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International Development Programmes Manager: UKRI, Swindon – Deadline 25 October

By 21/10/2020

International Development Programmes Manager: UKRI

Deadline: 25 October, 2020
Location: Swindon, UK
Term: Permanent, full time
Salary: £31,305
Other: i.e. immigration

The International Development team sits within the International Shared Capability Group within UKRI. The team works on activities that form part of the UK’s Official Development Assistance (ODA) commitment, which is monitored by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). ODA-funded activity focuses on outcomes that promote the long-term sustainable growth of countries on the OECD Development Assistance Committee (DAC) List of ODA Recipients. The main focus is the Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) and the Newton Fund.

The Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) is a £1.5 billion fund announced by the UK Government to support cutting-edge research that addresses the challenges faced by developing countries through:

  • challenge-led disciplinary and interdisciplinary research
  • strengthening capacity for research and innovation within both the UK and developing countries
  • providing an agile response to emergencies where there is an urgent research need.

The Newton Fund is a £735 million UK investment Fund, with partner countries providing matched resources within the Fund. The Fund was launched in 2014 and extended and expanded in 2016. The Newton Fund aims to promote the economic development and social welfare of the partner countries. It will do so through strengthening partner country research and innovation capacity and unlocking further funding to support this work.

UKRI is the largest GCRF and Newton Fund Delivery Partner, but significant activity will also be delivered through the Learned Societies, UK Space Agency and the British Council. The International Development Team works closely with other UKRI areas such as UKRI International. The team reports to the UKRI International Senior Responsible Officer, Professor Andrew Thompson.

Team purpose

The purpose of the International Development Team is to lead the development and delivery of UKRI activities that form part of the UK’s Official Development Assistance (ODA) commitment, and to lead on the development of associated policies. The main focus is on GCRF and the Newton Fund. The team coordinates, integrates and oversees GCRF and Newton Fund activities conducted across the councils within UKRI. It takes a leading role in setting the overall strategic direction and makes a significant contribution to the delivery of interdisciplinary and cross council approaches. The team also runs some cross-cutting programmes and oversees cohorts of projects, in partnership with the Councils. The team has considerable interaction across the UKRI Councils, BEIS, DFID, FCO and other government departments. The focus on the developing world requires working with UKRI International.

Job Purpose

The main purpose of the role is to support the operation of the GCRF and the Newton Fund. ODA activities have grown increasingly in scale within UKRI, with some very important characteristics and requirements. The role will involve the commissioning and running of interdisciplinary research calls and leading on their peer review. It will also involve working with substantial cohorts of projects and engaging with grant holders of GCRF projects for monitoring purposes and responding to their enquiries. The role will support the design and implementation of the GCRF and the Newton Fund, providing a supporting role in the development of the strategy, policies, operations and organisation of GCRF and the Newton Fund. This includes policy activities such as equality, diversity and inclusion, ODA compliance, DFID and OECD transparency requirements, safeguarding, portfolio and data analysis and management and evaluation. The role requires a pro-active and imaginative approach as well as excellent planning, engagement, and communication skills.

You need to understand the breadth and complexity of UKRI Council operations and work effectively with colleagues across the Councils. You will need to build positive relationships across Councils and with external stakeholders.

Key responsibilities

  • Contribute to and in some cases lead the commissioning of interdisciplinary research calls and peer review, helping to develop good practice in calls in international development
  • Management of and engagement with cohorts of projects supported through programme calls, working across the UKRI councils to ensure a consistent approach
  • Gathering, understanding and integrating internal and external information to support the GCRF and Newton Fund strategy; including monitoring applications to calls and some desk-based research
  • Policy work including activities such as equality, diversity and inclusion, ODA compliance and reporting, safeguarding, portfolio and data analysis and management and evaluation
  • Provide briefings as required and respond to ad hoc queries for information from colleagues and other external sources
  • Co-ordinating internal UKRI networks, and working closely with other teams in UKRI International
  • Supporting coordination bodes within UKRI such as the GCRF Coordination Group and the Newton Fund Implementation Group and the Grants Business As Usual Group
  • Working with stakeholders and representing UKRI at external networks and meetings
  • Task management of delivery support staff.

Organization Description

What is UK Research and Innovation?

Operating across the whole of the UK with a combined budget of more than £7 billion, UK Research and Innovation is a new entity that brings together nine partners to create an independent organisation with a strong voice for research and innovation, and a vision to ensure the UK maintains its world-leading position in research and innovation. UKRI will build on the successful elements from the current funding system and maximise the contribution of each of the component parts to create the best environment for research and innovation to flourish.

Building on success

The UK has a world class research and innovation system. Our expertise spans all fields of knowledge, from the discovery of penicillin and monoclonal antibodies, to the jet engine and the world-wide web. Our inspirational creative industries are strong in art, design and the innovative use of new materials and technologies. Our universities and laboratories produce a disproportionate percentage of the world’s top research, and their academics are highly-sought as international colleagues and co-authors and are among the world’s best at attracting overseas students Nor is this excellence confined to university campuses and research centres. Our engineering, automotive and pharmaceutical industries are successful in part because of the superb graduates they can hire and the top rate researchers that support them.

Our partners

The nine UK Research and Innovation partners each bring unique assets to this cooperation. Innovate UK helps businesses to identify the commercial potential in new technologies and turn them into the new products and services that will drive economic growth and increase productivity; Strong discipline-facing Research Councils encourage breadth and diversity, curiosity-driven research, and priority-driven initiatives; Research England’s work on knowledge exchange will focus on capacity and culture in universities and provide balance to the funding system. It will drive quality and impact through the REF and work closely with its counterparts in the devolved administrations.

Applications via the website.