HIV/HCV Director

Geneva, Switzerland
[Closing date: March 19, 2017]

Established in 2003, the Drugs for Neglected Diseases initiative (DNDi) is a not-for-profit research and development (R&D) organization that develops new, improved, and affordable medicines for deadly neglected diseases that afflict millions of the world’s poorest people.

DNDi focuses on discovering and developing treatments for sleeping sickness (human African trypanosomiasis), Chagas disease, leishmaniasis, filarial infections, paediatric HIV, mycetoma, and hepatitis C. In 2016, in collaboration with the World Health Organization, DNDi launched the Global Antibiotic Research and Development Partnership, a not-for-profit research and development organization to develop new antibiotic treatments addressing antimicrobial resistance and to promote their responsible use for optimal conservation, while ensuring equitable access for all.

Since its inception, DNDi has developed seven new treatments for neglected patients for malaria, sleeping sickness, visceral leishmaniasis, Chagas disease, paediatric HIV with several new drug candidates in the R&D pipeline including two for sleeping sickness. Our objective is to deliver 16 to 18 new treatments by 2023, ensure equitable access to these treatments, and build a robust pipeline of new drug candidates.

DNDi’s headquarters are located in Geneva, Switzerland, with seven offices around the globe which are based in Nairobi, Kinshasa, New Delhi, Tokyo, Rio de Janeiro, New York, and Kuala Lumpur.

The Director of the HIV/HCV Program will take the leadership in defining and supervising program strategy for the HIV and HCV portfolio, conducting clinical development and identifying new opportunities for late-stage drug development and access of affordable drugs for neglected patients.

The position of Director is new to address the increasingly complex and growing portfolio of the HIV HCV program, and ensure success of projects in both disease areas.

The HIV/HCV program, in existence since 2012 for HIV and 2015 for HCV aims to develop patient-adapted drugs which are affordable and effective for the poorest of the poor (see DNDi website). The HIV/HCV team has a global composition with a core of the team based in Geneva, and growing numbers of team members based in south east Asia (Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam), east (Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania) and southern Africa (South Africa, Zimbabwe) India and Latin America and potentially Ukraine involved in clinical trials.


Overall Purpose

The Director for HIV/HCV Department takes the leadership in defining and supervising the program strategy for the current HIV and HCV portfolio and identifying new opportunities in the future in the late stage development and access to affordable drugs and ensuring success of clinical development of new therapies. A veteran of the drug development industry, preferably with expertise/knowledge of IP, regulatory, pricing, medical affairs, or market assessment, he/she should also have, a good knowledge of public health programs for low income countries as well as middle income and mature economies.

The Director of the HIV/HCV program knows how to make the economic argument work for placing DNDi’s treatments at an affordable price to benefit the neglected patient. A strong leader, managing a team with 25 core staff in Geneva, operations across three continents and DNDi offices plus partner organizations, the Director of HIV/HCV program is expected to deliver on program objectives and ensure future growth of the pipeline. The Director is expected to represent DNDi at a global level, communicating at high level conferences and events to promote partnerships between private and public sector and advocating for removing barriers to access and treatment. The Director is expected to maintain and grow a large network of stakeholders and partners.


The Department Director, will be part of the global leadership team, and Member of the Extended Executive Team. He/she contributes to the development of DNDi strategy and business plans and is accountable for implementing the annual action plan at the Department/Regional level. He/she innovates and positions the programs under his/her responsibility to adapt to the rapidly evolving environment and seizes opportunities for new initiatives that are in scope of the business plan.

Scope of work (results)

The Director is responsible for the budget and programs at Department/Regional level as well as securing the resources, exercising high degree of freedom in operations.


Tasks and responsibilities

  • Strategy setting, moving the strategy to an effective operational plan and delivery, and adaptation of strategy based on careful evaluation of situation and opportunities
  • Orchestrating of a complex program management, composed of senior team management through clear delegation of roles and responsibilities, operations and delivery planning and monitoring, stakeholders and partner’s careful management and maintaining of key advocacy /government relationships
  • Supervising a detailed planning of annual work and business planning, with careful setting of timelines and milestones
  • Delivering to market of DNDi’s treatments in the HIV HCV area through negotiations with partners, supervision of business development efforts
  • Identifying new partners for the HIV HCV program as well as potential new programs
  • Identifying new sources of revenue for the HIV HCV program, and be at the heart of innovative new proposals pitched to donors + cultivate relationship with donors
  • Maintaining political relations with high level stakeholders across the globe who play an important role of the success of the HCV HIV program, and keep abreast of political developments in this area to ensure DNDi is one step ahead


Reporting lines

As Director of the HIV/HCV program, he/she is responsible for the overall success of the program directly reporting to the Executive Director. A second reporting line on R&D topics is to the R&D Director.


  • The HIV HCV Director works closely with the R&D teams and the regional offices where HIV HCV programs are delivered, and with the External Relations teams on advocacy and fundraising
  • The HIV HCV Director is member of the extended Executive team and interact with his/her peers on strategic organizational matters
  • Given DNDi is a relatively flat and collaborative organization, the HIV HCV Directors interact with many staff members, from Operations, External relations, on DNDi projects and matters
  • The Director develops and maintains external relationships and represent DNDi in negotiations to ensure commitment of partners to concerted and actions. He/she represents organization at high level events and with major stakeholders


Job Requirements

  • Excellent ability to use initiative, prioritize, multi-task, and work well under pressure to meet deadlines
  • Very clear and systematic thinking that demonstrates strong judgment and problem solving competencies
  • Knowledge of managing global multicultural teams
  • Excellent analytical skills
  • Excellent ability to manage and deliver a complex and large size program that requires political and entrepreneurial skills, that requires diplomacy but also a certain appetite for risk taking
  • Excellent budget management skills
  • Excellent leadership abilities
  • Excellent strategic thinking with vision, and ability to transmit clear positioning to several audiences, internal and external to DNDi
  • Excellent management, negotiation, and advocacy skills
  • Excellent ability to exercise high degree of independence to ensure program delivery and explore new areas of activities
  • Excellent ability to interact with internal and external stakeholders
  • Industry-related technical expert level skills around pricing, access, regulatory and medical affairs
  • Ability to operate in the corporate and public sectors to effectively liaise with private companies, development agencies, and governments in different cultures, to apply contextualized skillfulness
  • Excellent communication skills in multicultural, multi-lingual environments
  • Excellent communication, and public speaking skills, ability to convince and represent DNDi at high level events
  • Excellent ability to lead and motivate a team for optimum performance

DNDi leadership competencies (full competency wheel available at request from HR)

  • Orientation to developing others
  • Strategic expertise
  • Professional competence
  • Care of relationships
  • Leading by example
  • Contextualized skillfulness



  • From Life sciences industry sector with strong knowledge of both Hep C and HIV drug development), on a global scale
  • Minimum 15 years’ relevant experience at senior management level and 20 years of management experience
  • Experience with public health programs and liaising with appropriate government structures (MoH, regulatory bodies), preferably in several regions of the world is an asset
  • Experience of working in IP, pricing, market assessment, or regulatory is highly desirable
  • Proven ability to work effectively in a team environment and matrix structure is critical
  • Experience building and leading teams in a start up environment
  • Proven track record in resource mobilization / business development



  • Postgraduate studies in life sciences, pharmacology or equivalent
  • Executive management training or managerial certification
  • MD or Phd in public health or related fields is an asset


Other Requirements

  • Fluency in English
  • French is desirable, but not essential
  • Willingness and ability to travel globally
  • Excellent knowledge of Microsoft Suite


Other information:

  • Work Location: Geneva
  • Direct Reports: 6 – 10
  • Travel Required: Up to 50 %


To apply

  • Open until March 19, 2017.
  • As an exclusive partner, ODGERS BERNDTSON has been tasked to undertake the recruitment for this position. We thank you for sending your full application to Mr Norman Nashed at:
  • For further information please call +41 43 344 31 31.