Copy Editor (English)

United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS)

Job Overview

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The UN General Assembly adopted the International Strategy for Disaster Reduction in December 1999 and established the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR), the secretariat to ensure its implementation. Its mandate was expanded in 2001 to serve as the focal point in the United Nations system to ensure coordination and synergies among disaster risk reduction activities of the United Nations system and regional organizations and activities in socio-economic and humanitarian fields (UN General Assembly resolution 56/195). As the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, UNDRR supports the implementation, follow-up, and review of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015–2030 (Sendai Framework), which was adopted by the Third UN World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction on March 18, 2015, in Sendai, Japan. The Sendai Framework is a 15-year voluntary, non-binding agreement that maps out a broad, people-centered approach to disaster risk reduction, succeeding the Hyogo Framework for Action that was in force from 2005 to 2015.

In adopting the Sendai Framework, the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (2030 Agenda), the New Urban Agenda (NUA), and the Paris Agreement, Member States clearly identified the prevention of new risk, the reduction of existing risk, and the strengthening of resilience as central to global efforts in realizing sustainable development pathways in the 21st century.

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The copy editors will be expected to edit UNDRR publications, including any other last-minute requests that may arise, for linguistic and grammatical accuracy.

Under the supervision of project managers, the Copy Editor will carry out a wide range of activities related to the editing and management of texts for various projects and campaigns.

Ensure adherence to brand guidelines
The copy editor will adhere to in-house style guides that include UNDRR’s preferred branding across all channels; this includes reviewing for style, clarity, and consistency with international and UN standards and UNDRR editorial guidelines, policies, and language standards.
Copy edit and proofread long and short-form articles, reports, presentations, websites, social media content, and other deliverables for spelling, grammar, factual accuracy, style, punctuation, fairness, balance, and tone. The copy editor will proofread layouts to ensure files are ready for printing and online publication.
Reduce overlong texts to brief and concise copy within specific word counts.
Check references to ensure the correct and accurate information is provided
Ensure that files are print-ready and proofed
The estimated number of working days is 150 per year.

Treats all individuals with respect, responds sensitively to differences, and encourages others to do the same. Upholds organizational and ethical norms. Maintains high standards of trustworthiness. Role model for diversity and inclusion.
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Acts as a positive role model, contributing to the team spirit. Collaborates and supports the development of others. For people managers only: Acts as a positive leadership role model, motivates, directs, and inspires others to succeed, utilizing appropriate leadership styles.
Demonstrates understanding of the impact of their own role on all partners and always puts the end beneficiary first. Builds and maintains strong external relationships and is a competent partner for others (if relevant to the role).
Efficiently establishes an appropriate course of action for oneself and/or others to accomplish a goal. Actions lead to total task accomplishment through concern for quality in all areas. Sees opportunities and takes the initiative to act on them. Understands that responsible use of resources maximizes our impact on our beneficiaries.
Open to change and flexible in a fast-paced environment. Effectively adapts their own approach to suit changing circumstances or requirements. Reflects on experiences and modifies own behavior. Performance is consistent, even under pressure. Always pursues continuous improvement.
Evaluates data and courses of action to reach logical, pragmatic decisions. Takes an unbiased, rational approach with calculated risks. Applies innovation and creativity to problem-solving.
Expresses ideas or facts in a clear, concise, and open manner. Communication indicates consideration for the feelings and needs of others. Actively listens and proactively shares knowledge. Handles conflict effectively by overcoming differences of opinion and finding common ground.

Excellent record in editing UN documents.

Able to deliver products adapted to different cultural environments and different audiences.

a. Education

A first-level university degree (a bachelor’s degree or equivalent) in political or social science, literature, international relations, journalism, or a related field is required. A Master’s degree in a relevant field may be considered in lieu of some of the required years of experience.

b. Work Experience

Four (4) years of relevant experience in copy editing or related fields are required.
Experience working with the UN editorial style guide is desirable.
Substantive experience in the field of disaster risk reduction (DRR) is desirable.
c. Language

Fluency in English is required

Contract type: Individual Contractor Agreement (ICA) – Retainer
Contract level: Local ICA Specialist / ICS-9
Contract duration: one year (estimated start date: January 1, 2022). Extension is subject to organizational requirements, availability of funds and satisfactory performance
For more details about the ICA contractual modality, please follow this link:

Based in Geneva, the Europe and Central Asia Regional Office (ECR) supports UNOPS offices throughout the region through: management, financial, and programmatic oversight of global and country-specific portfolios, clusters, and operations centres, including hosting services; fund and management advisory services; project implementation; procuring goods and services; and managing human resources.

ECR ensures that projects are executed to the highest standards, providing a shared knowledge base and ensuring that best practices and lessons learned are disseminated between business units and projects across the entire region.

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UNOPS is an operational arm of the United Nations, supporting the successful implementation of its partners’ peacebuilding, humanitarian, and development projects around the world. Our mission is to help people build better lives and help countries achieve sustainable development.

UNOPS areas of expertise cover infrastructure, procurement, project management, financial management, and human resources.

Working with us

UNOPS offers short- and long-term work opportunities in diverse and challenging environments across the globe. We are looking for creative, results-focused professionals with skills in a range of disciplines.


With over 4,000 UNOPS personnel and approximately 7,000 personnel recruited on behalf of UNOPS partners spread across 80 countries, our workforce represents a wide range of nationalities and cultures. We promote a balanced, diverse workforce—aa strength that helps us better understand and address our partners’ needs—and continually strive to improve our gender balance through initiatives and policies that encourage the recruitment of qualified female candidates.

Work-life harmonization

UNOPS values its people and recognizes the importance of balancing professional and personal demands.

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