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Security sector reform advisor (justice reform focus)

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, respect for human rights, and gender equality. Since its founding in 2000, DCAF has contributed 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 capacity‐building of both state and non‐state security sector stakeholders. 

DCAF’s Foundation Council members represent over 50 countries and the Canton of Geneva. 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 principles of neutrality, impartiality, local ownership, inclusive participation, and gender equality. For more information visit and follow us on Twitter @DCAF_Geneva.

ISSAT is a Department of DCAF. ISSAT was established in 2008 in response to the need to increase the capacity of the international community to support Security Sector Governance/Reform (SSG/R) processes, to enhance the effectiveness and quality of SSG/R programming, and to facilitate the coordination and coherence of international assistance for nationally driven SSR/G processes. It provides practical support to the international community in its efforts to improve security and justice, primarily in conflict-affected and fragile states. It does this by working with a group of member states and multilateral institutions (International Partners Group Members, or IPGMs) to develop and promote good security and justice reform practices and principles, and by helping its members to build their capacity to support national and regional security and justice reform processes. The ISSAT provides a deployable capacity to support its GBMs. Within ISSAT, the professional development and training (PDT) Service  Line focusses on training design and delivery, professional development advice and mentoring for the benefit of our GBMs to enhance the their ability to deploy strategic SSG/R advisors. For more information, please see:

For our OAK service line, we are looking for a motivated and experience individual to be our next :

  • Security sector reform advisor (justice reform focus) – 100%
  • Location: Geneva (with regular travel)
  • Starting date: As soon as possible
  • Duration:Permanent

The role
Reporting to the Head of Outreach and Knowledge (OAK) service line, the SSR Advisor will focus on ISSAT’s justice reform portfolio, in addition to additional activities for OAK and across the two other ISSAT, Advisory field support (AFS) and Professional Development and Training (PDT). 

Key areas of operation
•    Lead or contribute to individual Justice and Security Sector Reform mandates, as requested by ISSAT’s International Partners Group Members, including assessments, programme design, and Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning;
•    Lead or contribute to the growth of ISSAT justice-oriented partnerships with peer organisations active in the areas of justice reform, access to justice and Rule of Law;
•    Lead or contribute to the growth of ISSAT’s justice and Rule of Law portfolio, through drafting   knowledge products, ISSAT Advisory Notes, guidance and tools for donor programming on justice reform and related subjects;
•    Contribute to the development of ISSAT and OAK strategic priorities; 
•    Lead or support the provision of assistance to ISSAT International Partners Group Members in developing their policies and strategies for security and justice reform support;
•    Lead and contribute to OAK’s Donor Methodology & Guidance portfolio, ensuring clear deliverables and approaches for donor support to SSR. This includes developing practical operational guidance tools, designing and delivering training and workshops and contributing to preparing and sharing knowledge products;
•    Support the implementation of ISSAT’s Programme of Work, by ensuring quality delivery of mandates and contributing to reporting, monitoring and evaluating.

Your experience
•    MA/MSc in International relations, security studies, political sciences, law, conflict studies, development or related field; 
•    10 years of relevant work experience, including 5 years in an international advisory position; 
•    General SSR and governance expertise, combined with specialist skills in areas such as justice, police, defence, civil society etc.
•    Experience in drafting guidance for donors and their partners on security and justice related issues and programme cycle management;
•    Experience in working with and supporting governments, international bilateral partners and multilateral organisations;
•    English and French, other languages an asset

Your skills
•    Excellent public speaking, presentation and facilitation skills 
•    Strategic mindset and skills 
•    Excellent advisory skills 
•    Strong analytical abilities
•    Strong drafting capabilities in English (and French would be an asset)
•    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 security of states and their people within a framework of democratic governance, the rule of law, and respect for human rights

If you think you are a good match for DCAF and the position advertised, please send your application to by 30 August 2022 with the subject-heading ISSAT OAK SSR Justice Advisor 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, neurodiversity, 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.