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Consultant: email system evaluation

United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR)


The International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (ISDR) is a multi-disciplinary and multi-stakeholder platform to enable societies to increase their resilience to natural, technological and environmental disasters and to reduce associated environmental, human, economic and social risk and losses. A range of United Nations organizations and international partners participate in cooperation with Governments and civil society organizations.

The implementation of the ISDR is supported by a secretariat lead by the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Disaster Risk Reduction. The secretariat’s main functions are policy coordination, advocacy and information management, at the international and regional levels, to ensure synergy between disaster reduction strategies and those in the socio-economic and humanitarian fields.

Currently, the ISDR has Headquarters office in Geneva, with main regional offices in New York, Panama, Nairobi, Cairo, and Bangkok. Sub-regional offices are located in Almaty, Kobe, and Suva. Communications between headquarters and regional offices depends upon an efficient email system. As part of the knowledge management and branding strategy of the UNISDR, the secretariat would like to harmonise the email environment which is currently very heterogeneous and involves several different email domains and service providers.
Scope of the Consultancy

The main deliverable of this consultancy is a document which details the current technical arrangements and requirements of the email systems used in all UNISDR offices worldwide, provides an analysis of available options to harmonize the email systems of all UNISDR offices, and makes recommendations on the most suitable options, including cost estimates for setup, transition and maintenance.

Organizational setting and reporting relationships

The incumbent will perform his/her duties in the Information Management Unit (IMU), in the secretariat of the International Strategy for Disaster Risk Reduction (ISDR) in Geneva under the direct supervision of the IMU Senior Coordinator.

Duties and responsibilities

The consultant will be recruited to undertake the following tasks, within delegated authority:

Development of a report on the current email system implementation for UNISDR, including HQ and all regional offices, including options for harmonization of email systems and estimates for the associated development and maintenance costs of each option, including:

• Documentation of current usage, technical setup, support systems and expenditures for all UNISDR offices

• Review of possible configuration options with current UN service providers, including OCHA, UNOG, UN NY, UNICC, ESCAP, UNEP, UNDCP and PAHO

• Review of other email hosting options including private sector or hybrid approach

• Analysis of options for harmonization of the UNISDR email domain for all offices (un.org or unisdr.org)

• Analysis of implications for connections with UN address book and the UNISDR contact directory

• Analysis of options for web mail functionality as well as use of IMAP and POP in regional offices, including risks and potential security and spam issues

• Analysis of options for spam filtering and risk of blacklisting for all proposed solutions

• Documentation and presentation of analysis and recommendations for the main email configuration options for UNISDR including associated cost estimates


• Professionalism – conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments; observing deadlines and achieving results; demonstrated problem-solving skills and ability to use sound judgment to ensure the effective and timely completion of complex tasks; ability to work under extreme pressure and prolonged time;

• Technological awareness - Keeps abreast of available technology, understands applicability and limitations of technology to the work of the Office, actively seeks to apply technology to appropriate tasks, shows willingness to learn new technology;

• Communication – Excellent communication (spoken and written) and analytical skills, including the ability to convey complex concepts to partners, stakeholders and staff, in a concise style; listen to others, correctly interpret messages from others and respond appropriately; demonstrate openness in sharing information and keeping people informed;

• Teamwork – Excellent interpersonal skills, including ability to operate effectively across organizational boundaries; ability to establish and maintain effective partnerships and working relations in a multi-cultural, multi-ethnic environment with sensitivity and respect for diversity.



University degree in computer science, or a related diploma and several years of equivalent related working experience in the management of office automation systems.

Work experience

A minimum of 7 years of increasingly responsible professional experience, in email and computer system administration. Knowledge of United Nations email administration and Lotus Domino is an advantage.


English and French are the UN working languages. Fluency in written and spoken English is required for this position. Working knowledge of another UN language would be an advantage.

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  • Additional location info Geneva
  • Closing Date 17 Sep 2009

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