Lead and direct the strategic development, positioning and effective implementation of the IUCN Centre for Science and Data, its four Thematic Teams and associated initiatives. S/he works strategically and in support of the Deputy Director General – Programme and in full collaboration with the other Centre Directors, his or her Regional counterparts, IUCN Member organisations, Commission members, governments, institutions, and civil society groups to advance IUCN’s Mission and mandate of the organisation. With a firm understanding of global conservation and sustainable development and a keen desire to innovate and deliver positive change at scale, the Centre Director oversees and drives the development and implementation of the Centre’s portfolio, in line with IUCN’s strategic plans and programmes. She/he is responsible for maintaining a high and professional corporate profile for IUCN, particularly with IUCN Members, partners, donors and other stakeholder groups.
This position requires an accomplished, credible and reliable senior leader with strong experience, an innovative track record and a good understanding of the demands and requirements that various stakeholders (from both within and outside the conservation sector) have for credible conservation knowledge, tools, guidance and technical engagement. The Centre Director has an institutional responsibility for oversight of the broad spectrum of expertise offered by her/his Thematic Teams as well as the skills to oversee organisational management and financial planning. S/he is equally accountable for financial, people and administrative resources and ensures the financial viability of the Centre in line with IUCN policies and procedures. The Centre Director ensures that all organisational activities are consistently performed under the principles of equity, fairness, inclusiveness and respect for the diversity of people and that all Centre staff adhere to IUCN’s standards and values and observe a high level of personal and institutional propriety.
Leadership, Programme Management and Representation
- Represent and promote the Mission of IUCN to Governments, donors and collaborating boundary partners in a manner that enhances the status of the Union and influences decision-making bodies, intergovernmental agencies, non-governmental organisations, civil society and the private sector;
- Provide strategic leadership and guidance in developing and implementing innovative robust and reliable business models to support delivery of IUCN’s Programme;
- In close collaboration with peers, ensure that the Centre’s programmatic delivery fully integrates the required skills and knowledge from other thematic Centres and Regional Offices and that the cost of such inputs are fully covered;
- Oversee the preparation, implementation, evaluation and reporting of multi-year work plans for the Centre in line with the IUCN Programme and its operational and management procedures;
- Serve as a member of the IUCN Programme Centres Coordinating Group;
- Establish programme and portfolio targets derived from IUCN’s quadrennial strategic programme;
- Support the Programme Planning Monitoring and Evaluation Team in coordinating and tracking the delivery of designated Prioritised Programme Areas and Programme Enabling Activities;
- Establish and maintain institutional relations with key collaborating partners and formalise such relationships by establishing Agreements that enhance active cooperation and collaboration between parties in conserving the integrity and diversity of nature;
- Establish priorities and remain accountable for the implementation of work plans to manage and mitigate strategic and operational risks associated with various programmatic engagements;
- Provide intellectual direction on the development, uptake and use of knowledge products, analysis and reports developed by the Centre;
- Ensure Centre’s initiatives and projects are delivered within time, quality, scope, specification, and budget as well as compliance with all appropriate stakeholder and donor requirements and reporting.
Resource mobilisation, Operational Oversight and Constituency Engagement
- Cultivate and develop a dynamic, effective and committed team of professionals while addressing workforce diversity, equity and equality;
- Foster the behaviours and values that prioritise the delivery of high quality, team-based results across the Centre, ensuring that staff understand how their work, role and responsibilities fit into the strategic objectives IUCN;
- Review, maintain and, as necessary, enhance the mix of technical skills and competencies within the Centre’s workforce required to deliver the individual Teams’ mandate;
- Develop and safeguard a professional work environment, free from harassment, ensuring that the highest standards of conduct are observed at all times;
- Maintain a positive work environment that facilitates proactive collaboration, programmatic integration and information sharing across Teams, Centres and Regional Offices;
- Direct the effective operation of the Centre’s activities including workforce resources and financial management, as well as the effective application of IUCN’s policies, procedures and internal control mechanisms;
- Lead and manage the Centre’s budgeting process, prioritising key investments in innovation and ensuring the Centre’s overall financial sustainability;
- Facilitate the necessary donor intelligence and align the Centre’s products and outcomes with helping to meet their needs and priorities;
- Build and nurture the Centre’s engagement with the IUCN Commissions, developing deeper collaboration.
Profile and Qualifications
- Advanced graduate degree in a development or science-related area including natural resources management, business management, public administration, project management, economics, conservation and sustainable development or relevant social sciences.
- At least 15 years of experience of proven and innovative conservation leadership.
- At least 10 years of leadership experience in managing a large team of professionals working in a decentralised global network.
- Excellent verbal and written communication skills in English, including ability to communicate complex issues to a wide range of audiences. A basic command of a second language (French, Spanish) is desirable.
- Demonstrated experience in partnership, government relations, and operations management.
- Experience in developing projects and programmes and ability to lead fund raising strategies and activities with the donor community, both public and private.
- Ability to travel frequently.
- Enthusiastic commitment and vision, characterised by: a commitment to the systematic incorporation of cutting-edge knowledge and approaches in policy and practices and an ability to provide inspiration and strategic direction.
- Leadership abilities and experience, maturity and management skills, characterised by: unimpeachable integrity as evidenced by behaviour, communication style and way of handling ambiguous or difficult situations involving staff with skills, personalities, and backgrounds. Furthermore, the Director must possess a clear commitment to fostering a culture of high performance and accountability, demonstrated in the ability to manage by results, differentiate performance and assertively give feedback and take decisive action when necessary.
- Senior management experience, characterised by: a commitment and co-ownership of institutional change processes combined with well-developed sense of managerial self-awareness that enables proactive management of individual strengths and weaknesses (including one’s own).
- Sound judgment and decision-making, characterised by: a clear moral compass and resolute managerial courage that does not shy away from making the ethical, just, fair and professional decisions even when they are difficult or potentially unpopular.