Consultancy – Aviation UAS Officer, UAS-Airship Regional Project Manager At World Food Programme

Consultancy opportunities in Sub-Saharan Africa and other locations

Are you an Aviation specialist and interested in humanitarian work?

If yes, this opportunity is for you!

We are looking for candidates of the highest integrity and professionalism who share our humanitarian principles. We select our candidates on a competitive basis, and we are committed to promoting diversity and gender balance.

Currently, we are looking for a candidate to support us in Sub-Saharan Africa, in Nairobi or South Sudan as a second option, but we are also building a roster of candidates for other upcoming opportunities.


The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) is the largest humanitarian organisation delivering food assistance to over 90 million beneficiaries in 80 countries on a yearly basis. With over 5000 trucks, 50 ships and close to 100 planes on the move every single day, WFP, together with its partners, operates a global network to deliver life-saving food assistance to the most hard-to reach places.

This year, the Norwegian Nobel Committee has decided to award the Nobel Peace Prize 2020 to the World Food Programme for its efforts to combat hunger and its contribution to bettering conditions for peace in conflict-affected areas.


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The United Nations Humanitarian Air Service (UNHAS), managed by the World Food Programme (WFP), offers safe, reliable, cost-efficient and effective passenger and light cargo transport for the wider humanitarian community to and from areas of crisis and intervention. It is the only humanitarian air service that gives equal access to all humanitarian entities.

UNHAS responds to the need for access to the world’s most remote and challenging locations, often under precarious security conditions, where no safe surface transport or viable commercial aviation options are available. Sometimes natural disasters leave air transport as the only mean of access; at other times, it is conflict that puts entire areas beyond the reach of land transport or commercial flights. Created precisely for such scenarios, UNHAS provides access for humanitarian workers and cargo, allowing life-saving projects to be implemented and monitored.


The Aviation UAS Officer (AUO) will support the design, launch and implementation of regional Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) and airship projects in support of WFP country office cargo delivery operational needs. In this role, the AUO will work collaboratively with selected WFP’s country offices and corporate expert teams, client structures and partners as needed, to manage UAS / Airship projects leading to transformative and scalable change and ultimately, to lasting supply chain improvements.

KEY ACCOUNTABILITIES (not all-inclusive)

As Aviation UAS Officer, UAS-Airship Regional Project Manager, you will be responsible for the following key duties:

  • Ensure that adequate administrative and logistics support arrangements are made for the execution of his/her project.
  • Work with WFP Regional Bureau and Country Office (CO) Logistics to understand their transportation needs and to define a Use Case and Business Case for UAS / Airship utilization, with detailed budget estimation, cost-efficiency analysis and pros/cons comparison to alternative means of transport (piloted air delivery, land, river, etc.) for UAS / Airship solutions with different cargo capacities.
  • Liaise with Aviation Authorities in selected countries regarding UAS / Remotely Piloted Aircraft System (RPAS) / Airship approval / certification process.
  • Liaise with RPAS Operator Certificate (ROC) holders in selected countries to understand their UAS / RPAS capabilities and transportation needs.
  • Ensure that all contractual provisions and obligations are satisfied in terms of proper communication, commitment, and partnership/collaboration selection by cooperation with related WFP functions.
  • Perform risk assessments prior to the project tasking and keeps involved personnel informed of the actual and potential risks.
  • Plan, arrange, and coordinate the provision of technical and operational support for air transport service operations.
  • Assist and advise Country Office / Regional Bureau in determining their UAS / RPAS / Airship transportation needs and design a service in form of Project Roadmap / Business case that will cater to their needs, to the extent possible, without compromising safety, efficiencies and economies.
  • Periodically review and analyse logistics structures, payload, cargo traffic current operations to assess viability of delivery routes and possible service improvements with UAS / RPAS / Airship solutions.
  • Attend internal / external meetings and events with other United Nations (UN) agencies, or other partners and entities as required.
  • Ensure that an adequate and efficient safety organization is planned / promoted throughout the designated scope of the project.
  • Plan and promote an effective and efficient flight operations management system for flight following and search and rescue.
  • Liaise and advise the appropriate authorities on all safety matters and recommends remedial measures to counter actual or potential causes of aviation accidents/incidents.
  • Monitor all UAS / RPAS / Airship techniques and aircraft types for potential safety hazards.
  • Monitor action taken on all UAS / RPAS / Airship aircraft accidents/incidents and provides specialist knowledge inquiries when required.
  • Ensure quality management of operational processes and compliance to the established standards in support to the Quality Assurance Commitment.
  • Any other duty as required.

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Advanced University degree in Aeronautics, Aviation Engineering, Aviation Maintenance Engineering, Airport Management or other relevant field; or Aviation Military officers’ professional career (including degree) as pilot or navigator pilot; or First University degree with additional years of relevant work experience and in possession of one of the following Aviation licenses: Commercial Pilot License, Air Traffic Control License, Flight Operations Officer or Flight Dispatcher Officer License.


You must have:

  • Minimum of five (5) years of relevant professional experience in the aviation industry.
  • Have held a supervisory or management position in air operations.
  • Demonstrated experience working with UAS / RPAS / Airship projects, providing evidences/references.
  • Experience managing the projects.
  • Experience in commercial and/or military aviation with a specific focus in humanitarian air operations/food aid or experience in UN peacekeeping aviation operations.
  • Experience liaising with country authorities to facilitate air operations.
  • Knowledge in cost structure analyses and business case development.
  • Experience establishing methodologies for risk analysis and problem solving.


You have:

  • You are fluent in oral and written English
  • It is highly desirable if you have Intermediate knowledge in oral and written Portuguese
  • Intermediate knowledge of another official UN language (Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian and Spanish) is desirable


  • Good organisation and coordination skills.
  • Knowledge in humanitarian logistics and/or WFP field operations.
  • Knowledge in risk preparedness process including aviation risk identification and analysis.
  • Experience fostering strategic alliances for WFP.
  • Excellent analytical, conceptual and writing skills.
  • Ability to rapidly understand complex operations and quickly focus on priorities
  • Ability to plan ahead, anticipate challenges and work on activities in parallel.
  • Extremely result oriented and capable of working under considerable pressure.
  • Showcase a can-do attitude in an area of work very new for the WFP.
  • Ability to explain complex concepts / plans / solutions in simple terms.
  • Ability to facilitate strategic/technical conversations and drive stakeholders’ consensus.
  • Ability to create and maintain strong relationships with key counterparts.
  • Team player and ability to deal with evolving contexts and priorities.
  • Fully committed to the objectives, mandate and code of ethics of the WFP.
  • Proficiency in using Microsoft Office programmes and other related tools.


WFP offers a competitive compensation package which will be determined by the contract type and selected candidate’s qualifications and experience.

Please visit the following websites for detailed information on working with WFP:

http://www.w Click on: “Our work” and “Countries” to learn more about WFP’s operations.

How to apply


Application deadline: 25 July 2021 (midnight Rome time)

Your CV must be submitted in English

Women applicants and qualified applicants from developing countries are especially encouraged to apply. WFP has zero tolerance for discrimination and does not discriminate on the basis of HIV/AIDS status. No appointment under any kind of contract will be offered to members of the UN Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions (ACABQ), International Civil Service Commission (ICSC), FAO Finance Committee, WFP External Auditor, WFP Audit Committee, Joint Inspection Unit (JIU) and other similar bodies within the United Nations system with oversight responsibilities over WFP, both during their service and within three years of ceasing that service.