Deputy Director, Information Democracy Program

Open Society Foundations
New York, United States
Competitive Salary
Oct 21, 2020
Nov 19, 2020
Employment Type
Full Time
  Do you want to help make the world a better place with your deep experience in and commitment to realizing a global information democracy?  We’re seeking a Deputy Director for the Information Democracy Program (IDP) to work closely with the Program Director in providing guidance, leadership and strategic direction to the newly formed program.  The position can be based in New York, Berlin or London.

The Open Society Foundations works to build vibrant and inclusive democracies whose governments are accountable and open to the participation of all people. We are active in more than 120 countries, making us the world’s largest private funder of independent groups working for justice, democratic governance, and human rights.


The new Information Democracy Program will bring together and amplify the work of OSF’s current Information Program and Program on Independent Journalism.  Engaging with civil society, government, multilateral and private sector actors, the IDP will seek to strengthen fundamental institutions of open society to preserve rights and freedoms and open a new era of broader and more inclusive political participation in the age of digital.  The new program will use grant making, advocacy, strategic litigation, research and knowledge-sharing to understand the implications of technological advances, address the interlinked challenges of regulating influential digital actors, combat political and corporate interference in independent journalism, and advance a global information economy that upholds the rights and freedoms of all citizens.


As Deputy Director of the IDP you will:
  • Work closely with the IDP’s Director, Advisory Board, staff and external collaborators to ensure the quality and relevance of strategy and innovation pioneered by the new program. This may include identifying strategic opportunities, reacting to tactical challenges in a rapidly shifting information landscape and forging the coherence of the program’s overall objectives;
  • Provide oversight of the IDP’s budget operations and support the Director in the management of strategy operations; work in tandem with the Director in configuring and implementing the architecture of the new program; 
  • Identify intersections between the IDP’s work and issue areas with that of thematic and regional programs and national and regional foundations in the OSF network; participate in working groups and discussions on topics related to the OSF as a whole; 
  • Serve as an alternate to the Director as the program’s primary representative in external fora at the highest levels when required; including with partners in civil society and actors within governmental institutions and the private sector.
  • Develop the IDP’s capacity to deploy the full range of tools at the program’s disposal (including grant making, advocacy and strategic litigation) to effect positive social change;
  • Provide leadership to a diverse, geographically dispersed team in a manner that is inclusive, accountable and respectful at all times;
  • Be conscious and sensitive towards power dynamics; model values of anti-racism, equity and cultural inclusion in all facets of your work and engagement with stakeholders.

What we are looking for:
  • University degree or equivalent experience and in excess of 10 years’ experience at leadership level within an institutional setting working at the intersection of public information and technology;
  • A noted authority in the field of journalism and/or information policy; excellent awareness of the field of actors currently involved in the battle for information power;
  • High-level understanding of the impact of the digital transformation on independent journalism and public information dissemination; demonstrable track-record of engagement in the public discourse on digital’s impact on human rights, social justice and democratic practice;
  • Personal and professional alignment to the core mission and values of OSF; strong understanding and interest in information democracy as a core open society issue;
  • Proven experience in the development and nurturing of teams, instinctive understanding of when to delegate or lead; an empowering and enabling people manager who encourages staff to incorporate their perspectives in strategy development;
  • Demonstrable experience in leading organizational transformation programs at a strategic level;
  • Experience in planning and managing significant budgets, maintaining high standards of fiscal governance;
  • Excellent writing, analytical, interpersonal, organizational and communication skills with sensitivity to cultural communication differences;
  • Excellent spoken and written English;
  • Ability to undertake frequent travel.

Desirable (but not required):
  • Experience of managing geographically dispersed teams;
  • Experience in holding overall fiduciary responsibility for the management of significant (seven-figure) budgets;
  • Additional language skills a plus.

What we offer:
  • Ample opportunities to learn and grow, from annual professional development allowances to onsite trainings and brown bag lunches with visiting experts.
  • Top-notch benefits and perks designed for your well-being and a healthy work-life balance. With some variability according to location, this includes generous time off, flexible work arrangements, employer-paid health insurance, generous retirement savings plan, progressive paid parental leave, reproductive and family planning support, sabbatical opportunities, and much more.
  • A commitment to creating a diverse and inclusive workplace that enables everyone to bring their full self to work and make a positive impact on the world.

See what a day in the like of an Open Society colleague is like.


If this sounds like the position you have been looking for, please submit your cover letter and CV; we look forward to learning more about you.

Competitive rates of pay apply.


We aim to build an inclusive workforce that is reflective of the populations we support, and actively seek applications from those who are marginalized and underrepresented. We are committed to providing reasonable accommodations to applicants and colleagues with disabilities.


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