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Specialist Adviser vacancy for EAC inquiry into 'Sustainability of the built environment'

7 May 2021

Can you help Parliament find the best routes to net zero for future building needs?

The Environmental Audit Committee (EAC) is inviting applications from individuals interested in being a Specialist Adviser to the Committee for its inquiry into 'sustainability of the built environment'.

This inquiry will look at how low carbon materials can be used to minimise the whole life carbon impact of new buildings, and how Government policy can contribute to this outcome.

The inquiry will examine how to account for and reduce the embodied carbon in buildings, the role of the planning system in delivering a sustainable built environment and what balance should be struck between the re-use and retrofitting of existing buildings and the construction of new developments.

The Committee

The EAC is a cross-party select committee of 16 MPs, chaired by Rt Hon Philip Dunne MP.

Its remit is to scrutinise how far the operation and policies of government departments and their public bodies contribute to sustainable development.

It is supported by the National Audit Office (NAO) in auditing the Government's performance against environmental protection targets.

Unlike most select committees, the EAC's work cuts across government rather than focusing on the work of a particular department.

The Committee launched its inquiry on sustainability of the built environment on 25 March 2021 and is expected to hold evidence sessions starting in July 2021 and continuing into the autumn.

The Role

The Committee wishes to hear from applicants who:

  • Can demonstrate detailed knowledge and experience of the UK infrastructure sector and regulatory frameworks governing the construction industry
  • Can demonstrate a detailed technical understanding of sustainable building, embodied carbon, and the planning system and its requirements in relation to house building and commercial property
  • Can provide insight into how structures and incentives within the infrastructure sector can be harnessed to support low-carbon materials, climate adaption and green infrastructure with the greatest potential to deliver substantial contributions to the UK’s Net Zero target
  • Can suggest from experience which individuals and organisations the Committee should consult on this subject
  • Are familiar with the advocacy positions or political affiliations that are held by these individuals and organisations, and with the policy debates relevant to the inquiry terms of reference
  • Can demonstrate a strong network of contacts on this subject

The ability to provide clear, concise and impartial advice orally and in writing to politicians and/or senior decision-makers is essential.

As a Specialist Adviser, you will be working with the Committee secretariat on an ad hoc basis to provide authoritative advice in relation to this subject.

Work demands from the Committee are likely to be irregular and unpredictable.

Only in exceptional circumstances would you be asked to do more than two days' work in a particular week and it would normally be less than this.

You would be paid a daily honorarium on the basis of work done.

Examples of the types of work you may be asked to do include:

  • Working with the Committee secretariat, in particular the inquiry manager, on the planning and conduct of scrutiny for the inquiry
  • Contributing to briefing material for the Committee
  • Attending Committee meetings and providing oral briefings when required.

The role may involve attendance at Committee meetings in Westminster, and you may be asked to accompany the Committee on any visit in connection with the subject (subject to current guidance on social distancing), although it is expected that initially contact with the Committee and the Committee team will be on a virtual basis.

The Committee will meet connected, necessary expenses.

Specialist Adviser appointments are in the public domain.

Application Process

To apply please send a CV, covering letter and a declaration of relevant interests to

In your covering letter you should indicate how your expertise is relevant to this subject, the amount of time you could realistically devote to Committee work, and your ability to take on work at short notice if required.

Your declaration of interests should include anything that a reasonable person might consider could influence the advice you give the Committee.

For example, a relevant financial interest, active membership of a relevant campaign group or political party, or the involvement of a close family member in the area of specialism.

Declared interests from successful applicants will be published.

The Committee values diversity and encourages applications from people from a wide range of backgrounds.

Deadline for applications

Expressions of interest should be sent no later than 12 midday on Friday 28 May 2021.

Shortlisted candidates may be invited to interview (held virtually) during the week of 14 June.

If you have any questions about the role, please contact the Committee team on 020 7219 8890.

Further information

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