Senior Programme Officer, Sustainable Security

3 April 2017

Job Title: Senior Programme Officer, Sustainable Security

Reporting to: Director, Sustainable Security Programme

The Role: The post-holder will take a leading role in ORG’s research and analysis on UK defence and security policy along with its engagement with UK government, parliament, military, political parties and academia/think tanks on security issues.

Location: London (Development House, 56-64 Leonard St, EC2A 4LT)

Hours: Part-time: 3 or 4 days/week.

Salary: £30,351 PA pro rata.

Duration: 1 year contract offered initially.

How to Apply: Please send a short covering letter (1 page max.), CV (2 page max, including 2 referees), and a sample of your writing on a subject relevant to UK defence and security (max. 3,000 words) to Please put "SSP SPO" in the subject box of your email.

Deadline: Monday 10th April.

Eligibility: Please note that you must be eligible to work in the UK in order to apply. Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.


About Oxford Research Group (ORG)

Oxford Research Group (ORG) is a leading independent ‘think-and-action-tank’. Based in London, it has been influential for 35 years in pioneering the idea of sustainable approaches to security as an alternative to violent global confrontation. We work through original research, wide-ranging dialogue, and practical policy recommendations.

Our work is currently based around two programmes. Sustainable Security analyses the deeper drivers of global insecurity and advocates for a radical shift in security and defence policies and spending to address these drivers. Our Middle East programme facilitates innovative forms of dialogue and capacity-building for conflict resolution in Israel and Palestine, and has engaged in mediation and conflict-prevention projects in Iran, Egypt and elsewhere. Additionally, we host the Remote Control Project, which analyses the changing character of warfare and military interventions, and work with the Oxford Process, which facilitates high-level dialogue, pioneering a preventive diplomacy approach to conflict resolution.

ORG is a registered charity, governed by a Board of Trustees, and a company limited by guarantee. It has ten staff and several paid and pro bono consultants.

Role Description

ORG is seeking a Senior Programme Officer for its Sustainable Security Programme (SSP) to lead its work on UK defence, security and conflict prevention policy including our flagship Rethinking UK Defence and Security Policies project.

The role is funded at 3 or 4 days/week, with potential to expand to full-time subject to additional fundraising. The role will include networking, researching, commissioning, editing and writing articles, briefings and reports, and advocacy. Maintaining and expanding ORG’s network of influence among British parliamentarians, government officials, military officers and other security practitioners and experts is central to this new role. The post-holder will also assist the Programme Director with programme strategy, administration, fundraising and reporting, including development of new projects and activities, not necessarily limited to the UK.

Project management

  • Taking primary responsibility for the research and advocacy tasks related to delegated SSP projects (including written outputs and any related meetings and workshops).
  • Engaging with politicians, military, civil servants, NGOs and other experts on issues relevant to UK and international security policy.
  • Monitoring project spending and taking responsibility for reporting and liaising with project funders.
  • Providing administrative and logistic support for project activities, including workshops and roundtables.
  • Managing programme assistants or interns, if necessary.
  • Remaining well-informed and updated on developments in research and policy that are relevant to UK and international security (including attending relevant external events).

Contributing to ORG research outputs

  • Researching and writing regular briefings and timely articles on UK and international security issues.
  • Leading on or providing research and editorial support for briefings and reports written or co-authored by other ORG staff, consultants or commissioned experts.
  • Commissioning relevant articles for, the SSP blog site.

Programme development

  • Contributing to the review and revision of Programme strategy  and ORG organisational strategy and development. 
  • Contributing to the design of new projects and new areas of work for the Programme
  • Contributing to the researching and writing of funding applications and assisting where necessary with reporting to existing funders.


Person Specification





Education and


A post-graduate (e.g. MA, MSc) degree in International Relations, Peace Studies, Strategic Studies, Politics or equivalent.




At least three years of experience of research and/or advocacy on security and defence issues and policy, preferably in the UK.


Record of publications on defence and security issues with relevance to UK and European policy.



Experience of working for a think tank or conflict prevention organisation.



Experience of working for UK government or military.



Experience of working for a multilateral organisation (e.g. UN, EU, OSCE, NATO) on conflict prevention or peace support operations.



Experience of fundraising and/or public relations, especially for charities or think tanks.



An excellent understanding of the political context of UK security, defence and foreign policy.


A good understanding of ‘non-traditional’ security issues e.g. climate change, resource scarcity, social and economic inequality.


In-depth knowledge of security dynamics in Middle East, Africa or other region.


Knowledge of international peace and security frameworks or conflict prevention strategies.


Skills and Abilities

Ability to engage and influence policy-makers.


Fluency in spoken and written English at the level of a native speaker.


Excellent writing and editing skills/excellent written and oral communication.


Ability to multi-task and respond flexibly to a quickly changing workload.


Ability to use online content management systems for web publications (e.g. WordPress, Drupal).


Other Requirements

Commitment to ORG’s Mission and Goals.



Commitment to learning and developing new skills.