CfA: Director of the Research Department - European Trade Union Institute

Call for applications, deadline 25 April 2020

The European Trade Union Institute (ETUI) is a non-for-profit organisation ( located in Brussels. The ETUI conducts research and provides scientific, educational and technical support to the European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC) and its affiliates.  The ETUI conducts and commissions research of strategic relevance for the labour movement on issues pertaining to the integration of the European Union.  The ETUI has over the years established itself as a key player in research on industrial relations, labour market issues including occupational health and safety, quality of job, digitalisation and climate change and European Union governance issues.

About the position:  

The ETUI is seeking to hire a person (M/F) to become Director of the Research Department. He/she will work closely and report to the General Director and will run a team of thirty staff members organised in 3 units (Europeanization of Industrial relations, Economic, employment and social policy; health and safety/working conditions) of equal size.  His/her work will be carried out in a multicultural context.

About the mission:  

In collaboration with the General Director, and with the assistance of his/her own team, the Director of the Research Department will be responsible for setting a research strategy in the above-mentioned areas (Europeanization of Industrial relations, Economic, employment and social policy; health and safety/working conditions), facilitating the deployment of the strategy into research projects, be in charge of its implementation, including its financial aspects and of the reporting to various stakeholders. Duties will include internal allocation and monitoring of the budget allocated to the Research Department as well as supervision and management of the researchers and staff of the department. The candidate will work in close collaboration with the ETUC, European sector-specific union organisations as well as national trade union organisations. He/she must (with his/her team) proactively develop research projects that address the changing world of work and provide insights into the functioning as well as impact of the European integration. She/he will collaborate closely with the Education Department.


  • Contribute to the Institute’s Strategic Plan under the responsibility of the General Director and develop the strategy for the area of responsibilities.
  • Organise and direct the activities of the department, promote innovation and the visibility of activities/publications of the department, coordinate and encourage the team to achieve excellence and ensure a good working environment.
  • Take part in the sound financial management of the Institute and be responsible for managing the budgets of the department.
  • Act as a point of reference and expert for the department, both internally and externally.
  • Represent the Institute and establish external contacts.

Skills required

We are looking for a candidate with the ability to solve problems, to work autonomously, to lead a diverse research community, to rigorously apply the internal regulations, with good communication skills and ready to develop a strategy for research activities on a European scale that reflect the changing nature of the economic and social environment.  The person should be willing to work in a complex environment.

Knowledge and experience

  • PhD, or equivalent experience;
  • relevant professional experience with conducting and managing research on a broad range of issues of relevance from a trade union perspective, in line with the ETUI areas of interest and Strategic Plan;
  • very good scientific reputation with a proven track record (publications);
  • at least 5 years of experience in heading up research projects and leading teams, at a management level;
  • strong leadership, management and people management skills and well-established experience in managing multicultural teams;
  • extensive experience in managing significant financial resources, including budgeting and internal control;
  • in-depth knowledge of the European Institutional system and the world of unions;
  • general knowledge of the European Commission’s financial regulations;
  • be able to meet agreed and set deadlines;
  • be intellectually curious and willing to go beyond his/her disciplinary field and be interested by very diverse topics;
  • have an excellent command of English (spoken and written) and French (or readiness to learn French); knowledge of other languages is an asset;
  • be willing to commit to a strong societal-based project;
  • working in Brussels and required to travel regularly mainly within Europe;
  • be able to work in a team and be a team player but being able to take decision alone when necessary.

We are offering

  • a key position in a senior management team under the global responsibility of the General Director;
  • an active role in a stimulating and excellence driven research environment close to policy;
  • a competitive salary package: the salary has been fixed by the director committee and is non-negotiable.


Applications must reach us at the latest by 25th of April 2020: 
 Sophie Kasiers:
 Boulevard du Roi Albert II 5
 1210 Brussels

Provision timetable: selection of the shortlisted candidates will be done end of April, assessment tests of the pre-selected candidates will be carried out in May or beginning of June; a selection interview will be held in Brussels mid-June ; a final decision will be taken by the end of June. The contract may begin asap with a preference for September 2020.

Your application will be dealt with in total confidence.

For more information, contact Olga Barth: -