The United Nations Institute for Disarmament Research—an autonomous institute within the United Nations—conducts research on disarmament and security. The Institute explores current issues pertaining to a variety of existing and future armaments, global diplomacy, and local tensions and conflicts. Working with researchers, diplomats, government officials, NGOs and other institutions since 1980, UNIDIR acts as a bridge between the research community and Member States.

UNIDIR’s Managing Exits from Armed Conflict (MEAC) Project seeks to understand how and why people exit armed groups, disarm, and fully and sustainable transition into civilian life. MEAC’s work advances UNIDIR’s mandate, particularly with regard to enhancing the international community’s knowledge of micro-disarmament and the interventions that promote it.

The objective of this consultancy is to advance MEAC’s ability to design and contextualize surveys to the Colombia case study, as well as other case studies, adjust skip logic, ensure consistency across surveys in different countries, work with local researchers to transfer translations, support analysis and the writing up of finding reports.

Responsibilities and outputs

Under the direct supervision of the MEAC Head of Project, the consultant shall deliver the following services:

  • Coordinate the research design for the Colombia Case Study by liaising between the MEAC team and local researchers, as well as other local partners such as the ARN;
  • Update surveys for different Case Studies (in multiple languages) accordingly in google sheets;
  • Work with the survey programmer to ensure skip logic is working correctly in SurveyCTO;
  • Work with local researchers to ensure translations are updated correctly;
  • Review and test surveys to ensure that the surveys run properly and trouble shoot potential issues (e.g., translations, skip logic);
  • Troubleshoot specific problems with surveys as identified;
  • Contribute to mainstreaming questions across different case studies;
  • Contribute to contextualization and operationalization guides;
  • Contribute to MEAC publishable toolkit;
  • Contribute to research, data analysis, and literature review, including published outputs such as findings reports;
  • Provide monthly hours reports and regular status reports to MEAC management.

Tangible and measurable outputs of the consultancy

The consultant shall provide UNIDIR with the following outputs:

  • Well-designed research design (including surveys) for the MEAC Colombia Case Study
  • Updated translations for Colombia surveys, as well as other surveys
  • Substantive research outputs (including findings reports)

An implementation timeline with milestones for deliverables will be established with the MEAC Project Head at the start of the assignment.

Performance indicators for evaluation of services provided:

Assignments described above are completed to the satisfaction of MEAC’s Project Head and the Institute’s Senior Management. The non-resident consultant will be evaluated at the end of the contract. Performance indicators include:

  • Deadlines for delivery of agreed outputs are met.
  • Outputs are provided in the form and quality requested by UNIDIR.
  • Key deliverables are addressed to the satisfaction of UNIDIR. To this end, the non-resident consultant shall keep the Head of Project informed at agreed regular intervals as to how the delivery of work is progressing.
  • Progress and performance will be measured against a work schedule, which the non-resident consultant shall provide to and agree on with UNIDIR management at the start of the assigment. Over the course of the consultant’s work, reviews, updates and drafts of the work as it stands shall be provided in a timely manner if requested.
  • Professional engagement is cooperative and positive. In this regard, the non-resident consultant will work under and consult with the Senior Researcher and MEAC Team, operating under the Head of Project, to manage unexpected events.

Qualifications and Experience


Advanced university qualification (Master’s degree or equivalent) in international law, social science, public administration, disarmament and arms control, international security or a related field is required.

Work Experience

  • A minimum of 3 years of progressively responsible experience in action research related to Colombia.
  • Experience in the design testing, and delpoyment of surveys in Colombia is required.
  • A track record in project management and extensive experience in the process of reviewing and revising project outputs is required.
  • Computer competency, including but not limited to Microsoft Office (Outlook, Word, Excel, and PowerPoint), is required.
  • Proven experience in coordinating research activies and managing relationships with multiple stakeholders, including with government officials, is required.
  • Existing relationships in Colombia with practitioners, policymakers, and researchers working on reintegration, reincroporation, and criminal group desistance processes, including regional organizations and UN agencies is desirable.


For this assignment, fluency in English (both written and oral) is required. Knowledge of another official United Nations language is desirable.


There is currently no travel anticipated as part of this assignment.


All outputs will be edited, fact-, and language-checked by UNIDIR. UNIDIR retains copyright of all documents, as well as ownership of the intellectual property resulting from work carried out under this assignment. The consultant warrants that all written outputs are original works or that where they incorporate copyrighted material from another source, this information is cited correctly and the necessary permission for its use is obtained. The consultant is to provide UNIDIR with written documentation, where applicable, together with the written outputs.

How to apply

The applicant should submit:

  • A cover letter
  • UN Personal History Profile (PHP) created via Inspira
  • Name and contact details of three references.

Applications should be sent as email attachments, with the subject line “Application: MEAC Survey Coordinator – Colombia Case Study” to No applications will be accepted by post. Deadline for submission of applications is 20 November 2023. Closing date is midnight Geneva time.

Subject line Application: MEAC Survey Coordinator – Colombia Case Study

Please note

Please note that due to the high volume of applications received, only shortlisted candidates will be contacted. Should you move forward in the process, you may be contacted for further assessment.

UNIDIR promotes the core values of the United Nations: Integrity, Professionalism and Respect for Diversity. Women are encouraged to apply.


Relevant contacts: 

Dr. Siobhan O’Neil
Head of the Managing Exits from Armed Conflict (MEAC) Project

Ms. Maliha Khan
Executive Officer