The International Safeguards Project Office has compiled the following
information to help prospective IAEA candidates weigh the benefits of
working at the IAEA versus government or private organizations in the United
States. Some benefits are directly comparable to those provided by U.S.
employers while others are not.
The scenario shown is meant to be an example based on rates from December 2010 and the amounts are subject to change.
Due to variations in the Euro rate, the Agency permits salary to be dispersed in any one currency or combination of currencies. The Agency does not charge a fee for salary conversion.
Post adjustment is an amount paid in addition to net base salary, which varies according to the cost of living at each duty station in comparison to New York (the base of the UN remuneration system). It is designed to ensure that no matter where the United Nations Common System staff work, their take-home pay has a purchasing power equivalent to that at the base of the system, New York. It is applicable to international staff in the Professional and higher categories.
Employees are required to participate in the United Nations Joint Staff Pension Fund (UNJSPF), www.unjspf.org, for which they contribute 7.9% and the Agency contributes 15.8% of their pensionable remuneration. They become vested in the UNJSPF after five years of service. Anyone leaving the Agency before completion of five years of contributory service will be reimbursed the amount of their own contributions plus 3.25% interest. As an exception, staff members may be authorized to continue participation in a national pension insurance scheme or the pension scheme of their former employer.
As the dollar fluctuates against the Euro, the appeal of the IAEA salary will increase or diminish. As the dollar becomes weaker, the post adjustment usually increases, making the IAEA salary look attractive compared to U.S. salaries. This is a benefit especially when the employee has significant financial commitments in dollars. Prospective candidates should be aware that the IAEA salary is designed to provide a constant standard of living in Vienna.
The IAEA salary is free from U.S. Income Tax. The first $91,500 of income
is exempt from income tax based on the foreign presence test (IRS Form
2555), requiring absence from the United States for 330 days of a 365-day
period. Tax must be paid on any income earned from the IAEA in excess of
$91,500, but the IAEA will reimburse the employee for the tax paid, making
the entire salary tax-free to the IAEA employee.
For further information regarding US taxes for IAEA staff visit:
This website was designed and written by Richard Hilliard, Tax Liaison Officer at the IAEA.
Medical insurance covers medical and hospital expenses. Normally staff
members and their eligible dependents will be enrolled on a cost-sharing
basis in the Agency's health scheme (Van Breda), which provides coverage for
medical and hospital costs and for dental treatment. Staff members can,
however, under certain conditions, join the Austrian national health
insurance scheme, with an optional Van Breda supplementary insurance plan.
In special cases approval may be granted to continue participation in health insurance schemes other than the Agency's.
The rental subsidy scheme aims to ensure a greater degree of equity and
alleviate hardship by subsidizing housing for newcomers whose rental costs
significantly exceed the average for the duty station. A newly appointed
staff member, or one transferred from one duty station to another, is
eligible for the rental subsidy, for a maximum period of seven years. The
actual subsidy is based on an algorithm that takes into account the staff
member’s professional level, salary, and number of family members in
residence. The subsidy cannot be more than 40% of the actual rent and will
decrease with time.
An IAEA employee accrues vacation at the rate of 2.5 days per month, which can also be interpreted as six weeks per year. In addition, there are ten official holidays.
Aside from vacation time, travel expenses of an eligible staff member and primary dependents are paid to and from the home country to enable one to take leave there once every two years of qualifying service. The first home leave will fall within the second year of a staff member's service based on a three-year contract.
This grant is intended to defray the costs of food and temporary housing in Vienna while the new employee seeks suitable accommodations, but it is not based on actual expenditures. An IAEA employee receives ~$6,000 plus $3,000 per dependent.
Upon separation from service, a staff member who has completed at least one year of service outside their home country and whom the Agency is liable to send home is paid a repatriation grant. The amount of the grant is based upon the number of years of continual service equating to the number of weeks of pay. Payment of the repatriation grant shall be subject to evidence of relocation.
Education expenses are subject to an admissible educational expense limit,
which is reimbursable at 75% per child per year, 100% for disabled children.
In 2010, for a dependent child studying in Vienna, the limit is ~ $17,000, 75%
is ~ $12,000. For a dependent child studying in the USA, the limit is
$39,096., 75% is $29,322. The education grant is payable, if supported by
documentary evidence, for each child in full-time attendance at a recognized
school or university. The grant is not payable for attendance at a school free
of charge or one charging only nominal fees at the duty station.
In Austria most American families opt to send their children to private primary and secondary schools due to language considerations.
At the higher professional levels, Agency staff are eligible for refunds of value added tax (VAT). VAT is a sales tax that is included to varying degrees in apartment rentals, automobiles, gasoline, and other items in Austria.
The IAEA provides a variety of in-house training programs and
professional development opportunities to help staff members update and
develop their work-related knowledge and skills. These programs include
communication, management, career planning, and computer courses. In
addition, new staff members and their spouses are invited to participate in
the Induction Course that will introduce them to the IAEA and to life in
The IAEA also offers training at a reasonable cost in all the official
languages, as well as German, to staff members and their spouses who wish to
further develop their linguistic skills for professional or personal
The IAEA Staff development Centre (SDC) is a multiple media facility for employees and their spouses. Users can broaden their professional, as well as personal skills and develop their career options through self-training and workshops. A wide selection of video tapes, books, CDs, software, and other instructional material is available at the SDC and assistance is provided to guide users through these materials.
In addition, the SDC offers counseling in relocation matters and support for spouses in the job-search process.
The IAEA's Headquarters are located - together with a number of other United Nations organizations - at the Vienna International Centre (VIC), an office complex comprising several towers and bordering Vienna's Donaupark (Danube Park). The site lies about 7 km (4 miles) from the center of Vienna and is easily accessible by car and public transport. Parking is available at low cost.
Facilities at the VIC include a post office, a bank, two travel agencies, a pharmacy, a news-stand, a dry-cleaning service, a restaurant, a self-service cafeteria and a gymnasium.
In the most recent worldwide quality of living survey, conducted by
William M. Mercer, the noted international human resources consultancy,
Vienna was ranked first for overall quality of life.
For further information contact:
Tanya Collins, ISPO
For details and conditions, please consult the Guidebook for U.S. Citizens Going to Work for the International Atomic Energy Agency in Safeguards that is published by the International Safeguards Project Office.
Last Modified: May 20, 2011