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Executive Director, Global Conservation

Sandy, Bedfordshire
£93,840 - £134,895 pa.
Closing date
14 Jul 2021

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Job Details

Together, we can create a world richer in nature.

As the largest nature conservation charity in the UK, the RSPB has a new ambitious strategy to 2030. We are facing a nature and climate emergency, and tackling it requires a step change in the way we do things, to ensure the RSPB is making its best contribution. Now is the time to focus our conservation work on those areas where we can make the biggest impact, and to invest in enabling people to take action for birds and nature. The next decade will be vital for the future of our planet. We must scale up and collaborate more to deliver our excellent evidence-based conservation work, whilst influencing systemic change in the UK and beyond, as well as inspiring and empowering others through powerful partnerships. Our vision for the future is ambitious and challenging, but achieving it is vital – not only for nature, but for people too.

We are currently seeking to appoint an outstanding and ambitious individual as our Executive Director, Global Conservation. Reporting to the Chief Executive Officer, you will be responsible for bringing vision, inspiration, and leadership to the global conservation team, setting and guiding the conservation philosophy and approach of the RSPB. As well as critically important science and delivery of our conservation programming, you will make a significant contribution to realising RSPB’s ambition through external influencing, advocacy and policy engagement and will play a key role as part of the BirdLife International partnership. You will help lead the organisation as a member of the Executive Board.

This role offers a unique opportunity for an individual with genuine passion to make a positive difference for the natural world. You will demonstrate significant experience in strategic leadership and managing in complex organisations. You will bring significant conservation and policy expertise, as well as an ability to engage and motivate people and key stakeholders. You will have strong communication and interpersonal skills to advocate and represent the organisation to a wide range of audiences. Forward-thinking, inspiring, and collaborative, you will forge funding and delivery partnerships to further RSPB’s mission and impact in the UK, and globally. Perhaps most importantly, you will have values that align with the RSPB.

To apply or to download further information on the required qualifications, skills and experience for this exciting role, please visit quoting refence 5194. The deadline for applications is 9am BST Monday 19th July. 

Like nature our survival depends on diversity. Nature has no borders and neither do we. We recognise that everyone is individual and different and value what that difference brings to the RSPB. We want to support everyone to unlock their potential and better reflect the communities in which we work. We are committed to creating a workplace where our people can thrive. We value equality of opportunity at all levels and welcome applications which reflect the diverse communities that we are part of. Therefore, we particularly encourage applications from those currently underrepresented in the RSPB family.

RSPB is headquartered in Sandy, Bedfordshire, UK; the role can be considered with a flexible or remote location, where reasonable. The remuneration for the post is in the range of £93,840 - £134,895 pa. Further details are available from Perrett Laver.

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The RSPB (the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds) is a large, national charity dedicated to the conservation of birds and other wildlife and the environments on which they depend. Founded in 1889, the RSPB has more than a million members, over 2,000 employees and 13,500 volunteers. RSPB’s UK headquarters are in Bedfordshire and it has an annual income of nearly £133 million.

RSPB carries out conservation work in many different areas. It runs a network of 200 nature reserves covering almost 13,000 hectares, which are home to 80% of the UK’s rarest or most threatened bird species. It works with farmers to identify wildlife friendly farming methods, researches bird populations and partners with international conservation organisations.

RSPB is also an advocacy organisation, lobbying the government on diverse topics such as planning, wind farms and economics. It has a UK headquarters, three national offices and nine offices in the English regions. Its million-plus members, 200,000 of whom are youth members, make it the largest conservation organisation in the UK. RSPB also has 150 local groups and more than 80 youth groups. It has a volunteer to staff ratio of 6:1.

The charity was founded in Manchester in 1889 as the Plumage League (initially as a campaign against the killing of birds for the fashion industry). It received a Royal Charter in 1904, becoming the ‘Royal Society for the Protection of Birds’. RSPB moved to its present headquarters in Sandy, Bedfordshire, in 1961.

One of the RSPB’s most popular activities, carried out for children since 1979 and for adults since 2001, is the Big Garden Birdwatch. The Birdwatch is an annual data collection of bird populations that takes place every January. In 2016, 519,000 people were involved, counting over 8 million birds. The Birdwatch enables RSPB to build a picture of garden wildlife across the UK. It has shown, for instance, that the sparrow population has declined by 60% since 1979.

RSPB also urges supporters to ‘make a home for nature’ in their gardens. Activities include creating feeding stations and homes for hedgehogs, providing flowers and plants for moths, creating habitats for frogs and toads and forming safe corridors from one garden to the next.

RSPB, along with sister organisations, Stop Climate Chaos Cymru and Stop Climate Chaos Scotland, is part of The Climate Coalition. It argues that the effect of climate change on wildlife and wild places can already been seen and that increased flooding and rain from climate change will spell disaster for birds and wildlife.

RSPB is also a member of BirdLife International, a global partnership of conservation organisations that share common objectives.

RSPB is a major fundraising charity and spends around 90% of its income on conservation, public education and advocacy.

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01767 680 551
The Lodge,
Potton Road,
SG19 2DL
United Kingdom
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