Vacancy: Senior Advisor and Team Leader in Health Policy and Advocacy


Closing date for applications: July 3, 2010


The Analysis and Advocacy Unit (AAU) is a team of experienced staff, providing support to MSF operations in the form of analysis, advisory and advocacy work for some of the key issues MSF is confronted with in its field work and working to reinforce MSF’s ability to deliver timely and quality medical humanitarian assistance to vulnerable groups.

In particular, the AAU provides analysis on political and humanitarian developments, including trends in the positioning and functioning of key humanitarian and health actors at field and international level. The AAU also supports the definition of MSF messages and strategies for témoignage, advocacy and external positioning. Currently, the AAU’s key dossiers are related to the HIV funding backtrack, the politicisation of aid, the health and humanitarian impact of migration and measles outbreak responses. In response to the evolution of MSF operations, AAU priorities are revised on a yearly basis.

Beside the HIV/AIDS donor retreat, examples of the work covered by the health policy team include health systems strengthening, innovative health delivery mechanisms, human resources for health, financing health care, gaps in the transition between humanitarian and development health policies, vaccination policies and funding mechanisms, including outbreak responses.

Hierarchically the person reports to the Head of the Analysis and Advocacy Unit of MSF-OCB (part of the General Direction), and works closely with members of the Operations, Medical and Communications Departments. Close working relationships are to be expected with a network of people working in Programme Units/Advocacy Units, medical and operations departments across the different MSF sections/offices as well other Operational Centres and with the Campaign for Essential Medicines (CAME).


  • Provide analytical and advisory support to Operations both at headquarters and field levels on the trends, potential implications and impact of international health policies and practices, including funding and delivery mechanisms, in the places where MSF works;
  • Contribute/lead in the development of advocacy strategies, both in countries where MSF is operational and at international level in connection with specific medical challenges;
  • Proactively identify key policy debates in health policy, ensuring they are known within MSF, that their impact for MSF are taken into account in operations and positioning.
  • Work to build networks and convey MSF concerns on issues related to international health policy and the delivery of quality healthcare, to relevant interlocutors (international organizations, governments, NGOs, private sector, academic community and think tanks), with the aim of influencing or effecting change in policy and practice;
  • Support in the development of MSF’s external positioning on health-related dossiers that are key for the effective running of MSF projects;
  • Supervise other positions, either based in HQ or in the field, that are linked to the relevant health-related dossiers.


    According to priorities identified in collaboration with the Operations and the Medical department and building on work previously undertaken, the person will:

  • Gather and analyse information related to specific health-related dossiers in order to help MSF’s understanding of the &#“health environment including funding and delivery mechanisms of international organizations, national governments and donors’ approaches to health that can have an impact on our work and ultimately on the most vulnerable populations;
  • Work with Operations at both headquarters and field level to develop advocacy strategies, linking national level efforts with international advocacy strategies;
  • Develop or support the development of tools (reports, briefing papers, communication messages, talking points, etc) and advocacy strategies in order to share our experiences and challenge/ influence such environment;
  • Coordinate, supervise and coach other members of the team who work on related dossiers (e.g. Global Fund liaison person, field-based temporary positions), as well as providing support to other members of the AAU for health policy-related questions in their own dossiers (e.g. migration, conflict contexts)
  • Share expertise and foster and maintain a network across the MSF movement including the field, other operational centres’ counterparts, the CAME, the International Office, the medical, humanitarian and operational departments;
  • Identify and maintain a network of policy-makers, NGOs, umbrella groups and academics working on international health, facilitating dialogue and exchange with the MSF movement;
  • Prepare and give training modules for MSF field staff on the dossiers covered.


    Essential requirements:

  • Medical Degree, Para-Medical Degree or Masters Degree in a health-related field;
  • Significant field experience in a coordination position for at least 2 years with MSF or other field humanitarian organizations;
  • Knowledge/experience or strong interest of current issues relating to health systems and health policies, the political approach towards health needs in developing countries and access to healthcare;
  • Ability to critically analyse different health approaches from a humanitarian perspective, identifying the potential impact in the field and proposing clear positioning when adequate;
  • Ability to work independently, take initiatives and seize opportunities as well as supervise other people’s work;
  • Proven representation, combined with a willingness to act as a spokesperson;
  • Writing, communication and negotiation skills;
  • Availability to travel to both other MSF offices and field projects, exceptionally for extended periods;
  • A demonstrable understanding of and commitment to humanitarian issues and to the aims and values of MSF;
  • Fluency in English;
  • Computer literate (Word, Excel, Internet).

    Desirable requirements:

  • Fluency in French is a strong asset, other languages are an asset as well
  • Some experience of dealing with the media


  • Belgian contract of indefinite period,
  • full time
  • Start date: as soon as possible

    If you are interested in this position, please send your CV and a letter of motivation explaining how your skills and experience relate to the person specification to: Emilie Delcroix, Assistant of the General,

    Or: Rue Dupré, 94, 1090 Bruxelles. Closing date for applications: July 3rd 2010