SSR Officer – (100 %)

The Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces (DCAF) is dedicated to making people and the states they live in more secure. We help countries to develop sound laws, institutions, policies and practices that improve the way the security sector is governed. Good security sector governance – rooted in respect for human rights and the rule of law – is a cornerstone of security and development.

DCAF is a leading global centre of excellence for security sector governance (SSG) and security sector reform (SSR) knowledge and practice. Headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland, we operate in over 70 countries and have a team of more than 170 international staff.

DCAF’s International Security Sector Advisory Team (ISSAT) provides practical support to the international community in its efforts to improve security and justice, primarily in conflict-affected and fragile states. Established in 2008, it works to increase the capacity of the international community to support SSR processes, to enhance the effectiveness and quality of SSR programming, and to facilitate the coordination and coherence of international assistance for nationally driven SSR processes.

We are a dynamic team working with, and across, world-leading government departments, multilateral institutions and experts in the international security and justice sector development arena. You will compliment an experienced, values-driven professional group from a broad variety of backgrounds.

Today, DCAF-ISSAT is looking for a dynamic and committed individual to be our next:

SSR Officer – (100 %)

Location:                   Geneva, with frequent international travel

Starting date:            As soon as possible

Duration:                  This is a project funded post, the position will be offered on a one-year contract which can be renewed dependent on performance and availability of funding.

The role         

An SSR Officer (SSRO) within ISSAT is a professional level, multidisciplinary profile, able to undertake activities related to Advisory Field Support (AFS), professional development and training (PDT), and advocacy & outreach and knowledge (OAK), including the development of operational tools in the area of SSR programme design, assessment and monitoring and evaluation. It is a demanding role with advocacy and outreach aspects to wide-ranging high-level departmental contacts within donor states, their staff overseas, international organisations and partner nations.

ISSAT SSROs are part of an in-house network called the “methodology cell”. This body is set up to contribute to the methodological development of ISSAT’s mandates and use ISSAT’s operational experience to update ISSAT’s approaches, produce knowledge products and tools and share with the wider community of SSR practitioners.

Reporting to the Head of Advisory Field Support (AFS), the SSRO will work in relation to ISSAT’s mandates as well as other activities across all of the service lines.

Key areas of operation:

1. AFS and Training tasks 

  • Support AFS and/or training mandates, bringing thematic, process and contextual expertise where relevant;
  • Support the mandate team leader in planning and preparing the mandate, as well as lead the application of ISSAT methodology to the mandate;
  • Deploy on mandates as a team member, with responsibility to ensure consistent application of ISSAT methodology.

2. Methodology cell tasks

  • Identify and develop the evidence to demonstrate successful SSR in different contexts by supporting and managing ISSAT learning from mandates and knowledge development;
  • Translate individual and situational learning into a shared knowledge base within the international community, ensuring that the latest SSR thinking, in addition to the major issues, challenges and patterns are reflected in ISSAT’s OAK material, as well as in its key messages to its Members;
  • Produce knowledge products, based on experience and analysis from ISSAT mandates and further afield, including through contribution to blog posts, forum responses and other inputs to the ISSAT SSR Community of Practice.


  • Minimum of 2-4 years of experience in SSR and/or related international development work;
  • Proactive and have demonstrated an ability to work as part of a multi-cultural, multi-disciplinary team;
  • Good communication (verbal and written), and good drafting and presentational skills, as well as the ability to network and liaise effectively with a wide range of potential stakeholders at all levels both within governments and non-governmental and multinational organisations
  • Able to analyse situations quickly and effectively, adapt to rapidly changing circumstances and produce workable solutions to meet customer requirements – SSG/R is a fast developing field and it will be necessary to retain currency in the latest thinking and developments; 
  • Interest in international relations and development issues, fundamental to the SSR concept, is highly desirable – knowledge of the EU would be an added advantage;
  • Masters degree in law, conflict studies, international relations, development, political science, or a related field;
  • The team’s operating language is English. Fluency in one or more of French, German, Spanish or Portuguese is an added advantage;
  • Swiss or EU citizenship, or a valid work permit for Switzerland at the time of application is a pre-requisite

We offer:

  • a rewarding, dynamic and challenging work experience
  • the chance to be part of a multicultural team of supportive, hardworking and values-driven people
  • the chance to contribute to a more secure world

If you think you are a good match for DCAF and the position advertised, please send your application to by 05th April 2018 with the subject heading “APPLICATION SSR Officer”, enclosing:

  • a one-page motivational statement in English describing your story and what you can bring to DCAF
  • a concise CV (maximum two pages)

DCAF is an equal opportunities employer that considers applications from all qualified candidates.

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