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  • Posted: Nov 21, 2022
    Deadline: Dec 6, 2022
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  • British Council is the UK's international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities. We are on the ground in six continents and over 100 countries, bringing international opportunity to life, every day.


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    Head of Arts

    Role Purpose

    • The Head of Arts is the most senior representative of Arts in the country and represents our work in Arts and creative industries externally. They lead implementation of high-value, Arts and Creative Industry programmes in country/cluster funded by British Council, other partners or client-funders. They will have oversight of activities in country delivered through our Arts four global programmes: Culture Connects, Spotlights on Culture, Creative Economy and Arts Responds to Global Challenges.
    • They will lead a small specialist Arts team in country and manage sector partner and stakeholder relationships. They provide Arts and Creative Industries sector expertise at a country level and feed relevant insights to MENA Regional Arts Director, based in Egypt. The role is an important part of the country’s leadership team as well as the Global Arts Management Team and will work with colleagues in the region to influence decision making across regional Arts programmes.

    Main Accountabilities

    Sector/subject expertise

    • Uses their own expert knowledge on the arts and creative industries, intelligence and insight from other sector stakeholders, opinion formers and funders to support the ongoing development of global arts programmes that meet the specific needs of the country/cluster while also providing value to a diverse range of UK arts and creative industry organisations.
    • Through ongoing relationships with the Global Arts Management Team, builds and maintains good understanding of UK arts and creative industry sector priorities as well as Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO), Department of Culture Media and Sports (DCMS) and other UK Government priorities.
    • Represents British Council in country as a recognised, credible authority in Arts and the creative industries to external stakeholders and audiences.
    • Provides up-to-date and well-informed senior-level briefings on current and emerging themes in arts and creative industries in country.
    • Identifies and develops opportunities for the UK Arts sector to work in and collaborate with peers in country
    • Identifies and develops opportunities for the UK Arts sector to work in and collaborate with peers in country
    • Supports internal capacity building, ensuring that teams can access appropriate and cost-effective L&D opportunities and grow their sector knowledge and skills

    Leadership & management

    • Champions matrix working in the Arts network, empowering and enabling colleagues to collaborate on programmes, while promoting equity, diversity and inclusion
    • Provides specialist input and design to ensure activities under the Arts global programmes are relevant to the Arts and creative industry sectors in country.
    • Direct line management and matrix management support provided to Arts teams in country/across the region as required.
    • May be Senior Responsible Officer for smaller Arts projects/programmes
    • Monitors, reviews and ensures that the portfolio is achieving agreed impact measures, and monitoring, evaluation and learning and reporting is in place against Cultural Engagement’s Strategy 2025 and FCDO key performance indicators.
    • Leads an inclusive organisational culture where staff have opportunities for continuous professional development.
    • Leads and inspires country arts initiatives which actively drive forward to the British Council’s anti-racism action plan. Is accountable for Arts portfolio in country delivering to Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) strategy (to mainstream EDI and become anti-racist in our cultures and practices within our organisation and in our programmes.)

    Strategy and/or planning

    • Leads on planning process for country arts portfolio within region
    • Contributes to regional business strategy
    • Strategic leadership of design, development, delivery, and closure of projects and or programmes as needed
    • Develop and nurtures internal relationships across Cultural Engagement and in the wider organisation to ensure strategic objectives are aligned, understood and achieved
    • Considers the role of digital products, services and channels in optimising the impact and sustainability of the portfolio, working with regional marketing and digital colleagues.

    Relationship & Stakeholders

    • Builds and maintains critical country funder and partner relationships relevant to the Arts, and wider cultural sectors, to maintain an excellent understanding of relevant themes and issues in the arts and creative industries. Uses this insight to identify new opportunities and partnerships for the British Council, influence agendas and build favourability for the UK.
    • Builds and maintains a broad, diverse and dynamic network of key creative and cultural sector representatives in country, including artists, creative professionals, creative hubs, arts organisations, arts advocacy groups, intermediary and sector bodies, etc.
    • Builds and maintains the government and sector institutional relationships that will help open doors for artistic collaboration, cultural exchange and creative economy work.
    • Leads on relationships with a range of senior stakeholders and partners at a programme level, including representing and communicating about regional and global Arts programmes and the British Council at senior external level
    • Represents the British Council externally and internally, including in x-British Embassy coordinating bodies as required

    Brand and market positioning

    • Promotes and positions the diversity of the UK arts and creative industries sector in country
    • Ensures British Council’s value proposition and support to the UK arts sector in country is clear, agreed and communicated.
    • Works closely with colleagues and experts in the global team to feed market/customer insights into the programme development planning cycle, to ensure the British Council’s offer is market relevant, demand-led and consistent with the British Council and FCDO objectives.
    • Working with the Arts Marketing lead, contribute to the development of internal and external communications materials to highlight impactful stories from the country Arts portfolio

    Business development

    • Builds relationships with strategic clients/partners within area of influence.
    • Uses insights to understand current and prospective business development opportunities for the British Council.
    • Owns the arts pipeline for the country, ensuring high quality pipeline data and documentation feeds in to the partnership approvals process.
    • Leads the development of bids, proposals and business cases in country.
    • Leads and/or ensures appropriate assessment, technical and commercial quality assurance and evaluation procedures for programmes and tender submissions in country.
    • Provides direction and support on contract negotiations and delivery on individual contracts.
    • Ensures internal and client compliance including legal finance, procurement, contract management and reporting
    • Working with the marketing and comms function, contributes to the development of internal and external communications materials to highlight impact and support positioning for new opportunities.

    Programme management

    • Leads on country portfolio planning working closely with operational programme management colleagues
    • Leads on ensuring activities under the Arts global programmes are tailored to the specific needs of country/cluster, through collaboration with colleagues in globally dispersed programme teams
    • Oversees finances of the country Arts portfolio and can interpret complex financial information
    • Is responsible for addressing and acting on risks and issues escalated to them by programme management teams
    • Holds delivery partners, team members and consultants to account including supply chain management
    • Where applicable has responsibility for managing all country contractual obligations on programme or project
    • Designs governance frameworks and manages compliance on a project
    • Oversees procurement, grants management and due diligence on programmes
    • Can manage budgets and project finances or supports Finance Manager on bigger projects

    About You (essential Requirements For The Role)

    • Specialist knowledge and understanding of current trends and practices in arts and creative industry in the country
    • Experience of leading impactful high value national/ international arts projects
    • Experience of building partnerships with a diverse range of arts and culture stakeholders in country - including governmental and funding partners (trusts, foundations, institutional donors)
    • Ability to develop strategy & culture partnerships with stakeholders in-country and internationally.
    • Skills at management level in KSA Arts & Culture sector and substantial networks.

    Desirable Requirements

    • Understanding and appreciation of current arts trends and practices in the UK

    Method of Application

    Please Note

    This role may require domestic/international travel / attendance at some evening or weekend events.

    All applications should be submitted in English only.

    It is advisable to apply in advance to avoid any technical issues at the last moment

    Interested and qualified? Go to British Council on careers.britishcouncil.org to apply

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