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Search for Common Ground

Global Affairs and Partnerships - Executive Director, Brussels

HEADQUARTERS - Belgium – Brussels, Belgium
Department HEADQUARTERS - Belgium
Employment Type Full-Time
Minimum Experience Experienced

Position Summary

We are seeking a new Executive Director for Search for Common Ground - Brussels who will oversee the maintenance and building of relations with European governments, in line with Search’s European Fundraising Strategy, as well as with European Union institutions, leveraging and coordinating the availability of senior program and executive leadership to advance strategic outreach, advocacy, and fundraising goals, working closely with the Global Affairs and Partnerships Team. 

S/he will also support the Strategic Development and Communications team’s efforts to build relations with private sector corporate, foundation, and individual partners and donors throughout Europe. 

S/he will manage operations out of the Brussels office ensuring effective management of the Search for Common Ground – Brussels legal entity (a Belgian registered ASBL), backstopping, communication, and coordination between the Brussels legal entity and relevant global support functions, regional teams, and country offices. 

This position will report to the Board of Directors of Search for Common Ground - Brussels and to the Senior Director of Partnerships and Engagement. S/he will work closely with Search’s Senior Management, Regional and Country Program Directors, and the divisions of Global Affairs and Partnerships, Strategic Development, Communications, and Operations. 

Please review the full position document here.  

Key Responsibilities

Roles and responsibilities include:

Leadership and Management 

  • Ensure the sound management of the Search for Common Ground ASBL and its operations and seek efficiencies in terms of field-HQ coordination and information-flow and in the structuring and management of this office’s operating budget and annual plan. Prepare board meetings, 
  • Work with the Global Finance to ensure effective financial oversight and audit-management for the Belgian entity.
  • Provide effective leadership, coaching, and management to Brussels-hired staff, nurturing a supportive atmosphere, strong teamwork, and a culture of accountability in an environment in which the direct-line supervisors for most staff are located elsewhere.

External Relations & Partnership Development

  • Maintain and build relations with Search for Common Ground’s partner governments in Europe - including the foreign ministries and development agencies of France, Germany, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, the UK and others - cultivating deeper strategic partnerships where relevant to advance the organization’s strategic goals. Maintain strong relations with the European Union.  
  • Oversee the European Affairs and Partnerships Team in close coordination with the Senior Director, Partnerships and Engagement. Work with the Global Affairs and Partnerships team and Global Programs leadership to implement and advance annual fundraising and advocacy strategies.
  • Provide external representation with peer organizations in the field of peacebuilding and other relevant communities.

As job descriptions cannot be exhaustive, the position holder may be required to undertake other duties that are broadly in line with the above key responsibilities.


    You meet the following qualifications:


    • Minimum of seven years of representation and fundraising experience with European donors for a similar international organization;
    • Proven successful experience in developing new business for multi-year program funding and/or strategic partnerships;
    • Experience managing and leading teams in a matrix organizational structure;
    • Experience managing European grants and relationships with grant officers;
    • Strong knowledge of institutions, dynamics, and thematic priorities in the international development or humanitarian sectors across Europe;
    • Excellent network of key figures within national European policy and development institutions;
    • Experience working collaboratively with a broad range of stakeholders, local government, officials, and international donors;
    • Spoken and written fluency in English; French highly desired; German, Dutch or a Scandinavian language a significant plus. 
    • Willingness and ability to travel significantly internationally in Europe with some travel to program sites;
    • Highly organized and efficient to manage large portfolios;
    • Excellent communication and relationship-building skills;
    • Experience in managing program activity consistent with the Search’s work at ‘in-country’, regional, and global levels is a plus.
    • Experience and familiarity with the international peacebuilding field a plus.

    To apply

    To apply, interested candidates should send the following items to our employment portal  here:

    • current resume
    • cover letter

    Only applicants invited for an interview will be contacted. No phone calls please. Please see our website for full details of our work.

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    • Location
      Brussels, Belgium
    • Department
      HEADQUARTERS - Belgium
    • Employment Type
    • Minimum Experience
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