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Vacancy: Campaigns and Communications Director

Campaigns and Communications Director

SALARY: £45,000 - £50,000

DURATION: Permanent, full time

DATE AGREED: November 2018

REPORTING TO: Executive Director

Based in London (with international travel)

PEN International promotes literature and freedom of expression and is governed by the PEN Charter and the principles it embodies: unhampered transmission of thought within each nation and between all nations. Founded in London in 1921, PEN International – PEN’s Secretariat – connects an international community of writers. It is a forum where writers meet freely to discuss their work; it is also a voice speaking out for writers silenced in their own countries. Through Centres in over 100 countries, PEN operates on five continents. PEN International is a non-political organisation which holds Special Consultative Status at the UN and Associate Status at UNESCO.


The role sits within the Senior Management Team and is responsible for developing and implementing an overarching communications strategy for PEN International; developing PEN’s campaigns, and oversight of PEN’s Writers at Risk protection programme.  The role is also responsible for providing leadership on policy development and high level advocacy to promote and defend freedom of expression, and other core issues of concern to PEN such as the promotion of literatures, languages and translation.


  • As a member of the Senior Management Team, contribute to the overall management of the organisation including contributing to development of organisational policy and governance
  • Team manager with responsibility for direct line management of four staff and overall responsibility for further two staff - responsible for setting targets and objectives and driving strategy
  • Lead the development and delivery of PEN International’s international  campaigns and communications strategy, including towards PEN’s centenary in 2021
  • Lead PEN’s campaigns for individual writers and on themes important to PEN
  • Responsibility and oversight for PEN’s protection programme for writers at risk
  • Oversight of PEN external outputs for consistency with policy positions and international human rights standards
  • High level representation of PEN to diplomats/governments, at external events and to other relevant stakeholders including the media
  • Responsible for building and maintaining effective relationships both within and outside the organisation to maximise PEN’s visibility and impact
  • Responsible for contributing to fundraising strategy and maintaining relationships with existing institutional funders
  • Responsible for developing and managing team budgets
  • Deputise for Executive Director as required



  • At least eight years working in the human rights or cultural sector and at least three years in a senior management role within the sector; expertise in Freedom of Expression would be a strong advantage.
  • Strategic vision, demonstrable experience of strategic planning and delivery of communications and advocacy campaigns at a global level.
  • Demonstrable experience of leading and developing strategic communications and brand development for a wide range of audiences.
  • Experience of developing organisational policy in the human rights or cultural sectors
  • Excellent knowledge of the international human rights framework and experience of high level advocacy and representation before a wide range of actors
  • Experience of managing multiple teams in fast-changing environments
  • Ability to set and manage budgets
  • Experience of fundraising and networking an advantage
  • Fluency both spoken and written in English and one other language (ideally Spanish, with French, Arabic and Russian also an advantage)
  • Sensitivity to the particular challenges faced by those discriminated against on grounds of identity, including language, gender and social and economic deprivation.


  • A good understanding of the challenges faced by a volunteer membership organisation
  • Knowledge of civil society and non-governmental institutions working internationally
  • Demonstrated interest in literature and the role of literature in the promotion of freedom of expression an inter-cultural dialogue.


  • Willingness to uphold the values of the Charter of PEN International.
  • Commitment to accountability, transparency and fairness.
  • Commitment to equal opportunities and cultural diversity and a willingness to apply this at work.

The post requires several weeks of international travel each year.

Terms of Employment

1. Salary

 £45,000 – £ 50,000 gross salary per annum, we would normally expect the successful candidate to start at the bottom of the salary scale. However PEN International may be willing to offer a salary above the starting salary, depending on skills and experience.

2. Position

Full-time permanent contract, based in London.

3. Hours

35 hours per week, normally worked Monday to Friday, flexible working hours will be considered.

4. Benefits and holidays

Benefits 25 days’ holiday per annum, plus statutory holidays.

PEN International operates a statutory contributory pension scheme.

5. Notice

One month during probationary period and three months thereafter

6. Probationary Period

Six months, subject to written confirmation

 7. Contract of Employment

Ideally, the successful candidate must be eligible to work in the UK.

Nothing in the above constitutes an offer of employment or forms any part of any contract of employment.

Recruitment process

Candidates should submit their CV and a covering letter which addresses all aspects of the Job Description and Person Specification, to  or by post to PEN International, Koops Mill, 162-164 Abbey Street, London, SE1 2AN, UK. Kindly quote reference number DCC/2018

• Applications must be submitted by 10:00 hours GMT on Monday 3rd December 2018.

• We shall aim to inform shortlisted candidates of the interview process including interview dates and times by 6th December 2018. Interviews likely to be held on 11 and 12 December 2018.

• Due to our limited resources we are only able to contact shortlisted candidates

PEN International is an equal opportunities employer