Vacancies and Internships in South Africa

Position Vacancy: Policy Officer Culture and Media, Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, Pretoria

Deadline for applications: Tuesday 29/06/2021 no later than 10:00 AM

Basic details of job

Job title: Policy Officer Culture and Media
Unit/mission: Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Pretoria
Job level: 09
Number of hours: 37.5

General features of job

He/she/they is an enthusiastic and creative new colleague who is interested in working in a multicultural Embassy team

  • The PO is part of the policy staff working in themes and sectors. The PO actively contributes to team effort of execution of the Multi Annual Country Strategy and the Annual Plan. All of the PO’s responsibilities are seen in the context of the goals described in these documents and the goals stated by Dutch central government in the POs areas of responsibility, i.c. culture, heritage and public diplomacy (PD) and communications. 
  • As for culture and heritage, the PO develops policy and draws up project plans for the mission’s cultural and heritage projects and activities in cooperation with the thematic teams (assessing proposals and preparing approval documents; processing of monitoring and evaluation reports; managing  administrative aspects and preparing formal correspondence on these projects in a sound manner); and
  • Develops policy and draws up project plans for the mission’s ’s public diplomacy activities (participating in the Communications Cluster; editing the websites, overseeing the mission’s  social media accounts),
  • General policy coordination rests with the Deputy Head of Mission, your direct line manager is the Consul General.

Actual duties


Description of duties:

1.    Contributing to the policy goals and results as described in the Multi Annual Country Strategy and the Annual Plan, therefore participating in the missions’ thematic teams and aligning the portfolio as much as possible to the thematic approach.
2.    Contributing to the Dutch central government’s goals and results in the areas of culture, heritage and public diplomacy and communications.
3.    Managing the mission’s cultural and cultural heritage activities that fall outside the thematic teams:

  • initiating cultural activities (with other mission staff working on cultural affairs);
  • taking care of all correspondence with (potential) applicants; answering questions about and providing information on the programme; assessing and processing of requests / project proposals for funding;
  • managing all administrative aspects of the cultural activities in a professional and sound manner. Includes archiving.

4.    Contributing to the Embassy’s public diplomacy and communication activities:

  • Public diplomacy policy and communications strategy development in cooperation with the missions communication policy team (COMs Cluster) and in alignment with Ministry of Foreign Affairs guidelines
  • creating, developing and managing public diplomacy and communication activities and events
  • identifying new opportunities all the assigned portfolio and thematic areas collaboratively with colleagues in the Embassy and CG.
  • coordination of PD and communication activities and support to other policy staff responsible for their PD strategies in their portfolios
  • secretariat to the missions communications coordinating meeting COMs Cluster
  • practical support by editing speeches, press releases, social media posts for heads of missions and staff; editor of the missions website and social media accounts; responsible for the Content Management System; writing and compiling news and background articles; coordinating the input of all other departments of the missions; compiling and keeping up-to-date of the Social Media calendar; implementing media related activities (e.g. regarding incoming high-level visits, delegations and missions).
  • managing all administrative aspects of the public diplomacy activities in a professional and sound manner. Including archiving

5.    Assisting with general activities of the Embassy and Consulate General, including the preparation of visits and organising events.
6.    Building and maintaining a relevant network in the private, non-governmental and governments spheres


The Kingdom of the Netherlands has two missions in South Africa. The Embassy is based in Pretoria, and the Consulate General is based in Cape Town. They operate as one team. Regular interaction between the 2 missions are essential and frequent traveling between the missions is required. Besides the 2 missions in South Africa, the Embassy is also responsible for resort countries, i.c. Namibia, Botswana, Eswatini and Lesotho. Irregular travel to these countries may be required.

The missions in South Africa currently both expatriate and local staff. The work climate is open and informal. A sense of responsibility and willingness to work together, exchange information and experience are prerequisite. The PO needs to contribute to a safe and sound working environment for all colleagues including interns and hired staff for communication, security and other services

The work is characterised by great variation. Priorities of the missions are set on the basis of the Multi Annual Policy Framework, as well as on the basis of instructions from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and policy and political developments in the Netherlands.

Currently the missions in South Africa are working in a theme-based approach covering the period of the Multi Annual Country Strategy (2021-2026). Priorities within that framework are identified each year in an Annual Plan. Policy officers take on the results as (thematic) teams, which demands flexibility and can-do team oriented work ethic from the policy officer. Policy officers participate on average in two thematic teams. These teams consist of local and expat staff over both missions in Pretoria and Cape Town.


Knowledge and areas of experience:

Knowledge / level of education: degree in a relevant field, preferably in the cultural field (others may include communications, marketing). A master’s degree is preferred. Experienced in the field of media (traditional and social) and public diplomacy.

Level of experience: the Policy Officer needs to have at least 5-year experience in a relevant field.

1.    Cultural requirements:

  • Experience in programing, project management in cultural (and) heritage fields
  • Strong communication skills in order to remotely work with partners and departments (in the Netherlands).
  • Broad South African cultural and creative network. Network in The Netherlands is a plus, but not a necessity.
  • Ability to demonstrate cultural sensitivity towards projects and people.  

2.    Media (traditional and social) and public diplomacy requirements:

  • Experience in programing and project management in the communication field
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • Broad South African media network / media knowledge
  • Working knowledge of photo and video editing programs
  • Ability to demonstrate cultural and political sensitivity towards messaging communication from your position.  

3.    Other requirements

  • Excellent knowledge of English, basic understanding of Dutch is preferred, other South African languages are a pro
  • Strong administrative skills, paying attention to details, ability to follow-through on projects / programmes
  • Capable of writing to-the-point strong analyses and advice
  • Excellent computer skills and talent to work with new programmes and systems
  • Strong team (theme) player, able to let others shine
  • Can-do mentality, flexibility in taking over tasks outside of portfolio
  • Ability in being able to work under pressure and to provide quality output
  • Able to travel and do site visits, spend time at Consulate in Cape Town every two months at minimum
  • Able and willing to attend meetings and events outside normal working hours (37.5 hours per week)
  • The Embassy and Consulate General will consider diversity characteristics as part of their hiring policy, especially when candidates are deemed to bring equal skills and experience to the fore.
  • No legal obstructions to work in South Africa. Valid South African work permit.

Brief employee description: the Policy Officer Culture and Media must be an enthusiastic, flexible and creative person; an excellent team worker, a keen communicator and user of traditional and social media and a hands-on project manager/administrator. He/she/they has   profound writing skills (both professionally and for the wider public), and is able to shift between different writing styles. He/she shows an active attitude towards all aspects of his/her work. Team work, accuracy, reliability, creativity and integrity are key words. He/she must be able to relate to the work of the overall mission of the Embassy and Consulate General (MACS and annual plans) and the wider bilateral relations between the Netherlands and South Africa. He/she must be able to work in an international environment and in an office consisting of Dutch and South African staff. The policy officer is politically and socially sensitive to the history of the relationship between our countries and act accordingly. The policy officer represents The Netherlands in formal and informal settings correctly and is able to advocate the Dutch position as his/her own.

Minimum monthly basic gross salary: ZAR 51,262 (can be upwardly adjusted depended on working experience)
Probation period of 3 months will apply
Benefits such as medical insurance are offered to employees under certain conditions.

Knowledge and skills

Level of education: University degree in a relevant field, Master’s level preferred.

Level of experience: relevant working experience of at least 5 year in a relevant field.

  • Ability to work with others
  •  Creativity
  • Initiative
  • Ability to plan and organize
  • Accuracy
  • Flexibility
  • Excellent writing skills
  • Knowledge of Dutch or Afrikaans will be a bonus
  • Bringing diversity characteristics underrepresented in the team will be a bonus
  • Skills in photography or videography will be a bonus
  • Understanding of social and specialised developments in relation to the area or areas in which the embassy operates.
  • Knowledge of general training methods and techniques for drawing up project plans and performing evaluations, and skill in using them.
  • Understanding of relevant ministerial frameworks and legislation in the policy area concerned.
  • Skill in translating insights and information into advice, plans and reports and in assessing their policy and financial implications.

Application requirements

Candidates are invited to submit the following via Wetransfer to Mr Sebastiaan Messerschmidt at;

Subject line of email should read “Position Vacancy: Policy Officer Culture and Media, Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, Pretoria”

1.    A one-page cover letter
2.    CV
3.    A short (max 1 min) introduction video of themselves

Clarifications can be obtained through Mr Sebastiaan Messerschmidt at