World Health Organization (WHO)

Technical Officer (Nutrition)

World Health Organization (WHO)

Job Description

  The Division of Country Health Programmes (CHP) assists country efforts to reduce the burden of non-communicable and Communicable Diseases and address the social, economic and environmental determinants of health, and promotes policies and actions for health through stewardship of the WHO European Healthy Cities Network. It focuses on health promotion measures; prevention and control of noncommunicable diseases, including cancers, cardiovascular diseases, chronic respiratory diseases and Diabetes, and risks related to tobacco use, physical inactivity, unhealthy diet, and the harmful use of alcohol; communicable diseases such as tuberculosis, HIV/AIDS and hepatitis, and vector-borne and neglected tropical diseases; elimination and control of vaccine-preventable diseases and advocacy for increased use of vaccines; containing and controlling antimicrobial resistance; addressing existing and emerging environmental health risks, and supporting violence and injury prevention. A determination to ensure universal access to people-centred quality health services across the continuum of care is matched by enriching the evidence base for policy Design and interventions using social, cultural and behavioural approaches, to drive implementation of innovation at national, regional and local levels.

The WHO/Europe Prevention and Control of Non-Communicable Diseases approach will foster the achievement of NCD-related targets of the Sustainable Development Goals in the WHO European Region countries through fostering innovations and strengthening national capacities, governance, multisectoral action, and partnerships in reducing major risk factors, orienting health systems towards people-centered health care and universal health coverage and ensuring access to quality NCD services across the care continuum. The “NCD Office”, an integral part of WHO/Europe's Prevention and Control of NCD approach, will coordinate countries in the development of NCD investment cases and national strategic action plans, coordinate scale-up of “best buys” implementation for country impact for NCDs, the empowerment of individuals, including for better health literacy and capacity-building through NCD flagship courses. It will evolve as a Regional hub for excellence in NCD surveillance, modelling and policy monitoring, implementation research and innovations, including digitalization and big-data approaches to addressing NCDs trends and determinants. It will also work to reduce the major risk factors for noncommunicable diseases- tobacco use, physical inactivity, unhealthy diet and the harmful use of alcohol - provide policy and strategic directions and Technical Support to countries in developing and strengthening tobacco control programmes and intensify support for WHO FCTC implementation, interventions to reduce alcohol consumption, unhealthy diets and physical inactivity, through regulation and policy change, alongside traditional and innovative efforts to change behaviour. It will provide monitoring and surveillance and support to countries on prison health and prison health-care systems and services.


The purpose of the post in to provide technical support to Member States in respect to promotion of nutrition, physical activity and obesity. Support the horizontal Coordination of the technical work between the various units of the Division and across the Organization anchoring the physical activity, nutrition and Food Systems issues on their agendas for optimal integration of activities related to NCD prevention, promotion of healthy diets through multisectoral actions including environmental sustainability , universal access to sufficient nutritious food and effective nutrition actions, through setting evidence-based international food standards, promoting nutrition actions in health systems, fostering sustainable food production and consumption, improving physical and digital food environments, empowering consumers in all situations ,monitoring nutrition status and nutrition related policies. To work with multiple partners to promote physical activity all settings and across the life course and to reduce sedentary time which is an independent risk factor for NCDs.

Key duties: Core responsibilities in providing technical contribution for the development of nutrition, physical activity and obesity intervention and assisting Member States in relation to physical activity, food standards, promoting nutrition actions as part of country efforts to strengthen health systems include: 1. To promote and facilitate collaboration between health authorities and other sectors of government, academic institutions, civil society and other stakeholders to strengthen national and subregional capabilities to design, implement and evaluate actions related to nutrition, physical activity and obesity.

2. To collaborate in the development and execution of specific modes of Data Collection on nutrition, physical activity, obesity including training, supervision, implementation, and reporting.

3. To lead the preparation of country profiles, country fact sheets and policy briefs that describe policy developments and particularly success stories in obesity, diet and physical activity, 4. Develop, tools and instruments and support Member States in evidence-based nutrition, physical activity and obesity prevention policies and plans for national NCD prevention in technical cooperation with the teams in GDOs, CHP, CPS and other divisions, and country offices.

5. Technical support for initiatives related to childhood obesity including the convening and support to the member states action network on childhood obesity: Childhood Obesity Surveillance Initiative (COSI). Link obesity and physical activity with other pan-European approach such as cancer and other initiatives.

6. Organize expert meetings, development of joint initiatives and work plans with professional societies and WHO Collaborating Centres (dealing with nutrition, physical activity, obesity and related issues) 7. Support and contribute to the European Salt Action Network (ESAN), WHO European Network on Reducing marketing pressure on children and European network for the promotion of health-enhancing physical activity and other relevant networks for nutrition, physical activity and obesity.

8. Under the guidance of the first level supervisor, work in close cooperation with the WHO headquarters, other regional offices and country offices as well as other agencies to achieve strategic objectives in the area of physical activity, nutrition, infant feeding, food security and obesity.

9. Contribute to the development of relevant policy papers, briefs and presentations on the subject matter. Document on best practices in implementing programmes and activities and dissemination of information for Capacity Building in the respective area of work.

10. Regularly monitor and assess the performance of the technical area through evaluation and reporting.

11. Perform other duties as assigned.



Essential: University degree (Bachelors level) in public health.

Desirable: Additional university degree in social sciences, law or field relevant to the position.


Essential: At least 5 years of professional experience in public health programmes focusing on non-communicable diseases and/or nutrition, physical activity, obesity at national and international levels. Proven practical experience in key domains of nutrition and physical activity promotion, data analyses and in intersectoral capacity building.

Desirable: Relevant experience in WHO, UN organizations/agencies, international institutions or NGOs. Proven experience working in partnership with UN organizations, the private sector, multinational organizations and non-governmental organizations Relevant experience in intersectoral work and resource mobilization. Proven experience working with Ministries of Health and other Ministries/Governmental Agencies/Legislative Authorities.


Comprehensive knowledge of global and European public health aspects of nutrition, physical activity, obesity and NCDsAdvanced level knowledge in aspects relevant to the prevention and control of noncommunicable diseases.knowledge of the political, social and health systems of countries in the WHO European Region.Emotional awareness; Ability to identify and harness one's emotions and apply them to tasks; and the ability to manage emotions, which includes both regulating one's own emotions when necessary and helping others to do the same.

WHO Competencies

Teamwork Respecting and promoting individual and cultural differences Communication Moving forward in a changing environment Producing results

Use of Language Skills

Essential: Expert knowledge of English.

Desirable: Intermediate knowledge of French,RussianGerman.


WHO salaries for staff in the Professional category are calculated in US dollars. The remuneration for the above position comprises an annual base salary starting at USD 62,120 (subject to mandatory deductions for pension contributions and health insurance, as applicable), a variable post adjustment, which reflects the cost of living in a particular duty station, and currently amounts to USD 2226 per month for the duty station indicated above. Other benefits include 30 days of annual leave, allowances for dependent family members, home leave, and an education grant for dependent children.


  • This vacancy notice may be used to fill other similar positions at the same grade level
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  • A written test may be used as a form of screening.
  • In the event that your candidature is retained for an interview, you will be required to provide, in advance, a scanned copy of the degree(s)/diploma(s)/certificate(s) required for this position. WHO only considers higher educational qualifications obtained from an institution accredited/recognized in the World Higher Education Database (WHED), a list updated by the International Association of Universities (IAU)/United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). The list can be accessed through the link: Some professional certificates may not appear in the WHED and will require individual review.
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