ECDPM - European Centre for Development Policy Management

Policy Officer I in International Cooperation in the European External Affairs Programme

ECDPM - European Centre for Development Policy Management

Maastricht, Netherlands

This position should not be confused with the Senior Policy Officer position also advertised.

The European Centre for Development Policy Management (ECDPM) headquartered in Maastricht is looking for an entrepreneurial senior professional to join its European External Affairs Programme and to contribute to the Centre’s policy analysis, dialogue, networking, and independent knowledge brokerage.

Person and position description

ECDPM needs a dynamic policy oriented professional to join its European External Affairs Programme. You will be excited at the prospect of being part of a team working in a stimulating and fast-paced ‘think and do’ tank at a time when Europe and the world are changing. You will have a Master’s degree or Ph.D. with a strong relevance to European foreign policy or development cooperation and a good awareness of the international cooperation agenda of the EU. You will have some publishable material that can speak to a policy audience. Your knowledge of certain policy domains is increasingly recognised by external audiences and will have some exposure in supporting funds raising and project delivery. Working in an international multi-cultural organisation with a continued requirement for high quality delivery under pressure energises and motivates you. You will be able to adapt your knowledge and competences to ECDPM’s niche, organizational culture, strategy and workplan, and will have the experience and maturity to take the lead on delivering certain activities.

ECDPM activities

ECDPM is a non-partisan “think and do tank” working at the interface of where development meets international relations. Our main goal is to broker effective partnerships between the European Union and the developing world, especially Africa. ECDPM promotes inclusive forms of development and cooperates with public and private sector organisations to better manage international relations. It also supports the reform of policies and institutions in both Europe and the developing world. One of ECDPM’s key strengths is its extensive network of relations in Europe and in developing countries. Its partners embrace multilateral institutions, international centres of excellence and a broad range of state and non-state organisations. ECDPM was established in 1986 as an independent foundation.

ECDPM’s European External Affairs programme.

By being well informed about global, African and particularly the EU and European context, this programme focuses on improving the overall relevance and coherence of EU external action and the effective delivery on development objectives. It is a follow-up programme to the Strengthening European External Action Programme for ECDPM’s new strategic period 2017-2021. It contributes to inclusive and informed policy dialogue processes, the effective and responsible integration of development dimensions into EU policy-making and external action, and the participation of EU and developing countries’ public and private sector actors in innovative EU development policies. To strengthen the implementation of EU policies (and reduce ‘implementation gaps’), it promotes the effective functioning of the new EU architecture for external action, while contributing to a more coherent EU that speaks with one voice. The programme pays particular attention to engaging with African partners so as to improve their understanding of EU processes and institutions and better equip them to engage with the EU.

The Policy Officer will use her or his knowledge to deliver projects within the team’s mandate, l participate to activities and represent the programme/team externally, and engage across the Centre.

Key commitments of the ECDPM Policy Officer

  1. To effectively manage small project teams for delivery on projects/policy processes;
  2. To contribute to building, expanding and maintaining relevant all-centre strategic networks and partnerships;
  3. To assist in identifying new funding opportunities, to development new funding proposals, and to securing funds for assigned projects and/or policy facilitation activities;
  4. To develop knowledge on key policy issues through research to broker knowledge and engage in outreach/communication activities to deliver impact.

The Policy Officer is a full team member of the programme and reports to the Head of Programme or Senior Policy Officer. Taking into account specific personal qualities and experience, and in accordance with the needs of the ECDPM’s other programmes, other activities may be assigned to her or his portfolio as well, notably in the context of the European development policy agenda.

Professional and personal requirements




Academic Background


1. Masters or Ph.D. in a relevant social science discipline.


2. Comfort and familiarity with using social scientific qualitative and quantitative research methods.


Professional Background


3. At least 4+ years work experience in a professional setting covering issues related to ECDPM’s international cooperation mandate.


4. Good knowledge (as evidenced by direct working experience or publications) in at least one of the following issues: (i) European foreign policy (ii) European development policy (iii) the Sahel region of Africa.


5. Good knowledge of at least two of the following areas: (iv) bilateral development policy of one or more EU member-states (v) political economy analysis (vi) advanced international policy analysis (vii) development economics (viii) international political economy of Africa (ix) culture in development/international cooperation (x) economic diplomacy (xi) Agenda 2030 and global development policy (xii) cooperation with middle income countries (xiii) least developed countries (LDCs) (xiv) European Neighbourhood Policy and North Africa.


Core Competencies


6. Ability to develop her/his own perspective on the European Union’s (EU institutions and member-states) development aid and foreign policy using policy analysis skills.


 7. Good writing, editing, analytical and synthesis skills, including the ability to structure arguments and present options to policy makers and non-specialist policy audiences. Evidence of published material in English.


8. Practical mind and excellent interpersonal and communication skills in a multi-cultural environment (including flair and enthusiasm) and willingness and interest to work as part of a team.


9. Some exposure to policy processes and/or institutional development activities (rather than only academic or implementation activities).


10. Good understanding of gender and how gender mainstreaming can be brought to policy oriented research.


11. Experience as a team member in research or policy projects including managing small parts of the project (e.g. timelines, deliverables, budgets).


12. A familiarity with utilising social media in a professional context and with communication tools more widely.




13. Complete fluency in English is required, fluency in French would be a distinct asset, as would one other additional European language.


 14. Experience living and/or working in Africa would be a distinct asset.



ECDPM will appoint the Policy Officer I position at a point on the gross annual salary between €36,243.42 and €42,860.47 dependent on experience.

ECDPM offers a lively and attractive working environment, space for autonomy and personal growth, and ample opportunity for participating in exciting areas of policy development for international cooperation. This post is based in the Maastricht office of ECDPM with frequent travel to Brussels as well as overseas travel.

The appointment provides a generous package of leave (9+ weeks on annual full time basis) and other benefits such as a pension scheme and training budget.

Application Process

Applicants should fill in an ECDPM application form specifically created for this job that can be found on, under vacancies. Applications should be submitted electronically to the email address <>, to the attn. of Guy Janssen Human Resources, as soon as possible (deadline COB – Thursday August 10, 2017). Please enter: “Application for Policy Officer: – EEA Programme” in the subject line. Candidates should ensure that hyperlinks linking to 2 (co)-published pieces of work in the application form or submitted as attachments to the application as assessment of these will be part of the short-listing process. Short-listed candidates will be invited for an interview and additional assessments and tasks directly relevant to this job announcement.

More information on ECDPM, its strategy, work plan and programmes can be found at

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