EFTA Surveillance Authority 2018/19 Trainee Programme

Launch your career in the heart of Europe

Each year, six talented candidates are invited to join the EFTA Surveillance Authority trainee programme for 11 months from September to July. The traineeship provides young professionals and recent graduates from the EEA EFTA States (Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway) a unique opportunity to experience and participate in the work of the Authority and the inner workings of the EEA Agreement.

The Authority

The EFTA Surveillance Authority (ESA) monitors compliance with the Agreement on the European Economic Area (EEA Agreement) in Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway, enabling those States to participate in the Internal Market of the European Union.

ESA is independent of the States and safeguards the rights of individuals and undertakings under the EEA Agreement, ensuring free movement, fair competition and control of state aid.  ESA's work helps remove barriers to trade and open up new opportunities to more than 500 million Europeans, creating jobs and growth and adding to the international competitiveness of the States.

ESA is based in Brussels and operates independently of the EFTA States. It currently employs 75 staff members of 16 nationalities.

Job Reference

Role Description

A traineeship at ESA is a great way to kick-start your career. Whether you are pursuing a career in the public or the private sector, at home or internationally, the experience will prove beneficial. Trainees take part in the daily work of the different departments. They gain valuable work experience by assisting case handlers with the ongoing activities of ESA, get hands-on knowledge of the functioning of the EEA Agreement and have the opportunity to live and work in a thriving multicultural environment. 

We are looking for engaged young professionals or recent graduates from Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway, primarily with a background in law but also in other relevant disciplines for our Communications traineeship.  Strong academic results and an interest or specialisation in EEA/EU affairs are required, as is an excellent command of English, the working language of the Authority. Extracurricular activities and community involvement are rated positively.

The trainees work in the Competition and State Aid (CSA) or Internal Market Affairs (IMA) Directorates or in the Legal and Executive Affairs (LEA) Department, which includes the Communications Team of the Authority.  Each year, two trainees join each of the Directorates/Departments.

Essential Skills

  • Applicants must be nationals of Iceland, Liechtenstein or Norway. 
  • University degree in law for the IMA, CSA & LEA trainees.
  • University degree in a relevant discipline for the Communications trainee (i.e. Journalism, Media or Communications).  Other subjects may be accepted, provided the applicant has relevant work experience in media and communications.
  • Interest or specialisation in EU/EEA matters.
  • Applicants should be young professionals or final year students who will complete their studies prior to 1 September 2018, with strong academic results.
  • An excellent command of written and spoken English, the working language of ESA. 
  • We are looking for people who are engaged, proactive and independent, whilst at the same time being strong team players. You should be accurate, well organised and proactive in your work.

Other information

The traineeship at the Authority is a paid position and trainees receive:

  • A monthly allowance of €1500
  • Free, furnished and private accommodation in Brussels
  • Utility and internet costs covered by ESA, and mobile phone provided
  • Health, life and invalidity and travel insurance cover
  • Reimbursement of travel costs upon taking up and leaving the traineeship

For more information about the Authority and the traineeship programme, visit: www.eftasurv.int

In the interests of ensuring that trainee positions are open to as wide a group of individuals as possible, current and former trainees of the EFTA Secretariat will not be eligible to apply for ESA trainee positions.  Current and former trainees of the EFTA Court will, however, be eligible to apply in light of the short-term nature of traineeships in the Court as compared with those in the Secretariat.

Application procedure:

All applicants must apply online via our jobs portal at: jobs.eftasurv.int.  Only nationals of Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway are eligible to apply.

 Further questions regarding the traineeship programme may, in the first instance, be addressed to Catherine Vandeput, HR assistant: cva@eftasurv.int  or +32 (0)2 286 18 93.  

Deadline for applications: 4 March 2018                               Start Date: 1 September 2018

Interviews will be held in March/April 2018 by telephone or Skype and the selection process will be finalised by the end of April 2018.

For information on how your personal data will be used, processed, disclosed and retained, please see the EFTA Surveillance Authority’s privacy statement on recruitment: here.



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