Job purpose: To collate information on practical conservation actions for threatened tree species and carry out other tasks to support BGCI’s practical tree conservation programme

Contract Type: Full-time

Duration: until Dec 2023

Location: BGCI Offices, Kew, London

Remuneration: £20-£25,000 per annum, depending on experience

Position Summary

Botanic Gardens Conservation International (BGCI) is seeking to appoint a Conservation Assistant Officer to support the delivery of BGCI’s practical tree conservation programme. Part of this role will include gathering data from our global network on current conservation actions for threatened tree species to help prioritise where future conservation efforts are needed. The appointed person will also provide support to the Global Conservation Consortia and practical tree conservation projects led by BGCI and partners. Candidates for this post will be self-motivated, demonstrate an interest in plant conservation and have a record of data collection and report writing.

About BGCI

There are an estimated 2,500 botanic gardens and arboreta in the world attracting 750 million visitors each year. Botanic Gardens Conservation International (BGCI) is at the centre of this network. Our members include the largest, most renowned gardens on the planet – Kew, New York, Missouri, Singapore, Sydney and Shanghai –and they also include many smaller gardens situated in the world’s plant diversity hotspots. All of these member gardens share a commitment to making sure that no plant species becomes extinct, and they have a combined workforce of many thousands of horticulturalists and scientists working towards that end.

BGCI provides support to its members in many different ways: we are an advocate for the botanic garden community, promoting the role of botanic gardens in plant conservation policy, practice and education; we connect people, co-ordinating efforts and bringing people together to exchange ideas; we are a knowledge hub, providing training, learning resources and professional support; and we provide funding and technical support to efforts aimed at saving plants.

Central to BGCI’s role in advocating for the botanic garden community is our efforts to communicate about the important conservation work being carried out by BGCI, our members, and our partners. We recently launched a landmark report, ‘State of the World’s Trees’, documenting the conservation status of the world’s 60,000 tree species. This report indicated that 30% of the world’s tree species are at risk of extinction. BGCI also leads a programme of practical work on threatened tree species, including coordinating action for specific taxonomic groups of trees via Global Conservation Consortia and working with partners on the ground to design and deliver projects for threatened tree species.

Detailed Position Description

BGCI is recruiting a Conservation Assistant Officer to contribute to BGCI’s tree conservation programme, through gathering data from our global network on current conservation action for threatened tree species, supporting the expansion and activities of Global Conservation Consortia for specific taxonomic groups, and providing support to BGCI’s practical tree conservation projects.

We are looking for a Conservation Assistant Officer who will:

  1. Gather information on current conservation actions for threatened tree species to be added to our conservation action tracker. This will include:
    • Reach out to regional botanic garden networks, IUCN/SSC plant specialist groups and other conservation organisations and networks, to request data on current conservation actions for threatened tree species.
    • Ensure data is collated from all BGCI-led tree conservation initiatives, including practical projects, Global Conservation Consortia and national tree conservation programmes.
    • Process data, tidying it as needed, and collating it in an Access database.
    • Check the data when it is published online via BGCI’s Global Tree Portal.
    • Work with the BGCI team to use this data to identify gaps in conservation action and prioritise where conservation efforts are needed.
  1. Provide support to Global Conservation Consortia (GCC). This will include:
    • Help to manage GCC membership via our customer relationship management tool.
    • Support conservation gap analysis work for target GCC groups.
    • Support IUCN red list activities for target GCC groups.
    • Provide support to practical tree conservation projects for GCC target species.
  1. Support development of resources to build capacity for tree conservation. This will include helping to develop:
    • An online training module on tree species recovery.
    • Informational materials for Global Conservation Consortia.
  1. Help to prepare communications content from BGCI’s practical tree conservation projects. This will include:
    • Collate and write content for BGCI’s websites and social media on our practical tree conservation projects.
    • Help to organise webinars focused on practical tree conservation action.
  1. Other tasks. This will include:
    • Contribute to technical and other reports, fundraising and publications.
    • Show flexibility and undertake tasks related BGCI’s practical tree conservation programme that need immediate attention.

Person Specification

BGCI is seeking to appoint a self-motivated person with a strong interest and knowledge of plant conservation approaches. Candidates for this post will have a proven record of data collation, report writing and attention to detail. The post holder will demonstrate sensitivity to complex, multicultural and multinational institutions and structures.

Education and Experience


  • A BSc or equivalent qualification in conservation, environment, science or another relevant discipline
  • Experience of data collation
  • Experience of investigatory research and report writing
  • An interest in plant sciences and plant conservation


  • Experience of IUCN Red List assessments
  • Proven record in delivering projects on time
  • Experience in interacting with international organisations and individuals

Skills and competencies


  • Self-motivated and able to work independently
  • Strong editing and writing skills in English
  • High attention to detail


  • High proficiency in the use of databases such as MS Access and Excel
  • Command of Spanish, Portuguese or French (able to read and write)

Application Process

Interested applicants should submit a CV and a cover letter of two pages maximum, explaining the candidate’s motivation and providing concrete evidence of why they are suitable for the position.

Please send your CV and cover letter to info@bgci.org. As BGCI has multiple vacancies open at the moment, please clearly state that you are applying for the position “Conservation Assistant Officer – Practical tree conservation” in the email text.

Closing date for applications: 10th July 2022

BGCI is committed to putting equality, diversity and inclusion at the heart of our organisation. We are committed to ensuring a working environment in which all individuals are free from discrimination and in which opportunities are equal to all. We encourage applications from all sections of the community, particularly those underrepresented within our sector.