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VSO hiring Senior Policy Adviser on Women's Empowerment

Kingston Upon Thames, United Kingdom, 31 July 2014


VSO is the world’s leading independent international development organisation that works through volunteers to fight poverty in developing countries. Our high-impact approach brings people together to share skills, build capabilities, promote international understanding and action to change lives and make the world a fairer place.

Role overview

As VSO UK’s new Senior Policy Adviser you will play a key role in influencing government and international action seeking transformative change for some of the world’s most disadvantaged people.

Undertaking and publishing research, delivering policy briefings, influencing international moments through engagement with UK officials and working with coalition partners are all critical to success in this role. We need someone with a keen analytic mind, a talent for writing persuasively and with an aptitude for developing influential relationships with civil servants and policy targets.

The major focus for this role during 2014-15 will be delivering the policy work relating to VSO UK’s Women in Power campaign and working with colleagues on the global influencing on this agenda. Key ‘deliverables’ early on in the job will include producing a research publication into the impact of women’s influence in politics and public life, briefing UK officials around key international moments and playing a key role in the development of our campaign strategy through to the end of 2015.

As part of an agile Campaigns and Policy team you will also have a broader brief supporting VSO UK’s policy and influencing work; inputting into the development of a new campaign around the theme of livelihoods and producing policy advice on other policy issues which VSO has programme experience of such as health and education.


  • Development and implementation of VSO UK’s policy and research plan to support VSO advocacy initially with a particular emphasis on women’s influence in politics and public life as this relates to the Post 2015 development agenda. Work with VSO colleagues, on placement and returned volunteers, partner agencies and consultants to design and implement a research plan which under-pins VSO’s advocacy campaign Women In Power.

  • Represent VSO at external meetings including those relating to the post 2015 development agenda.

  • Build VSO’s reputation and influence through collaboration with partners through Bond and other networks to ensure VSO’s policy proposals are integrated into coalition efforts. As appropriate advocate for and support volunteers, partners and colleagues to advocate for VSO at international summits such as the Commission on the Status of Women or the UN General Assembly. Lead on and support UK policy influencing activities including meeting with key policy influencers and civil servants.

  • Provide a policy perspective to help VSO engage with emergent policy matters in international and UK development debates. Have a general awareness of our programming areas and a strong working relationship with our programme effectiveness colleagues in order to enable evidence based reactive policy lines to be generated.

  • Management of budget and resources.

  • Recruit and manage Policy Interns. Recruit and manage freelance and research consultants. Support the Campaigns and Policy Manager with developing funding proposals.

  • Brief senior colleagues, and particularly VSOUK Director around key interventions that they make on our policy agenda in the UK and throughinternational forums. 

View the ECN Recruitment Notice (accessible by all ECN Members - Login to View)

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