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Non-Executive Director for Culture

Deadline: 5th November 2020
Contract Type: Voluntary

Could you provide expert, independent pro bono advice for the UK’s National Commission for UNESCO on national and international culture policy? Would you like to work with the UK’s UNESCO designations, with the UK government, UNESCO and its member states?

The UK National Commission for UNESCO is inviting applications for a Non-Executive Director (NED) with expertise and experience in the field of Culture.

Please review the material below. You can download full details and the application form in the ‘application notes and forms’ section below.

The UK National Commission for UNESCO is seeking to appoint a voluntary Non-Executive Director to its Board to take responsibility for the Culture Portfolio. The closing date for applications is 5th November 2020. Interviews for selected candidates are likely to be arranged by video conference.

Our role and core functions

As the central link for UNESCO-related matters in the UK and a constitutional part of the UK’s membership of UNESCO, the UKNC works to support the UK’s contribution to UNESCO and bring the benefits of UNESCO to the UK. It is part of UNESCO’s unique global network of national cooperating bodies known as National Commissions. It works at the heart of the UK’s over 160 UNESCO designations. Its aim is to connect the UK Government and UNESCO to the UK’s educational, academic, scientific, cultural, creative and artistic communities.

In this role, the UKNC’s core functions are:

  • To provide expert, independent policy advice to UK and devolved governments on UNESCO related issues;
  • To support and enhance the value of the UK’s 160+ UNESCO sites and projects;
  • To support the UK government’s agenda in helping UNESCO become more institutionally effective;
  • To advise and support individuals and institutions in the UK, its Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies on accessing UNESCO accreditation;
  • To work with and share best practice with the global network of the other UNESCO Member States’ National Commissions for UNESCO.

Time Commitment

At least 20 days per year, providing policy advice in ­­­areas of expertise (sometimes requested at short notice), and attendance (tele/videoconference participation during the Covid-19 crisis) at UNESCO meetings in the UK, Paris or elsewhere, including four UKNC Board meetings per year and other task-related activities. Reasonable approved expenses will be covered. Candidates should indicate the time they expect to be able to devote to UKNC work.


The role is voluntary and there will be reimbursement of reasonable approved expenses only.

Application Notes and Form

Applicants should complete and submit an application form, which may be downloaded below, with a short covering letter (maximum length of  2 sides of A4) paying close attention to the job description and especially the essential and desirable criteria, indicating relevant expertise, engagement & networks.  The names and email contacts of two referees should also be provided and the application should be sent to [email protected].

Although this appointment does not come within the remit of the Commissioner for Public Appointments, it is being made using a process which takes into account the Commissioner’s Code of Practice as best practice. Appointment will be ratified by the UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office.

Informal enquiries may be addressed by email or to arrange a conversation in confidence to Helen Maclagan (Non Executive Director, Culture Portfolio and Vice-Chair of the UKNC, [email protected] or James Bridge, CEO/Secretary-General at [email protected].

   Download the Role Description        
   Download the Application Form