UNESCO Reviews

Updated March 12, 2015
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Employee Reviews

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  1. Working at UNESCO is good, but not great

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Contractor - Programmer Officer
    Current Contractor - Programmer Officer

    I have been working at UNESCO as a contractor (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Noble mission, rewarding work with governments (sometimes), good pay, pleasant co-workers, good work-life balance, flexi-time

    Cons

    short term contracts, little to zero budget to support important programmes, bureaucracy, not innovative/creative, risk-averse, highly political, too many meetings, workshops and conferences

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    management teams need further training on how to manage programmes and people, most managers aren't bold, tend to follow what HQ instructs, overall, need to keep up with the times and the changing landscape outside of the UN bubble.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2. Good place to live a life, not work.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Intern - Research Assistant in Paris (France)
    Former Intern - Research Assistant in Paris (France)

    I worked at UNESCO as an intern (less than a year)

    Pros

    Great location/ environment/ food
    Nice and friendly people/ multi-cultural
    People recognize the name and respect your research skills

    Cons

    Don't really get anything done. time wasted during communication and liabilities.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  3. It was an excellent experience, with great environment and an inclusive work area

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Intern - Intern in Bangkok (Thailand)
    Current Intern - Intern in Bangkok (Thailand)

    I have been working at UNESCO as an intern (less than a year)

    Pros

    The inclusive work atmosphere allows for more in depth knowledge on the world around us and gives a deep insight into how policies and policy makers are constantly updating the education systems around the globe.

    Cons

    There is a lot of reading and a lot of researching if you are new to the terms and concepts where focus and attention is needed. Other than that, work is great.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Everything is smooth moving in UNESCO and their work and hiring system is up to par.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
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  5. Good experience as entry-level

    Former Employee - Research Assistant in Geneva (Switzerland)
    Former Employee - Research Assistant in Geneva (Switzerland)

    I worked at UNESCO full-time (less than a year)

    Pros

    location, friendly staff, interesting work in development

    Cons

    UNESCO's crisis, bureaucracy, low efficiency

  6. Great opportunities to work with creative people for inspiring programs, poor leadership and job security

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Program Officer in Beijing, Beijing (China)
    Former Employee - Program Officer in Beijing, Beijing (China)

    I worked at UNESCO full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    Stimulating work content if you are interested in the programs; many opportunities to work with creative and smart people; multicultural work environment to sharpen up political and business savvy.

    Cons

    Complicated organization and weak leadership; insecure funding and job sustainability.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Drastic change in both external and internal communication. Realignment of organizational strategy. Improve operations efficiency and human resources management.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
  7. Fulfilling experience in a dying organization that can offer few employment opportunities

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Intern - Culture Sector Intern in New Delhi (India)
    Current Intern - Culture Sector Intern in New Delhi (India)

    I have been working at UNESCO as an intern (less than a year)

    Pros

    Being in a cluster office with a small staff allowed me to work on interesting and substantive projects. I was treated like an equal staff member, and my contributions were welcome.

    Cons

    Sometimes the bureaucracy of a UN agency hampered making actual progress in achieving the purported goals of the organization. Furthermore, since the United States stopped making contributions in 2011, the organization has suffered and hiring numbers are down as a result. Finally, UNESCO mostly provids technical assistance, allowing contractors to do the hands-on work on the ground.

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
  8. culture of peace and non-violence.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at UNESCO

    Pros

    the best reason that pushes me to work at UNESCO
    because I have worked as a volunteer for over 10 years and I am used to the way they work.

    Cons

    lack of pay, lack of protection in the event of an assignment of risk, lack of office equipment, lack of means of transport.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Please kindly answer us a brief delays.

  9. Assistant Programme Specialist

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at UNESCO

    Pros

    Started out with an internship.

    Cons

    Complicated bureaucracy and budget woes.

  10. 1 person found this helpful

    Awful place to work for

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Contractor - Anonymous Contractor
    Former Contractor - Anonymous Contractor

    I worked at UNESCO as a contractor

    Pros

    Part of UN with potential to make a difference in the world. It has done good work to some extent on the culture front.

    Cons

    Most appointments are political and not transparent. Who knows who serve as criteria for career advancement. Critical thinking is not encouraged nor is merit. The organization is not really committed to social justice and the developing world. It is a self promoting mechanism for egocentric civil servants who will not bulge from its HQs.

    Doesn't Recommend
  11. Overall an interesting learning experience

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at UNESCO

    Pros

    Rewarding work and interesting colleagues

    Cons

    Excessive bureaucracy and slow procedures

    Recommends

UNESCO Photos

UNESCO Headquarters, Paris (Photo thanks to Flickr user Matthias Ripp, Some Rights Reserved)
UNESCO Headquarters, Paris (Photo thanks to Flickr user Anna Armstrong, Some Rights Reserved)

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