Sunday, June 26, 2022

The United Nation system organizations have made it their top priority to ensure their employees operate in a healthy, safe, and inclusive workplace free of sexual harassment. In order to improve workplace culture across all levels of UN organizations, the WFP has launched the UN Culture Change Innovation Challenge together with the UN System Chief Executives Board for Coordination (CEB) Task Force on Addressing Sexual Harassment within the Organizations of the UN System. This is a UN systems organizations wide initiative to search for innovative ideas to foster a safe and inclusive work environment. We welcome applications from all UN entities with innovations that seek to address sexual harassment through leadership and organizational culture change. These can include but are not limited to, innovative approaches such as applied behavioural science, bystander intervention training, or initiatives such as gamification, crowd mapping, tool kits, buddy and/or mentoring programmes.

Why a culture change challenge to address sexual harassment? 

Sexual harassment “offends the principles of what we stand for as an organization and undermines our core values and our work.”[1] The  CEB Task Force on Addressing Sexual Harassment within the Organizations of the UN System has been working since 2017 to address this important issue. Its work has led to important advances in how the UN system deals with sexual harassment, including the introduction of the “clear check” system, the UN System Model Policy on Sexual Harassment, and the recent adoption of the document “Advancing a Common Understanding of a Victim-centred Approach to Sexual Harassment within the Organizations of the United Nations.”

Sexual harassment is embedded in a culture of discrimination and privilege, based on unequal gender relations and power dynamics, and has no place in the UN system. In order to end it, we must work together to understand and address its multiple causes. That is what the UN Culture Change Innovation Challenge is all about. It is a place to discover innovative solutions to improve the workplace culture across all levels of UN organizations, to foster a culture based on dignity and respect free of sexual harassment. 

2021-22 Programme Dates

Application Deadline7 February 2022
Innovation Bootcamp25 to 29 April 2022
Pitch Event12 May 2022

What We Offer

The WFP Innovation Accelerator together with the Leadership and Culture Workstream of the CEB Task Force on Addressing Sexual Harassment within the Organizations of the UN System, including FAO, IAEA, IFAD, UNHCR, and UN Women, will support in converting innovative ideas into blueprints ready for implementation.

Bootcamps are immersive experiences where participants learn to combine innovative techniques such as human centred design, lean start-up, creative leadership, and systems thinking to advance their solutions in a viable and feasible way for the organization and its beneficiaries. After the virtual Innovation Bootcamp, teams will participate in a high-visibility virtual Pitch Event. Participating teams will have the opportunity to raise awareness of their ideas and to share their solutions with key internal counterparts who can help drive further adoption and support for broader implementationEligibility Criteria

Teams from any UN Entity stationed anywhere in the world are eligible to submit a project proposal: 

  • Your proposal should have a clear problem statement and solution that addresses culture change areas such as leadership, inclusive work environment and promoting anti-sexual harassment practices. 
  • Submitted project proposals should have a dedicated team that will participate in the bootcamp 
  • Your team should be available to join the virtual Innovation Bootcamp from 25 to 29 April 2022
  • Level of maturity: You are either working on an early stage idea, a proof of concept, or just started with the implementation of your innovation. 

Your application will be evaluated in equal weight according to the following criteria:

  • Impact towards an improved workplace culture for a UN entity or the UN system that fosters a safe and inclusive work environment free of sexual harassment
  • Level of innovation of the solution
  • Feasibility and viability of deployment within a UN entity or UN system wide
  • Team diversity, inclusiveness and equality
  • Level of alignment with UN priorities.

*Applicants will need formal supervisor approvals to participate in the innovation challenge and to commit the time needed to participate in the Bootcamp for five days, from 25 to 29 April 2022.


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