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Research Intern Policy and Research Division 100%

DCAF – Geneva Centre for Security Sector Governance is dedicated to improving the security of states and their people within a framework of democratic governance, the rule of law, and respect for human rights. DCAF contributes to making peace and development more sustainable by assisting partner states and international actors supporting these states, to improve the governance of their security sector through inclusive and participatory reforms. It creates innovative knowledge products, promotes norms and good practices, provides legal and policy advice and supports capacitybuilding of both state and nonstate security sector stakeholders.

DCAF's Foundation Council comprises 63 member states, the Canton of Geneva and six permanent observers. Active in over 70 countries, DCAF is internationally recognized as one of the world's leading centres of excellence for security sector governance (SSG) and security sector reform (SSR). DCAF is guided by the operational principles of impartiality, local ownership, inclusive participation, and gender equality. DCAF embraces and promotes values of accountability, excellence, inclusivity, integrity and respect. For more information please visit

DCAF`s Policy and Research Division (PRDiv) produces empirically grounded and policy-oriented comparative research on global topics related to security sector governance and reform (SSG/R). his cutting-edge research bridges the gap between policy and practice and is driven by the demand of our national and international partners

Research Intern in the Project “Security sector governance/reform (SSG/R) and climate change” (100 %)


Location:                        Geneva

Starting date:                 1 October 2020 or upon mutual agreement

Duration:                        three-month paid internship

Where:                            Policy and Research Division (PRDIV)

The role:                         Research Intern in the project “Security Sector Governance and Reform (SSG/R) and climate change”.


Under the supervision of the PRDiv`s program manager leading the project “SSG/R and Climate Change”, the incumbent will conduct background research as well as regional and country analyses pertaining to the impact of climate change on the security sector; will support research grant applications and donor-mapping efforts to support international and national policy-making processes on the nexus SSG/R and climate change; and contribution to the day-to-day work of the Policy and Research Division. The ideal candidate will have a strong background and interest in one or more of the following fields: qualitative methodology, climate change and environmental politics, security sector governance and reform, security, peace and conflict studies, area studies (Global South) and international relations.

Main responsibilities:

  • Conduct research on the nexus climate change and SSG/R issues aiming at generating in-depth empirical knowledge about this field as well as policy solutions for adapting and strengthening SSG/R in the face of climate change security challenges;
  • Provide support on the development of publication/s pertaining to this topic;
  • Provide organisational and logistical support to the PRDiv event/s  on “climate change and SSG/R”
  • Contribute to the  drafting of reports, concept notes and other project materials (including proofreading and translation as appropriate);
  • Support the mapping and identification of funding opportunities, eventually leading to grant proposals;
  • Perform other tasks as required.

Education, competencies and experience

  • Currently enrolled in advanced university studies in International Relations, Security, Conflict and Peace Studies, Political Science, or closely related fields;
  • Knowledge of and/or experience in using qualitative research methods and techniques is required; Knowledge of and/or experience or strong interest in climate and environmental politics is required; knowledge of security studies is an asset;
  • Knowledge or strong interest in one or more regions/countries of the Global South (especially in Africa, MENA, Middle East or Latin America) is required;
  • Understanding of and/or interest in security sector governance and reform;
  • Excellent writing skills; experience with publication projects is an asset;
  • Excellent command of English; knowledge of other languages relevant for empirical research is an asset;
  • Ability to work independently, be proactive and solution-oriented;
  • Attention to detail, good organisational skills and ability to deliver on time;
  • Flexibility and willingness to carry out administrative tasks as required;
  • Good intercultural communication skills;
  • 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 improving human, state and international security within a framework of democratic governance the rule of law, and respect for human rights as well as fostering multilateral cooperation in the field of climate change and security.

If you think you are a good match for DCAF and the position advertised, please send your application to  by 25 September 2020  with the subject heading [Intern PRDIV – Climate Change and SSG/R -2020], enclosing:

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

DCAF is committed to equality of opportunity and encourages applications from all qualified candidates regardless of sex, age, disability, gender identity, religion, or ethnicity. 

Individuals who seek to serve with DCAF in any individual capacity will be required, if short-listed, to complete a self-attestation stating that they have not committed or been convicted of any criminal offence and have not been involved, by act or omission, in the commission of any violation of international human rights law or international humanitarian law.