Head of International Relations

Zurich, (CH)
16 Oct 2019
End of advertisement period
01 Nov 2019
Contract Type
Full Time

University of Zurich – Head of International Relations

The University of Zurich (UZH) is one of the leading universities in the German-speaking world and the largest comprehensive university in Switzerland, comprising seven faculties offering the widest spectrum of undergraduate and postgraduate programmes in Switzerland to over 26,000 students. UZH ranks in the top ten of Europe and the top 100 worldwide. Numerous distinctions highlight its international standing, with a particularly strong reputation in the fields of medicine, immunology, biology, genetics, neuroscience, structural biology and economics. 

UZH is now looking to appoint a new Head of International Relations who places a strong focus on identifying strategic developments in the field of internationalisation, as well as on translating these developments into specific programmes. The successful candidate will have a proven track record as a senior leader, preferably in an academic or complex organisation. Reporting directly to the President, s/he will provide the President’s office with informed recommendations concerning internationalisation policy. The desired candidate has strong administrative capabilities and political sensitivity, is familiar with complex governance structures and able to act in both a diplomatic and determined manner. The post holder will lead a young and dynamic team and is expected to be a manager with a strong sense of responsibility who upholds values of integrity and transparency. 

The new Head of International Relations will play a crucial role in strengthening the international presence of UZH by representing the university's interests vis-à-vis national and international authorities or organizations and by further expanding the international network of UZH. In addition, the Head of International Relations will assume the financial and personal leadership of the International Relations Office. S/he will lead the International Relations Office team, currently consisting of 15 people, and will be part of the management team that reports directly to the President.

Candidate Profile
As Head of International Relations, the successful candidate will be expected to:

  • effectively advance the international reputation of the university, in consultation with the Executive board
  • further develop the university’s internationalisation agenda;
  • coordinate internationalisation activities across the university;
  • promote the understanding of the strategic importance of internationalisation on all levels of UZH
  • identify strategic developments which could be promising for UZH and translate these into concrete programs or measures;
  • provide the Executive Board with informed, well-founded recommendations concerning internationalisation policy to be implemented;
  • have experience in the world of academia; the ideal candidate is a generalist with experience in research and education;
  • be a bridge-builder and a networker, able to maintain and further establish relationships with key stakeholders and strategic partners;
  • possess strong administrative capabilities and political sensitivity;
  • have proven conceptual and management skills
  • provide coaching-style leadership to independently operating professionals within the internationalisation team.

In addition, the candidate meets the following requirements. S/he:

  • has proven success in realising policy changes within a complex organisation;
  • has international experience;
  • has extensive leadership experience;
  • is a person of integrity with strong team building and communication skills;
  • is highly committed to innovation and strategic development;
  • has affinity with administrative relationships within a complex professional organisation;
  • has experience in dealing with decentralised organisational units;
  • is diplomatic, with excellent negotiating skills;
  • has completed an academic degree and, preferably, a PhD as well;
  • has demonstrable command of the English language, command of German is strongly preferred.

An executive search exercise is being undertaken by Perrett Laver, to assist UZH in the assessment of candidates who meet the requirements of the role and to identify the widest possible field of qualified candidates. 
Perrett Laver may be contacted for informal enquiries and questions on +31 20 2404 378 or by emailing Mario.Adamo@perrettlaver.com. The deadline for sending Expressions of Interest is on Friday, 1st November 2019, at 9.00 CET time. 

Expressions of Interest should consist of a full CV accompanied by a brief covering letter in English. These can be uploaded at https://candidates.perrettlaver.com/vacancies/, quoting reference 4344.

Longlisted candidates will be invited to have an interview with Perrett Laver mid-November 2019. Shortlisted candidates will be selected on Friday 6th December and invited to participate in formal interviews at the University of Zurich on Wednesday 18th December 2019 or Thursday 9th January 2020. 
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