The United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) was established in 1963 as an autonomous body within the United Nations with the purpose of enhancing the effectiveness of the work of the UN and its member states.
UNITAR designs and conducts close to 500 different training and knowledge sharing events per year for some 50,000 beneficiaries worldwide. Participants include diplomats, other government officials, non-governmental representatives, and other stakeholders.
At the heart of UNITAR, the Multilateral Diplomacy Programme Unit (MDPU) delivers training workshops to address the needs of these international actors. MDPU’s activities cover a wide range of domains, including training on the UN system and skills development.
As part of the training activities implemented during the spring months, UNITAR designed a 10-day online training programme, offering participants a full immersion into the United Nations' multilateral working environment in Geneva.
In line with UNITAR’s mandate, its main purpose is to enhance participants’ knowledge and skills in the area of international affairs and diplomacy. This will empower them to work more effectively and efficiently in any multilateral setting.
UNITAR further intends to strengthen the participants’ conviction of the principles enshrined in the UN Charter, especially multilateralism. It lastly aspires to give its participants the opportunity to gain valuable insights into possible future career steps.
The United Nations Online Immersion Programme aims to provide participants with the knowledge, skills and attitudes to better understand the United Nations and be able to work in an international environment with confidence and ease. After completion of the course, participants should be able to: • Explain key components of the United Nations System and its agencies • Apply core skills and techniques of common diplomatic practice • Familiarize oneself with International Geneva as a city of multilateralism • Develop essential knowledge and skills to achieve professional growth • Adapt values and principles enshrined in the United Nations Charter
Hosting 35 international organizations and more than 250 NGOs, the city of Geneva offers a whole series of potentially formative experiences. UNITAR hosts the activity on its virtual e-Learning platform and provides a nuanced balance between the following different components:
UNITAR’s professional network across Geneva allows it to organize a series of 1.5 hour live-webinars, in which participants can directly learn from UN experts or other high-level officials. Previous online training programmes have included webinars from the following organizations:
- United Nations Office at Geneva (UNOG)
- United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)
- World Health Organization (WHO)
As its core activity and raison d’être, UNITAR provides several online workshops to the participants. Delivered by experts such as current UN staff or retired ambassadors, previous programmes have included the following e-workshops:
- Negotiation Skills
- Public Speaking Skills
- Workshop on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
Virtual Guided Tours:
Geneva is rich in historic buildings important to international affairs. Thanks to its access across the city, UNITAR can provide a series of virtual guided tours. Previous programmes have included virtual tours through the following facilities:
- The United Nations’ Palace of Nations (3-hours extensive private virtual tour)
- The diplomatic district of International Geneva with its manifold international organizations
- The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and UNITAR headquarters
Online Career Development Sessions:
UNITAR also provides several 1.5 - 3.5 hour online sessions on how to advance your professional career and find a solid footing in the world of international organizations. These sessions can include the following components:
- Information session on internships and other entry positions in the UN system
- Training workshop on application to a UN job opening and interview skills in the UN context
- Review of application material, including CV, motivation letter, personal history form, Inspira profile, LinkedIn profile
With its more than 10.000 conferences a year, the United Nations Office at Geneva (UNOG) counts as one of the most active international conference centres in the world. Depending on availability, UNITAR offers participants to experience such multilateral negotiations online:
- Human Rights Council
- United Nations Committee against Torture (UNCAT)
- United Nations Conference for Trade and Development (UNCTAD)
The United Nations Online Immersion Programme is entirely conducted in English. It runs on UNITAR´s virtual learning platform, to which participants receive log-in credentials shortly before the start. The course modules are enabled every 4 days. The United Nations Online Immersion Programme is created and facilitated by senior experts working at UN agencies. In addition to these experts, UNITAR staff assists in the organizational aspects of the course and stands ready to interact with participants on a daily basis. UNITAR online trainings are for the most part asynchronous, placing emphasis on self-paced learning. In this programme, a series of live online events at fixed times are incorporated. The United Nations Online Immersion Programme contains the following components: Live Webinars Live-webinars primarily focus on knowledge-transfer and allow participants to directly interact with the experts and UNITAR staff regarding the specific content under discussion E-Workshops Focussed on skills development, e-Workshops contain simulation exercises, group discussions and similar other interactive online elements Virtual Guided Tours Participants will be able to get to know high-profile UN buildings such as the Palace of Nations or other UN agencies´ headquarters through live-streamed guided tours Reading Material Compulsory reading material teaching the basic concepts of the course's subject-matter, delivered both through the interactive software Articulate Storyline and a downloadable PDF Discussion Boards Participants are able to exchange their views and lessons learned with UN experts directly by answering their questions in writing and engaging into a discussion with peers; Assessment Quizzes Assessment quizzes at the end of each module. To be eligible for the course certificate, a passing grade of 80% on these quizzes is required
UNITAR welcomes a variety of professional backgrounds as well as different degrees of experience among its participants. The Online Immersion Programme is therefore open to all actors related to international affairs wishing to build up knowledge and skills related to the United Nations or International Geneva.
Participants can include public sector officials, private sector professionals and representatives from NGOs, think tanks or academia. Junior professionals and graduate students are equally welcome to apply.
In order to ensure the highest quality standards, registration will be closed after 30 participants. Allocation of slots will be on a first-come, first-served basis. At the end of the Online Immersion Programme, each participant will be awarded a UNITAR certificate of completion.
UNITAR will be responsible for the overall design, coordination and implementation of the Online Immersion Programme. It will liaise with participants on a regular basis prior to the activity's implementation in order to ensure a smooth and flawless organization for everyone involved.
The participants are responsible to ensure they are in possession of the basic necessary hardware, software and connectivity to engage in online training activities. Please note that as of now, no scholarships are available to facilitate participation.