Candidates Wanted: Regional Director, Africa, Middle East, North Africa (MENA)

The Parliamentary Centre is hiring a Regional Director to lead the design and implementation of its African and MENA programming, especially its Common Support to the National Assembly of Burkina Faso (PROCAB) and an exciting new program (pending funding) to support women’s political voice in the parliaments of Ghana, Ethiopia and Togo. (see description below)

As Regional Director (Africa/MENA), you bring knowledge and experience on issues relating to challenges to inclusive democracy in Africa and MENA, citizen engagement, civil society participation, open government and other ways which parliaments can effectively engage women, youth and marginalized groups. You will also be fully bilingual and able to operate professionally in both English and French. Fluency in Arabic will be an asset.

In your implementation role, you will provide leadership and support in our Burkina Faso program. You will work closely with the Project Manager at headquarters, our Senior Technical Advisor and Senior Country Adviser in the field, and provide overall guidance, oversight and technical support for the program. You will have significant knowledge of national and subnational governance challenges and the ability to administer program activities, finances, and personnel in a complex political environment. You will advise on effective communication strategies for the program and provide mentorship to other program staff to deliver on these. You will undertake political analysis to support ongoing programming and the development of new initiatives. You will report to the Chief Executive Officer (CEO), in Ottawa.

The position will be based in Ottawa with potential travel to the field in countries of existing or anticipated programming (subject to evolution of COVID-19-related travel restrictions). The job can be done remotely until restrictions on accessing the Ottawa office are eased, however, relocation support to Ottawa is not available. Salary is commensurate with experience, and includes a generous benefits package featuring the Public Service Pension Plan and Public Service medical and dental benefits.

The position is open to those legally authorized to work in Canada. Visa support is not possible.

Starting date: early to mid May, 2021

Duration: 1 year with possibility for extension contingent upon the continuation and renewal of donor funding.

  • Deadline to apply is Sunday, April 18th 23h59.
  • Please consult www.parlcent.org for information on our programming and for the
    definitive job description before applying
  • To apply submit a cover letter describing what you can bring to the Centre and a brief CV to: parlcent@parlcent.org
  • Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted. No phone calls please.

Duties and Responsibilities:

The Regional Director will have a leadership role on the following areas:


  • Oversee program design and implementation to ensure Parliamentary Centre is meeting stated program goals;
  • Provide management and oversight of HQ-based, local and expatriate staff in region of focus, including consultants for short term technical assistance;
  • Strengthen existing and cultivate new relationships with domestic and international partners in the implementation of programming;
  • Establish and maintain close working relationships with parliamentarians, government officials, political party representatives and civil society groups, as well as the partner embassies/delegation, implementing partners, and local/international non-governmental organizations and consultants;
  • Ensure adherence to Parliamentary Centre and donor policies and procedures, as well as to funder/donor regulations, ensuring the advancement of program goals and the integrity of all financial transactions;
  • Report to the CEO, management team and project funders on program activities and political
    developments that may affect program outcomes; and
  • Oversee the development, review and timely submission of program-related materials, including
    regular reports that measure and evaluate program results.

Program Development

  • Lead Funds mobilization efforts in region of focus and support program development efforts aimed at other regions;
  • Lead and/or collaborate on the design of innovative programming on emerging issues relating to democratic development and support;
  • Provide technical leadership and guidance in building out the Centre’s emerging programming and its positioning;
  • Provide strategic vision, leadership and planning for the Centre’s work to build and strengthen strategic partnerships;
  • Support strategic positioning efforts aimed at key partners, namely GAC, the HoC and other international donors.


  • Participate as a member of the Centre’s management committee and contribute to the formulation of Centre strategy and longer-term plans; contribute work plans and budgets for the designated areas of responsibility;
  • Provide leadership to implement Centre strategic objectives;
  • As a member of the Centre’s management committee, review program operations to determine need for new and revised policies or procedures and recommend, establish and management the implementation of policies;
  • Provide analysis and advice on managing strategic relationships with funders, partners and stakeholders; including assessment and coordination of development opportunities;
  • Manage the resource cycle process (strategic, annual work plans, budgets and human resource allocations) to ensure the program office’s operations are effective and efficient.

Thought Leadership

  • Contribute to the development of internal knowledge products and promote knowledge sharing and collaborative tools to facilitate sharing of ideas and work among internal and external
    stakeholders, in particular work on parliamentary and political party strengthening, climate change, open government and oversight of the Security Sector;
  • Increase democracy expertise across the Centre through consultation, mentorship and implementation of capacity building and institutional innovation strategies;
  • Cultivate institutional relationships with domestic and international partners working on democracy support innovation.


  • Support Centre wide Inclusion (intersectionality) efforts and development;
  • Support Program Quality Assurance (All programming), including proposals;
  • Ensure performance management and reporting for areas of responsibility.


Required Skills and Experience:

  • Master’s in political science, African/Middle Eastern studies, public administration, international relations, or equivalent professional experience.
  • Minimum 10 years designing and managing projects, with 5 years in a management position;
  • Proven experience in developing and managing democratic development initiatives aimed at strengthening the organizational and institutional capacity of democratic institutions, including administration staff and parliamentarians, as well as civil society organizations;
  • Knowledge of the role and functioning of legislatures, elected members and civil society relevant professional experience will be considered a strong asset;
  • Knowledge of conflict areas and dynamics, including strategies to support countries in transition is an asset;
  • Significant knowledge of developmental dynamics and demonstrated work experience in Africa and/or MENA;
  • Excellent budget and project cycle management skills; administrative and financial skills, including the ability to prepare and analyze work plans and budgets;
  • Proven experience in and understanding of result-based management (RBM) and adaptive project management;
  • Experience managing projects funded by the Government of Canada. Experience managing projects funded by other donor agencies will be considered a plus; Excellent diplomatic and relationship management skills, and proven ability to work with diverse stakeholders in a multi-partner, multi-country/region project;
  • Excellent language skills in English and French in both oral and written communication (test will be administered);
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office suite, including Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook;
  • Interest in promoting learning and building the capacity of self, staff and partners to continue learning and innovating to better fulfill the Parliamentary Centre’s mission.

About the Parliamentary Centre

The Parliamentary Centre offers an opportunity to join a multicultural, value-driven, highly experienced, dynamic and growing team of international development professionals. We offer a competitive salary and benefits package. The Parliamentary Centre is an equal opportunity employer. We encourage applications from all qualified candidates regardless of sex, age, disability, gender identity, religion, or ethnicity.

Information on our proposed new program in Ghana, Togo and Ethiopia.