Download Job Description and Personal Specification

Job Title: Director, Strategic Peacebuilding Programme Reporting to: ORG Chief Executive

The Role: The post-holder will be responsible for the direction and development of ORG’s Strategic Peacebuilding Programme, will lead on its projects in Palestine and Israel, and will be a member of the ORG Senior Management Group.

Location: London (The Green House, 244-254 Cambridge Heath Road, E2 9DA) Hours: Full-time (37.5 hours/week).

Salary: £42,000 per annum (ORG operates a contributory pension scheme with an employer’s contribution of 6%).

Duration:  18  months,  with  extension  thereafter   subject   to   funding. Eligibility: Please note that you must be eligible to work in the UK in order to apply.

How to Apply: Please send a short covering letter (1 page max.) and CV (4 page max) to [email protected] by 6pm on Tuesday 2nd October. Please put "Programme Director, SPP" in the subject line of your email.

Interviews: We expect to hold interviews in London on 11th or 12th October 2018. 

About Oxford Research Group (ORG)

Oxford Research Group (ORG) is an independent peace, security and conflict resolution NGO that has been active and influential since the early 1980s. Since 2006 we have been based in London. In mid-2018 we have a staff of ten plus two part-time paid interns, three pro bono and several paid consultants.

ORG’s mission is to promote approaches to defence, development and foreign policies that are inclusive, accountable, sustainable and effective. We thus work to transform the way that people and policy-makers think about security, shifting to long-term, strategic measures to sustain peace. We call this breaking out of the cycle of conflict.

Our work is rigorous, realistic, and evidence-based. It is rooted in the four pillars of research, advocacy, capacity-building and dialogue. The main focus of our work is the UK, and to a lesser extent NATO, the UN and countries where British foreign and security policies are most closely intertwined with violent conflicts, not least the Middle East and North Africa. 

About the Strategic Peacebuilding Programme

ORG’s Strategic Peacebuilding Programme (SPP) seeks to contribute to preventing, transforming and ending violence by changing how people think about and engage with conflict. We facilitate innovative and strategic dialogues to lay the foundations and ripen the conditions for effective conflict-resolution efforts.

By creating space for people to engage strategically with one another, SPP seeks to open-up fresh possibilities for conflict resolution. Using the knowledge and expertise gained from dialogue, we seek to give third parties - be they the UN, governments or civil society - the critical insights they need to develop effective policies and peace processes.

Our creative approach encourages a deeper appreciation of the causes and drivers of conflict in the Middle East and seeks to challenge established ways of thinking. For over a decade, the SPP has been facilitating inclusive dialogue, often engaging with groups that sit outside the official diplomatic process, to explore means of resolving the conflict.

Our Strategic Dialogue work in Palestine and Israel has been ongoing since 2006 and now includes the well-established Israeli Strategic Forum (ISF), Palestine Strategy Group (PSG) and Palestinian Citizens of Israel Group (PCIG). A fourth track initiative, working with diaspora and refugee Palestinians is starting work in 2018. This year, the SPP has also begun work with Yemenis, applying learnings from its work in Palestine and Israel, and is seeking to broaden the scope of its work in the near future.

Role Description

Based in our London office, this new position will take responsibility for the strategic direction, growth and diversification of the Strategic Peacebuilding Programme’s projects and funding, leading the implementation of existing projects in Palestine and Israel, and overseeing the Yemen project. The post-holder will line manage programme staff and consultants and be responsible for measuring and maximizing project impact. She or he will also be a full member of ORG’s Senior Management Group.

The role is fully funded full-time until May 2020. Continuation of the role thereafter will be dependent on success in raising continuation and/or new funding.

In particular, the Programme Director will have responsibility for:

Strategic Direction of the Strategic Peacebuilding Programme

  • Ensuring the conformity of programme strategy and activities with agreed ORG strategy, policies and practices. 
  • Reporting (in person and/or in writing) on the programme’s work, plans and financial situation to staff meetings, Senior Management Group and Board of Trustees meetings.
  • Overseeing and ensuring the quality of the programme’s public outputs, including reports/briefings, website copy and media comment.
  • Being the public face of the programme, participating in interviews, public events, engaging with peer organisations, politicians, journalists and others. 

Project Design, Fundraising and Donor Relations

  • Identifying and developing project ideas through concept notes and proposals, including budgets, in line with the programme strategy. 
  • Designing, planning and implementing new projects (including writing project descriptions, undertaking research, advocacy and communications aspects).
  • Identifying, building and managing contacts with recent, current and prospective donors. 
  • Submitting and promoting fundable proposals to donors, managing the funding pipeline to ensure the financial viability of the programme. 
  • Ensuring and approving the quality and viability of funding proposals and budgets developed by other members of the programme team. 
  • Monitoring, evaluating and reporting on the impact of all programme projects and activities to ensure the achievement of project, programme and organisational objectives. 

Leadership of Projects in Palestine and Israel

  • Planning, managing and ensuring the effective implementation of projects with due regard for agreed plans, budgets, deadlines and quality. 
  • Coordinating the work of the three tracks (PSG, PCIG, ISF), including organising an internal strategy meeting of all partners, staff and consultants in Jordan. 
  • Creating new partnerships with organisations in the West Bank, Jordan and Brussels. 
  • Managing excellent relationships with existing project partner organisations, principally in Israel, the West Bank and Gaza. 
  • Overseeing the commissioning and editing of policy papers from experts, managing production of the PSG strategic report and assisting production of reports from other tracks in Arabic and English languages. 
  • Leading on advocacy and outreach with European and international partners and stakeholders.
  • Monitoring and evaluating the impact of all project activities to ensure the achievement of project, programme and organisational objectives. 
  • Reporting to donors (principally the EU and Norwegian MFA) on the use of restricted grants and their impact. 

Management of Programme Staff and Consultants

  • Recruiting/contracting, managing, developing and appraising programme staff, consultants and interns, following ORG performance management policies. 
  • Ensuring that staff and consultants have clear roles, work plans and goals to achieve specific tasks and outputs. 
  • Providing opportunities for staff to learn and develop. 

Collective Leadership of Oxford Research Group

  • Contribute to the collective management of ORG as a full member of the Senior Management Group, meeting monthly. 
  • Contribute to the wider development of ORG, through engagement in strategy and policy development, cross-programme communication, etc. 
  • Any other tasks as may be reasonably required. 

Travel Requirements

The post-holder may be expected to undertake several trips per year to the MENA region (primarily Jordan, Israel and the West Bank) and Europe of short (c. 1 week) duration to build relationships and implement project activities. International travel to conferences or advocacy events may also occasionally be required. No work for extended periods outside of the UK is initially envisaged in the role.

Person Specification







Education and qualifications

A Master’s degree (or equivalent) in politics, international relations, history, peace/war studies, Middle Eastern studies or related field.



At least three years relevant experience in a project management role with a comparable NGO, think tank or in government/diplomacy.



Experience of budget-setting and oversight as well as donor reporting.



Experience of leading strategic planning processes.



Experience of writing successful funding applications.



Experience of managing or facilitating conflict resolution/dialogue projects and working with overseas partners.



Experience of engaging with the media, government officials and policy-makers.



Experience of event management.


Skills and Abilities

Ability to build and manage successful relationships with funders, partners and long-standing advisors, consultants and staff.



Fluency in spoken and written English to a native speaker level combined with excellent communication and presentation skills.



Demonstrated ability to think creatively and strategically and to understand political sensitivities.



Ability to manage a complex workload within tight timescales and deliver outputs to deadlines.



Arabic language skills.



Excellent people management skills.



Hebrew or other regional language skills.


Knowledge and understanding

An interest in and deep knowledge of Middle Eastern politics and conflict issues, including society and conflict in Palestine and Israel.



Strong commitment to ORG’s ethos, goals and values.