Recruiting! TJBCM is seeking a new Senior Programme Manager for Novel Therapeutics Accelerator Programme


Published 4th August 2022

Senior Programme Manager – Novel Therapeutics Accelerator (BTR-NTA)

A unique opportunity to join a fast-growing cancer organisation working on transformational programmes, backed by the UK government and major cancer charities. This new role will launch and deliver an exciting programme funded by Brain Tumour Research, aimed at accelerating pre-clinical novel therapeutics for brain cancer into human trials with an international world-class panel of experts.

Salary:  £36,000 – £40,000 (depending on experience) for 37.5 hours a week

Contract type: Full-time

Location: Office is based in London, Highgate – hybrid working offered with a minimum of 3 days a week office-based

Tessa Jowell Brain Cancer Mission (TJBCM): an overview

TJBCM is a national convening body delivering transformative national programmes to improve brain tumour research, treatment and care in the UK.

TJBCM designs and currently delivers a national portfolio of eight transformational programmes. We deliver innovative programmes focused on: Accelerating research, building state of the art clinical trial infrastructure, improving care for today’s patients and connecting and training NHS staff through a novel digital platform. Our transformational work is funded and supported by the government through the National Institute of Health Research (NIHR) , as well as 8 different cancer charities. Over 70 NHS doctors, nurses, allied health professionals and scientists from across the UK work daily with the Mission to design and deliver its programmes, which are jointly delivered with its partner organisations. The Mission currently employs three full-time employees and a pool of Research Assistants to support the core team. By joining the mission, you will have the opportunity to become the fourth full-time employee in a successful, fast-paced, growing start-up with digital and data health programmes, with a unique purpose of improving research and care outcomes nationally.

In 2018, Dame Tessa Jowell, following her brain cancer diagnosis, led a call to action to tackle brain tumours, recognising that too little progress has been made in the treatment of patients. The Government responded by convening members of the brain tumour community to design a new national strategy. Today, the national effort has grown is scale and size and the Tessa Jowell Brain Cancer Mission has become an independent Community Interest Company with backing of the NIHR, Cancer Research UK, the Department of Health and Social Care and many other major organisations.

The TJBCM is currently focussed on brain tumours in the UK. The aim is to extend the Mission in the future by building out the current programme offering, growing its impact by branching out internationally and supporting other hard to treat cancers. The successful candidate will be offered the opportunity to help shape this growth.

The role and the Novel Therapeutics Accelerator programme (BTR-NTA)

The TJBCM has received funding to launch an exciting new programme aimed at accelerating pre-clinical novel therapeutics into human trials, in a faster and more successful way. The programme aims to give scientists direct access to a world-class panel to assess pre-clinical work, helping them position their candidate compound in a realistic pathway to trials. The panel will give independent and transparent advice on work done to date and will make recommendations on further work and next steps – both on scientific next steps, as well as commercial and funding opportunities. In parallel, the team will create materials to train scientists on the topic of drug development and organise partnerships with other organisations and funders of scientific research. The programme will be led by TJBCM, supported by the NCRI and funded by Brain Tumour Research. We have received funding for an initial 17-month pilot phase of this programme which will be renewed upon success of the initiative. This programme will be a revenue generating programme and will contribute to future company growth.

We are looking for an adaptive, driven and highly skilled Programme Manager who will help the team successfully launch and deliver this new programme. The ideal candidate will be a highly organised team player, with excellent verbal and written communication skills and with a clear growth mindset. An interest in health and/or drug development is a must, as well as a proven track-record in managing complex projects.

Responsibilities and Duties:

The successful candidate will be reporting directly to the TJBCM CEO and work with a variety of TJBCM members and partners to design, plan, launch and deliver the NTA programme, including the application and review process.

  1. During the 5-month pre-launch phase:
    1. Design and build a best-in-class NTA programme with our partners
    2. Engage with other organisations and apply learnings to the development of this programme
    3. Start advertising the programme with prospective commercial and academic applicants
  2. In the 12-month pilot phase (consisting of two six-month cycles):
    1. Work with our high-profile committee members consisting of scientists, funders, industry and commercial experts to give feedback to the applicants on the programme by writing up high quality reports and endorsements
    2. Market and advertise the programme to engage potential academic and industry applicants and recruit academic and industry applicants
    3. Co-ordinate with programme committee members and organise two yearly review cycles with in an in-person conference
    4. Liaise with applicant scientists throughout the review process
  3. Throughout the 17 month programme
    1. Work with experts to create engaging workshops, materials and podcasts on the topic of drug development for the TJ Academy platform on an ongoing basis
    2. Provide efficient and effective programme management functions
    3. Write briefings, draft reports and presentations for internal and external stakeholders
    4. Measure impact and evaluate programme based on feedback to improve programme year on year
    5. Provide ongoing support to other TJBCM programmes where needed
    6. Help to grow the TJBCM size and impact

Reporting to: TJBCM CEO Dr Nicky Huskens, as well as the TJBCM Joint Strategy Board and Brain Tumour Research

What we offer:

Person Specification

Qualifications, skills and required experience

Required Desired
Has obtained education to Degree level i.e. BSc in biological, medical or business degree with an interest in public health


Strong scientific background with the ability to understand and write about complex science

MSc or PhD in biological, medical or social sciences with an interest in public health


Ideal for a post-doc who is branching out to work beyond the lab

Experience in project management with multiple stakeholders: experience in designing and executing medium-scale projectsExperience in designing and running income-generating projects
Excellent written and verbal communication skills: demonstrable experience in writing engaging content for scientific audiences


Experience communicating with senior level clinicians and scientists

Has previously worked as an academic or commercial scientist
Experience working in scientific work environmentsExperience working with the NHS or other healthcare or research organisations
Ability to present information appropriately and maintain high level of accuracy and consistent attention to detail
Ability to work independently and demonstrate initiative and a pro-active approachTrack record in growing income or attracting funding or broadening the impact of a project


Equal Opportunity and Diversity Statement:

The Tessa Jowell Brain Cancer Mission is committed to achieving a working environment which provides equality of opportunity and freedom from unlawful discrimination on the grounds of race, sex, pregnancy and maternity, marital or civil partnership status, gender reassignment, disability, religion or beliefs, age or sexual orientation. We work hard to remove unfair and discriminatory practices within the Mission and to encourage full contribution from its diverse community. The Mission is committed to actively opposing all forms of discrimination. We welcome and encourage applications from people of all backgrounds.

How to apply:

Please send an up-to-date CV (2 page max) along with a cover letter (1.5 page max), addressing the following:

Application deadline: 24th of August, although we will interview strong candidates on a rolling basis.

Email application to: and