Head of Conservation Learning & Development

Job Description

Department:       Durrell Conservation Academy / Education

Job Title:             Head of Conservation Learning & Development

Reports to:          Chief Executive Officer

Location:             DWCT’s Headquarters in Jersey, Channel Islands

1.         Job Purpose

  1. To lead the Conservation Learning Team in the provision of innovative and engaging teaching and learning initiatives, including public connectedness to nature activities and events, exhibit and interpretive design and formal/informal education programmes for schools and university students.
  2. To support the development of conservation learning activities, at Durrell rewilding sites globally.
  3. To lead Durrell’s capacity-building programmes internationally including projects to enhance institutional effectiveness within Durrell itself. 
  4. To work collaboratively in cross-disciplinary teams, in particular the Senior Management Team and others, to deliver the Durrell Strategy, 2017-2025, Rewilding our World.

2.         Principal Accountabilities 

            Conservation Learning

  • To lead the development of activities associated with maximising public connectedness to nature and to work closely with the Head of Science in the research, monitoring and evaluation of such activities;
  • To manage and inspire the Conservation Learning team to plan and deliver both formal and informal education programmes, producing multi-year plans that demonstrate how programmes will utilise Durrell's unique assets to deliver the highest standards of visitor care and value;
  • Along with senior animal staff and others, to develop new initiatives to maximise the connectedness to nature value of the animal collection and interpret the conservation work of Durrell, in accordance with the Durrell 2017-2025 Strategy;
  • To lead the development of the formal schools' education programme, utilising Durrell's unique resources to enhance curriculum delivery;
  • Along with the commercial and fundraising teams develop new initiatives to add value to the visitor admission, increase membership through new recruitment, and encourage increased retention and conversion of junior to adult members;
  • To sit on the Zoo Experience Group (ZEG) to identify opportunities to increase visitor numbers and dwell time within Jersey Zoo, maintain a high quality experience for visitors and facilitate an increasingly holistic approach to visitor experience management through cross-departmental collaborations;
  • To lead the development of our interpretation programme within Jersey Zoo, with oversight of signage development and, where required, management of discrete projects that enhance the learning  experience of visitors to Jersey Zoo;
  • To sit on the Jersey Zoo Research Team to support the delivery of the research strategy, with a particular focus on visitor research and the evaluation and monitoring of education activities;
  • To support Durrell's Conservation Science Hub in the development and delivery of in situ conservation learning  initiatives;
  • To ensure that the Department produces timely reports, identifying progress against targets;
  • Manage the Department’s budget, ensuring financial targets are met and the goal of Departmental cost-neutral status is pursued, including collaboration with the Communications and Fundraising Department to secure external funding. To lead on the publication of reports to funders of the learning  programmes;
  • To remain abreast of developments within the visitor experience, education and conservation fields and oversee their incorporation where appropriate within the learning programmes across Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust.


  • To provide strategic direction for Durrell Conservation Academy and lead the development of multi-year strategic plans that deliver Durrell’s international capacity-building goals;
  • To manage staff within Durrell Conservation Academy in at Jersey Zoo and the Durrell Conservation Academy: Indian Ocean Campus, in Mauritius;
  • To represent Durrell’s CEO on the Board of Management of the Mauritian Wildlife Foundation;
  • To develop, manage and report on annual training budgets, with a focus on generating unrestricted income streams to Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust;
  • Monitor and maintain quality standards within the training programmes and ensure that we meet annual KPIs;
  • To develop international institutional partnerships that enhance the quality and quantity of the training being provided by the Durrell Conservation Academy;
  • To work closely with Head of Human Resources to develop, and assist with delivery of in-house training and development initiatives for staff;
  • Produce fund-raising proposals and assist in the management of donor relations in support of Durrell’s training work;
  • To be a member of the Senior Management Team, in terms of:
    • developing and implementing strategic plans, budgets and operations plans;
    • providing regular reporting and updates to the CEO as required.

3.         Knowledge & Skill


  • Educated to degree level, with a focus on Zoology/Wildlife conservation and public communication;
  • Teaching qualification;
  • Minimum of five years’ experience in managing a teaching and learning environment in a wildlife/nature/living collection/museum environment;
  • Understand financial information and proven ability to manage projects and budgets;
  • Experience of interpreting and operationalising strategy;
  • Understanding of the application of models of behaviour change and  associated visitor research;
  • Experience in interpretive and exhibit development and evaluation;
  • Proven management capability and ability to lead and motivate a team;
  • Enthusiastic and energetic with excellent communication and presentation skills;
  • Excellent organisational skills and be able to juggle a complex workload and meet deadlines;
  • Experience as a professional conservation trainer and facilitator;
  • Excellent communication skills;
  • Enthusiastic, energetic, innovative and entrepreneurial;
  • Commitment to be part of a team taking Durrell to a new level of reputation, profile and conservation impact;
  • Post will require a DBS check.


  • Experience in working in the not for profit sector and in writing and applying for grants;
  • Current driving licence;
  • An understanding of fundraising, in particular within the non-profit sector;
  • Capacity for the analysis and understanding of financial based information e.g. budgets and annual accounts.

4.         Dimensions


This role requires the line management of up to a maximum of 4 Education staff in addition to volunteers and student placements.

To line manage the Durrell Conservation Academy staff in Jersey and recruit, as appropriate staff in Mauritius to manage the Durrell Conservation Academy: Mauritius Campus.


This role requires management of the education and interpretation budget and responsibility for monitoring and reporting on funding from external bodies.

How to apply

To apply for this position please send your updated CV, completed application form and cover letter to recruitment@durrell.org.

A full job description that explains the role is available at http://wildlife.durrell.org/home/work-at-durrell/head-of-conservation-learning--development-jersey/

Closing date for applications:  Friday, 16th June 2017.