Open Source Information (OSI) Analyst

International Committee of the Red Cross


What we do

The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) is an impartial, neutral and independent organization whose exclusively humanitarian mission is to protect the lives and dignity of victims of armed conflict and other situations of violence and to provide them with assistance. The ICRC also endeavours to prevent suffering by promoting and strengthening humanitarian law and universal humanitarian principles. Established in 1863, the ICRC originates from the Geneva Conventions and the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement. It directs and coordinates the international activities conducted by the Movement in armed conflicts and other situations of violence.

Within the Department of Operations and its Protection and Assistance structure, the Protection of Civilians Unit develops strategic direction and provides advice and operational support to achieve protection outcomes for civilians affected by armed conflict and other situations of violence in the following areas of activity: ICRC’s prevention approach, monitoring, documentation and analysis of violations of IHL and other bodies of law, strengthening operational interventions – including community based approaches – to prevent, avoid or mitigate civilian harm, notably in the context of the conduct of hostilities, and other situations of violence, internal displacement, migration and risks linked to the use and development of digital technologies. The Unit is also responsible for the production of methodological and policy guidance documents and relevant training in its areas of expertise.

Purpose of the position

In recent years, digital technologies have become a key area for Protection work, where their use by different actors in armed conflict settings can both play an important role towards alleviating the suffering of affected people, as well as presenting new risks to civilians and humanitarian actors alike. The Unit for the Protection of the Civilian Population (hereafter the Unit) recognises the need for the ICRC to invest in the use of Open Source Information (OSI) — and methods to verify and analyse sources of online information — in order to effectively deliver on its mandate in the digital age. As part of CIV’s mission to monitor, document and analyse violations of IHL and other bodies of law and strengthen operational interventions, as well as to better understand and respond to digital risks to civilians in conflict, the use of OSI has the potential to enhance ICRC’s capacity to document and analyse protection problems and thus provide relevant responses to affected populations.

This position is meant to support the Unit’s efforts to build capacity and expertise to better leverage OSI to complement its traditional field approach and ensure it remains on the cutting edge of humanitarian protection work. The position will have also have a particular focus on supporting the ICRC to gather and analyse relevant social media and open source data, and document and report on incidents where harmful online information contributes to civilian harm or directly or indirectly incites or enables IHL violations.

Main Duties and Responsibilities

  • Conduct digital open source research and analysis into alleged violations of International Humanitarian Law and protection concerns, including those linked to digital risks.
  • Assist in the identification and analysis of harmful information online in conflict situations.
  • Assist in the development and implementation of best practices related to open source information and analysis in accordance ICRC mandate and work.
  • Assist in the adaptation and development of appropriate guidance, methodology and criteria for OSI analysis within the ICRC and specific to digital risks
  • Assist in the development and delivery of appropriate training for various audiences within the ICRC.
  • Assist in the systematic collection, verification, and analysis of digital content for the purpose of increasing the speed, specificity, and credibility of ICRC documentation work.
  • Identify new methods for collecting and analysing open source information using latest tools, and develop techniques to improve access to relevant data sets
  • Conduct research on a variety of topics related to the use of digital technologies and open source information to support protection activities.
  • Interact with other relevant units (TRAK, COM, A&E, etc) on identifying collaborative ways and methodologies of work related to the use of open source information for identifying and analysing harmful information
  • Upon request from the field, and in coordination with other relevant units, undertake the collection, verification and analysis of digital open source information to support the documentation of protection concerns linked to the conduct of hostilities.
  • Perform other work-related duties as required.

Education and Experience Required

  • A University degree in relevant field with demonstrated credentials, training and/or practice in the field of open source information & analysis
  • A demonstrated interest in humanitarian work, and other relevant branches of public international law, including human rights law and international criminal law
  • For candidates to be eligible they must have a maximum of one year of professional experience since graduation (in relation to the position), or two years if these professional experiences are traineeships

Desired profile and skills

  • Excellent command of English; knowledge of other languages (Arabic, Russian, Chinese, Spanish, French, etc) is an asset;
  • Initiative and capacity to work independently under minimal supervision;
  • Strong knowledge of open source investigation, methodologies and the verification process and practical experience conducting digital investigations.
  • Experience using digital methods for researching influence operations and related mis/disinformation techniques including the use of social listening tools
  • Excellent ability to work in a team;
  • Excellent communication skills including strong writing abilities;
  • Excellent organizational skills;

Additional information

Location: Geneva
Type of contract: Traineeship
Length of assignment: 11 months
Working rate: 100%
Visa/permit: legitimacy card provided

The ICRC values diversity and is committed to create an inclusive working environment. We welcome application from all qualified candidates. The Unit for the Protection of the Civilian Population actively welcomes applications from a gender-inclusive and diverse range of candidates.

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