The United Nations Institute for Disarmament Research (UNIDIR) is an autonomous institution within the United Nations that conducts independent research on disarmament and related problems, particularly international security issues. The vision of UNIDIR is a stable and more secure world in which States and people are protected from threats of arms-related violence. The role of UNIDIR is to support Member States, the United Nations and policy and research communities in advancing ideas and actions that contribute to a more sustainable and peaceful world. UNIDIR is based in the Palais des Nations, Geneva.

UNIDIR’s Space Security Programme builds knowledge and awareness of the challenges and global security implications relating to the space domain. Our research builds capacity and trust in the international sphere and informs multilateral processes as they grapple with the complex technologies and issues at play in this important arena.

Costs and arrangements for travel, visas, accommodation and living expenses are the responsibility of the Graduate Professional or their sponsoring institutions.

A stipend is offered as a contribution to living expenses (Geneva-based, USD 1210/month). Successful candidates who already receive a stipend from another source, such as an educational institution, will have their stipend topped up to this amount.


Within UNIDIR’s Space Security Programme, the Graduate Professional shall perform the following duties under the supervision of the Head of Programme:

  • Background research, including research national policies related to space security in support of the development of the Space Security Portal;
  • Assisting in the further development and digitization of the Lexicon for Space Security;
  • Assisting in the planning and implementation of programme activities (e.g. meetings, workshops, conferences, field missions), in particular UNIDIR’s flagship Outer Space Security Conference;
  • Contributing to day-to-day tasks, including communication, coordination and administrative matters;
  • Performing other tasks, as required by programme staff.

Key Skills and Interests

  • Expertise in space security, space law, space policy or related fields;
  • Ability to undertake independent research on issues related to space security and space law;
  • Ability to synthesize information into concise, high-quality written briefs;
  • Organization and coordination of multiple tasks;
  • Interpersonal, teamwork and communication skills (written and oral);
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Office tools (in particular Word, Excel and PowerPoint) and InDesign;
  • Should have an interest in international peace and security, disarmament, gender issues and the work of the United Nations.


The Graduate Professional is to demonstrate the core values of the United Nations: Professionalism, Integrity, and Respect for Diversity. In addition, in this role, the Graduate Professional will demonstrate the following competences:

  • Communication: Identifies the information needs of target audiences and tailors communication accordingly, drafts clearly and concisely, good written and oral language skills, demonstrates openness in sharing information and keeping people informed.
  • Teamwork: Good interpersonal skills, ability to work collaboratively with colleagues from different national and cultural backgrounds to achieve organizational goals.
  • Planning & Organizing: Uses time efficiently, foresees risks and allows for contingencies when planning, monitors and adjusts plans and actions as necessary to ensure tasks are completed.
  • Creativity: Actively seeks to improve programmes or services, offers new and different options to solve problems, takes an interest in new ideas and ways of doing things, is not bound by current thinking or traditional approaches.
  • Client Orientation: Considers all those to whom services are provided to be ‘clients’ and seeks to understand and reflect the clients’ points of view in their work.

Qualifications and Experience


To qualify for a GPP with the United Nations Graduate and Professional Program, applicants must meet one of the following requirements:

  • Be enrolled in a graduate school programme (second university degree or equivalent, or higher); or
  • Have graduated with a university degree (second university degree, as defined above) and, if selected, must commence the graduate professional programme within a one-year period of graduation.

At UNIDIR, preference will be given to applicants with post-graduate degree qualifications relevant to space security-related issues, for instance in the fields of international relations, political science, international law, and or international security.

Work Experience


  • Are not required to have professional work experience for participation in the programme, while demonstrated experience/interest in space issues, disarmament or international security will be considered an asset;
  • Shall be computer literate in standard software applications, including Microsoft Office and graphic design tools (e.g. InDesign);
  • Have a demonstrated keen interest in the work of the United Nations and have a personal commitment to the ideals of the Charter; and
  • Have a demonstrated ability to successfully interact with individuals of different cultural backgrounds and beliefs, which includes willingness to understand and be tolerant of differing opinions and views.


  • For the position advertised, fluency in English (both oral and written) is required.
  • Knowledge of at least one other official UN language is an asset.

How to apply

Please send us a cover letter and your CV in PDF format titled as SURNAME_Name_CV-CL to Ms Almudena Azcárate Ortega ( and to with “UNIDIR Space GPP Application” in the subject line. Deadline for submission of applications is 15 February 2024. Closing date is midnight Geneva time.

Subject line UNIDIR Space GPP Application

Please note

Incomplete applications will not be processed.

Due to the high volume of applications received, only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.

*Applicants for the Graduate and Professional Program must show proof of valid medical insurance coverage to cover the full period of the GPP and provide a medical certificate of good health prior to the Graduate Professional’s commencement. The United Nations accepts no responsibility for the medical insurance of the Graduate Professional or costs arising from injury, illness or death that may occur during the Graduate and Professional Program.

UNIDIR promotes the core values of the United Nations: Integrity, Professionalism and Respect for Diversity.