Legal Adviser, The Hague, Netherlands

Organization: Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE)

Country: Netherlands

City: The Hague, Netherlands

Office: OSCE, The Hague

Closing date: Tuesday, 16 March 2021

The majority of positions in OSCE field operations are filled by secondment, which means that individuals are nominated by their respective OSCE participating State. In addition, a limited number of seconded positions are available at the OSCE Secretariat and the institutions.

Issued by

OSCE High Commissioner on National Minorities

Vacancy number VNHCNP00148 Vacancy type International Contracted Field of expertise Legal Affairs Grade P3 Number of posts 1 Duty station The Hague Date of issue 16 February 2021 Deadline for application 16 March 2021 - 23:59 Central European Time (CET/CEST)


The OSCE has a comprehensive approach to security that encompasses politico-military, economic and environmental, and human aspects. It therefore addresses a wide range of security-related concerns, including arms control, confidence- and security-building measures, human rights, combating human trafficking, national minorities, democratization, policing strategies, counter-terrorism and economic and environmental activities. All 57 participating States enjoy equal status, and decisions are taken by consensus on a politically, but not legally binding basis.

The OSCE High Commissioner on National Minorities (HCNM) promotes conflict prevention and integration of diverse societies. HCNM was established to identify and seek early resolution of ethnic tensions that might endanger peace, stability or friendly relations between OSCE participating States. Among the tools that the High Commissioner uses are recommendations to governments of OSCE participating States regarding the treatment of national minorities. The Legal Adviser supports the work of the High Commissioner as part of a dynamic team of political and legal advisers, project staff and administrators that values diversity.

Tasks and Responsibilities

Under the supervision of the Head of Section, as Legal Adviser, you will be responsible for:

Advising the High Commissioner on legal aspects regarding the execution of HCNM’s conflict prevention mandate, and on questions relating to the protection and promotion of the rights of persons belonging to national minorities and on other issues of international public law;Researching and drafting memoranda on international best practice in minority protection and country-specific national legislation, including thematic issues such as education, political participation, language rights and integration;Researching and preparing comprehensive legal analyses, notes, reports and recommendations for the High Commissioner, the Director and Senior Advisers on minority-related international instruments and international case law;Providing country-specific analyses of legal developments and the promotion and protection of persons belonging to national minorities as assigned;Preparing and conducting or participating in staff visits, at times on short notice;Preparing briefs for visits of the High Commissioner;Establishing and maintaining contacts with other OSCE institutions and missions as well as other international organizations with regard to the legal aspects of minority issues, e.g., relevant bodies of the Council of Europe, the United Nations and the European Union;Providing legal advice and consulting on minority-related issues when required;Speaking on behalf of the High Commissioner at conferences and other occasions as assigned, including among representatives of governments, non-governmental organizations and intergovernmental organizations;Collaborating on the drafting of speeches for the High Commissioner, Director, or Head of Section as assigned;Providing both in-house and external trainings on relevant human and minority rights issues;Performing other related duties as assigned.

For more detailed information on the work of the OSCE High Commissioner on National Minorities, please see:

Necessary Qualifications

First-level degree in international law, comparative law and politics, international relations or related field; specialization in the international protection of human rights, particularly minority rights;
Six years of progressively responsible professional experience in dealing with minority issues and human rights, international relations, public administration or other related field, including three years at the international level;
Thorough knowledge of international relations, European security issues, international law and human rights;
Excellent analytical skills;
Ability to work with minimum supervision;
Professional fluency in English, including drafting skills;
Working knowledge of Russian is required;
Good communication skills, resourcefulness, team spirit, initiative;
Ability to work independently but also as part of a team;
Ability to travel regularly, including to remote areas or post-conflict regions;
Demonstrated diversity awareness, and an ability to integrate a gender perspective into tasks and activities;
Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with people of different national and cultural backgrounds, whilst remaining impartial and objective;
Tags civil servants comparative law conflict prevention democratization human rights intergovernmental organizations international law international relations legal aspects minority rights political participation public administration public law staff rotation

Computer literacy.

Required competencies

Core values

Commitment: Actively contributes to achieving organizational goals

Diversity: Respects others and values their diverse perspectives and contributions

Integrity: Acts in a manner consistent with the Organization’s core values and organizational principles

Accountability: Takes responsibility for own action and delegated work

Core competencies

Communication: Actively works to achieve clear and transparent communication with colleagues and with stakeholders of the Organization

Collaboration: Works effectively with others on common goals and fosters a positive, trust-based working environment

Planning: Works towards the achievement of goals in a structured and measured manner

Analysis and decision-making: Analyses available information, draws well-founded conclusions and takes appropriate decisions

Initiative-taking: Proposes and initiates new ideas, activities and projects

Flexibility: Responds positively and effectively to changing circumstances

Managerial competencies (for positions with managerial responsibilities)

Leadership: Provides a clear sense of direction, builds trust and creates an enabling environment

Strategic thinking: Identifies goals that advance the organizational agenda and develops plans for achieving them

Managing performance: Helps to maximize team performance by providing active feedback and skill development opportunities

Remuneration Package

Monthly remuneration amounts to approximately EUR 6,386 per month depending on post adjustment and family status. OSCE salaries are exempt from taxation in the Netherlands. Social benefits will include possibility of participation in the Cigna medical insurance scheme and the OSCE Provident Fund. Other allowances and benefits are similar to those offered under the United Nations Common System.

Appointments are normally made at step 1 of the applicable OSCE salary scale.

How To Apply

If you wish to apply for this position, please use the OSCE’s online application link found under


The OSCE retains the discretion to re-advertise/re-post the vacancy, to cancel the recruitment, to offer an appointment at a lower grade or to offer an appointment with a modified job description or for a different duration.

Only those applicants who are selected to participate in the subsequent stages of recruitment will be contacted.

Please note that vacancies in the OSCE are open for competition only amongst nationals of participating States, please see


The OSCE is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages qualified female and male candidates from all religious, ethnic and social backgrounds to apply to become a part of the Organization.

Applicants should be aware that OSCE staff/mission members are international civil servants and may not accept instructions from any other authority. The OSCE is committed to applying the highest ethical standards in carrying out its mandate. The OSCE subscribes to the following core ethical standards or values: integrity, diversity, commitment and accountability.

The OSCE is a non-career organization committed to the principle of staff rotation, therefore the maximum period of service in this post is 7 years.

Please be aware that the OSCE does not request payment at any stage of the application and review process.

Link to the organization’s job offer: