Vacancy announcement
Geneva, Switzerland

Traineeship - International Law

Vacancy type Trainee
Duration of the contract
6 months (in person)
Deadline for submission of applications
26 November 2023
Organizational Unit
Multilateral Diplomacy Programme Unit (MDPU)
Number of job positions

The Multilateral Diplomacy Programme Unit (MDPU) of the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) maintains a traineeship programme for students/recent graduates interested in gaining professional experience in a multicultural environment and enhancing their understanding of the United Nations system.

MDPU designs and delivers the Institute’s core diplomacy training (CDT), consisting primarily of orientation briefings and short, intensive skills development workshops which benefit cumulatively some 2,500 diplomats yearly at the United Nations Headquarters and other venues where the Organization maintains a significant presence.

Parallel to CDT, MDPU develops and delivers training activities at country and regional levels in close partnership with governments, universities and selected international organizations. MDPU’s activities also include e-Learning courses; special projects, advisory services related to the curriculum development of diplomatic academies; and the development of other training tools and publications.

MDPU welcomes qualified candidates interested to work for a period of six months, at UNITAR headquarters in Geneva. The placement is on an unpaid basis, but a monthly lump-sum of 700 CHF will be provided towards transportation and miscellaneous costs.


In line with the Institute’s efforts to improve its training activities, the Multilateral Diplomacy Programme is developing an unprecedented amount of face-to-face activities offered to the diplomatic community based in Geneva, New York and elsewhere.

The Programme also routinely organizes tailor-made activities upon request of donors and partners. These activities target government officials involved in bilateral and multilateral negotiations, students and younger generation.


Under the supervision of the Training Associate of UNITAR’s Multilateral Diplomacy Programme Unit, the trainee will assist in the coordination and implementation of face-to-face and online training activities related to International Law. The trainee would assist in, inter alia, designing and managing the courses and adapting training content to quality and academic standards. The trainee would also be responsible for assisting in communications and outreach activities. Typical tasks assigned to the trainee may include the following:

  • To provide support in the coordination of tailor-made training activities, including preparation of training materials, coordination of logistics before, during and after courses;
  • To assist subject matter experts with the development of participatory training activities;
  • To conduct research and draft project proposals for further collaborations;
  • To adapt training materials and learning packages to quality and academic standards and certification criteria;
  • To liaise directly with partner organizations and beneficiaries in preparation for the delivery of the Programme;
  • To prepare key data such as programme statistics and evaluation reports;
  • To undertake research that may provide necessary input into such training tools and exercises;
  • To assist the unit in its outreach and communication strategy.
  • To assist colleagues with the implementation of e-learning courses, workshops, and webinars;
  • To support in procurement processes such as purchase request and comparative statement etc;
  • To perform other duties as and when necessary as directed by the supervisor.

The tasks assigned may be reviewed during contract period to reflect changes in programme needs and priorities.

Learning Objectives:

After the assignment the trainee should be able to:

  • Translate strategic vision into actionable objectives;
  • Work independently and take initiative;
  • Develop a professional rapport with UNITAR and United Nations staff;
  • Propose ways to further UNITAR’s mission;
  • Work in a multicultural environment.
Minimum requirements

Education: Applicants must be enrolled in an undergraduate degree (within either international relations, education, history, law, political science, languages or a related subject) or be a recent graduate of the aforementioned (if selected, they must commence the traineeship within two years of graduation).

Experience: Candidates should also have: demonstrated interest in training methodologies and especially e-Learning; ability to write in a clear and concise manner; analytical and research skills; administrative and organizational skills to assist in the organization of training activities; computer skills (to deal with e-Learning tools, word processing, excel, power point, internet search, etc.) and a high level of individual responsibility, commitment and initiative. Candidates should furthermore have an interest in participatory training methodologies and instructional design as well as be motivated to work with monitoring and evaluation.

Languages: A high standard in both oral and written English are required. Knowledge of another UN language is an advantage.

Dates and Duration:

Start date: Early December 2023. Exact date to be agreed upon with the selected candidate.

Duration: Six months. The traineeship programme is on a full-time basis and trainees are expected to work five days a week.

How to apply

Please submit your application along with a motive letter as soon as possible after the vacancy has been posted and well before the deadline stated in the vacancy announcement.

Due to high number of expected applications, only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.