Young Graduate Trainee in “Protect Accelerator – Space Safety Policy and Coordination”





ESA Headquarters, Paris, France


Our team and mission

The Protection of Space Assets (Protect) Accelerator was established to contribute to protecting European assets from space hazards, including debris and space weather interferences, in synergy with relevant national, EU or other European initiatives. Implemented by the Directorate of Operations, it leverages the capabilities and solutions developed by the Space Safety Programme to foster collaborative capacity building activities with all relevant actors of the European and global space sectors, for the achievement of a Zero Debris future by 2030 and to ensure the availability of state-of-the-art space weather services in Europe.

You, in the Protect Accelerator, will be working under the supervision of the Protect Accelerator Coordinator in the Strategy and Transformation Office, Directorate of Operations, and will provide functional support to the Space Safety Programme. The position will be based at ESA HQ in Paris, working hand-in-hand with the Core Accelerator Team and other Accelerators’ Coordinators.

In addition to hosting the Protect Accelerator, the main responsibilities of the Strategy and Transformation Office, which works directly with the Director of Operations are:

  1. preparing and formulating strategies in collaboration with the Director and the Operations Directorate (D/OPS) Management Team;
  2. managing the Directorate’s governance process with respect to the Mission Operations Infrastructure Investment (the overall system infrastructure that is required to operate space missions) and Core Technical Expertise strategic planning and budget management.


As part of these tasks the Office is responsible for ensuring ESOC remains at the forefront of innovation in mission operations and space safety, to enable European space industry competitiveness on the global market.


You are encouraged to visit the ESA website:

Field(s) of activity/research for the traineeship

Working with the Protect Accelerator Coordinator, you will contribute to the development of the Accelerator, in coordination with the Space Safety Programme and other relevant structures in the Agency, and to the implementation of its two core activities.

On the one hand, you will support the promotion of the Zero Debris Charter, the world’s most ambitious commitment on space debris mitigation and remediation to-date and support the implementation of ESA’s engagement roadmap with the Zero Debris Community, laying out major capacity building activities and ensuring Europe’s leadership in space debris mitigation and remediation.

On the other hand, you will be involved in ongoing discussions on the operationalisation of space weather services in Europe on the basis of ESA’s Space Weather Service Network and you will contribute to the Protect Accelerator’s objectives towards identifying and consolidating communities of users of space weather services.

In addition, you will be exposed to the overall work of the Space Safety Programme and of the Strategy and Transformation Office, hence learning the core functioning of the Directorate of Operations.

Technical competencies

Knowledge of relevant technical domains
Relevant experience gained during internships/project work
Breadth of exposure coming from past and/or current research/activities
Knowledge of ESA and its programmes/projects

Behavioural competencies

Result Orientation

Operational Efficiency

Fostering Cooperation

Relationship Management

Continuous Improvement

Forward Thinking


You should have just completed, or be in the final year of your Master’ s degree in space policy, law, engineering, or sciences. A dual expertise in social sciences and engineering would be a strong asset.

Additional requirements

You should have good interpersonal and communication skills and should be able to work in a multicultural environment, both independently and as part of a team.

The working languages of the Agency are English and French. A good knowledge of one of these is required. Knowledge of another Member State language would be an asset.

During the interview motivation and overall professional perspective/career goals will also be explored.

Other information

For behavioural competencies expected from ESA staff in general, please refer to the ESA Competency Framework.


For further information on the Young Graduate Programme please visit: Young Graduate Programme and FAQ Young Graduate Programme


At the Agency we value diversity and we welcome people with disabilities. Whenever possible, we seek to accommodate individuals with disabilities by providing the necessary support at the workplace. The Human Resources Department can also provide assistance during the recruitment process. If you would like to discuss this further please contact us email [email protected].


Please note that applications are only considered from nationals of one of the following States: Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom. Nationals from Latvia, Lithuania, Slovakia and Slovenia, as  Associate Member States, or Canada as a Cooperating State, can apply as well as those from Bulgaria, Croatia and Cyprus as European Cooperating States (ECS).

According to the ESA Convention, the recruitment of staff must take into account an adequate distribution of posts among nationals of the ESA Member States*. When short-listing for an interview, priority will first be given to candidates from under-represented Member States*.


In accordance with the European Space Agency’s security procedures and as part of the selection process, successful candidates will be required to undergo basic screening before appointment conducted by an external background screening service.

*Member States, Associate Members or Cooperating States.

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