Business Development Manager

About IHS

The Institute for Housing and Urban Development Studies (IHS) is a centre of urban expertise at Erasmus University Rotterdam. Looking at cities from different perspectives, we educate urban professionals from diverse backgrounds, provide consultancy services to national and local governments from the Global South and engage in cutting-edge urban research. Bringing practical experience from real-life projects back to the classroom, we inspire collaboration and co-creation of urban knowledge. Together with our partners, we work at the forefront of urban development to improve the well-being of people living in cities across the globe.

IHS has a staff of approximately 45FTE. It has undergone significant organizational restructuring over the past 3 years, and a new General Director has recently been appointed. Projects are a key tool for delivering the mission of IHS and are a mainstay of the organization’s long-term financial stability.

Vacancy Description

We are seeking a highly motivated and well-networked individual to work strategically on business development with the organization’s staff and to expand its portfolio of projects in advisory work, education, and research. The successful candidate will:

  • Assess current strategies and processes and use these as the basis for creating a business development strategy in line with the Institute’s mission.
  • Work with colleagues to acquire relevant projects that draw on the skills and resources within the Institute, strengthen the organization’s financial position, and contribute to the career development of staff.
  • Support efforts to expand funding for educational programmes (including short courses) and policy-relevant academic research.
  • Work with colleagues to scope and build relationships with current and potential funders (including bilateral and multilateral development partners, independent foundations, and research funding organizations) to assess opportunities that are in line with the desired strategy for business development (e.g. GIZ, FCDO, World Bank, Gates Foundation, Earth Fund, Cities Alliance, Horizon Europe, NWO).
  • Identify, develop and maintain relationships with potential bidding and implementation partners (e.g. TripleLine, DAI, European and international Universities)
  • Support the development of new education and advisory products
  • Support colleagues in the Projects and Acquisition Team in the identification of appropriate ‘cold’ opportunities, linking these with potential staff in IHS and supporting the process of preparing Expressions of Interest and Proposals.

The post holder will report directly to the General Director of the Institute. S/he will play a critical role in aligning business development activities across the Projects and Acquisition Team, the Research Team, and the Marketing Team, and will guide the Management Team in setting priorities and allocating resources for this purpose.

Qualifications and competencies

We are looking for a candidate who meets the following criteria:

  • Holds at least an HBO diploma in a relevant subject. A relevant postgraduate (Masters's) degree would be an asset but is not essential.
  • Has at least 5-10 years of progressively responsible experience in Business Development, fundraising, or similar roles.
  • Knowledgeable of national and international funding priorities in urban and/or international development research and practice.
  • Has a demonstrated ability to work in a collaborative style, with experience in using various methods to build understanding and consensus.
  • Committed to innovation, with great communication and people skills and sufficient business maturity to communicate and influence (including at the executive level).
  • Highly organized, proactive and independent, with the ability to multitask and manage multiple deadlines.
  • Confident and comfortable working in a diverse and multicultural environment.
  • The working language of the position will be in English, but Dutch would be a significant advantage.

Terms and conditions of employment

We offer a challenging job in an international and dynamic work environment, which provides the freedom and flexibility to perform your job to a high standard.

The candidate must be in possession of a Dutch residence permit or be an EU citizen. The position is available in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, starting for a period of 1 year, with possible extension to permanent employment, and is based on a minimum of 32 hours per week to a maximum of 40 working hours per week.

Remuneration will be in line with the responsibilities of the role and related to the work experience of the candidate. For full-time employment, the minimum salary is €4,814 and the maximum € 6,702, salary scale 12-13 of the CAO NU. The employment conditions include a holiday allowance of 8.0% and an end-of-year bonus of 8.3%.

We prefer a candidate who is available to start as soon as possible.

Application procedure

For further information on the position, please contact Dr David Dodman (

We would like to receive your application no later than 31 March 2023 by email to A committee will evaluate the applications and selected candidate(s) will be approached for an interview.

Please add ‘Application: Business Development Manager’ to the subject line. Please send a cover letter (with clear description of your motivations for applying for this position) and detailed CV including the names and contact details of two referees to the email above.

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