Senior Officer – EU Policy and Partnerships Brussels, Belgium

Website International Union for Conservation of Nature

Job Description


TRAFFIC is the leading non-governmental organization working globally on trade in wild animals and plants in the context of both biodiversity conservation and sustainable development.

TRAFFIC International is a charity and limited company registered in the UK. TRAFFIC’s head office, based in Cambridge UK, provides worldwide leadership, coordination, cross-regional and corporate functions. TRAFFIC’s local engagement is managed through programme offices operating under the auspices of the UK charity, with staff based in a hub office and at other strategic locations where necessary. Programme offices operate within a geographic area of responsibility focused on one or multiple countries where TRAFFIC aims to help deliver priority programme outcomes.


Job description

The mission is to engender political will, policy and related financial and technical commitments at key European fora – particularly those of the European Union (EU) and its Member States – that will support the effective implementation of commitments made by African Union Member States promoting sustainable and legal wildlife trade and reduction of unsustainable and illegal trade and related crime in Africa – with an emphasis on Central Africa and its Congo Basin.

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This position will be responsible for supporting the understanding and political will-building of European / EU audiences on specific African wildlife trade-related strategies and commitments. It will also be responsible to provide guidance towards implementing these strategies and commitments as well as sharing experienced obstacles, hindrances and obstructions – and means how to overcome those issues.

This position will further be responsible for supporting guidance on wildlife trade in Europe – particularly in the EU and its Member States as it relates to the effective implementation of EU policy initiatives such as the EU Biodiversity Strategy 2030 and related EU Action Plan against Wildlife Trafficking and other priority initiatives/policies in Africa – with an emphasis on Central Africa and its Congo Basin.

Characteristic Duties

The mission is twofold:

  •  To engender the political will of European – particularly EU – decision-makers to provide for adequate technical and financial means for the effective implementation of commitments and outcomes stemming from key African regional and subregional policy fora addressing wildlife trade problems – with an emphasis on Central Africa and its Congo Basin;
  •  To support the political will, policy commitments and outcomes at key regional Central Africa and Congo Basin fora that lead to the effective implementation of European – particularly EU – efforts outside Europe to address wildlife trade problems, with a focus on Central Africa and the Congo Basin.

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Specific Duties

  • Monitors relevant policy decision-making in the EU (European Commission, Council and Parliament) and ensures that TRAFFIC´s objectives and technical advice are communicated to target audiences for consideration;
  • Develops policy briefs, provides policy advice and support in the implementation of the EU Action Plan against Wildlife Trafficking and other related EU initiatives (e.g., on forestry and marine resources) relevant to wildlife trade – with an emphasis on Central Africa and its Congo Basin;
  • Develops partnerships with relevant target audiences and partners (including various Directorate Generals of the European Commission, different configurations of the Council and relevant committees/interest groups/experts of the European Parliament, as well as select permanent representations of EU Member States in Brussels, and other EU agencies);
  •  Supports and influences the development of EU funding opportunities of relevance for wildlife trade with an emphasis on Africa, monitors respective funding flows and provides advice on their proper implementation as well as on potential unintended detrimental side-effects;
  •  Monitors and influences development of new funding mechanism related to issues of relevance to TRAFFIC (sustainable development and conservation, regional integration, multilateral agreements, etc);
  •  Liaise with target audiences leading on EU bilateral and multilateral issues in support of effective implementation of and awareness on relevant EU wildlife trade policies vis-à-vis regional entities and bodies in the African and other regions;
  •  Communicates TRAFFIC’s policy advice and positions to the above target audiences (including through organization of meetings/events/webinars) and support them with advice and implementation guidance as related to relevant international and bilateral fora/instruments. This includes bilateral EU initiatives with other key countries and regions, e.g. EU-Africa and other such fora;

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  •  Liaises and closely workes with the TRAFFIC policy team led by the Director of Policy as well as Regional/Country Program Office Directors and Thematic Directors in TRAFFIC;
  •  Liaises with the EC, and relevant EU delegations and representatives at Africa-specific meetings of UN agencies (e.g., UN Environment, UNDP, FAO), ICCWC and other international organisations working on issues related to wildlife trade;
  •  Supports relevant EC, and EU delegation representatives with implementation guidance and advises on policy coherence as related to African CITES commitments as well as trade-related commitments stemming from other multilateral agreements (CBD, CMS, UNTOC, UNCAC, etc.);
  •  On the basis of the above, and in collaboration with TRAFFIC policy colleagues, identifies and develop strong linkages and mutual support between related policy work in Europe and Africa and other regions and policy work conducted by TRAFFIC, as well as high-level policy fora such as the UNGA and country-led initiatives such as London Conference on IWT.
  •  Represents TRAFFIC and TRAFFIC’s position at various events;
  •  Maintains regular liaison with counterparts/relevant colleagues at the IUCN and WWF offices and other partner organisations in Brussels as well with fellow NGOs and CSOs;
  •  Other duties as required by the TRAFFIC Programme Office Director – Europe.


  • A university Master’s degree or equivalent experience in a relevant discipline demonstrating understanding of the subject area.
  •  Significant professional work experience relevant to nature conservation and sustainable development, preferably within an international NGO and with work experience in Europe and Central Africa.
  •  Strong and demonstrable experience in national and regional/international policy, including on high level political negotiations and political processes preferably within an EU and Central African context, and good working knowledge of political processes in other regions of Africa;

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  •  Exceptional ability and confidence in communicating and influencing government and intergovernmental agencies, non-governmental organisations, civil society, private sector and other conservation partners.
  •  Demonstrated ability to deliver high level political outcomes.
  •  Knowledge and previous working experience in development, wildlife trade (including on forest and marine resources), related law enforcement issues preferred but not essential.
  •  Strong ability to initiate, build and maintain relationships with key external stakeholders.
  •  Ability to identify and strategically capitalise on policy opportunities.
  •  Excellent organizational skills with ability to prioritize.
  •  Good interpersonal and leadership skills and ability to work effectively as part of a small team, with respect for and sensitivity to multi-cultural approaches.
  •  Excellent interpersonal and communications skills.
  •  Excellent working knowledge of French and English.