The International Detention Coalition (IDC) is a unique global not-for-profit network of over 300 civil society organisations; that advocates and promotes alternatives to immigration detention for asylum seekers, refugees and migrants. Based in Melbourne, Australia, with employees located around the world, the IDC is a highly recognised, impact-driven organisation, offering a stimulating workplace committed to global change.


An exciting opportunity has recently become available for the pivotal role of the IDC Executive Director.

The Role:

The IDC Executive Director’s role is to ensure the vision, tone and direction of the organisation is anchored to IDC’s mission to end immigration detention, particularly for children, through the use of more humane policies. The Executive Director is also responsible for securing continued funding for the organisation’s work.

This full-time position will suit an experienced and committed leader with proven high level advocacy experience in the human rights field. The role requires strategic thinking, expert stakeholder engagement and excellent staff empowerment skills, as well as a proven track record in managing relationships with funders and fundraising. This role reports directly to the IDC Governance Board. The role requires international travel, and flexibility of hours to support staff located over multiple time zones.

Responsibilities include supporting, motivating and mentoring a team of highly skilled advocates to implement national, regional and international multi-year strategies. The Executive Director will develop and oversee projects across various locations within sensitive contexts, and ensure delivery of high impact outcomes. The Executive Director will collaborate with the IDC team to provide technical support and advocacy, and expertly engage with multiple stakeholders to promote IDC vision of alternatives to immigration detention. The Executive Director will work with IDC staff to develop and implement funding strategies to secure continued funding for carrying out the organisations mission and goals.


  1. Technical Leadership

The Executive Director will be IDC’s lead ambassador to promote alternatives to immigration detention. The Executive Director plays a core role in the development of tailored and persuasive advocacy arguments. The right person will be required to have:

  • Experience providing high quality, internationally-recognised thought leadership on the issue of immigration detention
  • Experience effectively persuading key actors to agree with and adopt a preferred position, including through negotiations and advocacy within various forums such as the UN, regional governance bodies, national governments, and stakeholders • The ability to develop and refine the organisation’s arguments in terms of framing, terminology and technical knowledge
  • Knowledge of IDC’s Community Assessment and Placement model (CAP)
  • Post graduate qualifications in human rights, law or related fields
  1. Relationships / Partnerships

The Executive Director will lead key relationships across all aspects of our work including with members, partners, stakeholders and funders. The right person will have:

  • Significant experience in maintaining relationships with key partners, stakeholders and existing funders, and building relationships with potential funders and new stakeholders
  • Experience providing inspiration and leadership to network members
  • Experience effectively engaging stakeholders in politically sensitive and culturally diverse settings
  • High level of inter-personal skills with internal and external stakeholders
  1. Impact Success

The Executive Director will promote positive change and understand the importance of impactful project delivery. The right person will have:

  • Experience managing the development and implementation of multi-year projects and strategic thinking of complex issues to ensure IDC’s mission is fulfilled
  • Experience with overseeing project monitoring and evaluation
  • Experience managing the design and implementation of a theory of change process
  • Experience with risk assessment and mitigation procedures
  1. Management and Leadership

The Executive Director will provide inspiration and leadership to ensure staff achieve IDC’s vision, and to effectively resource the organisation to ensure its ongoing capacity. The right person will have:

  • Proven leadership and management / people skills, with best-practice knowledge of supporting remote staff
  • Proven ability to inspire others to share and remain committed to the vision of the organisation
  • Excellent financial understanding and budgeting knowledge / experience
  • Ability to mentor, upskill and support staff to effectively achieve impact
  • Experience leading an NGO to effectively utilise resources to achieve optimal impact
  • Demonstrated record of ethical behaviour / leadership and a commitment to the IDC Code of Conduct
  • The ability to maintain a workplace culture of value, respect, dialogue, openness and trust
  • The proven ability to collaborate with a Governance Board to ensure legal compliance and high quality governance
  • Sophisticated communication and interpersonal skills in English, with Arabic, Spanish and/or French advantageous
  • Proven ability to draft funding proposals and engage with high level funders to secure financial stability for the organisation.

This position is currently based in Melbourne, Australia and will preferably remain there for an initial 6-12 month period. Relocation may be possible to other locations upon negotiation.

Salary is commensurate with qualifications and experience.

Applicants must be eligible to work in Australia or have the ability to meet Australian working visa requirements, while also being able to travel internationally. Possible IDC assistance in meeting visa requirements will be discussed at interview. A national (or international) police check is a requirement of this position.

Please apply by submitting your application to Mary Latham at [email protected] Applications must address the Key Selection Criteria and include a current resume to be considered.

Applications close Monday 5 February 2018, with interviews to be held during February. Initial interviews may be conducted via Skype.