Programme Manager

Civitates Programme Manager
Location Brussels, Belgium (flexible)
Application deadline 24 September 2023
Contract type Permanent
Hours Full-time
Salary €45,600 - €66,000
Apply now
Civitates are seeking a Programme Manager to oversee a portfolio of grants, including monitoring and learning processes and organise capacity building for grantee and donor partners.

Brief description of organisation

Civitates is a philanthropic pooled fund that was established in 2018 to defend and promote democracy and civic space in Europe. Since its inception, it has supported 50 organisations in 18 countries with a total amount of €10 million.

Civitates’ grant making and capacity building programmes are structured along three portfolios: 1) Civic Power – to strengthen the resilience of pro-democracy civil society organisations and coalitions. 2) Tech and Democracy – to promote a safe and inclusive Internet that promotes rather than undermines democracy and hold Big Tech to account. 3) Media – to preserve the existence of independent, public interest journalism across Europe.

Today, Civitates is a strong community of 18 like-minded foundations which bring diverse expertise and extensive networks. These foundations are united in their resolve to pool their resources and knowledge together with a view to scaling the support available for pro-democracy actors, learning from each other and experimenting with new approaches in defence of democracy and civic space in Europe.

Civitates is hosted by the Network of European Foundations (NEF) in Brussels and has a small team of four full time staff.

Brief description of role

  • The Programme Manager is responsible for the coordination of the sub fund on Civic Power and the sub fund on Media, and for ensuring strategic alignment and synergies of this work with Civitates’ other portfolio (on Tech and Democracy) and with Civitates’ overall agenda.
  • They are expected to contribute to the development and lead the implementation of the sub funds’ strategies, manage a portfolio of grants, including monitoring and learning processes and organise capacity building for grantee and donor partners.
  • The Programme Manager is also expected to oversee the sub-fund general operations with the support of a part-time Programme and Grants Officer and in coordination with NEF. This includes reporting, budget management and contracts, and other administrative duties and logistics support as needed.
  • The role reports to the Civitates Director. The Programme Manager is expected to collaborate closely with colleagues in the Civitates team and NEF.
  • We are a small team of four staff delivering a big, challenging and urgent mission. We are looking for someone who will bring passion, curiosity, and initiative, with a practical and positive approach.

Key roles and responsibilities 

Strategic leadership

  • Contribute to the strategic development of Civitates’ portfolios on Civic Power and on Media, in close collaboration with the Civitates Director and the donor working groups, to continuously position Civitates as a key and trusted player in these fields.
  • Foster strategic alignment, synergies and coordination between Civitates’ portfolios and among donors and other relevant players in the field, including multilateral agencies.
  • Spearhead emergent learning processes for the portfolios to ensure that Civitates learns and adapts as it goes, with a view to benefiting the entire field.
  • Stay abreast of key developments in the fields of civic space and independent journalism, spot strategic opportunities/gaps/needs, identify and analyse risks and mitigation strategies and feed this into on-going reflections within the team, donor working group and Steering Committee.

Portfolio management

  • Lead the grants management process for the Civic Space and Media portfolios, from designing calls for proposals, coordinating selection/renewal processes and assessing grantees progress in close cooperation with Civitates’ donor partners and external experts.
  • Support grantee partners throughout the grant implementation process, including by designing and organising site visits, peer exchanges, convenings and capacity building programmes.
  • Conduct the monitoring and evaluation of individual grants and the broader portfolios.
  • Lead and facilitate decision-making, learning and strategy processes within the working groups of donors for the Civic Space and Media portfolios and implement ensuing actions.
  • Contribute to managing, monitoring and reporting on the multi-annual budget available for the sub funds, in collaboration with the grants officer and NEF.
  • Contribute to raising the funds available for Civitates’ work on Civic Space and on Media, including through contributing to the identification of potential new donors and the development of funding proposals, in close collaboration with the Director and relevant players in the field.

Contribution to Civitates’ overall development

  • Contribute to monitoring, evaluation and learning efforts, including through assisting in the preparation of Civitates’ annual report and any other reporting requirements from donors involved in the working groups.
  • Contribute to Civitates’ strategic communications, by surfacing insights and helping produce inspiring stories and analyses gathered from across the portfolio of Civic Power and Media.
  • Foster exchanges with external stakeholders and regularly participate in conferences and other events, sharing findings from the work of Civitates with the field at large.