Consultancy – Researcher/Data Analyst – – Connectivity scoring, Data & Analytics Section (D&A), DAPM, NYHQ (remote based)

Consultancy Title:  Researcher/Data Analyst – Connectivity scoring

Section/Division/Duty Station:  Data & Analytics Section (D&A)/DAPM/New York (remote based)

Duration: 11.5 months


If you are a committed, creative professional and are passionate about making a lasting difference for children, the world’s leading children’s rights organization would like to hear from you. For 70 years, UNICEF has been working on the ground in 190 countries and territories to promote children’s survival, protection and development. The world’s largest provider of vaccines for developing countries, UNICEF supports child health and nutrition, good water and sanitation, quality basic education for all boys and girls, and the protection of children from violence, exploitation, and AIDS. UNICEF is funded entirely by the voluntary contributions of individuals, businesses, foundations and governments. UNICEF has over 12,000 staff in more than 145 countries.


We are seeking an experienced, talented, Researcher to join UNICEF’s Data & Analytics and Giga ( teams. The Researcher will work with a multidisciplinary team to create a connectivity credit scoring system that will inform the development of Giga’s Connectivity Token ( and help us achieve the ambitious goal of connecting every school, and every community to the internet.

Similar to carbon credits, Giga aims to create a token to incentivize companies, i.e. internet service providers and other stakeholders to connect areas and schools that they would not normally do because of their remoteness or low financial viability, among others. Each school will be granted credits based on the level of difficulty and costs associated with achieving/procuring connectivity. Once they provide connectivity, providers would be able to collect and redeem the credits/tokens and use them to access/claim different types of incentives. We are looking for a Researcher to help us determine this credit scoring system for schools based on a diverse range of factors.

UNICEF has a 70-year history of innovating for children. We believe that new approaches, partnerships and technologies that support realizing children’s rights are critical to improving their lives.

UNICEF and ITU have launched “Giga”, a new initiative to connect every school to the internet, and every young person to information, opportunity and choice. It also serves as a platform to create the infrastructure necessary to provide digital connectivity to an entire country, for every community, and for every citizen.

Providing connectivity to the world remains a challenge. According to the ITU, nearly 3.7 billion people remain unconnected from the internet, and by extension, unconnected to digital products and services that could dramatically improve their lives. Approximately 29% of 18-24-year-olds, most of them in Sub-Saharan Africa, do not have digital access (~360m people) and thereby lack access to the same information, opportunity and choice as their more-connected peers. Unless things change, a big part of this rapidly growing group of young people is in danger of being left behind, excluded from the modern digital world.

Closing the digital divide requires global cooperation, leadership, and innovation in finance and technology. Giga leverages data, innovative finance and new technologies to bring the power of meaningful connectivity to fast-track young people’s access to educational resources and opportunities.

Terms of Reference / Deliverables

  • We seek a strong self-motivated Researcher who can maintain the quality of their work even under tight time constraints and who can work with a diverse interdisciplinary team of data scientists, designers, researchers and other colleagues to lead the development of a dynamic school connectivity credit scoring system for Giga and its Connectivity Token. In particular, working closely with D&A’s and Giga’s Data & Tech Lead, you will:
  • Create a methodology for assessing the ‘difficulty’ of connecting a school and develop a set of criteria for determining the number of credits that a school should be granted based on an array of factors, e.g. remoteness, socioeconomic status, availability of infrastructure, energy, climate or potential economic or social impact.
  • Identify data sources and inputs required for the scoring system, including assessing difficulty and assigning credits to schools.
  • Look into new types of data and/or innovative methods for supporting the credit score system.
  • Provide action-oriented recommendations for ensuring viability of the system over time – I.e. dynamic scoring system to adjust for reduction in total number of disconnected schools over time.
  • Advice vendors building in-country Giga Connectivity Token prototypes to ensure adequate integration of the scoring system in their prototypes, assess feasibility and iterate.
  • Create relevant documents, knowledge products and communication materials.


End Product/


Time Frame

Create a methodology for assessing difficulty and assigning credits to schools

Desk and literature research

Month 1

Draft methodology

Month 2

Iterate and improve methodology

Month 3, Ongoing

Identify data sources and inputs for the system

List of datasets and inputs required, including an assessment of availability/quality of data sources

Month 2

Sources of data for each of the datasets and inputs

Month 2

Updated list and sources based on improvements on the method and system

Month 3, Ongoing

Look into new types of data and/or innovative methods

Research and critically assess possible sources of new types of data

Month 4

Proposed new, innovative methodologies

Month 4

Ensure viability of the system over time

Define requirements for maintaining viability

Month 3

Adapted methodology/system to incorporate requirements

Month 4

Advice vendors building country prototypes

Meet with different vendors and stakeholders and do market research

Month 2

Gather and incorporate country specific inputs and datasets

Month 3

Support vendors to prototype scoring system in 2-3 Giga countries

Month 4, Ongoing


Assess feasibility

Month 5, Month 10

Create relevant documents and communication materials

Document/summary describing the credit scoring system methodology, as well as findings from country implementations

Month 10

Draft and fine tune blogposts and other communication materials

Month 6, 11

Support, and in some case lead on communicating the work with internal and external stakeholders and partners


Completion of contract

Final handover report

Month 11.5


  • An Advanced University degree (Master’s or higher) in Economics, Social Science, Computational Sociology, Complex Systems or similar, or equivalent work experience – a P.h.D. would be an asset.
  • A minimum of five years of relevant professional experience in developing scoring systems or similar.
  • Strong methodological knowledge and skills in data analysis, statistics and reporting for development programmes.
  • Demonstrated ability to conduct independent research.
  • Experience designing socio-economic indices and working with statistical and survey data.
  • Familiarity with emerging methods like computational social science and non-traditional data sources like social media, or satellite imagery.
  • Knowledge of open source software for analyzing data (I.e. R or Python)
  • Experience working with a multidisciplinary team of designers, engineers, researchers
  • Good verbal and communication skills
  • Developing country work experience and/or familiarity with emergency is considered an asset.
  • Fluency in English is required. Knowledge of another official UN language (Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian or Spanish) or a local language is an asset.


  • Completed profile in UNICEF’s e-Recruitment system and provide Personal History Form (P11) Upload copy of academic credentials
  • Financial proposal that will include:
  • your daily/monthly rate (in US$) to undertake the terms of reference (can be downloaded here: 
    • Any other estimated costs: visa, health insurance, and living costs as applicable.
    • Indicate your availability
  • Any emergent / unforeseen duty travel and related expenses will be covered by UNICEF.
  • At the time the contract is awarded, the selected candidate must have in place current health insurance coverage.
  • Payment of professional fees will be based on submission of agreed satisfactory deliverables. UNICEF reserves the right to withhold payment in case the deliverables submitted are not up to the required standard or in case of delays in submitting the deliverables on the part of the consultant.

U.S. Visa information:

With the exception of the US Citizens, G4 Visa and Green Card holders, should the selected candidate and his/her household members reside in the United States under a different visa, the consultant and his/her household members are required to change their visa status to G4, and the consultant’s household members (spouse) will require an Employment Authorization Card (EAD) to be able to work, even if he/she was authorized to work under the visa held prior to switching to G4.  

Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advance to the next stage of the selection process

For every Child, you demonstrate…

UNICEF’s values of Care, Respect, Integrity, Trust, and Accountability (CRITA) and core competencies in Communication, Working with People and Drive for Results.

To view our competency framework, please visit here.

Click here to learn more about UNICEF’s values and competencies.

UNICEF is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages all candidates, irrespective of gender, nationality, religious and ethnic backgrounds, including persons living with disabilities, to apply to become a part of the organization.

UNICEF has a zero-tolerance policy on conduct that is incompatible with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and UNICEF, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination. UNICEF also adheres to strict child safeguarding principles. All selected candidates will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles and will therefore undergo rigorous reference and background checks. Background checks will include the verification of academic credential(s) and employment history. Selected candidates may be required to provide additional information to conduct a background check.


Mobility is a condition of international professional employment with UNICEF and an underlying premise of the international civil service.

Individuals engaged under a consultancy or individual contract will not be considered “staff members” under the Staff Regulations and Rules of the United Nations and UNICEF’s policies and procedures, and will not be entitled to benefits provided therein (such as leave entitlements and medical insurance coverage). Their conditions of service will be governed by their contract and the General Conditions of Contracts for the Services of Consultants and Individual Contractors. Consultants and individual contractors are responsible for determining their tax liabilities and for the payment of any taxes and/or duties, in accordance with local or other applicable laws.

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