Start date: As soon as possible
Location: Geneva 
Contract length: Minimum commitment of 6 months, please indicate your availability in your application
Status: Full-time
Compensation: A small stipend is offered
Deadline for application: 20 March 2017

IRIN is the world’s leading humanitarian news service. Our journalists report from the frontlines of conflicts and natural disasters in some 70 countries to drive more effective prevention of and response to crises.

After 19 years as part of the United Nations, IRIN spun off in 2015 to become an independent non-profit media organisation, now headquartered in Switzerland. Over the last two years, we have constituted a legal entity, launched a new website and investigative reporting unit, raised more than $3 million, begun running our own independent operations, and struck a board of directors, led by Pulitzer Prize-nominated journalist, author and professor Howard French.

IRIN is building a new, dynamic team and looking for an External Relations Intern who wants to be involved in something meaningful and stimulating at an exciting time of change. We are looking for a smart, hard-working individual who can join our team in working towards expanding funding and syndication partnerships, building an outreach strategy and improving IRIN’s visibility. 
You will be working with our Director of External Relations and Outreach and Reporting Officer, and given the chance to get plenty of hands on experience.
Principal duties include, but are not limited to:

  • Conducting research and analysis on funding sources including foundations
  • Drafting letters and correspondence to key stakeholders
  • Research, analysis and preparation of substantive briefs and presentations
  • Support to organize conferences, travels, and meetings
  • Keeping IRIN’s donor contact database and funding prospects tool up-to-date
  • Tracking IRIN’s impact (such as re-publications, notable feedback on social media etc.) in a centralised document
  • Conducting research on awards towards the recognition of IRIN’s work
  • Conducting research and analysis on media for syndication partnerships (for example, IRIN already has partnerships with Reliefweb, the Guardian Development Network etc.)
  • Conducting research on events which would provide good opportunities for IRIN outreach
  • Providing any other support as required


Skill requirements include:

  • Fluency in English required (native level), fluency in French desirable
  • Holding or studying for a Master’s degree in international relations, communications, political science, human rights, journalism or related fields
  • Ability to manage many tasks at once, work against short deadlines and to remain calm and focused under pressure
  • Excellent writing skills
  • Good organizational and diplomatic skills
  • Demonstrated knowledge of peacebuilding and conflict prevention issue
  • Knowledge of computer applications (Excel, PowerPoint, Photoshop, InDesign)
  • Experience in managing social media accounts (desirable)
  • Experience in minute-taking (desirable)


About IRIN

IRIN is an award-winning humanitarian news and analysis outlet that was hosted and funded for nearly 20 years by the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).  Founded in 1995, as a result of the humanitarian information gap exposed by the Rwandan genocide, our frontline reporters highlight neglected crises around the world, amplifying the voices of the most vulnerable, and critically examining what has now become a multi-billion-a-year aid industry. Our work shapes the narrative, informs policy and prompts action.  

Some 220,000 people visit IRIN’s website every month; 38,000 subscribe to email newsletter; and millions access our work through media syndication and social media channels every month. We are a go-to source for decision makers in the humanitarian aid sector, including in the UN, governments and other policy circles. Our work is regularly cited by and republished in academic journals and local and international media outlets, including the BBC and the New York Times.  

We plan to grow our operating budget from $2 to $5 million in the coming years as we diversify our funding and strike longer-term agreements, in order to increase the geographic range of our coverage, the languages we offer and the scale of our investigative reporting.

How to apply

In an email to [email protected], with the subject line: External Relations Internship, send us:

  • Your CV
  • A cover letter outlining why you’d like to work with IRIN in particular and how your experience has prepared you for the role
  • In view of Swiss regulations and requirements, IRIN is not in a position to sponsor candidates who don’t have a valid work permit and are not Swiss or EU/EFTA citizens.

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