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Cefas is the government’s marine and freshwater science experts. We help keep our seas, oceans and rivers healthy and productive and our seafood safe and sustainable by providing data and advice to the UK Government and our overseas partners. We work in partnership with our colleagues in Defra and across UK government, and with international governments, business, maritime and fishing industry, non-governmental organisations, research institutes, universities, civil society and schools to collate and share knowledge. Together we can understand and value our seas to secure a sustainable blue future for us all.

Job description

As the CEO of Cefas, your role sits at the heart of the Government’s vision of achieving clean, healthy, safe, productive and biologically diverse oceans and seas. You will provide strategic leadership to a multi-disciplinary organisation supporting delivery of the Government’s marine, fisheries and aquatic animal health objectives.

You will ensure the continued provision of high-quality scientific advice, lead on growing Cefas’ role and reputation internationally, and ensure that Cefas uses the opportunity from leaving the European Union to drive innovation and new approaches to fisheries management and environmental protection in the UK.

To achieve this ambitious agenda, you will need to be an experienced leader of highly-skilled, multi-disciplinary teams, able to provide the energy and inspiration to lead through times of change and uncertainty, with a track record of strengthening and developing organisational capability. You will possess strong communication and influencing skills, with personal credibility to build trust and develop partnerships with a range of domestic and international stakeholders.


It is essential that you provide evidence and proven examples in your application against each of the selection criteria.

Essential Criteria

• Excellent, visible leadership skills; the energy and enthusiasm to inspire staff at all levels of the organisation and convey a persuasive future vision; and a proven ability to lead multi-disciplinary and highly skilled professional teams to deliver challenging objectives through times of change and uncertainty.

• Experience of strengthening organisational capability, improving staff engagement and building high performing, diverse and inclusive teams able to thrive under pressure, including ensuring the continued professional development of scientific and technical staff and retaining their skills and experience within the public sector.

• Strong communication and influencing skills, with the personal credibility to gain the trust of senior stakeholders within Government, industry and academia and the ability to effectively represent Cefas at home and internationally.

• An understanding of the working of Government, and an ability to operate effectively across Government Departments and with a range of global partners and stakeholders to support the successful delivery of a variety of mutual objectives

• Experience as a budget holder (or accounting officer) including oversight of effective systems of financial management and internal control, and delivering value for money


• Experience of working on international issues including with governments and a range of partner organisations in the private and public sector, and academia.

• Experience of the marine sector, with the ability to be a credible and authoritative leader within the sector

• Experience of engaging with science and how it supports policy and industry.

Apply Today!