Organisation UKRI
Organisation Detail UK Research and Innovation - Central Services
Reference Number IRC248305
Location Swindon See on Map
Salary £48202
Date Posted 06 February 2019
Grade UKRI-Band F
Contract Type Fixed Term Appointment
Hours Full Time
Closing Date 25 February 2019
Interview Date

Brief Description

Salary: £48,202
Grade: F
Contract Type: Fixed Term (until 31st march 2021)
Hours: Full Time/Part Time (0.6 FTE or above)
Closing Date: 25th February 2019
Interview Date: W/C 11th March 2019




We are looking for an enthusiastic individual to lead the portfolio management and coordination of more than £2.2billion research and innovation spend for development over the spending review period. This role is an excellent opportunity to shape the portfolio and maximise the impact and communication of two significant government Official Development Assistance (ODA) funds – the Newton Fund and Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF). As head of the ODA research management team you will be responsible for fund level management of the Newton Fund and coordination of delivery of both the Newton fund the Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF). A number of new posts are being recruited for this team as BEIS funding for research for development is growing rapidly. Further information on these funds can be found at and

Research and innovation (R&I) is at the heart of UK economic growth, the Industrial Strategy and an outward looking Global Britain. This role sits within the BEIS-led Research and Innovation ODA Unit which is responsible for ensuring BEIS spend supports cutting-edge research to address the problems faced by developing countries and works to build science and innovation capacity in developing countries and the UK. It is a multidisciplinary team of approximately 20 people, based in both Swindon (employed through UKRI) and London and including policy, delivery, finance, analysis and comms experts. This role will be based in Swindon but require regular travel to London. As Head of the ODA Research Management Team, this role is a key part of the senior management of the unit.


The team is responsible for co-ordination of the delivery of BEIS ODA funds, working closely with UK delivery partners, Newton In-Country teams (ICTs), the ODA Programme Management Office and wider BEIS ODA team. This includes:

  • fund level management of the Newton fund – producing guidance documents, capacity building, working with ICTs and delivery partners. Central monitoring and oversight of Newton delivery with flexibility in delivery to respond to new and unforeseen challenges, including managing in country challenges to ensure delivery and redistribution of funds, under and overspend etc. Central coordination of in-country teams in Newton partner countries. Lead on delivery forums
  • maximising Impact (Newton) – using portfolio mapping to understand and identify impacts and where interventions can be made to enable further impact of the work. Working with delivery partners to coordinate across the funds to ensure programmes are linking with and feeding into each other to maximise impact. Working with the academic community to ensure scientific excellence through top quality engagement. This may also mean coordinating meetings and events with delivery partners and relevant teams
  • portfolio mapping and data coordination (Newton and GCRF) – working with delivery partners and ICTs to map current ODA activity for impact, communications, gap analysis etc. to enable assessment of the coherence of ODA spend across funds and delivery of strategic objectives
  • communications on delivery (Newton and GCRF) – coordination of communicating the impact of the ODA funds and ensuring that work delivered through are high profile and visible.


The ODA Research Management Team works closely with the newly established ODA Programme Management Office and the ODA Research Policy & Strategy Team in BEIS and reports directly to the Head of ODA Research & Innovation. The team is responsible for co-ordination of the delivery of BEIS ODA funds, working closely with UK delivery partners, Newton In-Country teams (ICTs) and wider BEIS ODA team.

The head of the team will provide strategic and operational leadership of the ODA Research Management Team driving delivery and direction across the delivery partners and country teams and providing assurance and strategic advice to BEIS.

Newton Fund:

  • ensure the Newton Fund meets its overarching objectives and all risks are managed or mitigated
  • ensure that the Newton Fund is being delivered in line with the strategic direction of the fund as set by the ODA Research and Innovation Board (including ODA compliance, country specific spend, portfolio analysis) and negotiate implementation plans with delivery partners.  Coordinate inputs from delivery partners to the Board papers as appropriate
  • work closely with BEIS evaluation team to ensure input and steer to the Newton Fund evaluation
  • engage with Posts and in-country funding organisations to ensure the programme is joined up and delivering country objectives. Ensure that issues and difficulties to delivery in country are being addressed working closely with the BEIS regional and country leads as appropriate
  • ensure that Newton Fund spend matches profile, or can be vired where underspends are likely
  • coordinate a network of delivery partners to ensure activities of the delivery partners are joined-up with each other and with Posts to deliver a consistent & combined UK approach and brand to each country.

Newton and GCRF:

  • oversee coordination of communications of both funds to ensure a clear coordinated messaging in line with the objectives of the funds, the ODA research and innovation communications strategy and the BEIS statement of intent
  • oversee portfolio mapping for both funds providing a clear and consistent picture of BEIS ODA funding to support the strategic management of the funds and by the ODA Board
  • provide effective line management of highly skilled staff, providing leadership, counsel and coaching support to ensure that development and performance needs are addressed.

The Head will be expected to participate in meetings with country partner organisations to ensure coordination between activities on the ground and centrally in the UK.  This will involve regular travel within the UK and occasionally overseas.

Other key information:

Although these contracts currently only go through to the end of the spending review (SR) period on 31st March 2021, we expect these will be extended subject to SR outcomes.

Organization Description

What is UK Research and Innovation?

Operating across the whole of the UK with a combined budget of more than £6 billion, UK Research and Innovation is a new entity that brings together nine partners to create an independent organisation with a strong voice for research and innovation, and a vision to ensure the UK maintains its world-leading position in research and innovation. UKRI will build on the successful elements from the current funding system and maximise the contribution of each of the component parts to create the best environment for research and innovation to flourish.

Building on success

The UK has a world class research and innovation system. Our expertise spans all fields of knowledge, from the discovery of penicillin and monoclonal antibodies, to the jet engine and the world-wide web. Our inspirational creative industries are strong in art, design and the innovative use of new materials and technologies. Our universities and laboratories produce a disproportionate percentage of the world’s top research, and their academics are highly-sought as international colleagues and co-authors and are among the world’s best at attracting overseas students Nor is this excellence confined to university campuses and research centres. Our engineering, automotive and pharmaceutical industries are successful in part because of the superb graduates they can hire and the top rate researchers that support them.

Our partners

The nine UK Research and Innovation partners each bring unique assets to this cooperation. Innovate UK helps businesses to identify the commercial potential in new technologies and turn them into the new products and services that will drive economic growth and increase productivity; Strong discipline-facing Research Councils encourage breadth and diversity, curiosity-driven research, and priority-driven initiatives; Research England’s work on knowledge exchange will focus on capacity and culture in universities and provide balance to the funding system. It will drive quality and impact through the REF and work closely with its counterparts in the devolved administrations.

Shortlisting and Interview Criteria:


You should have the following:

  • experience of complex Programme and Project management in a funding environment, including a proven track record in financial and risk management
  • experience in managing international funding partnerships would be an advantage
  • excellent leadership skills with a track record of shaping the direction of work areas and influencing outcomes
  • broad experience of stakeholder management across partners and teams. Demonstrated ability to establish effective working relationships and networks internally and externally at a senior level
  • strong analytical skills – ability to extract rapidly the key information from reports and numerical data and present complex information concisely and accurately
  • effective team leader with the ability to motivate and inspire others to work effectively to deliver their own personal objectives and contribute to meeting overarching goals
  • ideally a strong understanding of challenges in working in a political and/or international environment.



  • educated to first degree level or equivalent.

UKRI supports research in areas that include animal health, agriculture and food security, and bioscience for health which includes research on animals, genetic modification and stem cell research. Whilst you may not have direct involvement in this type of research, you should consider whether this conflicts with your personal values or beliefs.

To enable us to hire the very best people we will conduct a full and comprehensive pre-employment check as an essential part of the recruitment process on all individuals that are offered a position with UKRI. This will include a security check and an extreme organisations affiliation check.

Limited parking subject to waiting list.

Employee Benefits

UK Research and Innovation recognises and values employees as individuals and aim to provide a pay and rewards package that motivates staff to perform to the best of their ability. The reward package includes a flexible working scheme, a Career Average Revalued Earnings pension scheme, 30 days annual leave allowance and a number of other benefits.

Developing Talent

We are committed to developing employees in their roles throughout their career. Learning and development plans enable employees to continue their professional development through training and development opportunities such as e-learning, classroom training and on-the-job experiences. We encourage our employees to share their learning across teams and organisations.

Equal Opportunities

We strive to make decisions based on individual merit and ability. We welcome applications from all sections of the community and promote equality of opportunity in accordance with the Equality Act 2010. As holders of Disability Confident Employer status, we guarantee to interview all applicants with disabilities who meet the minimum criteria for the vacancy.

Online applications only. Please submit a covering letter and CV ensuring that the IRC reference is included in the filename description of each document uploaded. Please note that failure to address the above criteria or submitted without a covering letter may result in your application not being considered.

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