South Africa is one of the most popular destinations for international relations jobs. The country offers a variety of opportunities for those interested in working in the field, from government positions to private sector jobs.
There are many different employers in South Africa that are looking for qualified international relations professionals. Some of the most common employers include the South African government, multinational corporations, and NGOs.
Department of International Relations and Cooperation of the Republic of South Africa
The Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO) is a national body dealing with formulation, coordination, implementation and management of South Africa’s foreign policy and international relations programs.
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DIRCO works to promote South African national interests through bilateral and multilateral interactions, as well as to monitor international developments and advise government on foreign policy. They also contribute to the formulation of international law and provide consular services to South African citizens abroad. DIRCO often hires professionals in the fields of law and advertises open positions on their website.
Delegation of the European Union to South Africa
Delegation of the European Union (EU) has been present in South Africa since 1994. Their relations were strengthened with the establishment of the EU-South Africa Strategic Partnership in 2007, a platform that facilitates cooperation.
Delegation of the EU to South Africa performs consular tasks, but they also function like an embassy representing 27 EU members. They perform a variety of tasks to enhance relations between the EU and South Africa and conduct dialogues in the areas of education, health, energy, the environment, macro-economic policies and, peace and security. Delegation of the EU in South Africa often posts available vacancies in area programs on their website. They also offer traineeship opportunities.
International Labor Organization
The International Labor Organization (ILO) is the UN agency that works to bring together governments, workers and employers to adopt a human-centered approach through employment creation, social protection, work rights, and social dialogue.
They have been working since 1919 with governments, workers and employers from 187 countries to develop policies, set labor standards, and devise programs that promote decent work for everyone. ILO is an equal opportunities employer hiring staff around the world, including South Africa, in the areas of international cooperation, development, and consultancy. They also offer junior professional positions and internship opportunities.
International Monetary Fund
The International Monetary Fund is an institution that promotes monetary cooperation and financial stability. They work to promote sustainable economic growth and employment, facilitate international trade and help to reduce global poverty.
IMF is governed and accountable to 190 member countries and their primary task is to ensure the stability of the international monetary system that enables countries and their citizens to transact with each other. Working at the IMF means addressing complex and challenging issues facing the global economy. IMF employs highly skilled professionals in the areas of economy and administration who are passionate about achieving the goal of global economic stability.
International Finance Corporation
The International Finance Corporation (IFC) is the largest international institution with a focus on the private sector in developing countries. They are a member of the World Bank Group, working to advance economic development and improve the lives of people through the growth of the private sector.
They create new marker, mobilize other investors, and share expertise. In doing so, the IFC creates jobs and raises living standards, especially for the vulnerable and poor. Their work supports the World Bank’s goals of boosting shared prosperity and ending extreme poverty. To achieve their goals, IFC offers competitive vacancies in their offices around the world, including the South African office located in Johannesburg.
The South African Institute of International Affairs
The South African Institute of International Affairs (SAIIA) is an independent public policy think tank working to advance a peaceful, well governed, globally engaged and economically sustainable Africa.
They link local experiences to global debates through spanning their activities on governance, foreign policy, the environment, social development, and economic policy. Their African-generated knowledge provides regional and local decision makers with evidence based and independent options for Africa’s future development. SAIIA accepts applications for internships and fellowships year-round, and regularly put out calls for research submissions.
Institute for Global Dialogue
The Institute for Global Dialogue (IGD) is an independent foreign policy think tank based in Tshwane, Pretoria, South Africa. They work to advance policy-oriented analysis, documentation and debate of South Africa’s and Africa’s global diplomacy and politics.
IGD provides cutting-edge and independent policy research and analysis, dialogue and stakeholder interface on global dynamics that have an impact on Africa and South Africa. From time to time, IGD looks for analysts and administrators fill vacancies when they become available. They also provide volunteer, internship and fellowship opportunities for interested students.
United Nations Information Centre Pretoria
United Nations Information Centre (UNIC) in Pretoria is the UN agency that communicates the work and activities of the UN in South Africa.
They promote greater understanding and awareness of the UN and its role in Africa and globally through outreach, capacity building and campaigns. To achieve this, they work with media, civil society, educational institutions and governments. They take an inclusive approach of telling the UN story in South Africa through the use of their public library and outreach programs such as UN4U and fUN days. UNIC advertises open vacancies for all UN agencies operating in South Africa on their website.
United Nations Development Programme
United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) is a global development network that helps countries find solutions to meet challenges of sustainable human development to reduce inequalities and poverty.
UNDP’s work in South Africa is focuses on contributing to social and economic aspirations through policy development. They bring knowledge of global practices to South Africa and help in sharing South Africa’s best practices worldwide. Their programs in the country are mainstreamed around gender equality, rights and HIV. UNDP employs staff with different contractual modalities, including fixed term, service contract, special service agreement and UN volunteers.
The World Bank is an international financial institution that helps low- and middle-income countries by providing them with loans and grants to pursue capital projects. They are comprised of two institutions: The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) and the International Development Association (IDA).
They work across 189 member countries to find sustainable solutions to reducing poverty and building shared prosperity. The World Bank has offices in 130 locations and employs staff from more than 170 countries. They offer a variety of positions in many areas, including environment, legal, communications, IT, etc.