Associate Legal Officer (Data Protection)

Position Title: Associate Legal Officer (Data Protection)

Job Code: VN 2024 170

Duty Station: Geneva, Switzerland

Classification: Professional Staff, Grade P2

Type of Appointment: Fixed term, one year with possibility of extension

Estimated Start Date: As soon as possible

Closing Date: 04 April 2024

Established in 1951, IOM is a Related Organization of the United Nations, and as the leading UN agency in the field of migration, works closely with governmental, intergovernmental and non-governmental partners. IOM is dedicated to promoting humane and orderly migration for the benefit of all. It does so by providing services and advice to governments and migrants.

IOM is committed to a diverse and inclusive work environment. Read more about diversity and inclusion at IOM at

Applications are welcome from first- and second-tier candidates, particularly qualified female candidates as well as applications from the non-represented member countries of IOM. For all IOM vacancies, applications from qualified and eligible first-tier candidates are considered before those of qualified and eligible second-tier candidates in the selection process.

For the purpose of this vacancy, the following are considered first-tier candidates:

  1. Internal candidates
  2. Candidates from the following non-represented member states:

Antigua and Barbuda; Barbados; Botswana; Cabo Verde; Comoros; Congo

(the); Cook Islands; Dominica; Fiji; Grenada; Guinea-Bissau; Holy See;

Iceland; Kiribati; Lao People’s Democratic Republic (the); Madagascar;

Marshall Islands; Micronesia (Federated States of); Namibia; Nauru;

Palau; Saint Kitts and Nevis; Solomon Islands; Suriname; The Bahamas; Tonga; Tuvalu; Uzbekistan; Vanuatu

Second-tier candidates include:

All external candidates, except candidates from non-represented member states.


The Office of Legal Affairs provides legal advice to the Director General, the Deputy Directors General, the Regional Offices, Country Offices, and other Departments and Offices of the

Organization. The Office provides support to ensure that the activities and operations of the Organization are carried out in accordance with the Legal Framework governing IOM, including the IOM Constitution, decisions of the governing bodies of IOM, the Unified Staff Regulations and Rules, the Financial Regulations and Rules, IOM instructions and international law.

The Office of Legal Affairs is comprised of three divisions: the Institutional Law and Programme Support Division, the Contract Law Division, and the General and Administrative Law Division.

The Institutional Law and Programme Support Division (LEG-PS) is responsible for:

  • Preparing legal advice on the structure and functions of the Organization, based on the IOM

Constitution; the Organization’s mandate; other basic texts, such as the Rules of Procedure of the Council and Standing Committee on Programmes and Finance; relevant Council decisions; and international law;

  • Preparing legal advice on IOM’s legal status and privileges and immunities;
  • Providing legal advice to ensure a sound legal basis for the Organization’s relationship with states, the United Nations, and other international organizations, and reviewing global cooperation agreements;
  • Supporting the work of the governing bodies, including subsidiary organs and working groups, by providing legal advice and interpretation;
  • Preparing advice on the legal aspects of IOM operations and organizational policies;
  • Establishing data protection controls and reviewing policies and processes to enhance the protection of personal data in a manner that respects human rights.
  • Providing advice to field offices and Headquarters to ensure that personal data of IOM beneficiaries are collected, used, transferred and stored in accordance with the IOM data protection legal framework, and preparing and reviewing related agreements and contractual clauses.

Under the overall supervision of the Head of the Institutional Law and Programme Support Division and direct supervision of the Senior Legal Officer (Data Protection and Governance), the Associate Legal Officer (Data Protection) will be responsible and accountable for assisting in providing timely, accurate legal advice and support on issues relating to the functions of the Institutional Law and Programme Support Division of the Office of Legal Affairs in the area of data protection.

Core Functions / Responsibilities:

  1. Assist in preparing general in‐house legal advice on data protection aspects of specific IOM programmatic areas.
  2. Contribute to the review of contractual clauses, data sharing agreements, and other agreements related to data protection in a timely manner, taking into account IOM’s legal status and the organizational regulations, rules and policies.
  3. Participate in the implementation of an updated data protection legal framework.
  4. Assist in providing legal advice on personal data mappings and risk assessments, and in handling data subject complaints.
  5. Assist in the development and provision of trainings on data protection matters.
  6. Assist in the preparation of comments to various organizational policies, procedures, and guidelines.
  7. Conduct research on public international law and data protection matters, and assist in preparing appropriate recommendations in‐house.
  8. Attend internal and external meetings relevant to the data protection work of the Office of Legal Affairs, as appropriate.
  9. Perform other duties as may be assigned.

Required Qualifications and Experience:


  • Master’s degree in Law or a related field from an accredited academic institution with two years of relevant professional experience; or
  • University degree in the above fields from an accredited academic institution with four years of relevant professional experience; and,
  • Data protection certification, such as through the International Association of Privacy Professionals (IAPP) is an advantage.


  • A minimum of two or four years (depending on the education qualification, see above), of which at least one year of provision of data protection‐related advice; and,
  • Experience in the legal department or data protection office of an intergovernmental organization will be considered an advantage.


  • Knowledge of public international law, in particular law of international organizations;
  • Knowledge of data protection law;
  • Excellent research, drafting, and analytical skills, with meticulous attention to detail, enabling thorough and comprehensive legal analysis;
  • Excellent organizational skills; and,
  • Ability to effectively work under pressure and meet tight deadlines.


IOM’s official languages are English, French, and Spanish. All staff members are required to be fluent in one of the three languages.

For this position, fluency in English is required (oral and written). Working knowledge of another official UN language (Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian, and Spanish) is an advantage.

Proficiency of language(s) required will be specifically evaluated during the selection process, which may include written and/or oral assessments.


Accredited Universities are the ones listed in the UNESCO World Higher Education Database (

Required Competencies:

Values – all IOM staff members must abide by and demonstrate these five values:

  • Inclusion and respect for diversity: Respects and promotes individual and cultural differences. Encourages diversity and inclusion.
  • Integrity and transparency: Maintains high ethical standards and acts in a manner consistent with organizational principles/rules and standards of conduct.
  • Professionalism: Demonstrates ability to work in a composed, competent and committed manner and exercises careful judgment in meeting day-to-day challenges.
  • Courage: Demonstrates willingness to take a stand on issues of importance.
  • Empathy: Shows compassion for others, to make people feel safe, respected and fairly treated.

Core Competencies – Behavioural Indicators level 2

  • Teamwork: Develops and promotes effective collaboration within and across units to achieve shared goals and optimize results.
  • Delivering results: Produces and delivers quality results in a service-oriented and timely manner. Is action-oriented and committed to achieving agreed outcomes.
  • Managing and sharing knowledge: Continuously seeks to learn, share knowledge and innovate.
  • Accountability: Takes ownership for achieving the Organization’s priorities and assumes responsibility for own actions and delegated work.
  • Communication: Encourages and contributes to clear and open communication. Explains complex matters in an informative, inspiring and motivational way.

IOM’s competency framework can be found at this link. df

Competencies will be assessed during a competency-based interview.


Internationally recruited professional staff are required to be mobile.

Any offer made to the candidate in relation to this vacancy notice is subject to funding confirmation.

This selection process may be used to staff similar positions in various duty stations. Recommended candidates endorsed by the Appointments and Postings Board will remain eligible to be appointed in a similar position for a period of 24 months.

The list of NMS countries above includes all IOM Member States which are non-represented in the Professional Category of staff members.

Appointment will be subject to certification that the candidate is medically fit for appointment, accreditation, any residency or visa requirements, and background verification and security clearances. Subject to certain exemptions, vaccination against COVID-19 will in principle be required for individuals hired on or after 15 November 2021. This will be verified as part of the medical clearance process.

Vacancies close at 23:59 local time in Geneva, Switzerland on the respective closing date. No late applications will be accepted.

How to apply

Interested candidates are invited to submit their applications HERE, by 04 April 2024 at the latest, referring to this advertisement.

IOM only accepts duly completed applications submitted through the IOM e-Recruitment system. The online tool also allows candidates to track the status of their application.

Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.

For further information please refer to:

Posting period:

From 22.03.2024 to 04.04.2024

No Fees:

IOM does not charge a fee at any stage of its recruitment process (application, interview, processing, training or other fee). IOM does not request any information related to bank accounts.

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