NETHERLANDS: Specialist Verified Sourcing Areas

Do you have a deep technical understanding of environmental and social issues in agri-commodity production systems? Would you like to contribute to an exciting new concept aimed at accelerating the production and uptake of sustainable commodities globally? Are you ready to innovate? Take this opportunity to join IDH as Specialist Verified Sourcing Areas.

The role

The Verified Sourcing Area (VSA) concept is based on three fundamental pillars: a jurisdictional multi-stakeholder sustainability Compact, a transparent supply chain and committed buyers. The three pillars together form the VSA, whereby the local parties in the compact can work in close cooperation with the committed buyers and supply chain actors to achieve both increased sustainability in the jurisdiction as well as traceability in a supply chain.

As Specialist Verified Sourcing Areas, you are leading on the technical aspects of Compact and VSA model design with respect to monitoring and verification, working closely together with internal and external stakeholders. You will be member of the VSAs thought-leadership team, jointly steering the VSA model from the design to operationalization and implementation. You drive a strategic agenda which engages VSA Global Steering Committee members and external stakeholders.

Based in Utrecht, the Netherlands, you are part of the Business Unit Landscapes, reporting directly to the Director Markets & VSA. The position is a full-time position and requires international travel.

Key responsibilities include:

  • Development and implementation of specific parts of the VSA program: (i) the further development of the Compact Transparency Tool, (ii) bringing Compacts onto the VSA Platform and (iii) the further development and implementation of the VSA Monitoring & Verification strategy;
  • Development of the Compact Transparency Tool: Guide the development of the Compact Transparency Tool, ensuring technical quality and usability of the document and alignment with the features of the VSA Platform, overseeing the work of consultant firms and engaging the different Working Groups;
  • Bring Compacts onto the VSA Platform: Manage the onboarding process of Compacts onto the VSA Platform, including giving guidance to existing VSA Readiness Pilots on updating of Compacts to meet the requirements set out in the Compact Transparency Tool;
  • Further develop & implement the VSA Monitoring & Verification Strategy: based on the existing high-level strategy and the indicators already developed for the Compact Transparency Tool;
  • Engage with external stakeholders, including NGOs, to achieve a constructive discussion on how to ensure quality of Compacts to be developed and how to ensure integrity of data being reported through the VSA platform;
  • Engage third party organizations who are interested in developing Compacts;
  • Organize the involvement of the wider IDH team in the successes, the challenges and the learnings gained with regards to compact development, monitoring and verification.

Who you are

You are an organised, self-motivated, team player with technical sustainability skills and a strong interest in supply chain sustainability and landscape approaches to sustainability. You are both analytical and practical, able to work independently and learn fast. Working in a results-oriented, flexible and hands-on manner, you take control of the VSA targets with respect to the assigned tasks.

What you bring

  • 8+ years of relevant international working experience, including interaction and engagement with local stakeholders (private and public sector, civil society) in Latin America, Africa, and Asia.
  • Proven knowledge and understanding of global environmental issues, market and business dynamics in the field.
  • Thorough understanding of sustainability standards, monitoring and verification methods and tools.
  • Ability to lead the development of technical documents and subsequent implementation.
  • Proven ability to deliver programmatic work with sharp project management skills.
  • Ability to interact with and command the confidence of senior business, government and CSO leaders.
  • Skilled communicator (fluent in English), excellent negotiation, diplomacy and lobbying skills.
  • Proven experience in designing and facilitating steering committees and working groups.
  • Demonstrated experience in building alliances, initiatives or platforms for change that leverage the capacity of partners.
  • Working and thinking at M.Sc. level, degree related to earth sciences, biology, agriculture, or economics.

Who we are

IDH brings companies, CSOs, governments and others in public-private partnerships together to realize green & inclusive growth at scale in commodity sectors and sourcing areas. Our approaches are designed to drive sustainability from niche to norm in mainstream markets, delivering impact on Sustainable Development Goals. We focus on creating positive impact on deforestation, living incomes and living wages, working conditions, toxic loading and gender. In this we are supported by multiple European governments, including our institutional donors: BUZA, SECO and DANIDA. IDH is a company that works together with over 600 companies, CSOs, financial institutions, producer organizations and governments in 12 sectors and 12 landscapes in over 40 countries worldwide

What we offer

IDH offers a dynamic international environment and an enthusiastic and passionate team. As an IDH team member you can contribute to positive global change. The position is for 40 hours per week. We offer a gross monthly salary between €3500 and €4500 (based on a 40-hour week) and solid fringe benefits, including a good pension scheme.


Please feel free to contact Guido Rutten, Program Manager VSA, by e-mail at with any question about this position.

Would you like to apply? Just send us your motivation and resume in English by using the following hyperlink:

We encourage applicants to respond as soon as possible, latest by January 31st, 2020.

Candidates should be EU nationals or have permission to work in the Netherlands.  For more information about IDH, please visit


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