Privacy International defends the right to privacy across the world, and fights surveillance and other intrusions into private life by governments and corporations. Read more »

Advocacy Director - job description and person specification

Are you looking to join a small charity that holds governments and companies to account on surveillance issues? We have identified the need for an Advocacy Director to join Privacy International to manage a multi-country advocacy and capacity-building project, focusing on communications surveillance. The Advocacy Director will be responsible for managing a team of five people working with our partners in developing countries in Africa, Asia, and Latin America.

The project will help our partners to understand the risks of modern surveillance techniques, investigate the technological and legal landscapes in countries, and seek policy change to protect privacy in the face of government surveillance. The Advocacy Director will work with team members and partners to develop educational and advocacy materials on communications surveillance, privacy law, human rights, and devise strategies for influencing policy.

The Advocacy Director will be a part of Privacy International’s management team. She or he will work with the Executive Director on a regular basis to monitor project activities, facilitate necessary project improvements and identify future resource and capacity strengthening needs. 

The ideal candidate will be well-versed in surveillance and technology issues, familiar with the development sector and human rights mechanisms, and willing to represent Privacy International in conferences and fora. The role will involve extensive travel, particularly to Africa, Asia and Latin America.

The successful candidate will be joining a small team of staff at one of the world’s leading privacy organizations. Privacy International is committed to fighting for the right to privacy across the world. We investigate the secret world of government surveillance and expose the companies enabling it. We litigate to ensure that surveillance is consistent with the rule of law. We advocate for strong national, regional, and international laws that protect privacy. We conduct research to catalyse policy change. We raise awareness about technologies and laws that place privacy at risk, to ensure that the public is informed and engaged. To ensure that this right is universally respected, we strengthen the capacity of our partners in developing countries and work with international organisations to protect the most vulnerable.

Please note that this position is for an initial one-year period, to be extended if deemed to be in the best interests of PI and if funding permits. The successful candidate will be based full-time in our London office.

Remuneration: £38,000

Roles and Responsibilities:

1. Project implementation

  • Undertake an assessment of capacity strengthening and resource needs of our partners
  • Develop guidance and guidelines for our partners, relating to: (i) project reporting; (ii) financial management and auditing; (iii) ethical investigation and research; (iv) procurement and corruption; and (v) physical and digital security
  • Coordinate annual project audits
  • Lead assessment and monitoring of project activities against expected objectives, activities and outputs. 

2. Advocacy and outreach

  • Conduct extensive travel to visit and build the capacity of partners; work with partners to run briefing meetings across policy communities, change agents, and parliamentarians and government officials
  • Develop guidelines to apply the International Principles on the Application of Human Rights to Communications Surveillance to assess gaps in legal protection within national policy
  • Convene a series of briefing events at the UN in Geneva to raise awareness and understanding of the landscape of surveillance arrangements and risks posed to privacy and free expression in target countries. 

3. Research coordination

  • Manage a research team to work with partners to undertake investigations into surveillance technology and policy in country
  • Work with the Big Brother Incorporated team to coordinate and integrate research and investigation undertaken by the partners

4. Administrative

  • Manage project staff to monitor and assess activities, plan for future activities, and identify capacity strengthening needs
  • Meet with management team to review project activities and facilitate improvements where necessary, and review financial reports order to identify budget surpluses and shortfalls
  • Provide financial oversight of the project; work with auditors to review Privacy International and partners on an annual basis; work with partners to guide them on financial processes
  • Review biannual technical and financial reports, schedule follow-up discussions, and where possible, face to face meetings with each local partner to discuss issues raised in the report.

Person specification:


  • In-country experience working in developing countries and emerging democracies
  • Demonstrable knowledge of, and interest in, a wide range of surveillance law, privacy law and data protection issues.
  • At least five years' experience in programme and research management
  • Understanding of issues related to the intersection of technology and human rights
  • Exceptional communications and presentation skills, both written and oral
  • Strong multitasking abilities and ability to manage multiple deadlines
  • Enthusiasm for development work and foreign travel, and willingness to travel frequently, including to medium-risk/high-risk environments on occasion
  • Experience of working with and in small teams
  • Cultural sensitivity and ability to get on with a wide range of people
  • Experience of organising events and/or workshops
  • Experience of conducting training or capacity building activities


  • Fluency in at least one language other than English, preferably Arabic or Spanish.
  • Post-graduate degree related to human rights, law or development studies
  • Proactive and self-motivated individual capable of managing small teams
  • Track record of initiating, developing and managing both stakeholder relationships

To apply, please send a CV and covering letter (not more than five sides of A4 combined) to by 6pm on 7th of February 2014. Interviews will be held in Central London on the 18th to 20th of February.

We are able to arrange video conference interviews with overseas candidates.