UN Commissions

Forensic Archaeologist

UN Commissions

Job Description


Organization profile

Every year, millions of people around the world go missing as a result of conflict, Human Rights abuses, disasters, organized crime, irregular migration, and other causes. This is a complex global challenge that can be tackled effectively through cross-cutting programs that address a variety of difficult, interconnected issues.

The International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) is the only international organization tasked exclusively to work on the issue of missing persons. It works with governments and other stakeholders, including families of the missing, to help them develop and maintain successful missing persons processes. To learn more about ICMP click here.

Western Balkans Program

In the Western Balkans, ICMP has supported regional cooperation in the search for the missing; it has worked effectively to foster the development and cooperation of Civil Society Organizations with one another and with governments and local authorities in the region. It has pioneered the application of state-of-the-art DNA and advanced database informatics to locate and identify large numbers of missing persons. To date, more than 70 percent of the estimated 40,000 persons reported missing at the end of the fighting in the Western Balkans have been accounted for. ICMP’s Western Balkans Program continues to provide assistance to countries in the region to account for approximately 11,000 persons who are still missing from the conflict in the 1990s.

Position Background

Under the overall guidance and supervision of the WB Forensic Coordinator, the Forensic Archaeologist’s main duties and responsibilities will include the following:

  • Contribute to the development of archaeological best practice
  • Undertake desktop assessment and Analysis and assist in the provision of ICMP archaeological field support
  • Coordinate with ICMP support staff and national authorities and agencies regarding desktop analysis, site assessment, and excavations
  • Provide ICMP Technical Assistance to national authorities involved at excavations through implementation of standards for archaeological assessment and excavation
  • Provide ICMP technical assistance to national authorities involved at examinations through implementation of standards for anthropological assessment, if required


    • Studies in forensic archaeology, anthropology, or related discipline; Master’s degree in aforementioned disciplines is an advantage
    • Five years of related experience
    • Hands on experience in employing forensic archeological skills at excavations of human remains
    • Experience in use of Total Station or similar survey equipment is an advantage
    • Demonstrable ability to analyze artefacts and information, and experience in drafting excavation reports
    • Proven photography and draughtsman skills
    • Experience in forensic examination of human remains or proven high capability in identification of human remains
    • Good knowledge of specialist software such as Adobe Illustrator, CAD, and GIS is an advantage
      • Abilities in Problem Solving, negotiation, and communication
      • Determination to complete objectives and reach targets when working in challenging conditions
      • Capable of performing well under pressure and meeting tight deadlines
      • Self-organized, self-controlled, and self-reliant, with a high level of personal and team responsibility
      • Threat awareness and ability to recognize, respond to, and manage risks.

        Mandatory Requirements

        • Proficiency of Microsoft applications, including Word, Excel, and Power Point
        • Professional fluency in written and spoken English; Native and Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian; Albanian is desirable
        • Team player with a demonstrated ability to interact positively with people of different cultural backgrounds or scientific specialties
        • Willingness to work flexible hours and to travel as necessary
        • Capability to work for extended periods and long hours in difficult and changing environments


          This is a full-time position with a competitive base salary at the L5 level on the ICMP Western Balkans salary scale, generous paid leave and extensive health insurance benefits for the incumbent and any eligible dependent. For more details, please see the ICMP website.

          This position is not eligible for expatriate allowances.

          Expected start date: Immediately

          Review of applications will begin on 20 January 2023; however, the position will remain open until filled.

          ICMP is committed to maintaining an environment of mutual respect, where equal employment opportunities are available to all applicants. ICMP believes that diversity and inclusion among our staff are critical to our success as a global organization, and we seek to recruit, develop and retain the most talented individuals from a thoroughly diverse range of candidates. ICMP is proud to be part of the International Gender Champions network.

          ICMP may cancel this recruitment without notice, or may decide to offer a position with different duties and/or contract length.

          ICMP does not request payment during any stage of the selection process.

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