Head of Programme

International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance

Freetown, Sierra Leone

The programme will support the active and inclusive participation of traditionally marginalised persons in electoral and political processes; strengthen the capacity of the election management bodies (EMBs) in Sierra Leone to conduct credible and inclusive elections in 2023 and beyond; improve the capacity of the EMBs and relevant civil society organisations capacities to contribute to resolving election disputes; and enhance stakeholder capacity for electoral and legal reforms beyond 2023.

The Head of Programme will be responsible for the overall management, oversight, and delivery of the programme, coordination of the country programme team and representing the programme at an institutional level with the Government of the Republic of Sierra Leone and the project donor. 

Duties and Responsibilities

  • Manages, represents and accounts for International IDEA’s programme in Sierra Leone, in line with International IDEA policies and procedures and responding to both donor and International IDEA Institutional requirements;
  • Leads the set up of International IDEA’s Office in Freetown;
  • Manages and directs a team of staff and consultants to ensure full delivery of agreed programme outputs while fostering a spirit of collaboration, work ethics and team cohesion;
  • Ensures adherence to donor and International IDEA regulations in programme planning and implementation;
  • Provides timely and insightful reports on political developments in Sierra Leone;
  • Participates in dialogue processes, and advocacy in the field of democracy, and elections;
  • Manages research and knowledge production to support the electoral process and the reforms thereafter. Contextualizes and updates existing International IDEA publications to promote comparative learning in Sierra Leone; Oversees the development of simplified and shorter versions of these publications to be disseminated to a broader audience;
  • Ensures consistent liaison, coordination consultation and engagement with the project donor, key programme partners and other international partners working on democracy and elections in Sierra Leone;
  • Maintains and develops relevant professional contacts and networks of cooperation with those active in relevant fields, including practitioners, policymakers, academics and the international community;
  • Plans, facilitates, participates in and makes presentations at coordination meetings, seminars, workshops and conferences;
  • Represents International IDEA externally as required, including development and maintenance of positive and effective relations with the Government of Sierra Leone, the project donor, International IDEA Member States, the UN, and other donors and interlocutors;
  • Is responsible for the overall programme risk management and actively manages risk in line with organizational policies and procedures;
  • Develops a crisis management plan;
  • Ensures that risks, including those related to operational partners, are documented and mitigated.
  • Develops response plans and procedures for high-risk areas as set out in the International IDEA Crisis Management policy.
  • Plans the provision of resources and assesses the level of redundancy in systems as well as prioritizes and covers all practical eventualities.
  • Ensure that all Staff Members are aware of the evacuation plans for office buildings.
  • Ensures communication and cooperation with International IDEA’s global and crosscutting programmes, with the project donor and other donor agencies, and complies with donor’s communication and visibility plan;
  • Ensures effective support for the convening of steering committee meetings and serves as the Secretariat for the Steering Committee.
  • Ensures that data on project implementation is collected during project implementation and that there are necessary systems in place to ensure that the data collected is accurate, and stored for easy retrieval and use;

General Profile

  • Combines in-depth knowledge, acquired through post-graduate academic achievements, excellent skills including managerial skills and relevant experience in their field;
  • Leads assigned projects with authority throughout the project life cycle, i.e. from strategic planning and project design, funding and budgeting to project assessment and accountability; leads meetings and discussions;
  • Oversees publications and input from external providers;
  • Manages and contributes to publications; is recognized as an expert in his/her broad professional community;
  • Has the intellectual leadership to integrate innovation into his/her field of expertise;
  • Leads a team of contributors to the project, including staff members and consultants;
  • Fosters team-based activities in his/her unit; collaborates with other entities of the Institute;
  • Acts as a model and mentor for colleagues;
  • Is expected to travel globally to any geographical area involved in his/her projects;
  • Follows internal procedures to ensure high standards of performance and compliance with Institutional guidelines;
  • Anticipates internal challenges and issues and recommends process improvements; Is resilient in a crisis;
  • Acts in accordance with International IDEA’s core values; Respect, Integrity and Professionalism;
  • Integrates a rights-based approach and a gender and diversity perspective in all activities.

Reporting line

  • Director Africa and West Asia Region.

Education and Experience

  • Post-graduate qualifications in political science, sociology, philosophy, international relations, law, development studies, peace studies or related subjects in the social sciences and humanities;
  • A minimum of ten (10) years of relevant experience working in the field of electoral support at international level and/or political participation and representation in Sierra Leone and/or in the West Africa sub-region, including substantial experience working in field positions;
  • Minimum five (5 )years experience in people management positions, including senior level positions, with direct supervision of complex programmes and multi-cultural teams;
  • Proven experience in engaging, cultivating and influencing stakeholders is essential;
  • BRIDGE accreditation is considered an asset;
  • Previous experience in managing EU-funded projects will be considered an asset;
  • Fluency in written and oral English is required. Knowledge of any other widely spoken language in an International IDEA priority region is an asset.

Source: https://careers.idea.int/jobs/1959469-head-of-programme-sierra-leone