Senior Manager, Operations & Events IAES & ISDC Secretariat, CGIAR (Rome, Italy)

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Senior Manager, Operations & Events

IAES & ISDC Secretariat, CGIAR


The Alliance of Bioversity International and the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT) delivers research-based solutions that harness agricultural biodiversity and sustainably transform food systems to improve people’s lives. Alliance solutions address the global crises of malnutrition, climate change, biodiversity loss, and environmental degradation. With novel partnerships, the Alliance generates evidence and mainstream innovations to transform food systems and landscapes so that they sustain the planet, drive prosperity, and nourish people in a climate crisis.

The Alliance hosts the CGIAR’s Independent Advisory and Evaluation Service (IAES) which provides operational support as the secretariat for the Standing Panel on Impact Assessment (SPIA) and the Independent Science for Development Council (ISDC) and implements CGIAR’s multi-year, independent evaluation plan as approved by the System Council.

On behalf of IAES, the Alliance of Bioversity International and the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT), which hosts IAES in its Rome, Italy office, is recruiting a Senior Manager, Operations & Events to support IAES (30%) and ISDC (70%).


About the position

Based in Rome, Italy and under the direct supervision of the Lead, Independent Science for Development Council Secretariat, the Senior Manager, Operations & Events will provide guidance to IAES on administrative policies and procedures, taking leadership to assure these policies and procedures are calibrated against system-wide requirements and industry good practice (30%). For the ISDC Secretariat, this senior-level position manages the operational and event-related tasks of the ISDC workplan and is responsible for the day-to-day processes (70%).


IAES Administration and Procedures (guided and overseen by IAES Director)

  • Ensure up-to-date administration procedures, policies, guidance notes, induction and training materials.
  • Engage actively in onboarding and internal information sharing, supporting compliance with prevailing policies; and serving as liaison for human resources and procurement policies.
  • Participate in interview panels for administrative temporary support, when required.
  • Lead, inform, and participate in discussions and negotiations related to IAES hosting arrangements.
  • Contribute to formulating and monitoring IAES performance indicators pertaining to operational support and maintaining IAES risk register.

ISDC Operational and Events Management

The ISDC establishes a triennial workplan to guide its efforts. Adaptive management is required to handle new arising requests within the ISDC’s mandate. The Senior Manager will play the imperative operational and events management role.

  • Lead virtual and in-person international event logistics and communication, from conception to reporting.
  • Oversee travel requests and reimbursements.
  • Work with Secretariat of System Council and the CGIAR global communication and events’ team in coordinating ISDC meetings and events.
  • Oversee the appointment contracts of ISDC Chair and Members and control honorarium payments.
  • Develop schedules for work plan activities for major milestones and track progress, including project management, documentation tools and systems.
  • Support Secretariat Lead in handling and completing new ad hoc requests to ISDC (e.g., from CGIAR governance body, and incorporate new arising needs into the ISDC work plans).
  • Implement contracting procedures for vendors, consultants, and interns.
  • In the absence of the ISDC Secretariat Lead and the IAES Director, represent ISDC and IAES to internal and external audiences.

ISDC Budget Management

ISDC has an approved yearly budget and three-year budget. This position will manage all budget- and expenditure-related activities.

  • Develop yearly and three-year budgets and monitor quarterly.
  • Manage financial implementation of the work plan.
  • Develop framework agreements, task orders, and terms of references for consultancies and vendors.


Essential Requirements

  • Master’s degree preferably in business administration, law, or policy studies or other fields relevant for position-related tasks.
  • Relevant professional experience in program coordination, administration, and management. (Minimum 8 years of experience is desirable)
  • Proven ability to work with a high degree of independence and collaboratively with various stakeholders. This role will work with internal and external collaborators as well as selected senior governance officials.
  • Solid managerial experience, as the position will supervise vendors, consultants, and interns, with no full-time staff supervision.
  • Proven capacity to adapt quickly to fast-paced environments.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of:
    • Meeting and large event organization with high-level stakeholders and leadership.
    • International project coordination and management.
    • Budget management.
    • Office administrative practices and procedures.
    • Online meeting platforms such as Zoom and Microsoft Teams.
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills in English.
  • Proficient skills in software such as MS Office suite (including Word, Outlook, PowerPoint, Excel, Teams, and SharePoint) and online meetings platforms including MS Teams.
  • Proven ability to liaise with a broad range of stakeholders and partners with varying cultural and educational backgrounds, and differing levels of seniority, and doing so with sensitivity, discretion, and tact.

Desirable requirements

  • Working proficiency (spoken and written) in Italian, French and/or Spanish.
  • Experience or education background in agrifood space, specifically in topics presented in the CGIAR 2030 Research and Innovation Strategy (e.g. : foresight, poverty reduction, nutrition, climate change, water, biodiversity, and genetic innovation as they relate to food and nutrition security).

Terms of employment

This is a 2 year internationally recruited position hosted by the Alliance, subject to a probationary period of 6 months and renewable based on performance, availability of funds, and IAES needs.

The position is based in Rome, Italy, and involves approximately 10% international travel yearly. Currently, IAES works on a hybrid basis; the current office attendance expectation is twice weekly, an arrangement revisited annually.

The salary is level 11, on a scale of 14 levels, with level 14 being the highest. The Alliance of Bioversity International and CIAT offers an attractive remuneration package including non-contributory retirement plan, home leave and housing allowance, as well as medical insurance. Salary and benefits are denominated and paid in US dollars.

Note: This is not a research or technical support role.

The selected person should be available to be on board in a maximum period of three months from the date of receiving the appointment letter.


Please apply online through the website ( ) no later than 15 September 2023, attaching a curriculum vitae, motivation letter and writing sample, all in English, and contact information (e.g.  names, email address) of at least three references. Please note that only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.

Closing date for applications: 15 September 2023

We invite you to learn more about us at:
Please visit our careers page at:
For more information about IAES

VA – Senior Manager, Operations & Events IAES & ISDC Secretariat, CGIAR (Rome, Italy)

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