Open position: Director-General (Chief Executive Officer and Legal Representative) – Deadline 15 May 2023

Open position: Director-General (Chief Executive Officer and Legal Representative) – Deadline 15 May 2023

General Summary

EMSO ERIC seeks a Director-General (DG) who will lead the European Multidisciplinary Seafloor and water-column Observatory (EMSO), a research infrastructure at fixed-point monitoring nodes connecting European marine research facilities: from the Arctic, through the North Atlantic, to the Mediterranean and the Black Sea.

EMSO is a European Institution set up as an ERIC (European Research Infrastructure Consortium) by decision of the European Commission, published on the Official Journal of the European Union, the 1st October 2016. Its members are currently States from the European Union or Associated States although it is open to external members. The Governing Board of EMSO ERIC is the Assembly of the
Members (AoM).

According to the Statutes:

  • EMSO ERIC is devoted to establish, coordinate, facilitate and optimize the use of pan-European facilities and sea operation resources in order to ensure maximum benefit to the ocean observation community. It optimizes access to ocean observatory infrastructures and data. It coordinates and manages contributions in goods, staff secondment, in-kind contributions and monetary contributions. EMSO ERIC integrates the existing fixed-point ocean observatories around Europe, to help coordinate the extension and upgrading of these facilities and to facilitate the planning and deployment of new ones.
  • EMSO ERIC is devoted to deep-sea processes and water column investigation and collaborates and complements shallow-water observation initiatives. EMSO ERIC makes and sustains connections with international initiatives relevant to ocean observation. EMSO ERIC promotes cooperation in these areas. EMSO ERIC stimulates and supports the development of advanced technologies for in-situ ocean monitoring, pursuing the need to achieve sustainable management and protection of marine resources.
  • EMSO ERIC operates on a non-commercial basis, although it may carry out limited commercial activities, provided they are closely related to its principal tasks and that they do not compromise the achievement thereof. Any income generated by these limited economic activities is used by EMSO ERIC to further its purpose.

Mandate of the Director-General

The EMSO ERIC Director-General is sought as an experienced manager with scientific background; who will act as the legal representative of EMSO ERIC.

The mission of the Director-General is to lead EMSO development to fully mature and operational services across the EMSO Infrastructure Framework. The Director-General shall carry out the day-today management of EMSO ERIC with due diligence; and in accordance with the EMSO ERIC Statutes and Implementing Rules, the directions and resolutions of the Assembly of Member Countries and applicable laws.

The Director-General will lead the Central Management Office (CMO) and he/she will report to the General Assembly of Members of the EMSO ERIC.

The Director-General is responsible for preparing and submitting to the Assembly of Members (AoM) strategic, technical, scientific, legal, budgetary and administrative assessments and for preparing and submitting the annual activity plan and activity report.

Duties (from EMSO ERIC Statutes, art. 13, paragraph from 3 to 8)

The Director-General shall be responsible for the preparation and implementation of the decisions and programmes to be adopted by the Assembly of Members, in consultation with the Executive Committee. The Director-General shall be assisted in performing his/her functions by the staff of the Central Management Office and by the Executive Committee.

The Director-General, shall, among others:

  • prepare the Long-term Strategic Plan, updated on an annual basis.
  • implement strategies, decisions and policies adopted by the AoM and shall:
    a) supervise the operation of EMSO ERIC;
    b) ensure collaboration between entities providing EMSO infrastructures;
    c) submit for adoption annual work programmes of EMSO ERIC;
    d) implement the annual budget;
    e) prepare other reports or opinions upon request by the AoM;
    f) ensure sound management and financial internal control system.
  • take all necessary decisions for the execution of the Annual Work Programme and the day-today administration and management of EMSO ERIC;
  • represent EMSO ERIC in international meetings, projects or initiatives.

Minimum Qualifications and Experiences

Required qualifications and competencies of the EMSO ERIC Director-General are:

▪ Proven experience in the management of research-based bodies such as Research Institutes, Innovation Facilities, Research Infrastructures, or similar organizations;
▪ Proven experience in the management of international initiatives such as networks, programs and projects in scientific and innovation domains, namely within the European Union;
▪ Demonstrated ability to engage and work collaboratively with diverse stakeholders;
▪ Demonstrated experience in leading professional staff and engaging effectively with a broad array of individuals;
▪ Demonstrated experience in fund raising strategies for research and innovation projects;
▪ Excellent communications and public relations skills;
▪ High proficiency in English language.

Desirable Attributes

Desirable attributes of the Director-General are:

▪ PhD or equivalent experience in science (preferably environmental sciences);
▪ Experience in the European and global research arena;
▪ Knowledge of Environmental and/or science landscape in Europe;
▪ Knowledge of international Environmental research institutions, organizations, infrastructures, and other relevant bodies;
▪ Fluency in one language of the European Union beside English.

Co-funding of the position by the member state will also be considered.

Working Conditions

▪ Full dedication;
▪ the main place of work will be the EMSO ERIC headquarters in Rome, Italy;
▪ duties will entail travel within and outside Europe;
▪ availability can be occasionally required beyond the daily work time;
▪ the initial probationary period is 6 (six) months.

Selection Procedure

EMSO ERIC selection and recruitment process is transparent and non-discriminatory. EMSO ERIC provides equal employment opportunities to all applicants.

Applications should be addressed to the Chairperson of the EMSO ERIC General Assembly, Mr. Miguel Miranda, and submitted via email to the EMSO ERIC Central Management Office ( as a single pdf file, by 15th May 2023, 12:00 CET. The application should include:

  • A cover letter describing and demonstrating the applicant’s suitability for the position and how he/she can lead the activities of the EMSO ERIC and to deliver the EMSO ERIC mission;
  • The Curriculum Vitae of the applicant;
  • The names and contacts details of at least three persons as reference of previous professional experience.

A selection Committee shall be established by the Assembly of Members; the composition of the panel will include some Assembly of Member delegates and external experts. Upon evaluation of the applications, the selection panel will invite the candidates to an interview in person or ‘virtual’. The selection Committee will communicate its proposal and final ranking to the Assembly of Members, which will take the final decision.

According to Italian Privacy Protection Law n. 196/03 any resume not mentioning explicitly the following wording: ‘I authorize the use of my personal data in accordance with Italian Privacy Protection Law (30/06/2003, n. 196/03)’ will be automatically deleted from our database and consequently not taken into consideration.

When submitting the application, please use the following subject in your email: “Application for the EMSO ERIC Director-General position”. The deadline for submission of applications is 15th May 2023, 12:00 CET.

It is expected that the Director-General will be selected by early August 2023 and that he/she will take up office by October 2023.

Any specific enquiries about this job vacancy should be sent to the EMSO ERIC Executive Central Management Office (

Find out more about this position here.

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