View Vacancy - Climate Diplomacy Policy Officer (CHEB21.138)- COP 26

The British Government is an inclusive and diversity-friendly employer.  We value difference, promote equality and challenge discrimination, enhancing our organisational capability. We welcome and encourage applications from people of all backgrounds. We do not discriminate on the basis of disability, race, colour, ethnicity, gender identity, religion, sexual orientation, age, veteran status or other category protected by law. We promote family-friendly flexible working opportunities, where operational and security needs allow.
Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (Policy & Political roles)
Climate Diplomacy

Due to COVID-19, you may experience some delay in the progress of this recruitment campaign. We are working hard to minimise any disruption. You may find more information in the Additional Information section below.

The British Embassy in Berne is part of a worldwide network, representing British political, economic and consular interests overseas and is looking to hire a Climate Diplomacy Policy Officer.

Main purpose of job:

Climate is a top priority for the UK, and Her Majesty's Government (HMG) has designated Switzerland as a priority country in pursuit of nature and biodiversity goals. Switzerland’s importance to the UK has grown significantly since the UK’s vote to leave the EU and our decision to host COP26 in Glasgow. As we prepare to host COP26 this November, we are looking to recruit a talented policy professional to build a strong relationship with Switzerland to pursue COP26 and wider climate, energy and public diplomacy objectives.

The successful candidate will develop an embassy climate strategy for Switzerland and lead on its implementation. You will deliver UK objectives and follow-up for the UN Climate Conference (COP26) in Glasgow and for the UK-Swiss Climate Summit “Decarbonising Cities” in Berne. You will lead on broader UK Climate and Energy interests, including green finance, clean growth, emerging technology and future energy policy with Switzerland and the EU. You will develop and implement a public diplomacy campaign strategy covering all of the above and to manage relevant project funding.

This is a great opportunity to contribute to a recast UK-Swiss relationship, to play a role in our diplomatic effort to increase global ambition on climate change, and to develop policy practitioner skills at an expert level. This broad coverage will require wide vision and strong drive, requiring a proactive, self-starting approach that would befit someone keen to take their policy and analytical skills to the next level.


  • The job-holder will lead the development and delivery of both an embassy climate strategy and a public diplomacy campaign aligned to the UK’s ambitious and wide vision, ensuring the British Embassy strengthens the engagement and collaboration necessary to achieve a broad range of policy aims embracing Foreign Policy and Prosperity, as well as the UK’s future partnerships with both Switzerland and the EU.
  • The job-holder will need to secure any relevant project funding available across HMG (e.g. Climate Ambition, Research and Engagement fund in BEIS, and the Climate Diplomacy fund in FCDO) and manage delivery of the project portfolio accordingly, including in concert with regional colleagues where appropriate.
  • Subject to Covid constraints, the job will involve some travel – to London and potentially around the Swiss Cantons.


  • The job-holder will pursue COP26 goals to enhance momentum from the Paris Agreement. You will analyse the Swiss political context and how Switzerland engages in international climate processes. You will generate ideas on how to make UK influence resonate and what levers and synergies we can use to influence Swiss domestic policy and its ambition at COP26. You will lead the Embassy’s public diplomacy efforts on COP26, promoting the UK’s climate leadership and the work of the embassy.
  • You will develop an engagement plan for key government, civil society and business influencers, and deliver a communications strategy to influence them. You will share UK lessons, for instance on our net zero commitment legal framework (the Climate Change Act). You will send regular reporting to UK government departments and recommend bilateral handling, as well as coordinating policy consistency and coherence across the FCDO and through UK government departments.


  • The job-holder will also seek to represent broader UK Climate and Energy interests. Two strategic challenges that economists believe will define the UK’s prosperity in the 21st Century are Technology and Clean Growth, on which the UK Department for International Trade is running a major European regional campaign, bringing individual market work together. The job-holder will work with investment, policy and trade diplomacy teams in engaging with key stakeholders. On Green Finance, the officer will showcase the UK’s expertise, serving as an advocate for the latest UK developments. You will also access wider commercial networks arising from the associated COP26 campaigns of We Mean Growth and Race to Zero.
  • A key milestone in our climate activity is the “Decarbonising Cities” summit planned for 1 September 2021 where we envisage the COP26 president-delegate leading the UK side. The event brings together policy, research and commercial leaders in the climate sector - hopefully leading to longer-term business and policy engagement. The job-holder will engage in the final stages of planning and publicity for this and lead on the coordination of the expected follow-up.
  • On energy policy, in its future partnership with the EU, the UK has an opportunity to learn from Switzerland, which has successfully negotiated an Emissions Trading Scheme linking agreement and has tried to negotiate an electricity framework.
  • As the UK and Switzerland scope a possible Free Trade Agreement, there will be an opportunity to shape climate proposals for this.
  • Proficiency in English both written and spoken (minimum of C1 level for CEFR framework*);
  • Experience in driving campaigns and combining commercial, comms and policy priorities;
  • Energy and confidence to create new networks;
  • Experience of leading and inspiring a project team to achieve clear deliverables.
  • Business/Policy/Regulatory experience in Switzerland or in an international setting;
  • A proven network of Swiss stakeholders, including companies, academia, and federal and cantonal authorities, or clear ability to create this quickly;
  • French or German reading and/or speaking ability.
Seeing the Big Picture, Making Effective Decisions, Leading and Communicating, Engaging Internationally
18 May 2021
C4 (L)
Full-time, Temporary
Europe, Eastern Europe & Central Asia
British Embassy
14 June 2021

This is a full-time, temporary contract of 40 hours per week. This is a time-limited contract until end of March 2022. Given the compressed timescale, therefore, we are especially keen to attract applicants who can start in the role as soon as possible.

Gross monthly salary is CHF 9652.00. In addition, staff are entitled to a 13th month salary pro rata. The annual leave entitlement is 25 days per year pro rata and the Embassy also enjoys a maximum of 14 Swiss/ UK public holidays per year.

The successful candidate will be subject to professional background and security clearance. The successful candidate must have pre-existing work authorisation for Switzerland in order to apply. All applicants should have the right to live and work in Switzerland.

Staff recruited locally by the British Embassy are subject to terms and conditions service according to Swiss employment law.

Visa/work permit requirements: Candidates must currently hold the independent right to live and work in Switzerland and be prepared to ensure that right remains throughout the scope of the contract.

Please note that it is your responsibility to ensure you meet the legal requirements to live and work in this country.

Please note that the deadline for applications is 23:55 on the day mentioned in the above field “Application deadline”.

We advise you to allow enough time to complete and submit your full application, since only applications completed and submitted before the deadline will be considered.

Please be aware that the deadline for submitting applications is considered to be the time zone for the country where the vacancy has arisen.

Please be advised that the FCDO will not be able to meet the travel costs incurred when travelling to the interview, nor the costs connected with relocation if offered a job.

Information due to COVID-19:

  • You may experience some delay in the progress of this recruitment campaign and we are working hard to minimise any disruption;
  • Interviews will be done remotely if the existing situation determines this to be the right course of action;
  • Starting date may be delayed depending on circumstances at the time and it will be agreed with the selected candidate.

*Please note for more information on the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages: Learning, Teaching, Assessment  levels  please click on the following link CEFR. Please bear in mind in case you are invited for an interview your language skill is going to be assessed.

Please be aware that you will only be able to apply to vacancies for Country Based Staff roles with the British Government through this official site (operated by Oleeo). Jobs may be advertised on third party websites, however our adverts will always link back to the official site. If you complete and send an application through any other site, we will not receive it.

This opportunity is closed to applications.