International Relations Officer – ELIXIR at European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL)

November 16, 2023

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Job Description


About the team/job

ELIXIR is currently seeking an enthusiastic and flexible International Relations Officer.

You will be joining the External Relations team within the ELIXIR Hub. The main purpose of this role is to support ELIXIR’s external and international outreach to key stakeholders, notably funders, policy-makers and international collaborators.

The role will include working on EU-funded projects – notably the new ELIXIR-STEERS (starting February 2024) – with an expectation of working on other external grants awarded to ELIXIR in future.

The role will include implementation of ELIXIR’s International Strategy and Long-term Sustainability Plan, ensuring that outcomes are assessed and documented, and that ELIXIR continues to progress as a visible, sustainable and global infrastructure.

The role will also support ELIXIR’s positioning with national, European and international funders and policy-makers, through the preparation and submission of consultation responses and position papers.

This is an exciting and challenging role where opportunities for leading new projects will emerge constantly. You will work closely with stakeholders at all levels of seniority including ELIXIR Nodes, funding agencies and external consultants to deliver this work.

The role will suit candidates with a background in public affairs or external relations, or those with a background in life sciences/project management who are looking to move into a more international role. 

Your role

  • Build relations with scientific and political stakeholders in existing and future ELIXIR Member States and map their fields of interests and expertise.
  • Develop bilateral collaboration strategies with other research infrastructures on the ESFRI roadmap.
  • Develop and implement collaboration strategies with international research infrastructures and collaborators such as the Australian BioCommons and the US National Institutes of Health (NIH).
  • Support the ELIXIR Director and management team in the Life Science Research Infrastructure (LS RI) Strategy Board, working with public affairs experts in other life science research infrastructures to implement advocacy campaigns.
  • Prepare and deliver briefings and updates to ELIXIR Director and management team on EU-level developments of relevance to ELIXIR.
  • Develop and implement advocacy and public affairs campaigns for ELIXIR at the international level based on different stakeholders’ needs, including industry.
  • Lead on the development of consultation responses and position papers.
  • Own ELIXIR’s Long-term Sustainability Plan, responding to requests from national funders and initiating ideas for other projects that support the sustainability of ELIXIR Nodes.
  • Support ELIXIR’s engagement with key international organisations and bodies such as the European Commission, ESFRI, UN agencies, the G20 and the OECD.
  • Regularly contribute to the development of new external funding proposals, particularly the EU’s Horizon Europe programme.
  • Provide support to ELIXIR’s industry and innovation activities and impact portfolios, contributing to matchmaking actions between industry and ELIXIR members and wording with colleagues to demonstrate ELIXIR’s impact
  • Support other activities in the External Relations team, including in new and emerging areas, as required. 

You have

Knowledge and experience (essential):

  • A university degree, ideally in the field of international relations, life-sciences or administration.
  • External relations and science policy experience within an international research environment and/or international organisations, or significant experience of working in a cross-cultural international environment.
  • Familiarity with general office IT systems (Google Suite, Microsoft Office).
  • A high level of literacy and excellent English is a prerequisite, as is the ability to give presentations to diverse audiences.

Personal attributes:

  • A motivated self-starter with an ability to execute a number of projects simultaneously in a high-paced environment, effective at working independently and in a team.
  • Strong interpersonal and communication skills with the ability to work effectively with individuals across a range of profiles.
  • Excellent analytical and problem-solving abilities.
  • Effective in networking, information sharing and developing relationships.
  • When required, work outside normal office hours to travel to conferences and stakeholder meetings.

This will be a busy role with frequently changing priorities so it is essential that you are able to:

  • Work effectively with colleagues.
  • Work independently yet based on agreed individual and team objectives.
  • Meet deadlines and manage priorities.
  • Work to a high level of accuracy and attention to detail yet feel comfortable operating in an environment where priorities change and new opportunities arise frequently. 

You might also have

  • Experience of supporting collaborative science projects, for example, those funded through the EU’s Horizon Europe programme.
  • Understanding of national or EU science policy.
  • Experience within or knowledge of research infrastructure environments and research funding bodies is a strong asset.
  • Experience in working in an international environment and/or on projects involving collaborators across many sites.
  • Knowledge of other European languages. 

Why join us

Do something meaningful

ELIXIR unites Europe’s leading life science organisations in managing and safeguarding the increasing volume of data being generated by publicly funded research. It coordinates, integrates and sustains bioinformatics resources across its member states and enables users in academia and industry to access services that are vital for their research.

Our values

The ELIXIR Hub has a strong organisational culture which is defined by our core values. To ensure a good fit with our team, we look to recruit candidates who share our five values:

  • We work to benefit everyone
  • We are trusted
  • We work with a spirit of openness
  • We strive for excellence
  • We work in an environment of respect

Enjoy lots of benefits:

  • Financial incentives: Monthly family, child and non-resident allowances, annual salary review, pension scheme, death benefit, long-term care, accident-at-work and unemployment insurances
  • Flexible working arrangements
  • Private medical insurance for you and your immediate family (including all prescriptions and generous dental & optical cover)
  • Generous time off: 30 days annual leave per year, in addition to eight bank holidays
  • Relocation package including installation grant (if required
  • Campus life: Free shuttle bus to and from work, on-site library, subsidised on-site gym and cafeteria, casual dress code, extensive sports and social club activities (on campus and remotely)
  • Family benefits: On-site nursery, 10 days of child sick leave, generous parental leave, holiday clubs on campus and monthly family and child allowances
  • Benefits for non-UK residents: Visa exemption, education grant for private schooling, financial support to travel back to your home country every second year and a monthly non-resident allowance.

For more details please see our employee benefits page 

What else you need to know

  • Contract duration: This position is a 3 year contract, renewable to a maximum of 9 years.
  • International applicants: We recruit internationally and successful candidates are offered visa exemptions. Read more on our page for international applicants.
  • Diversity and inclusion: At ELIXIR, we strongly believe that inclusive and diverse teams benefit from higher levels of innovation and creative thought. We encourage applications from women, LGBTQ+ and individuals from all nationalities.
  • Job location: This role is based in Hinxton, near Cambridge, UK. You will be required to relocate if you are based overseas and you will receive a generous relocation package to support you.
  • How to apply: To apply please submit a cover letter and a CV through our online system. We aim to provide a response within two weeks after the closing date: 6th December 2023. Interviews will be held w/c 18 December 2023.





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