Swiss Expert Pool for Civilian Peacebuilding

Swiss OSCE representatives lead a meeting of Russian, South Ossetian and Georgian delegations in a tent near the administrative boundary line at Ergneti Georgia.
Swiss OSCE representatives (behind the table) at the meeting of the Russian, South Ossetian and Georgian delegations at the beginning of 2016 at Ergneti Georgia. © EU Monitoring Mission in Georgia

Every year, Switzerland sends some 200 civilian experts to international organisations to promote peace and human rights. These experts work either at the headquarters of international organisations or at peace missions in regions affected by conflict. Since its launch in 2000, the Swiss Expert Pool for Civilian Peacebuilding (SEP) has been an effective peace and human rights policy instrument for Switzerland.

Efforts to re-establish a well-functioning state governed by the rule of law are a crucial part of reconstruction following an armed conflict, giving people security and restoring the necessary trust in state institutions. Civilian experts provide inputs to help build states governed by the rule of law or mediate in conflicts. They help in the planning and running of elections or take part in election observation missions. They also advise judicial and police authorities in forensics or assist border authorities in migration or customs matters.

On average, some 100 experts are deployed at any given time. The UN, OSCE and EU are the pool's main partners. Up to 16 Swiss staff are taking part in the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine. Swiss police are on mission for the UN in Mali as well as in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and election observers are working for the OSCE, the Organization of American States (OAS) and the European Union (EU).

Types of deployment

Deployments lasting from a few days to several years

Training and knowledge transfer

The Swiss Expert Pool runs courses and ensures knowledge is passed on.

Employment opportunities

Make a difference working for peace – apply to the SEP