Vacancy: START Executive Director – deadline extended to 25 January 2016

Vacancy Announcement

Nominations and applications are invited from well-qualified candidates for the position of Executive Director of START International, Inc. and its operating office located in Washington, DC, USA.

START, the global SysTem for Analysis, Research, and Training, is a premier international organization dedicated to developing, strengthening, and mobilizing capacity to inform and support resilient transformations to a sustainable world. START promotes international collaborative engagement to ensure that knowledge on global and regional environmental change is generated in partnership with society and users of science. START engages scientists, practitioners, and decision-makers of all disciplines, natural and social, as well as engineering, health, the humanities and law.

START International, Inc. is a registered non-governmental, non-profit organization (US Code 501.c.3) with an operating office based in Washington DC, and regional centers and affiliates based in Africa and Asia. The International START Secretariat, located in Washington, DC, is the operating arm of START International, Inc.

The Executive Director will head the secretariat. Key responsibilities include:

  • Provide executive leadership for START in its engagement with the science community and stakeholders.
  • Sustain and grow START’s brand and portfolio in collaboration with partners, such as the Future Earth Program of the Global Alliance for Sustainability, the International Council of Science, the International Social Sciences Council, and other relevant international and multilateral partners.
  • Develop new opportunities in global environmental change research that involve user and funding communities as a means of developing, mobilizing and sustaining regional networks and capabilities.
  • Create funding strategies and opportunities that expand START’s portfolio of programs and projects, including engaging new potential funders, such as development donors, foundations, venture philanthropists, academic and private sector organizations.
  • Work closely and effectively with the Board of Directors of START and the staff of the International START Secretariat to lead and represent the organization, develop new innovative alliances and partnerships, and secure funding for organization.
  • Exhibit leadership in motivating secretariat staff to excel in program development and execution.
  • Sustain START’s capabilities and standards that ensure START International, Inc. is a recognized entity that is capable and audit certified to receive and manage US Federal and other non-US government funds.

Skills and Experience

  • Credibility in the research and stakeholder communities to provide leadership to a major international enterprise, with the necessary skills in diplomacy and an extensive network.
  • Experience in a senior executive leadership role – with insights into the leadership of a geographically distributed organization – including research, staff and change management, fundraising and science policy.
  • A strong track record of research and/or program leadership in global environmental change that demonstrates understanding of interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary engagement with stakeholders and processes for advancing research driven capacity building in Africa and Asia. .
  • Capability to forge bold and innovative new programs on capacity building in the context of sustainable development and in alignment with goals of the Future Earth Program.
  • Experience in fund raising for scientific programs.
  • Familiarity with and ability to engage closely and effectively with the Future Earth Program and other international partners/sponsors to secure a niche for START as a strategic partner in capacity building.
  • Ability to motivate staff and foster professional development.
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills.
  • Full command of written and spoken English; working knowledge of other languages is considered an advantage.
  • Willingness to travel extensively.

Reporting and Support

  • The START Executive Director reports to the START Board of Directors. Additional responsibilities of the Executive Director are specified in the By Laws of START International, Inc.

Conditions

  • This recruitment is carried out on behalf of the Board of Directors of START International, Inc.
  • This appointment will be for a fixed term of five years, subject to annual review and confirmation by the START Board of Directors. The appointment term is renewable based on performance.
  • The Executive Director is expected to commence duties in March 2016.
  • The salary is commensurate with the skills and experience expected of this position.

Application procedure

Nominations and applicants should include a curriculum vitae, together with a cover letter describing their vision for START, the challenges and opportunities they foresee, and how their skills and experience would help them meet the requirements of the position. Please also include the name and contact details of three referees and details of current salary.  Applications (preferably in one combined PDF file), should be sent via email with ‘START Executive Director’ in the subject line to edjob@start.org. The closing date for applications is Monday 25th January 2016, 1800GMT.

For candidates invited for initial interviews, these will be conducted remotely by video conference during the week of 24th January 2016.  Final interviews for shortlisted candidates are will be held in person during the week beginning 5th February 2016.  These dates are provided for information and planning, and should not be considered as an invitation to interview at this stage. For more information on START, please see: http://www.start.org/.  Further details on the START Secretariat and its tasks are available on request.

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