Program Manager (Earth Rights Defenders) via ReliefWeb

Earth Rights International

Chiang Mai, , TH

Position Title: Program Manager, Earth Rights Defenders

Location: Chiang Mai, Thailand

Reports To: Southeast Asia Regional Director

Application Deadline: June 19, 2020

EarthRights International is a non-governmental, nonprofit organization that combines the power of law and the power of people in defense of human rights and the environment, which we define as “earth rights.” A key part of who we are organizationally is our three-pronged approach to making change: training of community and legal activists, strategic legal work in defense of human rights and corporate accountability, and campaigns to promote systemic governmental and corporate policy change. We also work to improve the situations of those defending human rights and the environment whom we call earth rights defenders. We hope to contribute to a context where Earth Rights Defenders are able to carry out their work safely and effectively due to increased knowledge, skills, networks, support, and an enabling environment. The post is based in Thailand with our partner organization and requires frequent travel in the Mekong region.

Summary Description

The Earth Rights Defenders Program Manager position comprises of three core components: (1) develop, enhance, and implement systems, trainings and policies to address the physical, digital and legal security and wellbeing needs of EarthRights’s staff, students, alumni, networks, and allies, particularly in the Mekong Region of Southeast Asia, (2) provide timely and effective response to urgent security situations that arise for our staff, partners, students, and (3) strategize and engage in local, regional and international advocacy to create a strong and enabling environment for earth rights defenders to carry out their work.

Roles and Responsibilities

  • Lead the design and implementation of EarthRights International’s Earth Rights Defenders program in Southeast Asia and ensure alignment with EarthRights’ mission, vision and strategic plan.
  • Analyze contexts, identify emerging trends, monitor security situations and provide security-related advice to EarthRights management, staff, alumni, and partners for protecting earth rights defenders, and develop and coordinate efforts to implement them.
  • Collaborate with program leads to assess and address physical, legal and digital risks to EarthRights staff and partners and provide recommendations for interventions to protect them from such risks.
  • Advise internal crisis management teams and coordinate with global operating units to ensure safety protocols are followed and individual records are maintained.
  • Provide risk assessment advice to program staff and ensure that they understand risk mitigation procedures.
  • Provide training, coaching, mentoring and advice on wellbeing and physical, legal and digital security to staff, alumni, and partners.
  • Develop and monitor internal security policies and assessments related to physical, legal, digital and information security for regional and local EarthRights staff.
  • Establish alliances and collaborate with earth rights defenders and their organizations and support them to improve their physical, legal and digital security.
  • Contribute to publications and research reports, risk assessment papers, briefing papers, and other written materials that contribute to EarthRights mission and strategic plan and the progression of program goals.
  • Coordinate and lead when necessary the provision of EarthRights advice and inputs to other NGOs, activists and networks on earth rights defender topics.
  • Coordinate EarthRights’s advocacy efforts with relevant stakeholders at the local, regional and international levels.
  • Develop partnerships with other NGOs and activists to advance advocacy goals.
  • Represent Earth Rights on protection issues to policy makers, academics, businesses, media and other Earth Rights stakeholders at conferences and meetings.
  • Design and implement outreach activities to increase the visibility of earth rights defenders’ issues.
  • Develop training materials and training curriculum to promote Earth Rights defenders’ understanding and risk management in the region
  • Organize and conduct earth rights defenders’ trainings in multiple forums across the region.


  • Minimum of five years of experience designing and implementing human rights and environmental rights programs aimed at defenders and activists and a sound understanding of the sociopolitical and economic contexts, risks and mitigation options in Southeast Asia.
  • Ability to communicate in English (written and spoken). Other Mekong languages are also desirable
  • Experience developing and implementing security procedures in sensitive environments
  • Ability to synthesize complex information into understandable formats for multiple audiences especially for local communities, businesses and government stakeholder
  • Experience developing and delivering training using various learner centered methodologies including new technologies
  • Strong research and analytical skills and a demonstrated ability to analyze policies, laws etc.
  • Strong understanding of gender and social inclusion issues and their integration into programs.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills with a positive and professional attitude and a track record of building strong relationships with a wide range of local and international partners.
  • Experience with Information Technology (IT) and in developing and delivering digital security initiatives to increase security for activists and defenders
  • Experience living or working in the Mekong countries.
  • Experience working in culturally diverse settings and ability to travel

How to apply

Interested candidates should email their cover letter describing their interest in the position along with a CV to the following email address [email protected] by June 19, 2020. Be sure to use “Earth Rights Defenders Program Manager” as your subject line when submitting application materials.

Please note that only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.

EarthRights International is an equal opportunity employer that does not discriminate in its hiring practices, and actively encourages people of color, women, people with disabilities, and LGBTQI people to apply.