Deputy Director - Policy and Standards

About the job

About the HCV Network Secretariat

The HCV Network is a member-based organization that promotes the High Conservation Value (HCV) Approach, a methodology to identify and protect ecosystems, biodiversity, and the needs of indigenous peoples and local communities (IPLCs) where development takes place.

The Secretariat runs the Network’s day-to-day operations. It provides quality assurance, learning opportunities, tools and guidance, and technical advice to ensure robust implementation of the methodology in all ecosystems (land-based, aquatic), scales (from farms and management units to landscapes and jurisdictions), and development contexts (forestry, agribusiness, other).

The Secretariat is hosted by HCV Network Ltd. a not-for-profit company registered in England and Wales (company no. 9710578).

Our work with Sustainability Standards

The HCV Network envisions a world where production to meet human needs respects nature, people, and their rights. Adopting and implementing the HCV Approach contributes to meeting global societal goals on nature, climate, and people. Sustainability standards were the first adopters and users of the HCV Approach. Today, more than twenty standards use the HCV Approach as a tool to protect ecosystems, biodiversity and Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities (IPLCs) from the negative impacts of land-use change. Although achieving certification by sustainability standards is no longer the only motivation to adopt the HCV Approach, these standards remain key users and play an important role in fulfilling our Vision.

The HCV Network Secretariat currently supports sustainability standards by understanding their objectives and proposing HCV criteria and indicators, designing procedures, tools, and frameworks, and providing learning opportunities and developing outreach materials, among other work.

About the role

The Secretariat is looking for an experienced Deputy Director who will refine and implement our Standards strategy. This includes scaling up engagement with sustainability standards in all regions and commodities to ensure robust and streamlined application of our methodology in all contexts and geographies and demonstrating the positive impact of the HCV Approach on climate, nature and people when used within certification.

Reports to: Global Director

Main responsibilities

Refine and implement our internal Standard Strategy.

Scale-up engagement with the 22+ sustainability standards that have adopted the HCV Approach, including those that are Members of the HCV Network (Better Cotton, Forest Stewardship Council, Bonsucro, the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil, the Soil Association, Rainforest Alliance, and the Round Table on Responsible Soy Association), and ensure consistency and robustness of use of the HCV Approach across all of them.

Coordinate the Standards Working Group, which includes organizing and facilitating calls and meetings, and identifying and implementing priority projects.

Lead engagement with ISEAL Alliance, the Accountability Framework Initiative (AFi) and other relevant platforms and partnerships.

Manage projects with sustainability standards, including report writing, budgeting, carrying out technical work (including travel where relevant), managing stakeholder relationships, and event planning, among other activities.

Fundraise, including proposal drafting, donor relations and grant reporting.

Develop communications materials and content related to this workstream.

Business development, including representing the HCV Network in conferences and events.

Line management of Senior Project Managers.



Post-graduate degree in a relevant discipline (e.g., international relations, business management, natural resource management, conservation, geography, agriculture, forestry, social sciences, other)

A minimum of 10 years’ relevant work experience.

Experience and/or knowledge of sustainability standards and certification processes in the context of natural resource management (e.g., the Forest Stewardship Council, RSPO, Bonsucro, Rainforest Alliance, Better Cotton, voluntary carbon schemes, or similar).

Experience and/or knowledge of no-deforestation commitments and regulations.

Experience in facilitating multi-stakeholder processes, developing procedures, drafting technical guidance and outreach content and training materials.

Ability to work independently and as part of a global team that is connected remotely.

Excellent project management skills including time-management, problem-solving and organizational abilities.

Excellent verbal & written communication skills, including presentation skills.

Highly developed interpersonal and team working skills, as well as proven ability to operate in a multi-cultural environment.

Line management experience.

Ability and willingness to travel locally and internationally.

Discretion in handling confidential information.

Excellent understanding of environmental and social sustainability issues in commodity development contexts.

Fluency in English.


Fluency in one of these languages: Bahasa, Spanish, French, or Portuguese.

Previous experience with the High Conservation Value (HCV) Approach.

Experience attending international conferences and meetings.

Experience and/or knowledge of business and biodiversity target setting and reporting frameworks (e.g., SBTN and TNFD).

Experience and/or knowledge of landscape approaches and/or jurisdictional initiatives within certification.

Experience in stakeholder consultation and working with various stakeholders including large companies, SMEs, NGOs, financial institutions, governments, smallholders, and local communities.

Experience developing and delivering training courses.

Experience in Latin America, West and/or Central Africa, or Southeast Asia.


Global (remote work) or UK-based.

Hours of work

Full-time (8 hours per day, 5 days per week).


HCV Network Ltd.

Contract type

Permanent (3-month probation period).


Salary range of £47,000 - £53,000 per annum, commensurate with skills and experience.

How to apply?

Please send a 1-page cover letter explaining your suitability for the position and your CV in English to by Friday, February 24th, 2023.

Applications that do not meet these requirements will not be considered.