Join us as a trainee and help defend human rights in Europe!

Twice per year we welcome young graduates into our organisation as trainees. For them it is a chance to gain valuable experience in a complex multi-cultural and stimulating work environment. As an Organisation, we benefit from the enthusiasm, motivation and skills that new graduates bring.

Our traineeships:

  • last from eight weeks to five months and
  • can be undertaken in Strasbourg or in one of our field offices.

There are two official traineeship sessions each year (beginning in March and September – see below for details).
Only candidates applying online, through the official traineeship programme, will be eligible for a monthly allowance of

  • 600 € in Strasbourg and in the field offices or
  • 300 € in our field offices if the trainee is recruited locally. 

A candidate can apply only for one Department within the Organisation. Please find out more about our different Entities here.

Equal Opportunities

The Council of Europe encourages applications from any person who has the requisite qualifications, without distinction as to gender, disability, marital or parental status, racial, ethnic or social background, skin colour, religion, convictions or sexual orientation. Specific measures may be taken to ensure equal opportunities for applicants with disabilities.

Who can apply?

In order to be eligible for a traineeship, you must meet the following criteria:

  • Have the nationality of one of the Council of Europe member states;
  • Have a bachelor's degree or equivalent (a diploma for the first cycle of higher education as defined in the Bologna Declaration).
  • Have a desire to acquire practical experience and knowledge of the functioning and activities of the Council of Europe;
  • Have a very good knowledge of one of the two Council of Europe official languages (English or French) together with good drafting ability. Good knowledge of the other official language is appreciated.

 Please note that if you already were a trainee/study visitor within the Council of Europe (either in Strasbourg or in the field) you may not undertake another traineeship in the Organisation, whatever form it may take.


The typical responsibilities given to trainees include:

  •  research work;
  •  preparation of draft reports and studies for meetings of experts;
  •  drafting of meeting reports;
  •  assistance with work in hand;
  •  committee organisation;
  •  updating websites.


We provide a comprehensive induction programme for trainees which enables them to find out about the structures, the activities and the international co-operation procedures followed by the Council of Europe, including the implementation of the European Convention on Human Rights. Trainees may attend conferences held within the Organisation, sittings of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, and meetings that may take place during their stay in Strasbourg or in the field.


As of September 2020, trainees within the official traineeship programme receive a monthly allowance.

Specific measures apply to candidates who provide a certificate or attestation issued by an officially recognised body or professional to confirm the type and degree of disability or disabilities.

Among different ways to self-finance the traineeship applying for a scholarship with different international funds is suggested (for ex. Erasmus+). 

Please note that prior to applying for a scholarship you should be admitted to the traineeship programme.

In order to enable the largest number of applicants to benefit from an opportunity for a traineeship at the Council of Europe, nobody may undertake more than one traineeship in the Organisation, whatever form it may take.

How to apply

  • Use the on-line application system, ensuring that you submit by the due date. No other applications can be accepted.
  • You must have an e-mail address to set up an account.
  • Application forms must be completed only in French or English. You can complete the form over several different occasions and then submit it once finalised.

When to apply

Applications for traineeships are only open for specific periods, depending on the session you wish to apply for. Check the table below for the relevant dates. Completed traineeship applications must be submitted online by midnight (French time) of the deadline listed.

Important: Owing to the large amount of applications to be processed, it is strongly recommended to apply at least one week before the deadline. Incomplete applications will not be considered. After the deadline, the forms will be locked and it will no longer be possible to submit applications.

 Traineeship sessions
 Period of traineeship

Second Session 2022

from 01/09/2022* to 31/01/2023

The applications are now closed.
(Deadline: 21 March 2022)

First Session 2023 Unspecified  

Opening date to be announced at a later date**



* Please note that the starting date cannot be altered

** Please note that the link to the application form will be available on this page once the applications are open. 

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