Director, Global Advocacy and Government Relations

London, UK | Abuja, Nigeria | Washington, DC, U.S. | Islamabad, Pakistan | Full-time; Permanent

I. Position Summary

The Director, Global Advocacy and Government Relations will play a central role in developing and executing strategies to build and leverage Malala Fund’s relationships with government, multilateral institutions, private sector and civil society to advance the organisation’s advocacy objectives. Leading a small team, they are accountable for the development and day-to-day implementation of Malala Fund’s global influencing strategy and the coordination of Malala Fund’s international government relations outreach across key markets in the Global North and MENA region.

Working closely with colleagues in the Co-Founders Team (in particular, the Senior Adviser, Co-Founder Influencing and Strategy) and wider Advocacy department, the Director, Global Advocacy and Government Relations, will identify opportunities to advance Malala Fund’s global advocacy agenda to influence policy and funding in support of 12 years of free, safe, quality education for every girl. They will lead on direct advocacy towards global decision-makers and identify and support opportunities to leverage and amplify the voice of Malala Fund’s co-founders – Malala and Ziauddin Yousafzai – and Malala Fund’s programme partners in global forums. They will work closely with the Executive Office and the Senior Adviser, Co-Founder Influencing and Strategy to support the organisation’s co-founders to design and execute a government engagement strategy across key global advocacy markets, helping them cultivate and nurture effective influencing relationships at the highest levels.

They have the following key responsibilities:

  • Working closely with the wider Advocacy department, as well as Communications colleagues to deliver global advocacy strategies that influence key political stakeholders and are informed by and strategically aligned with Malala Fund’s regional and national influencing objectives and activities.
  • Contributing to the achievement of public campaigning objectives where these have been agreed and prioritised by the organisation.
  • Devising and overseeing delivery of ambitious government relations strategies and programmes of work for Malala Fund – including the organisation’s Co-Founders – that create an enabling environment within governments and key multilateral institutions, in support of Malala Fund’s global advocacy objectives.
  • Building a strong senior network of relationships with governments, civil society and private sector that maximises Malala Fund’s influence in support of the organisation’s strategic advocacy objectives.
  • Providing political analysis and insights to the Executive Leadership Team and the Co-Founders to inform approaches towards strategic advocacy objectives.
  • Building a high performing team who are committed to Malala Fund’s mission and strategy, live the organisational values, and are equipped to excel in their roles.

The ideal candidate is a political strategist with a deep knowledge of political contexts in key global advocacy markets (e.g. G7/G20) and the wider geopolitical environment. Knowledge and experience in issues related to girls’ education is a plus. They have strong networks and connections with key global decision-makers, experience in diplomacy and are committed to building a global advocacy agenda and approach that reflects Malala Fund’s values.

This role may require international and domestic travel of up to 50 days annually.

Salary range:

  • UK: £78,000 to £83,600
  • US: $100,600 to $106,700
  • Nigeria: ₦32,812,054 to ₦36,175,400
  • Pakistan: Rs10,653,751 to Rs12,311,800

II. Responsibilities

Accountable for Malala Fund’s Global Advocacy and Government Relations Strategy

  • As part of the Advocacy department’s senior leadership team, develop and deliver Malala Fund’s policy advocacy work in line with the organisation’s strategy and values.
  • Oversee the development and delivery of effective influencing strategies in support of Malala Fund’s global advocacy goals and Co-Founder vision.
  • Working with the Chief Advocacy Officer and the Executive Office and Co-Founders teams, identify and advise the Co-Founders on their own advocacy strategies and activities, ensuring alignment with Malala Fund’s influencing agenda.
  • Devise and oversee delivery of ambitious government relations strategies and programmes of work for Malala Fund – including for the organisation’s Co-Founders in collaboration with the Senior Advisor, Co-Founder Strategy and Influencing – in support of Malala Fund’s global advocacy objectives.
  • Provide intelligence and insight on political events and dynamics to the Executive Leadership Team and the Co-Founders/their team to inform Malala Fund’s positioning, advocacy actions and external communications.
Coordinate and Undertake High-Level Internal and External Engagements
  • Responsible for the cultivation and maintenance of strategic advocacy relationships with high-level stakeholders in government, multilateral institutions, the private sector and global civil society.
  • Develop and maintain a strong network of contacts across the education sector, donor governments and multilateral institutions, ensuring Malala Fund is operating with the latest political and sectoral intelligence and high-level relationships are being effectively managed and leveraged.
  • Support Malala Fund’s Co-Founders to develop and nurture their own relationships with high-level political influencers, working closely with the Executive Office and Co-Founders teams to ensure regular touch points and ensure timely follow-up from the Co-Founders.
  • Undertake advocacy at senior levels and accompany the CEO, the Chief Advocacy Officer and/or Malala Fund’s Co-Founders to advocacy meetings as needed.
  • Represent Malala Fund in external forums, serving as a public spokesperson for the organisation.
  • Develop and present materials on Malala Fund’s global advocacy to the CEO and Malala Fund’s Board as necessary.
  • Oversee the preparation of briefings to Malala Fund’s Co-Founders, the CEO and/or the Chief Advocacy Officer in support of their external engagements and use these as a basis for pre-meeting briefings.
Leadership and Representation
  • Working with Chief Advocacy Officer and Director, Research and Policy, provides leadership in developing and delivering Malala Fund’s advocacy work, in line with the organisation’s five-year strategy.
  • Cultivates and manages high-level relationships with global and technical stakeholders able to contribute resources, expertise and/or political capital to Malala Fund’s advocacy work.
  • Plays a thought leadership role within and outside the organisation on evidence-based interventions that increase girls’ access to 12 years of free, safe, quality education.
  • Develops and presents materials on Malala Fund activity to the CEO and Malala Fund’s Board as necessary.
  • Represent the Advocacy department in strategic collaborations with other departments.
Manage a High-Performing Team
  • Oversee a small team which directly implements global advocacy
  • Actively contributes to making Malala Fund a diverse and equitable workplace through inclusive practices and openness to different perspectives, cultures and ideas.
  • Actively builds and maintains systems that allow for the growth and development of all direct reports.
  • Welcomes and inducts new team members into Malala Fund, and facilitates collaboration across and within your team.
  • Co-creates clear objectives and development plans for direct reports, and engages in regular and constructive performance conversations.
  • Shares key messages and relevant information with direct reports, and seeks out, addresses and/or escalates feedback as appropriate.
  • Ensures all team members understand and comply with Malala Fund policies, procedures and resources.
  • Lead the development of global advocacy plans and budget on an annual basis in order to inform the wider departmental annual plans and budget.
  • Ensure that global advocacy impact is evaluated, and lessons are identified to inform Malala Fund’s on-going work.

Organisational Culture

  • Upholds the values of Malala Fund.
  • Actively contributes to making Malala Fund a diverse and equitable workplace through inclusive practice and openness to different perspectives, cultures and ideas.
  • Maintains behaviour and conduct that uphold the highest standards for safeguarding, professionally and personally.
  • Acts as a role model for a ‘learning organisation’ culture by seeking insight and using problems as opportunities to learn.

III. Knowledge, Experience and Behaviours


  • Undergraduate qualification in politics, international relations, development studies or relevant area, or demonstrable equivalent professional experience required.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills.
  • Ability to think critically and consistently apply good judgement.
  • Strong political instincts and the ability to identify timing and messaging that appeals to advocacy targets in support of Malala Fund’s advocacy aims.
  • Solid experience of leading government relations work internationally with a proven track record of navigating political processes in a variety of international settings.
  • Experience of representing organisations and building strong external relationships at senior levels.
  • Experience of developing and implementing advocacy strategies to deliver social change.
  • Project management experience, especially with delivery focus, as well as managing the work of others to achieve the same.
  • Proven experience in a leadership or management role.
  • Strong commitment to Malala Fund’s mission, purpose and values.
  • Strong commitment to gender equality, anti-racism, anti-discrimination, decolonisation and social justice.
  • Strong commitment to professional development and continued learning.
  • Excellent team player with ability to work independently and in collaboration with colleagues at all levels across departments and external stakeholders.
  • Knowledge and exposure to education policy/advocacy programmes and/or experience in global advocacy in the international development sector.
  • Sound knowledge of global and regional development institutions and pathways to influence.
  • Experience of insider and outsider advocacy tactics, including public campaigning.

Malala Fund is committed to racial equity and social justice. We actively seek applicants from diverse backgrounds, experiences and identities, to provide a wide range of perspectives, ideas, views and insights into the strategy, policies, culture and ambitions of Malala Fund. We would particularly welcome applications from candidates who have lived in countries in which Malala Fund is operating.

IV. About Malala Fund

Registered as a public charity in the U.K. and U.S., Malala Fund is working toward a world where all girls can learn and lead. With more than 130 million girls out of school today, we're breaking down barriers that hold girls back.

Malala Fund advocates for resources and policy changes needed to give all girls a secondary education. The girls we serve have high goals for themselves and we have high expectations for leaders who can help them. We invest in local education leaders and front-line organisations — the people who best understand girls in their communities — in regions where most girls are missing out on secondary school. We give girls the tools they need to advocate for education and equality in their communities and a platform for the world to hear their voices. We believe girls should speak for themselves and tell leaders what they need to learn and achieve their potential.

V. How to Apply

Please submit your resume and cover letter through the application link by 23 August 2022.

Please note that due to the very high number of applications we receive when positions are posted, we are only able to respond directly to candidates with whom we wish to move forward in the interview process.

Malala Fund is an inclusive organisation and welcomes applications from under-represented and intersectional groups including BIPOC, LGBTQ+ and persons with disabilities. We are seeking people from different backgrounds, cultures, age, experience and identities, to provide a wide range of experience, ideas, views and insights into the strategy, policies, culture and ambitions of Malala Fund.

Malala Fund is committed to ensuring the safety of those involved in our work. Our first priority is protecting everyone who comes in direct or indirect contact with our organisation. Malala Fund has a zero-tolerance approach to abuse and exploitation by any of our staff, representatives or partners. We commit to ensuring that those who work with Malala Fund or on our behalf are able to work in an environment that is free from harm. To this end, Malala Fund reserves the right to conduct background checks on prospective and current employees.