Consultant – Artificial Intelligence (AI), Data Science and Ethics


Aug 18 2020 Print
Reporting directly

Senior DTM Coordination Manager

Overall supervision

Global DTM Coordinator

Duty Station


Number of positions


Closing Date



3 Months




Established in 1951, IOM is a Related Organization of the United Nations, and as the leading UN agency in the field of migration, works closely with governmental, intergovernmental, and non-governmental partners. IOM is dedicated to promoting humane and orderly migration for the benefit of all. It does so by providing services and advice to governments and migrants.

Since 2004 the Displacement Tracking Matrix (DTM) is IOM’s main operational tool for tracking and monitoring the movements and the evolving needs of displaced populations. It has been systematically deployed in medium to large-scale humanitarian response operations in the last seven years, including in all Level 3 emergencies. DTM has been active in over 72 countries. To coordinate and support operations implemented by approximately 5,200 staff, the global DTM support team is comprised of approximately 50 specialists across eight locations (Geneva, London, Bangkok, Nairobi, Dakar, Cairo, Vienna, and The Hague). Since its inception, the global support team includes, on average, 50% female and 50% male staff as well as a diverse range of nationalities.


The DTM team has been actively exploring options how AI and machine learning (ML) can improve and expand its programme areas for several years now, from applying methods for quality control, to predicting mobility in displacement contexts. Furthermore, DTM has been key in the discussions around the application of AI for humanitarian outcomes, having established and co-chairs the Humanitarian Data Science and Ethics Group (DSEG). UN AI activities can be found in the UN Activities on Artificial Intelligence Compendium.


Under the direct supervision of the Senior DTM Coordination Manager and the overall supervision of the Global DTM Coordinator, and working very closely with DTM Data Scientists and the DTM Ethics team, the successful candidate will be responsible for implementing new uses of big data and AI/ML, developing policies, toolkits, applications and platforms to improve data-driven decision-making through the ethical use of data.






  1. Component One – AI Mapping:
    • Through an assessment of DTM’s programme methodology and desk research, supported by a few interviews with key stakeholders as agreed by with IOM, carry out a rapid mapping of areas where the application of AI can be utilised to enhance DTM programme areas
    • Support in the design, implementation, deployment and evaluation of artificial intelligence solutions based on state-of-the-art approaches.
    • Identify and communicate on main DTM’s technology greatest challenges and propose correcting actions by leveraging DTM data assets to drive innovative work in AI/ML that can be applied at vast scale across the organization.


  1. Component Two – Quality Control
    • With support of IOM specialists in Geneva and relevant regional and country offices,  familiarise oneself with the data processing phases of the DTM data cycle, and develop guidance on methods on how AI can be used for quality control on data processing and analysis
    • Propose a set of recommendations how AI can be applied to support to support data integrity and analysis, including automatic generation of datasets and reports, whilst implementing a number of automated quality control checks


  1. Component Three – Ethics
    • Work closely with the internal Data Science & Ethics stakeholders about collaboratively developing operational guidance on how to apply AI in humanitarian operating environments in a safe and responsible way, respecting Do No Harm and Humanitarian Principles


  1. Component Four– Capacity Development and Coordination
    • Support in the development of a methodology report and a training package with the inclusion of recommendations for existing operations to initiate the roll out of AI use, including in capacity building experiences and where appropriate to the DTM Global Training package.
    • Perform such other related duties as may be assigned.







  1. A report written in English (maximum 30 pages with annexes) that will (Report 1):
    • Provide a background and complementarity analysis of areas where the DTM can apply AI to support operations (data collection) and analysis, with recommended next steps of implementation processes


  1. Document (30 pages) the results of the analysis of current IOM/DTM quality control mechanisms, and provide recommendations how data quality and integrity can be improved through utilising AI (Report 2)
    • Generate any scripts required for accessing, cleaning, handling, analyzing, learning and modelling data;


  1. Electronic copies of presentations and other materials generated for workshops and conferences of relevance to the work within this consultancy.


  1. Final report on the consultancy as per IOM standard form.







The reports must be deemed acceptable by IOM (Global DTM Coordinator and other relevant specialists).


  1. Report 1 (AI Mapping)


  1. Mapping of DTM activities in relation to improvement of efficiency and expansion of activities (September 2020)
  2. List of possible AI applications (early October)
    • Pro/cons for each of these applications
    • Plan for implementation of those applications and their alignment with DTM strategy
  1. Draft report (mid October)
  2. Receive feedback from DTM Global Team (mid October)
  3. Submission of final draft report (End of October)


  1. Report 2 (Quality Control)
    1. Mapping of DTM quality control processes (mid of November)
    2. Draft report of recommended processes (end of November)
    3. Consultation with DTM Data Scientists, ICT and DTM coordination team (early December)
    4. Draft Final Report (mid-December)
    5. Last round of feedback from DTM Global Team (mid-December)
    6. Submission of final report (end of December)


  1. Presentations and workshop documentation (by December 2020)


  1. Final report on consultancy (by end December 2020)


Note: Deliverable dates may vary depending on the recruitment process





  • Timely delivery of foreseen outputs as per above timeline
  • Compliance with IOM and UN standards of quality, diplomacy, ethics, gender equality, human rights, and data protection
  • Timely and quality of incorporation of IOM specialists` inputs and requests for revision
  • Responsiveness in communication and readiness to participate in meetings, both virtually and in person






  1. Education
    • Master’s degree in Information and Data Management, Computer or Social Sciences, Statistics, or a related field from an accredited academic institution with five years of relevant professional experience; or
    • University degree in the above fields with seven years of relevant experience.


  1. Experience
    • PhD is an asset. Candidates pursuing PhD are welcome and encouraged to apply
    • Extensive experience in design, setting up, managing, and coordinating data collection and analysis exercises of relevance to migration and displacement.
    • Proficiency of working with computer programmes for data analysis and data management (Python, Scala, R, SQL/NoSQL architectures, and Big Data/High Performance Computing, etc).
    • Demonstrated knowledge of international data and migration statistics standards and practices and ability to apply this knowledge to a new context.
    • Experience in coordinating activities at global, regional, and cross-regional level.


  1. Languages
    • Fluency in English is required. Working knowledge of Spanish and French is an advantage.


  1. Note

The consultant must adhere to the International Organization for Migration (IOM) Data Protection Principles (IN/138) and maintain confidentiality.

The consultant will be responsible to follow IOM writing guidelines and latest glossaries in all given assignments for accurate translation.

1Accredited Universities are the ones listed in the UNESCO World Higher Education Database (






  1. Values
    • Inclusion and respect for diversity: respects and promotes individual and cultural differences; encourages diversity and inclusion wherever possible.
    • Integrity and transparency: maintain high ethical standards and acts in a manner consistent with organizational principles/rules and standards of conduct.
    • Professionalism: demonstrates ability to work in a composed, competent, and committed manner and exercises careful judgment in meeting day-to-day challenges.


  1. Core Competencies – behavioural indicators
    • Teamwork: develops and promotes effective collaboration within and across units to achieve shared goals and optimize results.
    • Delivering results: produces and delivers quality results in a service-oriented and timely manner; is action oriented and committed to achieving agreed outcomes.
    • Managing and sharing knowledge: continuously seeks to learn, share knowledge, and innovate.
    • Accountability:          takes ownership for achieving the Organization’s priorities and assumes responsibility for own action and delegated work.
    • Communication: encourages and contributes to clear and open communication; explains complex matters in an informative, inspiring, and motivational way.


  1. Managerial Competencies – behavioural indicators
    • Leadership: provides a clear sense of direction, leads by example, and demonstrates the ability to carry out the organization’s vision; assists others to realize and develop their potential.
    • Empowering others & building trust: creates an atmosphere of trust and an enabling environment where staff can contribute their best and develop their potential.
    • Strategic thinking and vision: work strategically to realize the Organization’s goals and communicates a clear strategic direction.



Interested candidates must submit updated CV and cover letter (in PDF format and only one file with your name and surname) to adding Consultant – Artificial Intelligence (AI), Data Science and Ethics Home-Based/Geneva, Switzerland in the subject line, no later than Friday 30th October
NOTE: Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted. Incomplete applications (CV+cover letter in PDF format) will not be considered