Internship – Liaison Office to Frontex, UNHCR – United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees – Warsaw, Poland

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (the UN Refugee Agency, also known as UNHCR) is an intergovernmental organization with a mandate to protect refugees and stateless persons worldwide. Promoting respect for international protection norms in European Union (EU) law and policy is of vital importance to UNHCR, and the agency, accordingly, provides its views on a wide range of issues related to access to Europe, asylum, refugee protection, resettlement and integration in the Member States of the EU. UNHCR’s reports, proposals and observations on EU asylum law and policy can be found on this page:

The European Border and Coast Guard Agency (also known as Frontex), which is based in Warsaw, is an independent EU body with a legal personality as well as operational and budgetary autonomy. The mission of Frontex is to promote, coordinate and develop European border management in line with the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the EU and the concept of Integrated Border Management. Frontex’s main areas of activity include monitoring, intelligence gathering and analysis of the situation at the EU external borders; planning, coordination, implementation and evaluation of joint operations and rapid border interventions conducted using Member States’ staff and equipment at the EU external borders (sea, land and air), assisting Member States in carrying out returns, and the development of common training standards and specialist tools to provide common training to border guards across the EU.

UNHCR has a bilateral working arrangement with Frontex implemented, through expertise and information sharing, as well as advocacy work led by the UNHCR Bureau for Europe and a dedicated Liaison Office based in Warsaw.

UNHCR is also a member of the Frontex Consultative Forum on Fundamental Rights and has played a leading role in it over the past few years. The Forum was established to promote transparency and respect for Fundamental Rights in Frontex activities. Comprised of fifteen relevant European and International Fundamental Rights organisations, this body serves as a knowledge and expertise resource that advises Frontex Management Board as well as the Executive Director in all Fundamental Rights matters, offering strategic advice on how Frontex can structurally improve respect for Fundamental Rights in its various activities.

Selection Criteria

In order to be considered eligible for an internship, the following criteria must be fulfilled:

a. Be a recent graduate (completed studies within one year) or a current student in a graduate/undergraduate school programme from a university or higher education facility accredited by UNESCO; and

b. Have completed at least two years of undergraduate studies in a field relevant or of interest to the work of UNHCR (law, international relations, political science or other relevant field);

c. Demonstrated interest in refugee protection;

d. Excellent research and analytical skills;

e. Excellent oral and written English skills.

Work Responsibilities

  • To support research on a wide range of subjects related to refugee protection, border management and asylum policy and practice relevant in the EU context, including international and European refugee and human rights law;
  • To review and analyze relevant reports issued by Frontex, other EU actors, civil society organizations or the media;
  • To provide statistical analysis of refugee and migration trends in Europe;
  • To assist in the implementation of various initiatives undertaken by the UNHCR Liaison Office, designed to promote and assess the application of international and European refugee and human rights law, particularly in areas of relevance to the work of Frontex;
  • To assist in the drafting of minutes of meetings, reports or advocacy documents prepared by UNHCR;
  • To assist in the preparation of UNHCR or Consultative Forum-led meetings and events, and to attend conferences and meetings on topics of relevance to UNHCR as necessary, as well as to support agreed follow-up actions;
  • To assist with other tasks that may arise.

Work Dates & Conditions

The UNHCR Liaison Office to Frontex offers two full-time internship assignments for six month each starting on 1 August 2018and 1 February 2019 respectively. Exact dates to be agreed with successful candidates. Please indicate your preferred start date in your motivation letter.

The successful candidates will be based at the UNHCR Liaison Office to Frontex in Warsaw, Poland.

The interns will receive a Food and Local Transportation Allowance (FLTA), up to USD 1000 per month, payable in local currency. The Food and Local Transportation Allowance is provided to non-sponsored interns only. In cases where a sponsored intern receives funding (less than the amount of allowance described above) from the sponsoring institution or another sponsor, UNHCR will pay the difference between this amount and the above allowance, if any.

How to apply

Please send your detailed CV and motivation letter indicating information on your availability in English to UNHCR Liaison Office to Frontex ( by 5 July 2018. Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and invited to the next stages of the recruitment process (on-line written test and interview). For more information, please check UNHCR’s websites (

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