Position Description

Humanitarian Affairs Officer (CLOSED)
Location MSF Holland
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A specialist position leading on the integration of humanitarian analysis, civilian and refugee protection, and human rights into MSF’s operational response. Humanitarian affairs work within MSF involves support to mission teams under three main tracks:

  • Identifying and responding to violence, abuse, and deliberate neglect (protection)
  • Increasing the understanding, visibility, and respect for humanitarian principles
  • Linking MSF into wider humanitarian debates (ex: aid effectiveness, urban refugees, etc.)  

Core activities dealing with humanitarian protection will include the gathering information and the documentation of violence and abuse against civilians and/or against the medical mission within the framework of International Humanitarian Law (IHL) and International Human Rights Law (IHRL). Improving the humanitarian and human rights situation of populations in crisis will further require the definition of advocacy activities to enhance the protection of civilians and encourage key actors (state, non-state, aid agencies, etc.) to assume their responsibilities and mandates.

You support the mission’s Management Team in countries undergoing emergency crises, often due to armed conflict. You do so by analysing the context and by identifying key humanitarian and protection issues to advocate for. Assignments can be specific and limited to the definition or implementation of an advocacy strategy according to MSF policies and values, taking testimonies or training national teams to do so, or developing systems for data collection. Humanitarian affairs work rests on strong analytical skills and requires the ability to synthesize complex field realities so as to prioritize core concerns and guide MSF organizational positioning and advocacy activities.

Requirements for Humanitarian Affairs Officers

  • Master’s degree in Law (IHL and/or IHRL), Social Sciences or a related university degree
  • Excellent analytical skills with the ability to synthesise large amounts of complex information and identify key points or trends.
  • Previous working experience of at least three years within humanitarian operations, human rights or a related field of which two years of humanitarian field experience in conflict, disaster or resource-poor environments (with MSF or another NGO).
  • Proven research and qualitative data collection skills, particularly working with vulnerable individuals
  • In-depth understanding of current humanitarian debates and of the dilemma/compromise nature of modern humanitarian interventions.
  • Excellent command of the English language (minimum level C1) with proven ability to write clearly and concisely
  • Computer literacy (database design/analysis, MS package, and internet-based research)
  • Ability to work independently and negotiate difficult situations with diplomacy and tact.
  • Ability to cope with stress and to organize/prioritize workload under tight deadlines
  • Willingness to work in an unstable and insecure environment
  • Availability of 9-12 months
  • A good command of other languages such as Arabic and/or French (minimum level C1) 



  • Policy, advocacy and/or campaigning experience.
  • Experience working with humanitarian protection issues or refugee/migrant case management.
  • Experience in networking and building relationships
  • Experience in training and giving workshops about human rights, humanitarian law and principles
  • Specialised expertise such as gender, specific country expertise and/or language, etc.
  • Experience with setting up data collection systems


Application process

At Médecins sans Frontières (MSF) / Artsen zonder Grenzen, we are committed to an inclusive culture that encourages and supports the diverse voices of our employees. Our diversity fuels our innovation and connects us closer to our beneficiaries and the communities in which we work.  We welcome applications from individuals of all genders, ages, sexual orientations, nationalities, races, religions, beliefs, ability statusand all other diversity characteristics.


The following documents will be requested in the application process:

  • Your most recent English CV not exceeding 3 pages
  • A cover letter explaining your motivation to work with MSF
  • A clear scan of your relevant diploma’s and certificates
  • A writing sample of about two pages
  • If you are currently working for MSF as national staff or have done so up until a year ago, we require that you upload a recommendation letter for expatriation from your HRCo, Head of Mission or other staff in a coordinating position and include two of your most recent MSF evaluations


In MSF we are strongly committed to professionalism and responsible behaviour and therefore the final phase of the application process is a background screening. Such screening can consist out of an identity check, check of employment history, reference check and declaration on behaviour (VOG).

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