John Innes Centre (LR)

The John Innes Centre (JIC) is a research institute with a global reputation as a leader in the field of Plant and Microbial Sciences. The core science programmes of JIC are strategically funded by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) and tackle research problems in the areas of food security, healthy foods and the production of complex clinically-valuable molecules derived from plants and microbes. Many ground-breaking discoveries with high social and economic impact have been made since the JIC relocated to Norwich 50 years ago. Thanks to an unparalleled level of success in winning funds for research, the JIC headcount has grown by 54% since 2013. This expansion, together with the legacy of out-dated, cramped, and energy inefficient laboratories and plant growth facilities means that JIC and its close partner institution - The Sainsbury Laboratory - have ambitious plans for next generation infrastructure. A Treasury Green Book Business Case for the majority of the required £250-300m is being prepared jointly with BSRC to Government, with the expectation that some funds will also be raised from other sources. The JIC now seeks to appoint a Programme Director to lead the development of the business case for ‘JIC Next Generation Infrastructure’.

The role will report directly to the JIC’s Director, Professor Dale Sanders, and will be responsible for ensuring that all aspects of the programme are developed, properly planned, resourced, communicated and progressed throughout the programme lifecycle and that all business benefits are realised. We are seeking a senior professional with a proven track record of leading major capital development projects in excess of £50m in value, particularly at the developmental stages such as option appraisal, masterplanning, business case development and brief development. Experience of leading the planning and development of major projects in comparable environments such as the science, education and/or health sectors would be advantageous. Exceptional interpersonal and stakeholder management skills are essential to be a success in the role. As an initial 2 year fixed-term contract, this challenging high-profile role offers the chance to work with a world-leading research institute and influence the future direction of UK bioscience, while working closely and extensively at senior executive level both within JIC and funders to advance a state-of-the-art estate development programme. Whilst the initial term is for a 2 year period, it is hoped that the postholder would be retained to lead the delivery of the project once the business case has been approved.

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