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Senior Partnership Specialist, Donor Relations, GPE

  • World bank group
Brussels, Belgium
Application Deadline: June 26, 2024
  • World bank group
Brussels, Belgium
Application Deadline: June 26, 2024


Are you a very passionate advocate for education? Do you want to make a difference in the lives of children? The Global Partnership for Education Secretariat (GPE) would like to hear from you.


GPE is a shared commitment to end the world’s learning crisis. It is the only global partnership and fund dedicated entirely to helping children in lower-income countries get a quality education, so they can unlock their potential and contribute to building a better world. We bring together governments, teachers, civil society, donors, United Nations agencies, development banks, businesses and private foundations to transform education systems so that every girl and boy can have hope, opportunity and agency.


GPE helps low- and lower-middle-income countries to build stronger education systems so that all children can get the education they need to thrive. We currently support nearly 90 countries where the needs are greatest and focus on reaching the children who are the most vulnerable, including girls, children with disabilities and those affected by extreme poverty or conflict. Our unique approach works. Since 2002, 160 million more children in GPE partner countries have set foot in classrooms for the first time, more than half of them girls. GPE is also the largest provider of education grants in the global COVID-19 response, providing partner countries with vital resources to ensure that learning can safely continue.


Now, GPE is working to help governments transform their education systems to get the most vulnerable children in school, improve teaching and learning, and build equitable, inclusive and resilient education systems fit for the 21st century. Between 2020-2025, GPE will support transformative change in up to 90 countries and territories, which are home to 1 billion children. Transforming education is about creating lasting changes and achieving impact at scale. GPE sets  out to deliver this transformative change by convening partners, mobilizing funds and catalyzing  reforms to help partner countries accelerate access, learning outcomes and gender equality.


In July 2021, the Global Education Summit put GPE firmly on the path to be fully-funded by 2025, by raising a record US $4 billion from donors for GPE’s Raise Your Hand campaign. At the Summit, Heads of State and Government from partner countries made historic commitments to education financing and GPE also mobilized an unprecedented number of pledges from businesses, private foundations and development banks.

A fully funded GPE would support transformed education systems in up to 90 countries and territories, enable up to 175 million children to learn and help get 88 million more girls and boys in school by 2025. In the longer term, this investment could add $164 billion to economies in GPE partner countries, lift 18 million people out of poverty, and protect 2 million girls from early marriage.


The GPE Board of Directors includes ministerial-level board members and alternates representing 20 constituencies that reflect the Partnership’s breadth. The Board Chair is HE President Jakaya Kikwete and the Board Vice Chair is Dr Susan Liautaud. The Board of Directors, with its three standing committees, provides policy and strategic oversight and approves or delegates funding decisions.

The GPE Secretariat, with 160 employees and hosted by the World Bank, is responsible for translating the policies and strategies set by the Board into practical support for partner countries, coordinating with diverse stakeholders and galvanizing global support for SDG4. The Secretariat’s headquarters are in the World Bank’s offices in Washington, D.C. and the European office is in Paris with a satellite office in Brussels and a support office in Chennai.


The External Relations team (EXR) responsibilities include donor relations, communications, advocacy, civil society outreach, private sector and private foundation outreach and it has the primary responsibility for overseeing GPE's Financing Campaigns.

The Donor Relations Team is part of the External Relations Team (EXR). This team is responsible for all aspects of sovereign donor engagement via a “whole of country” relationship management approach, including fundraising for the GPE Fund and support to the six donor board constituencies; engagement with all relevant branches of government, parliaments, private sector, foundations & national advocacy partners.


This position will be based initially in the GPE office located in Paris, France or Brussels, Belgium.

The position reports to the Donor Relations Team Lead.

The overall role of the position is to lead on the relations with key donor countries including France and to contribute to the overall resource mobilization strategy.

An initial identification of tasks includes the following; however, additional tasks may be identified according to the needs of the team and donors’ requests from the Secretariat.

Under the supervision of the Donor Relations Team Lead, the top 3 priorities of this role are:

  • Lead on relations with France and additional donor countries (to be determined). Manage relations with the government, Parliament, CSOs and other relevant stakeholders in these respective donor countries;

  • Set strategies for comprehensive partnerships and resource mobilization for these donor countries that align with GPE’s strategic priorities;

  • Develop, manage and implement key donor country influencing strategies and coordinate future replenishment strategies for these donor countries.

In addition, other key tasks include:

  • Develop and coordinate advocacy strategies in support of cross-market strategies such as “Team Europe” and other key policy processes;

  • Translate policy positions into compelling advocacy messages and tools;

  • Create materials tailored to individual donors/potential donors;

  • Work with GPE youth leaders and other champions in support of the national strategies;

  • Prepare and manage leadership trips to key donor countries;

  • Support the head of the donor team in cross-team work;

  • Cooperate with communication and campaign colleagues in relevant national NGOs and champions, coalitions and networks to develop effective and creative advocacy campaigns;

  • Coordinate the establishment of national “Friends of Education” for policy change and resource mobilization;

  • Collaborate with other team members in the External Relations (EXR) Team and contribute productively to the EXR team's work and output, demonstrating respect for different points of view.



  • Master’s degree in a relevant field of study with at least 8 years of experience (though 10 years is preferred) working within the field of advocacy, donor relations and/ or campaigns;

  • Or a Bachelor’s degree in a relevant field of study with at least 10 years of experience (though 12 years is preferred) working within the field of advocacy, donor relations and/ or campaigns.


  • Fluency in English and French is required; in reading/writing/speaking for both languages.  Other languages are a plus.


  • Track record of having led on major successful fundraising strategies;

  • A motivated self-starter with experience in advocacy & communications, and campaigns;

  • A flexible and enthusiastic team player with a track record of delivering in a fast-moving environment;

  • Ability to work effectively under pressure, prioritize and juggle multiple tasks within tight deadlines, and to deliver time-sensitive high-quality work;

  • Strong experience in creative undertakings, which proved to provide effective, out-of-the-box solutions to complex problems.


  • Accountability & Results Focus: Engages in productive consultation without losing sight of responsibility for own, and team, decisions, deliverables and deadlines. Doesn’t let the pursuit of perfection prevent forward progress, in self or on teams. Seeks clarity from colleagues or leadership team when needed; Helps junior staff get needed clarity to move work forward; works within and across teams to remove obstacles and resolve issues. Takes ownership of own mistakes, failures or oversights, and seeks to correct them; Shares credit for team accomplishments and accepts joint responsibility for team mistakes. Manages differences of opinion to productive resolution so as not to impede progress. Ensures group efforts produce clear actions and decisions and tasks conclude;

  • Adaptability -  Models flexibility: responds to changing circumstances by innovating and altering behavior to better fit different situations. Learns new skills, performs work in different ways and coaches team members to do the same. Exerts a calming influence on colleagues and staff in stressful situations. Professionally deals with personal discomfort in a changing work environment and helps others do so;

  • Communication & Interpersonal Skills:  Has extensive experience & success working in multicultural environments. Speaks and writes clearly and effectively, adapting language, tone, style and message to diverse, multicultural audiences, internally and externally. Skilled at communicating complex information in succinct and digestible ways; coaches others to develop this skill. Shares information and keeps people informed; Operates with transparency, in a way that builds trust in a culturally diverse environment; Within and across teams, addresses behaviors that undermine transparency and trust. Maintains productive working relationships with colleagues and holds team members responsible for doing the same. Engages in active listening and two-way conversation. Asks questions for clarification and responds to others appropriately.  Learns from others’ ideas and expertise;

  • Planning & Organizing: Works well independently and in teams. Develops clear goals aligned to agreed strategies and direction. Plans and prioritizes work effectively, for self and assigned teams Works under pressure and against tight timelines, and still delivers high-quality work. Manages own and team time efficiently, and delegates appropriately. Foresees risks and identifies mitigation strategies and contingencies;

  • Client Service Orientation:  Models positive attitude for junior staff and demonstrates and encourages creative problem-solving skills. Demonstrates, and instills in teams, a commitment to seeing client issues, problems and questions through to resolution. Creates the infrastructure to help team members prioritize client issues based on urgency, and triage as needed. Experienced in dealing with staff and partners at all levels of the organization and tailoring solutions and communications accordingly. Strong conflict management skills and ability to coach staff in deescalating and resolving conflicts; Able to see the big picture and the interconnectedness of decisions and activities within the various lines of business. Discretion and tact in dealing with sensitive issues and coaching staff to do the same. Proficient at developing client satisfaction metrics, monitoring, adjusting and optimizing strategies to ensure clients are satisfied with the services provided;

  • Conceptual and Analytical Skills: Expert level research skills and experience developing them in others. Extensive experience leading efforts to quickly analyze and synthesize information from technical reports and other sources, summarize it into key messages, and use it for political influencing. Experience modeling analytical and problem-solving skills for junior staff and guiding them in applying them to their operational tasks. Strategic thinker with ability to translate strategy into tactical actions;

  • Foundational Technical Knowledge in Education & Development: Demonstrated experience leading work on education and/or development issues in low and middle income countries. Experience with the policy process. Strong understanding of, and experience with, fragile and conflict affected contexts. Broad and deep knowledge of stakeholders and major issues and challenges, with demonstrated experience applying this knowledge to country issues. Expertise in one or more of the following GPE focus areas: Education finance, education planning and management, education in fragile contexts, girls' education, inclusive education, learning, teacher development, other areas relevant to work of GPE;

  • Relationship Management:  For assigned stakeholder group (e.g. donors, private sector & foundations, civil society, or other), deep knowledge of the organizations and their unique characteristics, and strong professional network with key players. Understanding of, and sensitivity to, stakeholder perspectives, interests and needs and their intersection with GPE’s goals and interests. Extensive experience forging and managing relationships and developing partnerships that expand the reach and impact of the organization. Strong influencing and negotiation skills; Skilled at getting alignment behind a common goal, and support for specific courses of action or solutions. Possesses strong political judgment, diplomatic sense, conflict resolution and problem-solving skills;

  • Representation Skills:  Well-rounded with a broad base of knowledge about GPE, its partners, its work, its challenges and its impact (not expected for external candidates). Expert ability to think and respond quickly and extemporaneously with tact and diplomacy, and to present a credible and convincing presence. Ability to represent GPE and the full range of its activities and products to external stakeholders. Thorough understanding of the political landscape within which GPE and its partner countries operate.


Term appointments include, but are not limited to, medical benefits, including dental and vision, Staff Retirement Plan, financial assistance program, life & disability insurance, comprehensive leave policy (minimum 26 days/annum) and parental leave policy (50-100 days).


Poverty has no borders. Neither does excellence. This is why we continually search for qualified individuals with a diverse set of backgrounds from around the globe. We are proud to be an equal opportunity and inclusive employer with a dedicated and committed workforce, and do not discriminate based on gender, gender identity, religion, creed, race, color, ethnicity, sexual orientation or disability.

GPE has a zero-tolerance policy against all forms of sexual exploitation, abuse and harassment in line with its PSEAH policy.

Individuals with disabilities may be provided reasonable accommodations to perform essential functions of the role and support in receiving other workplace accommodations. Please contact the DAF-Disability Accommodation Fund at for further information and support.

World Bank Group Core Competencies

The World Bank Group offers comprehensive benefits, including a retirement plan; medical, life and disability insurance; and paid leave, including parental leave, as well as reasonable accommodations for individuals with disabilities.

We are proud to be an equal opportunity and inclusive employer with a dedicated and committed workforce, and do not discriminate based on gender, gender identity, religion, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or disability.

Learn more about working at the World Bank and IFC, including our values and inspiring stories.
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