At the United Nations, we learn on the job as we work with experienced colleagues in fulfilling the mandates of the Organization, as well as through technical and substantive training. The UN has resources to help you develop UN knowledge, competencies, and expanded professional skills for your role to help you reach your career goals.

UN Learning Principles

  • Shared responsibility: Learning and development is a responsibility shared by the Organization, its managers and each individual staff member. Learning opportunities are made available to staff at all levels.
  • Learning Plans: Managers are required to agree on learning and development plans with individual staff members in the context of ongoing performance management. Plans should be based on job requirements and a staff member’s career aspirations. Every staff member should undertake at least five days of learning activities each year. Learning can take the form of courses, online options, special assignments, on-the-job training, coaching and mentoring.


Organizational Learning Priorities

OHR's Strategic Workforce Planning Section has detected three skills that will affect the future of the Organization: 

  • Data Analytics: The goal of the Secretary-General's Data Strategy is to invest in data and analytics capabilities to deliver value and solve real problems for our stakeholders, engaging everyone in data-driven work as appropriate to the role. Every staff member is expected to have a data-related learning goal.

  • Innovation: Skills that empower individuals to become innovative in their day-to-day activities. The ability to come up with/identify new solutions to existing technology, processes, behaviours and mindsets.

  • Partnerships: The broad coalition for advancing the 2030 Agenda requires collaborative skills for working closely with Member States, and the private sector, civil society, NGOs, and other non-state actors, as well as with System entities, in efficient coordination.

Go to the expanded Learning Priorities page to see recommended learning activities for these topics.


Learning Needs

The Global Learning Needs Assessment (LNA) is the second comprehensive review of learning needs at an organizational level and builds on the multi-dimensional approach used in 2017 to bring together self-reported staff learning needs with the priorities and gaps at the organizational level.

This assessment reviewed over 400 data sources, twice as many as the 2017 Global Learning Needs Assessment. It supports the Secretary-General’s Data Strategy which presents that we must “start with data action that adds immediate value for our organization and the people we serve.”


Important documents: