CB21, Cambridge
Circa £57,500 per annum
Permanent, Full-time
Job description

Alzheimer’s Research UK is the UK’s leading dementia research charity dedicated to diagnosis, prevention, treatment and cure. Backed by our passionate scientists and supporters, we’re challenging the way people think about dementia, bringing together the people and organisations who can speed up progress, and investing in research to make life-changing breakthroughs possible.

By working at Alzheimer’s Research UK, you will be part of an organisation that has been recognised nationally as an outstanding place to work. In 2020, we were listed 39th in the prestigious Sunday Times 100 Best Not-for-Profit Organisations to Work For.  We were also awarded a 2-star accreditation by Best Companies, recognising outstanding levels of workplace engagement and were listed in the 75 Best Companies to Work For in the East of England.

We are recruiting a new Head of Public Affairs and Campaigns to lead the Public Affairs team at ARUK. The Head of Public Affairs will report to the Director of Policy and Public Affairs and line manage the Senior Public Affairs Officer and the Public Affairs Officer.

The post holder will be joining a friendly, busy and fast-moving Policy and Public Affairs team, with the scope to grow both the function and the post-holder’s role within ARUK. The role will work closely with policy colleagues to help develop opportunities for influencing key stakeholders within and outside government and its agencies to help ARUK improve the dementia research environment. This is a very creative directorate, and the post holder will have opportunities to work on projects that take the charity in new directions. The role is likely to include frequent work in Westminster, Whitehall and elsewhere in the UK

Main duties and responsibilities of the role:

Public Affairs

  • Advise Alzheimer’s Research UK about effective political positioning to achieve our goals; working to ensure we are able to successfully influence key Government policy and decisions.
  • Build and maintain effective high-level relationships with key decision-makers and opinion formers, including in Government and in Parliament.
  • Develop and deliver a public affairs strategy for Alzheimer’s Research UK, with a range of creative tactics that create pressure, build momentum and drive forward our influence in Parliament and with government.
  • Provide leadership to the public affairs team and work closely with colleagues to grow political engagement in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland
  • Support implementation and further development of the strategy for public affairs & policy, in conjunction with Head of Policy.
  • Work across the organisation to develop stakeholder management processes and mechanisms that help us to manage and derive insights from key organisational relationships.
  • Play a key role in developing ARUK’s influencing stakeholder contact programme and identifying opportunities and strategies to improve engagement.
  • Develop and deliver a programme of parliamentary engagement for Chief Executive, Chief Medical Officer, President and Director of Policy and Public Affairs, working in conjunction with the Senior Governance Manager.
  • Work with the Head of Policy and the Director of Policy and Public Affairs to develop strategy and positioning on key parliamentary and policy issues.
  • Ensure ARUK has a meaningful role in shaping future legislation on dementia and scientific research.
  • Lead responses and briefings on key legislation and guidance, including proposed drafting amendments where appropriate.
  • Co-ordinate parliamentary briefs, develop submissions for parliamentary questions and other opportunities presented through the parliamentary system.
  • Represent the Charity to key decision-makers and stakeholders, managing a programme of meetings and to brief relevant staff.
  • Identify opportunities to use the media to maintain pressure on political decision makers around our policy and influencing priorities
  • Ensure compliance with Charity Commission guidance, and other legislation on charities’ lobbying activities


  • Develop and implement campaign strategies that deliver against ARUK policy objectives.
  • Build and sustain strong strategic partnerships, for example, with other voluntary organisations, think tanks etc to extend ARUK’s influence and impact
  • Grow digital campaigns and public affairs opportunities, building our reach and engagement with key audiences.
  • Manage and grow a supporter-based campaigning network, online and offline, to advocate on behalf of ARUK, including the involvement of people affected by dementia 

Events and meeting management

  • Lead the delivery of high-impact parliamentary and other events and conferences, including national party conferences.
  • Represent the charity attending external working groups as appropriate, under guidance from the Director of Policy and Public Affairs.

Other duties

  • Undertake any other relevant duties and projects delegated by the Director of Policy and Public Affairs in line with the responsibilities of the post.

What we are looking for

  • Educated to A Level or equivalent
  • Expertise in lobbying, government relations and campaigning
  • Thorough working knowledge of the UK political system, policy-making and Parliamentary processes, the media and which levers to pull to affect change
  • Experience of building relationships with influencers and supporters
  • Experience of delivering successful organisation-wide engagement strategies
  • Experience of delivering impactful campaigns that influenced legislation, government policy or practice
  • Ability to manage people, lead and develop a team of 2
  • Experience of working with colleagues of a senior level
  • Confidence working with computers – good knowledge of Word, Excel and Outlook
  • Excellent personal communication skills, with the ability to communicate with people at all levels face to face and on the phone
  • Experience of using the media to maintain pressure on political decision makers
  • Ability to assimilate new policy and political issues quickly and make connections between different aspects of influencing
  • Ability to write professionally, with an ability to adapt communications for different audiences
  • Ability to work with a high level of accuracy and attention to detail
  • Good organisational skills and the ability to prioritise workload
  • Ability to operate in a fast-moving environment, deal with competing demands and manage time effectively
  • Strong negotiation skills
  • Professional and hard-working team player
  • Outgoing, enthusiastic and able to remain calm under pressure
  • Willingness to work outside of regular office hours and overtime during busy spells
  • Willingness to travel weekly to London as and when the role requires

Location: Flexible, with regular weekly travel to Granta Park, Nr Cambridge, as well as regular weekly travel to London when required

Salary: Circa £57,500 per annum, plus benefits

Please download the Vacancy Pack for more details.

The closing date for applications is the 4th October 2020, with interviews to be held week commencing the 26th October 2020, with potential dates of the 27th, 28th and 29th October via Microsoft Teams. Please indicate in your cover letter if you are unable to attend on any of these dates.

To be considered, please create an online account using our Online Recruitment System which can be accessed through our Job Vacancies Page. You will be able to attach a CV and covering letter to your application, track your application and view other vacancies that may be of interest.

To view further details about this role and the benefits of working for us please visit the Alzheimer’s Research UK website.

More about Alzheimer's Research UK
Alzheimer's Research UK

Who We Are

Alzheimer’s Research UK is the UK’s leading dementia research charity. We fund innovative res... Read more

Refreshed on: 26 September 2020
Closed date: 04 October 2020
Job ref: HOPAC/20/14
Tags: Campaigning, Governance