Policy & Advocacy Manager - Europe

Access Now

Policy & Advocacy Manager - Europe

Access Now

Belgium or Remote

About Access Now

Access Now defends and extends the digital rights of people and communities at risk. As a grassroots-to-global organization, we partner with local actors to bring a human rights agenda to the use, development, and governance of digital technologies, and to intervene where technologies adversely impact our human rights. By combining direct technical support, strategic advocacy, grassroots grantmaking, and convenings such as RightsCon, we fight for human rights in the digital age.

About this role

The Europe Policy & Advocacy Manager is the lead policy and advocacy officer for Access Now in Europe, advancing the organizational mission to defend and extend the digital rights of people and communities at risk. The Manager heads up a highly sophisticated team of digital rights policy experts that together form one of the most effective civil society teams influencing digital rights and technology policy on the continent. In collaboration with the team and coalition partners, this role will have the opportunity to drive the advocacy agenda at the intersection of human rights and digital technologies in the region.

The Europe Policy & Advocacy Manager anchors the strategic vision for Access Now’s work on the continent and, in doing so, guides efforts to follow and influence relevant policy developments, recognizes campaign and strategic litigation opportunities, strengthens relationships across key networks, and advises on crafting appropriate communications. The key focus of the role is to be a strategic and supportive manager, advising and empowering each regional Advocacy team member to deliver excellence in strategic engagement, and pursue professional development opportunities, optimizing all available resources.

The successful candidate will sit on the Senior Management Team of the global organization, and be responsible for the implementation of Access Now’s Policy and Advocacy programmatic objectives in Europe. The Manager sits in the Policy and International Programs Team, within the Advocacy Arm of the organization, and reports through the Director - Policy and International Programs. They work closely with other Advocacy Arm teams; ensure smooth collaboration with teams across the Helpline, Development and Grants Arms; and facilitate the team’s participation in cross-organization workflows.

This role may be filled as a regional Policy and Advocacy Manager, or as a regional Policy and Advocacy Director, based on the level of expertise and experience of the candidate.

What you will do

Programmatic management (50%)

  • Design and lead the Europe advocacy strategy, including oversight over regional Advocacy Arm functions across communications and engagement, lobbying, campaigning, policy analysis, coalition building and legal interventions - leveraging functions and theories of change to achieve the greatest possible impact;
  • Help ensure that the organization’s Europe programmatic work is executed, informed by the mission and keeping pace with evolving policy and strategic opportunities;
  • Oversee and manage regional policy and advocacy budget, in collaboration with relevant colleagues;
  • Oversee development and execution of the regional team’s operational plan, as well as regional components of global or cross-team plans, in alignment with the organization’s Mission and Strategic Vision;
  • Coordinate and collaborate on global initiatives in conjunction with the Policy and International Programs Director, other regional managers and teams, and thematic working groups within the Advocacy Arm, and facilitate regional team members’ participation in those cross-organizational workflows;
  • Provide strategic guidance to ensure that relevant cross-organizational and partner engagements and processes are followed and appropriate team members are consulted;
  • Advise on the Organization’s strategic litigation capacity, including providing support and recommendations to Access Now’s Legal team, and work with senior policy team members on digital rights legal strategy and impact litigation efforts in the EU and beyond;
  • Support and advise the Executive Director and Senior Management Team on European-specific and cross-team organizational, programmatic, and governance questions at their request.

Events and stakeholder engagement (30%)

  • Develop and manage regional relationships with civil society organizations (in particular our membership and contributions to the EDRi network), coalitions, policymakers, investors and other relevant stakeholders as a member of Access Now’s senior leadership team in the region;
  • Represent Access Now at high level events, meetings, gatherings in Brussels and before other European and International institutions, and at other applicable fora;
  • Oversee the organization of regional convenings and stakeholder events to push Access Now’s priorities and advocacy actions in the region; e.g. Apéros, side events, sessions, expert roundtables;
  • Coordinate the regional response to queries from the media, the public, and colleagues in the digital rights community and take initiative to promote Access Now’s views in public discussion.

Team Management (People/Human Resources, finances, fundraising) (20%)

  • Lead timely and effective performance management processes, professional development, coaching to grow and retain talent within the team, working in close coordination with the Policy and International Programs Director;
  • Partner closely with regional and global People/HR Team Members to address issues that may arise across performance and behavior, talent management, culture, and compliance;
  • Manage team culture and interpersonal/communication dynamics with respect to programmatic work involving regional advocacy staff and priorities;
  • Proactively coordinate and communicate internally across teams and regions to ensure transparency of work plans, proposed projects, needed tools, and upcoming processes;
  • Identify potential funding opportunities, and support Development Team with funding proposals through program information that translates our priorities and outputs to funders;
  • Work with the regional Operations Team to support Access Now’s European operations and administrative tasks, including support with the engagement of the Board of Access Now Europe, oversight of the engagement of external programmatic resources, and management of regional programmatic budget (ex. Travel, discretionary or dedicated budgets);
  • Assist in the hiring selection and onboarding processes of Team Members across the Arm;
  • Assist in the global implementation of the annual RightsCon summit series;
  • Perform other duties as assigned.

Skills, education, and mindset you will bring

  • 5+ years of relevant work and management experience, with increasing levels of responsibility. Preference for previous work in the areas of internet freedom, internet governance, human rights, digital policies, legal education or practice, political communication, internet engineering, and/or new technologies, with increasing levels of responsibility;
  • Solid understanding and interest in human rights, EU Policy, tech policy, campaigning, technology, and public organizing with a deeper knowledge in at least one of these areas;
  • Knowledge about the functioning of EU institutions and decision-making, and civil society networks working on related issues;
  • Ability to bridge the gap between policy and technology;
  • Practice empathetic leadership;
  • Excellent interpersonal, communication and management skills, and proven ability to manage teams and projects in the tech policy or advocacy sphere;
  • Knowledge of the European NGO ecosystem;
  • Global perspective and ability to participate in a diverse team with people from around the world;
  • Experience working in a grassroots organizations with member activists is a plus;
  • Ability to lead the organization and facilitation of events, workshops, and small meetings;
  • Fluency in English is required; knowledge of other relevant languages is preferred;
  • Appropriate education and work preparation for the role, with bachelor or master degree equivalent in law, public administration, computer science, political and social sciences, international relations, or a similar field.

The Details


This is a full-time position, with preference for Belgium. The successful candidate must possess the right to work in the location in which they will be based. At this time most Access Now Team Members are working through hybrid office arrangements, combining remote at-home work with intermittent use of offices and/or co-working spaces.


Access Now offers competitive compensation and benefits packages that align competitively with locations and regions around the world. Location-specific example of initial placement within the salary range for this role include:

  • €7,390.50 - €9,053.42 EUR gross monthly (Belgium).

Benefits for this specific role are tied to the location, and will vary. Regardless of location, all Team Members benefit from a strong global culture aligned around:

  • Work-life balance...including a generous paid time-off program between 36 and 40 days annually;
  • Access to supplemental health care insurance policies;
  • Professional development and growth opportunities;
  • Extensive workplace flexibility;
  • Organizational resilience and support for all team members, including paid family leave and employee assistance programs;
  • Connection to a diverse, global team of passionate, principled professionals;
  • Opportunities to recharge (including one month of paid refresher leave after 4 years).

How to Apply

Please submit the following documents:

  • Résumé/CV (removing all personally identifying information such as age, gender, marital status, address, and photo);
  • Thoughtful cover letter outlining your suitability for our role, with particular attention to your experience aligning to the core functions.

Our hiring teams review applications submitted through our Career Openings page; email submissions are not accepted. Please note that if you are applying via a link in a 3rd party system (examples: Indeed, Glassdoor, LinkedIn, Snaphunt, Zip Recruiter), be sure that you are going through the application link in BambooHR so that you are properly uploading a distinct Cover Letter and a separate CV/Resume.

In order for us to communicate with you on the status of your application, please add apps.bamboohr.com to your contacts list, and check spam or junk folders so that you do not miss updates from us.

We are a global human rights organization committed to inclusivity and equity, and seek the most talented team members who bring their true selves, with diverse backgrounds, cultures, perspectives, and experiences. We are interested in receiving applications from people who consider themselves as under-represented in their talent communities. As an equal opportunity employer, we value and encourage diversity and consider applicants for all positions without regard to race, color, religion, creed, gender, sex, national origin, age, disability, marital or veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other legally protected status. Our commitment applies with regard to all aspects of one’s employment, including hiring, transfer, promotion, compensation, eligibility for benefits, and termination.

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