The Open Society Public Health Program is seeking a Program Officer to support its work on Governance for Health. This post will be based in New York.
Public Health Program
The Open Society Public Health Program (PHP) advances a human rights approach to health, with an emphasis on social inclusion and reclaiming the public good in health. We work to make justice systems more responsive to health, to shift power dynamics in health-related decision-making, to challenge the health establishment to advance human rights, and to influence the funding environment for health and rights. The PHP is unique in explicitly focusing on the political nature of health, not seeing it solely or primarily as a technical issue. More information about PHP can be found here .
The Program Officer will work in collaboration with other PHP colleagues to develop and implement portfolios of grants, plan and oversee strategic convenings and manage consultancies to advance PHP’s Governance for Health work. This work seeks to expose and challenge harmful influence on health related decision making that threatens the realization of health as a public good and human right. Presently our work focuses on three interconnected sets of influences: threats to the right to health posed by marketization of health financing, goods and services; the reframing of development assistance for health shaped by donors’ self-interest; and the harmful influence of economic actors and dominant economic theory on health rights.
The Program Officer will initially focus on marketization of healthcare goods and services. This work presently includes:
- Exposing the impact of the growing trend of marketization or commercialization of health goods and services through grant-making, convening and communications focused on the impact of these trends in particular countries or thematic issues;
- Supporting the development and strengthening of a multi-disciplinary and trans-national community, or “field”, of civil society organizations, academics, investigative journalists and others working to uphold health as a public good in the face of such trends;
- Identifying, supporting and fostering exchange on appropriate strategies to challenge these trends through increasing transparency, accountability and participation in health decision making.
The specific tasks may be adapted depending on the skills and experience of the successful candidate, as well as the needs of the program. The Program Officer may be asked to undertake additional responsibilities according to program needs. This position is ideally suited to a highly experienced and flexible professional, who is familiar with the key trends, stakeholders, issues and tensions in the field of health and human rights, economic and social justice, accountability and related fields.
Typical duties and responsibilities include the following:
Portfolio Design and Grants Management
- Construct, and regularly review, portfolios of work that combine multiple tools, which will include chiefly grant making, but also advocacy, convening, communications, and others to advance portfolio goals;
- Responsible for all grant-making activities related to the portfolios, including reviewing grant proposals, conducting grantee site visits, and providing feedback on organizational health and capacity of grantees.
- Develop, plan and organize program-related workshops, trainings and events;
- Stay abreast of developments in the field through research and attendance at conferences and/or meetings;
- Write strategy/position papers that provide direction on policy and capacity-building issues impacting the field;
- Perform special assignments, including participation in other PHP and OSF-wide task forces and working groups;
- Build and establish strategic relationships with other philanthropic partners and NGOs.
- Manage financial and budget reports to track spending and assist in planning and development of annual budgets Candidate Profile
- Advanced degree, and seven to ten years of experience, in a field related to health and human rights, economic and social justice, corporate accountability or related fields, or equivalent combination of education and experience;
- Strong analysis and knowledge of key trends, donors, stakeholders, decision making and accountability processes in relation to the Governance for Health;
- Demonstrated commitment to advance the human rights of marginalized populations;
- Deep knowledge and experience of civil society and related actors working to advance human rights and economic and social justice in health at both global and national levels, including understanding of tensions in the field;
- Experience and demonstrated success in advancing social change in the field of economic and social justice, including through innovative approaches; with focus on the impact of powerful economic or commercial actors on health and human rights particularly desirable;
- Experience of living and working in low or middle income countries, in particular in Africa or Latin America;
- Complex project/program management experience essential;
- Excellent written and oral English is required; knowledge of French, Spanish or Portuguese is an asset;
- Ability to grasp and work within a complex organizational environment, to show sensitivity and respect for people working in different programs and departments, and to empathize with different points of view;
- Exceptional collaboration skills including the demonstrated ability to capitalize on opportunities for effective working with others, recognizing the value of diverse geographic and thematic experience;
- Excellent strategic and analytical skills including the ability to combine external and internal inputs into a compelling strategy and theory of change, and to implement that strategy, synthesizing complex information to make and articulate well justified operational decisions, to assess progress and adapt as appropriate;
- Adaptability – able to work in conditions of change and ambiguity, and to stretch oneself to adopt new skills which respond to changing circumstances and challenges;
- Ability to work with a high degree of autonomy while contributing to strong and effective cross cultural teams;
- Willingness to undertake regular international travel.
Please upload a cover letter and CV, ideally as one document.
Work Environment and Physical Demands:
Essential functions are typically performed in an office setting with a low level of noise. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
OSF is an Equal Opportunity Employer which supports diversity and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, ethnicity, nationality, gender, age, disability, or sexual orientation. Qualified minority candidates and candidates with disabilities are particularly encouraged to apply.
Level of Language Proficiency
Minimum Education Required