You are only in a hurry till you get to the front of the queue

Monday, 28 September 2015

A new director role at Open City.

OCDirector JDpack


September 2015
Dear Applicant
Many thanks for your interest in the position of Director of Open-City. Attached to this letter you will find an application pack providing an introduction to the not-for-profit Open-City.
The closing date for receipt of applications is Monday 19th October at 6pm.
Please note that we intend to conduct first interviews between the 27th and 28th October
If second interviews are required, these will take place during the week of the 9th November 2015.
Once again, we thank you for the interest you have shown in working with Open-City, and look forward to hearing from you.
Yours faithfully
Crispin Kelly, Chair


Background: Open-City

Open-City is a unique, independent charity committed to influencing the quality and experience of London’s spaces and places. With a basis of experience, expertise and research built up over 2 decades, we encourages dialogue, debate and learning about how architecture and public space impacts our daily lives, and enables people to discover and understand how they can influence change. Our method of engagement is primarily through the creation and delivery of specific programmes.
Our programmes are shaped by our three main target audiences:
  • Engaging the general public – enabling all Londoners to experience and learn about the capital’s most interesting and significant architecture through the Open House London annual event, Open House Junior, Archikids Festival and a year- round architecture programme
  • Learning for young Londoners – providing architectural education for pupils in London’s schools through our Architecture in Schools programmes and Accelerate into University! Initiative
  • Advocating good design amongst decision-makers – working with developers, local authorities, regeneration and sustainability professionals and other decision- makers to advocate for good design through our Green Sky Thinking Week

Role: Director

The role of the Director of the architecture and built environment charity, Open-City, is to provide strong, inspirational and high-profile leadership for the cultural, strategic and operational demands of the organisation. The Director will ensure excellence and financial resilience through the development and implementation of a vision and business strategy that further develops Open-City’s reputation and profile within the capital.
The Director will hold overall accountability for the success of the organisation, delivering Open-City’s policies through strategic planning and efficient management. The Director will report to the Board of Trustees.
The role of the Director is to:
Set and guide the future direction of Open-City, taking into account mission, audience, funding, budget and delivery;
Lead the development and delivery of Open-City’s programmes; Line management responsibility and leadership of a dedicated team; Ensure delivery of business plans and budgets; Be the public face of Open-City; Lead Open-City’s fundraising and maintain relationships with public and private funders and supporters; Lead Open-City’s communications including marketing and PR.
The above is to be carried out working in collaboration with the Board of Trustees and the Open-City team.


Vision and Viability

Creating a compelling vision to inspire the architecture sector, wider audiences, staff, board and stakeholders
Developing profile and reputation which places Open-City at the heart of the debate about London.
Ensuring the financial viability of Open-City through sound business planning and income generating activity
Overseeing fundraising, sponsorship, external relations and other activities to identify and maximise potential sources of support
Ensuring that Open-City’s programmes are made as widely accessible as possible and that opportunities for the widest audiences and participants are maximized together with built environment professionals.

Leadership and Management

Developing an organisational culture that inspires excellence, innovation & dynamism.
Establishing and maintaining a standard of quality in all aspects of Open-City’s work commensurate with its aspirations.
Developing and ensuring a management style and structure that maximises the engagement and motivation of staff and is conducive to effective team working
Ensuring that the Board is provided in a timely manner with the information to assist it in making considered decisions on all matters of policy, planning and budgeting

Advocacy and External Relations

Developing and maintaining positive and productive partnerships with stakeholders and supporters
Representing Open-City as a key member of many of the hi-profile initiatives and ensuring that Open-City and its staff play a full part in the architectural, social, cultural and educational life of London
Developing projects and links with architectural, cultural and other relevant organisations Undertaking such other duties as the Board may reasonably require of the post.
With the Chair and Trustees, representing the Foundation at conferences, events, etc.



Demonstrable passion for and knowledge of architecture (both past and present)
Experience in a strategic role, successfully leading an organisation, team of professionals, or major project
An entrepreneurial approach to developing opportunities
Demonstrable ability to define, communicate and implement vision, policy and strategy
Experience of architectural programming having regard to artistic quality and developing audiences
Experience of strategic thinking, business planning, policy setting and implementation
Experience of financial acumen in planning, and managing and controlling budgets and resources
Experience of sourcing public and private funding
Experience of developing and maintaining positive and productive partnerships with stakeholders and supporters
Experience of managing and motivating staff Excellent interpersonal/people skills
Commitment to accessibility and equality of opportunity for all Excellent IT Skills


Commercial acumen
Experience of audience development
Experience of working in places where there is a need to develop engagement with Architecture
Proven ability to network, and establish and maintain new and existing relationships across architecture
Awareness/experience of the uses of social media in developing content and communicating with audiences

Job Title: Director

Reports to: Board of Trustees

Terms: Full time employment and permanent position

Salary: Negotiable

General Conditions;

Holidays: 28 days per year including period between Christmas and New Year
Hours: 9.30am-6.00pm. Staff are occasionally required to work outside these hours in the normal course of their roles including attending receptions etc

Pension: Up to a maximum of 5% contribution by Open-City

Location: 18 Ensign Street, London E1 (Aldgate East and St Katherine’s Dock area)

Appointment subject to: Satisfactory references

Compliance with Asylum and Immigration Act 1996 Successful completion of a six month probationary period

Additional employment

details: Open-City is an equal opportunities employer

Please note that none of the contents of this recruitment pack shall constitute a contract of employment or an offer of any such contract.
Support: The Founding Director will revert to title of Founder and concentrate in 2016 on the development of Open House Worldwide and an Impact Study for approx. 1 – 2 days a week to feed into the 25th anniversary celebrations in 2017.
In the first 4-6 months she will be available to support the new director as and when required but not as part of the core Open-City Team

How to Apply

If you are interested please send a covering letter outlining briefly why you would like to apply for this position at Open-City (1 page maximum) and your CV (2pg maximum) to by Monday 19th October at 6pm, quoting ‘director’ in the subject heading of the email.


Ethos and background

Architecture is fundamental to our society and culture. A high-quality built environment is essential to health, wellbeing and prosperity and to our sense of who we are.
People need an informed approach to influence change for the better in the built environment, yet it is not something that we learn about.
We aim to help change perceptions, break down barriers and inspire people to demand high- quality places for current and future generations.
Founded in 1992 by Victoria Thornton OBE, HonFRIBA, as a not-for-profit organisation, it originally set out to create an annual architectural event that would encourage everyone to see at first hand exemplary architecture and provide an opportunity for understanding and debate about London’s present and future physical environment.
Over the intervening period, the issue of bringing architecture and indeed other areas of the built environment to the attention of future generations and also to the capital’s decision-makers has been addressed through a number of initiatives and programmes which are still relevant and powerful today as well as the original but simple concept of Open House.
Open-City will be celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2017 and provides an ideal opportunity for the new director not only to showcase its contribution to the capital but also the development of the organisation’s future strategy and direction.
Meanwhile the founding director is stepping down to concentrate remotely on specific projects of Open-City namely Open House Worldwide and an Impact Study over the next 15 months whilst supporting the new director as and when required.


We are funded by sponsors, local government and benefactors with other income generated through trusts and foundations and donations.

Recent Activity : Engagement:

Architecture in Schools and Accelerate into Architecture See -
Green Sky Thinking Week – see
Further details are available on

'via Blog this'


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