preference for another UN language.

Preferred Experience  

  • Coming from and/or having work experience in a global South country is an advantage.


All applications must be submitted through NYU's online Interfolio portal. For further information and to submit an application, please follow this link.