We're looking for a new Head of Awards to take charge  of delivering our prestigious and highly visible Awards programme.

Job: Head of Awards


Posted By:

Emma Seery

Digital Communications Lead

2021 Ashden Award winners

This job role is now closed.


We’re looking for a new Head of Awards to take charge  of delivering our prestigious and highly visible Awards programme.

Job title: Head of Awards

Role overview: Design and delivery of the Ashden Awards

Salary: £61,527



What will you do?

The awards and this job are right at the heart of Ashden!  You will be the person in charge of delivering our prestigious and highly visible Awards programme. From design and research, through to delivery of the annual Ashden Awards ceremony, including development and oversight of the relevant budget, min. £700k.  You will manage and motivate a team drawn from across Ashden to power through a rigorous process of discovery and due diligence to uncover outstanding climate solutions and use them to inspire people to get behind them for to tackle climate change. The ceremony and associated “showcasing” (PR and communications), of the winners will be managed by the Communications Team, so you will be working closely together.

You’ll apply strategic thinking about the change we want to make and how to use awards to achieve this.  You will work with the UK Head of Cites and Head of International Programmes to ensure the award process and awards winners feed the Programme aims and outcomes.  You’ll enjoy working with the Awards Co-ordinator to manage the awards process of research, discovery, assessment and judging.

Showcasing solutions are key to our theory of change so you’ll work closely with the Communications Team to make sure that our Awards help us tell inspirational stories to key audiences and drive our campaigns. And we want to know that the awards are helping to deliver a just and fair transition, so you’ll work with the Impact and Policy Lead, to monitor the work of winners.


Duties and key responsibilities:

You will develop and deliver the vision and strategic direction of the Awards for impact, working with the Programme Heads, Director of Programmes (ultimately responsible for the strategic direction of the Awards), and the Communications Team.

  1. Managing and delivering the Ashden Awards process and budget, including:
  • Research, analysis and selection of all the Award themes.
  • Development and management of Awards budget, including contracts with suppliers, and working with the Director of Communications and People to confirm budgets required for the showcasing and celebration of Awards Winners (production of films, ceremony, PR activities etc.).
  • Stakeholder engagement (including experts, recommenders of applicants, judges etc.).
  • In partnership with the Awards Coordinator, design and deliver the Awards process.
  • Oversee the management of the IT systems for online applications – the Awards Coordinator will liaise with IT colleagues directly. o Delivery of two individual Awards, and delegation of remaining Awards themes to the wider team but providing oversight, coordination and assistance as required.

2. Providing specialist/content knowledge and Awards input to the Programmes and Communications teams generally.

3. Responsible for the generation of Awards’ concept notes for the Fundraising Team and maintenance of key relationships with donors.

4. Provide further input as required to fundraising proposals. Work with Fundraising Team to maintain relationships with funders and provide input to fundraising proposals.

5. Providing technical input to the Programmes and Communications teams in general.

6. Responsible for the generation of insights and data through the Awards process to feed into the organisational monitoring, evaluation and learning processes. This includes the monitoring and evaluation of past winners (delegating the delivery of this work as required) and working with the Communications and Fundraising Teams to share these with appropriate audiences. Supporting events run by Ashden.

7. Working with the Programme Heads to ensure the Awards are aligned with the Cities and International programme goals, and to assist in programme delivery as required.

8. Keep abreast of technological and other developments in climate solutions and sustainable energy to support the team’s work.


We really need to you have these:

Skills & Knowledge Why do we need this?
Sound technical knowledge of sustainable energy (for example, the generation, distribution and storage of electricity, efficiency and building fabric, sustainable mobility), at degree-level or equivalent experience You’ll draw on your expertise to design a relevant and robust set of awards and the criteria by which to assess them, and then lead the assessment process and maintain the rigour of the awards.
For the very technical aspects of a technology or engineering, we will be able to provide you with technical/engineering support.
Excellent IT skills, in particular Microsoft Excel, for use in monitoring and evaluation of winners, and of customer relationship management software (we use Microsoft Dynamics but working knowledge of Salesforce or other CRM will be transferable). The awards are a project that runs over a 12- month period involving lots of moving parts that need to be monitored and managed closely and efficiently – good IT skills will be crucial to make this run smoothly.
Ability to manage time, prioritise, plan-ahead, and see the big picture To create awards with impact we need them to knit together, demonstrating how action on climate can transform our world. To get there we need an efficient process that hits deadlines.
Excellent analytical and research skills You’ll need your finger on the pulse of climate action and “climate solutions” so keeping on top of developments in a fast-moving sector are crucial.
Excellent written and verbal communication skills, with attention to detail We gather lots of information through our application process. You’ll need to be able to corral this and communicate it effectively in written assessments and reports on applicants, and verbally in presentations to judging panels.
Ability to assimilate information from multiple sources and use it in strategic planning The awards are unique in covering innovation in both the UK and the global south. You’ll need the skills to sort through loads of information to draw out the trends and design awards with impact.


We would love it if you could do this:

Experience Why do we need this?
Working in climate change and sustainability, with a good working knowledge of climate solutions and a deep appreciation/understanding of their power to inspire action through great storytelling and other communications.


Ashden is a trusted voice on climate solutions in the UK and global south. To maintain this position, colleagues in the communications team will draw on your expertise to ensure that our storytelling is rooted in robust evidence.

In the sector we are seen as inspiring storytellers, putting a human face to climate action so your appreciation of that is crucial to shaping and driving the awards.

Experience and understanding of campaigns for change. The awards are in many ways, a campaign tool.  We want to show the world that climate solutions exist and that they need support to scale quickly.  Having a good understanding of how to use effective communications to drive outcomes would very much enhance the effectiveness of your role!
Managing projects with duration of several months and involving multiple colleagues and external consultants and stakeholders.


Whilst not quite a cast of thousands, there are many people working away behind the scenes to make our awards some of the best-known and prestigious in the climate sector. You will need to work closely with some of them daily while others you will only encounter a few times a year, but all are crucial to making the awards work.
Experience of critical appraisal of the work of organisations, to assess their impact. This year we had over 800 applications for an Award – we must find just six winners from amongst them. Sorting through them and spotting the gems is crucial!
Mentoring colleagues to help them improve their skills and knowledge. Everyone on the team would love you to share your knowledge and expertise. We are keen to give younger people a chance to understand more about climate action so there are always a few, paid, interns on the team who would benefit hugely from your experience and wisdom.


What do we expect from you?


We Will Be Collaborative

We are strongest and achieve most when we collaborate, both as individuals and as an organisation.

We Will Embrace Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

We actively promote diversity in our team, trustees, judging panels and any settings where we have influence.

We seek to achieve equity, promoting those climate solutions that also contribute to local and global equity.

We are inclusive, removing barriers to full participation in our work for the team, applicants, and partners.

We Are Authentic

We do what we believe to be right and important based on rigorous evidence and understanding.

We won’t shy away from speaking difficult truths and will use the power of positive storytelling to bring about change that benefits people and planet.

We honour our commitments to everyone we work with.

We Put People and Planet First

We centre our work and our ways of working around people and nature, supporting solutions that deliver a rapid, just transition that benefits people and protects the natural world.


How to apply:

We think this is an exciting opportunity and hope you do too!

We welcome applications from all those who are qualified for the job regardless of age, ethnicity, or physical ability.
We are flexible about where you are based but we do ask that you have the right to work in the UK as we will be employing you through our UK office.

Please tell us why you are the perfect fit for this role and submit your statement [2 pages max!], along with your CV to vacancies@ashden.org.

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