Junior Professional Officer Programme

What is the Junior Professional Officer Programme

The Junior Professional Officer Programme involves sponsorship by Member Governments of young university-trained nationals for employment in UN-system Organizations.

In IFAD, Sponsorship Agreements have been signed with Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Korea, The Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland and USA. Some donors sponsor candidates from developing countries thus leading to a broader diversity in Junior Professional Officer (JPO) nationalities.

Junior Professional Officers are appointed at the P1/P2 grade levels in the UN salary scales periods agreed between IFAD and sponsoring governments.

The Programme is based on mutual benefits and essentially two-fold in design:

  • Provide young professionals with the opportunity to gain experience in the field of international cooperation through a structured learning experience under the supervision of specialists; thereby enhancing the likelihood for them to gain employment in international organizations and/or development agencies; and
  • Contribute to the advancement and furtherance of organizational goals through the commitment, initiative, enthusiasm and insight that young professionals bring to IFAD's projects and programmes.

Many former JPOs are now serving as regular staff members in UN agencies including IFAD. JPOs are generally considered highly competitive candidates for future employment in international organization, non-governmental organizations and the private sector.

Eligibility criteria and how to apply

Candidates for the JPO Programme are selected on a highly competitive basis. They must be less than 32 years of age and have either a Master or Bachelor Degree in their field of specialization. Eligibility criteria for JPO position may vary from country to country, and the most accurate information can be found on the JPO section of the specific sponsoring government's website.

Nationals of sponsoring countries who may be eligible are encouraged to contact the relevant government office to obtain information on the vacancy and/or to apply.