The Executive Director for foodwatch International will lead a phase of development of the organisation to strengthen foodwatch’s role as a major advocate of consumer rights across Europe. This is an exciting opportunity for a collaborative leader with experience coordinating international teams and political campaigning savvy to encourage public debate and promote change.
About foodwatch International
With offices in Berlin, Amsterdam, Paris and Vienna, foodwatch is an international, not-for-profit organisation that fights for consumers’ right to safe and high-quality food. Foodwatch is a public pressure group for consumer protection, exposing abuses in the food sector and naming those responsible. Foodwatch is independent of governments and the food industry and financed through membership fees and donations.
foodwatch does not promote a certain way of eating but instead, fights back against anti-consumer business practices and advocates for more consumer rights in the agrifood sector. As outspoken proponents of consumer protection, foodwatch asks the difficult questions and focuses on awareness-raising campaign work. Experience has shown: pro-consumer changes are only made when public pressure forces the respective companies or policymakers to react.
Their independence from government and the food industry means that they are free in their choice of issues and campaign approach.
About the Role
At foodwatch, the Executive Director will lead a highly motivated team which is small enough to offer short decision-making paths and direct exchange between all levels of the organisation, and large enough to initiate and coordinate the international programme of foodwatch. The International Executive Director will head the international unit with team members based in Berlin and Brussels, as well as shape the international development of foodwatch.
Purpose of the Role
The Executive Director will be responsible for the management of the international team based in Berlin and Brussels, as well as the coordination of the five teams across Europe (Germany, France, Netherlands, Belgium and Austria). The director will lead the organisation in a phase of evaluating and establishing governance structures and strengthening their campaigning across countries and on the European level. The Executive Director will be providing major input and guidance on the vision and strategy of foodwatch international and support their teams in translating this into national contexts.
The Executive Director also serves as a formal Executive Director of the German association, and will share the management of administrative and organisational processes such as budgeting and compliance with the foodwatch Germany Executive Director.
Duties and Responsibilities
Continuation of overall organisational development
Introduce and develop new ways and systems of working across the organisation and the national offices.
Facilitate and coordinate the development and implementation of national and international campaigns (national to EU level and vice versa).
Review foodwatch’s governance structures and, together with colleagues and board, make recommendations and adaptations to them to ensure the organisation’s functionality and agility.
Maintain and establish meaningful relationships with current and future high-level contacts (political stakeholders as well as donors and the media).
Share the management of the German umbrella association (e.V.) with the German Executive Director as a team.
Final decision-making authority recognised under the International Cooperation Agreement.
Skills and Experience
Experience working as a collaborative and transparent leader.
A strong sense of politics and experience in the political campaign work, ideally in the political field of agriculture and nutrition or in related fields.
Familiarity with the development of political campaign strategies with experience coordinating global teams and support recognising suitable levers to trigger public debate and promote change.
Ability to communicate effectively – both with internal and external stakeholders.
An international mindset - bringing experience and interest in working in a cross-cultural, multi-lingual team.
Committed to the development of staff, structures and vision.
Capacity to set and operate budgets and monitor the achievement of budgetary targets.
An interest in the role of food in Europe as a sector and a human right for citizens.
High level of professional written and spoken English.
Knowledge of at least one other foodwatch language (German, French, Dutch).