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Centre for Geopolitics

Providing historically grounded approaches to enduring geopolitical problems

Consultant, Westphalia for the Middle East Programme Development

The Centre for Geopolitics is seeking an individual to help relaunch and direct, on a consultancy basis, its rebranded Westphalia for the Middle East Programme, under the direction of Centre Director, Professor Brendan Simms. The successful candidate will be expected to develop, plan and execute the new Programme, in which he or she will play the central coordinating, outreach and public policy role. He or she will contribute effectively to fund-raising and deliver significant public policy impact by ensuring high-level UK and regional participation – both government and non-governmental - in support of the Centre’s stated aim of encouraging historically grounded approaches to those enduring geopolitical and geoeconomic issues of legitimate national interest both for regional states and for the British Government. 

Shortlisted candidates will ideally have a diplomatic background at a senior level, extensive working experience across the Middle East and North Africa, a first degree at 2.1 or preferably above and a postgraduate academic qualification. They will be comfortable interacting with the most senior figures in government and outside government in Britain and across the region. A track record of academic, think tank or other publication in relevant areas, demonstrable intellectual curiosity, experience in commissioning research, university-level teaching and the think tank world, proficiency in at least one of the major languages of the region and professional experience elsewhere in the Islamic world will be advantages. Competency in other languages will be taken into account in the recruiting process, as will any relevant existing connections with Cambridge University. The successful candidate will be expected to demonstrate a professional history of effective management, and a network of relevant contacts in government, academia, think tanks, journalism and industry. There are no set hours, but it is a requirement that the successful candidate chairs a weekly meeting of the project, engages in whatever correspondence is necessary to drive the project forward and demonstrates personal commitment to the success of the Programme. The role will also require a proactive approach to organising public and private events to increase the Centre’s impact and outreach in topics related to the Middle East.  

We envisage a requirement for at least one day’s consultancy per week, although this is open to discussion, and we currently have funding for the role for one year from October 2023, with an intention to seek funding beyond that. Interested candidates should send a CV and covering letter to Charis Whitcombe, Centre Coordinator at the Centre for Geopolitics, at by Sunday 1 October, along with a suggestion of specific areas where they would seek to actively develop the Westphalia for the Middle East Programme. Please also indicate the expected level of remuneration. 


Research Assistants - General

The Centre offers 'Research Assistantships in Applied History' on a rolling basis, for PhD candidates at the University of Cambridge. The positions are tenable for up to 9 months and are paid through the TES scheme at Grade 5 equivalent, normally 5-10 hours per week, £14.64 per hour. The appointees will support the intellectual and organisational work of the Centre.  Typical responsibilities include organising and overseeing events and initiatives, managing and liaising with various stakeholders including speakers, special guests, and invitees; promotion via a range of channels including social media; writing summaries for the website, and budget reporting on events. Previous Research Assistants report their work experience at the Centre has equipped them with valuable new skills and contacts for the next step in their career.

Applicants should send a CV, short letter of recommendation from their supervisor, and a one-page cover letter that addresses their interest in the field of Applied History and relevant experience in event planning or advertising to Michelle Houghton, Events & Communications Coordinator at

Applications are normally accepted on a rolling basis.