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Europe Director & Secretary General, Centre for Democracy & Technology Europe

The Centre for Democracy & Technology Europe (CDTE) is seeking an experienced values-driven Director to lead our work ensuring that human rights are at the core of European digital policy, practices and laws. This position offers an exciting opportunity to lead an incredible team of programme directors and staff focused on wide-ranging issues from user privacy, to AI, to government surveillance, to online expression and civic space. The position is based in CDT’s Europe Office in Brussels, Belgium. 

About CDT Europe

CDT works to preserve international human rights standards such as privacy, freedom of expression and access to information, by holding governments and companies accountable for the ways they shape our online environment and seeking to empower individuals and communities. We engage in EU and Council of Europe legislative debates at the national and regional level; work with EU agencies and institutions on rulemaking and other policy development processes, domestically and globally; and work to build best practices with industry and with other civil society advocates. 

CDT Europe is a leading civil society convener, bringing together the broad ecosystem of NGOs to dialogue directly with high-level decision makers on policy and laws that impact both individuals and communities. CDT Europe is also known for its combination of deep technical expertise and human rights advocacy on tech and law policy issues.  Founded as a not-for-profit under Belgian law in 2019, CDT Europe has steadily grown over the past five years and now has three programmes: Online Expression & Civic Space; Security, Surveillance and Human Rights; and Equity, AI and Data. CDT Europe’s board includes some of Europe’s most prominent public interest advocates and organisational leaders, and the organisation enjoys the financial support of eight leading foundations. 

CDT Europe is a partner of CDT Global, a 28-year old nonprofit advocacy organisation that is headquartered in Washington, D.C. For more information, please visit and

About the Role

Key Responsibilities:

  • Representation. The Director is the head of CDT Europe. The Director acts as CDT’s senior representative to European Union institutions, European governments, regulatory agencies, and international organisations. They must convey CDT’s positions with authority and credibility at both working levels and political levels, and engage with policymakers across the political spectrum. 
  • Public speaking and media. The Director must deliver CDT’s views at panel discussions and public events with clarity and confidence, and work through the media to enhance and reinforce CDT’s visibility and reputation in Europe. 
  • Strategy. In consultation with the CDT Europe Board and in coordination with CDT Global, the Director determines CDT’s European advocacy and organisational strategy. This work requires the Director to combine strategic vision for CDT’s international and European activities with the day-to-day execution of programmes on particular issues. 
  • Fundraising. The Director must ensure communications of the impact of CDT Europe’s work to key foundation partners, seek out new opportunities for funding, and ensure the growth and stability of the organisation. 
  • Coalition building. The Director must work to maintain and build on relationships with key stakeholders across the field including fellow civil society leaders, representatives from regional and international organisations, lawmakers, and representatives from the private sector. 
  • Leadership. The Director must demonstrate an open and collaborative attitude and the ability to maintain seamless cooperation with CDT’s Washington, DC office, while also operating with a high level of autonomy and an entrepreneurial approach to developing and growing CDT’s European and international footprint.  
  • Administrative and managerial oversight. The Director has delegated authority from CDT Europe’s Board to manage the office and ensure its compliance with relevant laws. This includes preparing the annual budget (with support from our accountant), ensuring good financial management and clean audits, maintaining compliance with Belgian laws governing NGOs, and managing the different consultants in place to support CDT Europe’s administration.

Required Qualifications:

  • A minimum of 12 years experience of NGO leadership, preferably experience managing an AISBL in Belgium,  with a background in one or more of the following areas: human rights, democracy, technology. 
  • Passion for CDT’s mission and approach to technology policy.
  • Extensive experience with European Union policymaking processes.
  • Established networks in relevant EU institutions, civil society, industry, and/or academic communities.
  • Fluency and excellence in spoken and written English. Fluency in French is desirable. Excellent communication skills, with experience in public speaking, writing, and a demonstrated ability to communicate policy issues to the media and the public.
  • Demonstrated personnel management experience, and strong project and programme management experience. The role requires the ability to juggle multiple work processes and adhere to strict deadlines. Experience managing budgets and external resources is preferred.

Remuneration and benefits package

  • Full-time, permanent Belgian employment contract.
  • Salary scale: €120,000 to €140,000  gross per annum depending on experience.
  • Must have a right to work in Belgium.*
  • Location: Brussels, Belgium.
  • Benefits include: hospitalisation insurance, pension contribution and meal vouchers.

Application process:

  • Please send a copy of your CV, a cover letter explaining your interest in the position and how your experience and qualifications match the requirements, and a writing sample illustrating your thought leadership on a relevant topic relating to human rights, democracy, and/or technology, to [email protected]
  • Applications will be considered on a rolling basis from 5th February, 2024.

The Centre for Democracy & Technology Europe is an equal opportunity and inclusive employer. CDTE does not discriminate on the basis of race, colour, religion, gender, gender expression, age, national origin, disability, marital status, or sexual orientation in any of its activities or operations. We believe that a diverse staff enables us to do better and more impactful work. Women, people of colour, and members of low-income, disadvantaged, and LGBTQI communities are strongly encouraged to apply including those with lived experience of discrimination or marginalisation. Candidates from south, central and eastern Europe are also strongly encouraged to apply.*