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Document C2022/221A/04

The European Environment Agency (EEA) – Publication of a vacancy for the function of Executive Director (Temporary Agent – Grade AD 14) – COM/2022/20083


OJ C 221A , 7.6.2022, p. 20–25 (BG, ES, CS, DA, DE, ET, EL, EN, FR, GA, HR, IT, LV, LT, HU, MT, NL, PL, PT, RO, SK, SL, FI, SV)



Official Journal of the European Union

CA 221/20

The European Environment Agency (EEA)

Publication of a vacancy for the function of Executive Director

(Temporary Agent – Grade AD 14)


(2022/C 221 A/04)


We are

The European Environment Agency (EEA, the Agency) is a European Union regulatory agency established in 1990 (1) that provides environmental information to policymakers and the public. The Agency is located in Copenhagen.

The EEA role is to help the EU and its member countries to make informed decisions about improving the environment, integrating environmental considerations into economic policies and moving towards sustainability; and develop and coordinate the Environmental Information and Observation Network (Eionet), a network of national environmental bodies set up by the EEA founding regulation.

Since the creation of EEA, the EU environment and climate legislation (including energy policy closely linked to climate) has significantly evolved and the Agency plays an important role in monitoring, consolidating, evaluating and reporting on the implementation of these measures in Member States. With the European Green Deal there is more need for environmental knowledge cross-cutting various policy areas. In this context, EEA plays a key role in supporting European environment and climate policies, the European Green Deal and the 8th Environmental Action Programme in particular and the European Digital ambition, as well as Europe’s global commitments. This is reflected in the EEA/Eionet Strategy 2021-2030 (2).

For further information please consult the following website:

We propose

The Executive Director is the legal representative of EEA and is accountable to the EEA Management Board, set up under Article 8 of the EEA Regulation (3).

She/he will lead and manage EEA and take overall responsibility for its operations ensuring the achievement of EEA’s objectives as well as sound budgetary and human resources management.

The Executive Director shall be completely independent in the performance of her/his duties, without prejudice to the respective competencies of the European Commission and the Management Board.

The Executive Director will be responsible for:

the day-to-day administration of EEA, which involves (in 2022) a budget of around EUR 56 million (general revenues) and 256 staff members,

managing EEA in line with its Regulation, the applicable legislation in force as well as the decisions of its Management Board,

taking general responsibility for managing EEA’s staff effectively and efficiently, and fostering a good team spirit and working environment while seeking synergies and efficiencies,

managing all the Agency resources necessary for conducting the activities of its governance bodies, including making available appropriate scientific and technical support,

drawing up EEA’s strategic documents and work programmes in line with the Commission Guidelines for decentralised agencies (4), and reporting on their direction and policy setting procedures to the Management Board,

reporting on the implementation of the work programmes and decisions adopted by the Management Board,

taking general responsibility for the overall performance of the tasks assigned to EEA including supervising the quality of its internal control and management systems,

preparing and executing EEA’s budget in line with Financial Framework Regulation (5) for agencies and ensuring that it is managed efficiently and in accordance with the principle of sound financial management,

taking general responsibility for the financial matters of EEA including, inter alia, final accounts and financing decisions,

ensuring cooperation with the European Commission, the European Parliament and the European Council as well as with competent bodies in Member States carrying out similar tasks to those of EEA,

ensuring in particular close coordination with DG Environment, the EEA’s parent DG at Commission level through a regular ‘structured dialogue’ at senior management level and through a coherent and efficient coordination of relations between the Agency and Commission services,

ensuring that EEA core activities primarily support the EU environmental and climate policy priorities,

representing EEA and communicating with the range of stakeholders and the public on all matters within the Agency’s remit,

ensuring the management of the Secretariat for the European Scientific Advisory Board on Climate Change laid down by the EU Climate Law (6),

ensuring effective and timely compliance with deadlines laid down in EU legislation on all reporting obligations supported by the Agency,

ensuring appropriate coordination between its governance bodies, namely the Management Board, the Bureau, the Scientific Committee, Eionet and the European Topic Centres,

providing the secretariat for the Management Board.

We look for (selection criteria)

The ideal candidate should fulfil the following selection criteria:

a)    Management skills :

Very strong strategic leadership skills, being able to manage a large organisation, notably at operational, financial and human resource management level, in a dynamic and changing environment,

excellent capacity to develop and implement a strategic vision and facilitate innovation processes, in order to enhance the role of the Agency as a key environmental knowledge-based provider to support the development and implementation of related EU policies, in close coordination with other knowledge providers,

ability to set objectives, motivate and lead large teams in a multicultural and multilingual environment,

very good capacity to take decisions in a complex political environment, also in emergency situations,

experience in budgetary, financial and human resources management in a national, European and/or international context,

b)    Specialist skills and experience :

Very good knowledge of EU environmental and climate policies and ongoing policy developments under the European Green Deal,

experience in at least one of the following areas: environmental protection; climate change; health; circular economy, ideally acquired in a national, European or international institution,

very good knowledge of the European institutions and how they operate and interact, and in particular of the working practices of the European Commission and the EU budgetary cycle,

experience of negotiating at high level in an European or international environment of relevance to the EEA’s mandate.

c)    Personal qualities :

excellent interpersonal skills and ability to work effectively in a transparent and open manner and to maintain appropriate relations with the Agency’s governance bodies, with the European Union institutions and with Member States’ competent authorities,

ability to communicate efficiently with media, public and all internal and external stakeholders, and to represent the Agency in international fora within the scope of its mandate.

Candidates must (eligibility requirements)

Candidates will only be considered for the selection phase on the basis of the following formal requirements to be fulfilled by the deadline for applications:

Nationality: candidates must be a citizen of one of the Member States of the European Union. Subject to a decision of the Management Board of EEA to authorise an exception in accordance with Article 12.2(a) of the Conditions of Employment of other Servants of the European Union, if necessary, for the appointment of the Executive Director, applications can also be submitted by citizens of the following countries that are members of EEA at the closing date for registration: Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, Switzerland and Turkey.

University degree or diploma: candidates must have:

either a level of education which corresponds to completed university studies attested by a diploma when the normal period of university education is 4 years or more,

or a level of education which corresponds to completed university studies attested by a diploma and appropriate professional experience of at least 1 year when the normal period of university education is at least 3 years (this one year's professional experience cannot be included in the postgraduate professional experience required below).

Professional experience: candidates must have at least 15 years postgraduate professional experience (7) at a level to which the qualifications referred to above give admission. At least 5 years of that professional experience must be in areas under the mandate of the Agency.

Management experience: at least 5 years of the post-graduate professional experience must have been gained in a high–level management function (8) in a field relevant for this position.

Languages: candidates must have a thorough knowledge of one of the official languages of the European Union (9) and a satisfactory knowledge of another of these official languages. Selection panels will verify during the interview(s) whether candidates comply with the requirement of a satisfactory knowledge of another official EU language. This may include (part of) the interview being conducted in this other language.

Age limit: candidates must be able to complete, at the deadline for application, the full mandate of 5 years before reaching the retirement age. For temporary staff of the European Union, the retirement age is defined as being the end of the month in which the person reaches the age of 66 years (see Article 47 of the Conditions of Employment of other Servants of the European Union (10)).

Selection and appointment

The Executive Director will be appointed by the Management Board of EEA on the basis of a shortlist provided by the European Commission.

To establish this shortlist, the European Commission organises a selection in accordance with its selection and recruitment procedures (see the Document on Senior Officials Policy (11)).

As part of this selection procedure, the European Commission sets up a pre-selection panel. This panel analyses all applications, proceeds with a first eligibility verification and identifies candidates having the best profile in view of the selection criteria mentioned above, and who may be invited for an interview with the pre-selection panel.

Following these interviews, the pre-selection panel draws up its conclusions and proposes a list of candidates for further interviews with the European Commission's Consultative Committee on Appointments (CCA). The CCA, taking into consideration the conclusions of the pre-selection panel, will decide on the candidates to be invited for an interview.

Candidates who are called for an interview with the CCA participate in a full-day management assessment centre run by external recruitment consultants. Taking account of the results of the interview and the report of the assessment centre, the CCA establishes a shortlist of candidates it considers suitable to exercise the function of Executive Director of EEA.

Candidates on the CCA shortlist will be interviewed by the Member(s) of the Commission responsible for the Directorate-General in charge of the relations with the Agency (12).

Following these interviews, the European Commission adopts a shortlist of the most suitable candidates, which will be communicated to the Management Board of EEA. The latter may decide to interview the candidates before appointing the Executive Director from among the candidates on the Commission shortlist. Inclusion on this shortlist does not guarantee appointment.

Candidates may be required to undergo further interviews and/or tests in addition to those indicated above. They could also be required to deliver a statement before the relevant committee(s) of the European Parliament.

Equal opportunities

The European Commission and EEA apply a policy of equal opportunities and non-discrimination in accordance with Article 1d of the Staff Regulations (13).

Conditions of employment

The salaries and conditions of employment are laid down in the Conditions of Employment of Other Servants.

The successful candidate will be engaged by the EEA as a Temporary Agent at grade AD 14 (14). She/he will be classified depending on the length of his/her previous professional experience in step 1 or step 2 within that grade.

She/he will be appointed for an initial mandate of 5 years, with a possible prolongation for a maximum 5 years according to Regulation establishing the Agency as applicable at the time of appointment.

Applicants should note the requirement under the Conditions of Employment of Other Servants for all new staff to complete successfully a nine-month probationary period.

The place of employment is Copenhagen where EEA is based.

The post is available from 1 June 2023.

Independence and declaration of interests

Before taking up his/her duties, the Executive Director will be required to make a declaration of commitment to act independently in the public interest and to declare any interests, which might be considered prejudicial to his/her independence.

Application procedure

Before submitting your application, you should carefully check whether you meet all eligibility requirements (‘Candidates must’), particularly concerning the types of diploma, high-level professional experience as well as linguistic capacity required. Failure to meet any of the eligibility requirements means an automatic exclusion from the selection procedure.

If you want to apply, you must register via the Internet on the following website and follow the instructions concerning the various stages of the procedure:

You must have a valid e-mail address. This will be used to confirm your registration as well as to remain in contact with you during the different stages of the procedure. Therefore, please keep the European Commission informed about any change in your e-mail address.

To complete your application, you need to upload a CV in PDF format, preferably using the Europass CV format (15), and to fill out, online, a letter of motivation (maximum 8 000 characters). Your CV and your letter of motivation may be submitted in any of the official languages of the European Union.

Once you have finished your online registration, you will receive an electronic mail confirming that your application has been registered. If you do not receive a confirmation mail, your application has not been registered!

Please note that it is not possible to monitor the progress of your application on-line. You will be contacted directly by the European Commission regarding the status of your application.

If you require more information and/or encounter technical problems, please send an e-mail to:

Closing date

The closing date for registration is 7 July 2022, 12.00 noon Brussels time, following which registration is no longer possible.

It is your responsibility to complete your online registration in time. We strongly advise you not to wait until the last few days before applying, since heavy internet traffic or a fault with your internet connection could lead to the online registration being terminated before you complete it, thereby obliging you to repeat the whole process. Once the deadline for the submission of registrations has passed, you will no longer be able to introduce any data. Late registrations are not accepted.

Important information for candidates

Candidates are reminded that the work of the different selection panels is confidential. It is forbidden for candidates to make direct or indirect contact with their individual members or for anybody to do so on their behalf. All queries must be addressed to the secretariat of the relevant panel.

Protection of personal data

The Commission will ensure that candidates' personal data are processed as required by Regulation (EU) 2018/1725 of the European Parliament and of the Council (16). This applies in particular to the confidentiality and security of such data.

(1)  Council Regulation (EEC) No 1210/90, amended by Council Regulation (EC) No 933/1999 and Regulation (EC) No 1641/2003 of the European Parliament and of the Council and, subsequently, codified through Regulation (EC) No 401/2009 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 23 April 2009 on the European Environment Agency and the European Environment Information and Observation Network (OJ L 126, 21.5.2009, p. 13).


(3)  Regulation (EC) No 401/2009 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 23 April 2009 on the European Environment Agency and the European Environment Information and Observation Network (OJ L 126, 21.5.2009, p. 13).

(4)  C(2020) 2297 final, 20.4.2020.

(5)  Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) 2019/715 of 18 December 2018 on the framework financial regulation for the bodies set up under the TFEU and Euratom Treaty and referred to in Article 70 of Regulation (EU, Euratom) 2018/1046 of the European Parliament and of the Council (OJ L 122, 10.5.2019, p. 1).

(6)  Regulation (EU) 2021/1119 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 30 June 2021 establishing the framework for achieving climate neutrality and amending Regulations (EC) No 401/2009 and (EU) 2018/1999 (‘European Climate Law’) (OJ L 243, 9.7.2021, p. 1).

(7)  Professional experience is only taken into consideration if it represents an actual work relationship defined as real, genuine work, on a paid basis and as employee (any type of contract) or provider of a service. Professional activities pursued part-time shall be calculated pro rata, on the basis of the certified percentage of full-time hours worked. Maternity leave / parental leave / leave for adoption is taken into consideration if it is in the framework of a work contract. PhDs are assimilated to professional experience, even when unpaid, but for a duration of three years maximum, provided that the PhD has been successfully completed. A given period may be counted only once.

(8)  In their curriculum vitae, candidates should clearly indicate for all years during which management experience has been acquired: (1) title and role of management positions held; (2) numbers of staff overseen in these positions; (3) the size of budgets managed; (4) numbers of hierarchical layers above and below; and (5) number of peers.



(11) (only exists in English).

(12)  Unless the Member of the Commission concerned, in line with the Commission Decision of 5 December 2007 (PV(2007) 1811) and 30 September 2020 (PV(2020) 2351), has delegated this task.


(14)  The correction coefficient applicable to the remuneration and pensions of officials and other servants of the European Union for Copenhagen is set at 131,3 % as from 1 July 2021. This coefficient is subject to an annual revision.

(15)  You can find information on how to create your Europass CV online at:

(16)  Regulation (EU) 2018/1725 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 23 October 2018 on the protection of natural persons with regard to the processing of personal data by the Union institutions, bodies, offices and agencies and on the free movement of such data, and repealing Regulation (EC) No 45/2001 and Decision No 1247/2002/EC (OJ L 295, 21.11.2018, p. 39).