Head of UK Democracy Fund

The Joseph Rowntree Reform Trust is recruiting a Head of UK Democracy Fund to drive forward the UK Democracy Fund strategy to register and turnout a million people from low-voting groups at the next General Election and build support for a modern voting system and franchise reform.

The UK Democracy Fund is a pooled fund set up within the Joseph Rowntree Reform Trust Ltd (JRRT) to strengthen the integrity and vibrancy of democracy. Its focus is on participation in elections. The Fund operates on a strictly nonpartisan basis with the support of a committed group of charitable and non-charitable funders.

The Head of Fund will develop the strategy, provide overall project management, build institutional and funding partnerships, commission research and fund campaign initiatives, and support the Programme Manager to build the grants portfolio and evidence on “what works”.



  • To develop and implement the strategy and plan to register and turnout a million voters from low-voting groups at the next General Election, building a ‘Million More’ campaign, to mobilise and combine individual and collective efforts by democracy and civil society organisations and new institutional partners. See the funding framework here.
  • To build partnerships with key institutions (universities, mosques, social media, civil society organisations working with key demographic groups) to catalyse scaling up of voter participation activity ahead of the General Election.
  • To progress the Fund’s advocacy objectives, building support for franchise reform and modernising the voting system, funding campaigning, mobilisation and engagement, and pursuing opportunities for change including in the devolved nations.
  • To progress the longer-term goal of establishing a democratic participation evidence centre – cultivating collaboration between researchers and practitioners to further develop the evidence agenda, and commission priority research to advance understanding of barriers to participation by low-voting groups and learning about “what works”.
  • To build new funding partnerships and manage existing funder relations, organising meetings of the Fund’s contributors including agendas, quarterly updates and annual reporting.
  • To ensure that the Board of JRRT is supported to make strategic decisions and facilitate the work of the Project Board.
  • To oversee the work of the Grants and Learning Programme Manager to develop the grants portfolio, support applicants and assess and review applications based on the Fund’s learning and manage the work of consultants taking forward specific projects for the Fund.
  • To ensure plan milestones are set and met and manage the budget effectively.
  • To ensure that the Fund complies with electoral and charity law and operates on a non-partisan basis.
  • To stay abreast of political and policy developments in the Fund’s areas of interest and be alert to new developments, ideas, movements, organisations and people.


The full job description and person specification, alongside more information about JRRT and the UK Democracy Fund, can be found in our downloadable application pack.


The role involves outreach and engagement with politically underrepresented demographic groups. Candidates with lived experience of, or connections to, these groups are encouraged to apply.

Applicants will need permission to live and work in the UK.


Terms and conditions 

  • Initial two-year contract
  • Full time
  • Salary £56,000-65,000 depending on skills and experience
  • Open to discussing options for flexible working arrangements
  • Hybrid working – mainly remote/home-based (unless live near York) with a minimum level of travel to York to work with the team and Board required
  • Leave 25 days plus Bank Holidays (and three days office closure at Christmas)
  • Pension 10% employer contribution, 5% employee contribution, salary sacrifice option and life assurance
  • On-site parking in York
  • Professional subscription fees
  • The job may require some UK travel


Application process

Send the following documents by email to info@jrrt.org.uk with ‘Head of UK Democracy Fund application’ in the subject line of your email:

The deadline for applications is midday on Wednesday 17 August 2022.

Applicants are strongly encouraged to apply early as we may schedule rolling interviews before the final closing date.

First interviews will be held on Thursday 25 August with second interviews on Wednesday 31 August.

Please note that due to the number of applications we receive we will only be able to contact short-listed candidates.


Downloads and links

Head of UK Democracy Fund application pack

Grants awarded by the UK Democracy Fund

Personal details form

Diversity monitoring form