Senior Program Officer, Multilateral Reform and Prevention and Peacebuilding

New York University’s Center on International Cooperation (CIC) over two decades has built a reputation for its work on the links between politics, security, justice, and sustainable development. Our core mission is to enhance international responses on the countries and issues most important to conflict prevention and recovery, through direct and regular engagement with multilateral institutions and the wider policy community.

In 2020-21, CIC will support: (i) the Secretary-General’s reforms of the United Nations; (ii) the UN’s priorities for conflict prevention and sustaining peace; (iii) the new way of working between humanitarian, development, and peace actors at country level; and (iv) the Pathfinders for Peaceful, Just and Inclusive Societies, as they implement the 2030 Agenda targets for SDG16+. CIC also supports country-level programs for the Democratic Republic of the Congo and for Syria.


The Senior Program Officer/Researcher will work across the Multilateral Reform and Prevention and Peacebuilding Programs, to support efforts to strengthen collaboration between the UN and the International Financial Institutions (IFIs) on prevention, and to develop options for new financing approaches for peacebuilding.

This role provides a unique opportunity to work at the cutting edge of conflict prevention and peacebuilding efforts at the international level, in collaboration with the UN, the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, and bilateral and multilateral actors.

CIC values diversity and is proud to be an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment, and the CIC encourages persons from countries in the global south, including minorities and marginalized groups to apply. The ideal candidate will bring an understanding of the role of structural inequalities and their links to conflict to this work.  

The role will entail:

  • Developing and implementing new research agendas, with a focus on cooperation to improve preventive approaches. One part of this will focus on how the UN and the IFIs can collaborate to reduce risks related to issues that cut across the political, macroeconomic, and social spheres. Examples include political navigation of difficult macroeconomic reforms; the impact of various economic policy choices during sensitive election years and transitions; and the relationship between political and economic tipping points. Another part will focus on donor approaches to peacebuilding financing, and options to improve this (including through collaboration with the IFIs). The Senior Program Officer will be expected to produce their own research and policy analysis a well as commissioning research from others.
  • Creative translation of research to practice. This role will have responsibility for feeding research inputs into political and technical processes, including country-level dialogues; high-level political meetings; advising on new tools for the UN, the IFIs, donors, and other key actors, in order to integrate evidence-based insights; and briefings for experts and practitioners. We are seeking someone who can creatively conceptualize and lead convenings/meetings to ensure that evidence-based approaches are at the forefront of agendas and discussions. The role will have a primary responsibility in organizing effective international convenings to exchange lessons learned and showcase practical solutions, in order to move to action.
  • Representation.  The senior program officer will represent CIC in events at the UN, the IFIs and with other partners, including speaking in panel discussions as well as smaller meetings.
  • Writing. This role will involve writing practical, policy-oriented and evidence-based publications that are of high analytical quality, concise and polished in quick turnaround times.
  • Communication. It is critical to develop proactive communication about the program’s work through traditional media, blogs, social media, and other channels, in coordination with CIC’s communication specialist.
  • Supporting CIC’s director and deputy director, who both lead this work, to manage research grants, donor relations, project staff, and consultants.

 For this role, the ideal candidate will have:

  • A minimum of 10 years of relevant work experience
  • Required education: Minimum of MA/MS, with demonstrated relationship to conflict, security, prevention and/or peacebuilding
  • Direct experience working with or inside one of the IFIs and a strong grounding in international economic development. 
  • Good familiarity with the UN system, especially the peace and security and development pillars
  • Solid experience in organizing effective convenings.
  • Demonstrable quantitative/statistical skills.
  • Experience in undertaking a variety of engagement and research activities in conflict-affected countries, including in the Global South
  • PhD encouraged, as well as academic training relating to advanced statistical analysis/quantitative approaches
  • A background in research, analysis, and policy, with a track record of developing strategies, and/or publishing policy analysis and research
  • Experience with program development and monitoring tasks, such as proposal writing, budgeting, and indicator development
  • Fluency in English is required, along with outstanding written and oral communication skills

Demonstrated working level capability in a second UN language is strongly encouraged; the candidate will ideally show that they can communicate and conduct work/research in a second UN language

Application Instructions

Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis and early applications are encouraged. In addition to a CV, please submit a cover letter that clearly identifies your qualifications as they relate to the bolded points above.

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