Development and Validation Officer

European Space Agency - ESA
Noordwijk, The Netherlands
Added: April 20, 2024

Development and Validation Officer

Job Requisition ID: 18530

Closing Date: 3 May 2024 23:59 CET/CEST

Establishment: ESTEC, Noordwijk, Netherlands

Directorate: Directorate of Connectivity and Secure Communicati

Publication: Internal & External

Type of Contract: Permanent

Date Posted: 12 April 2024

Vacancy in the Directorate of Connectivity and Secure Communications.

ESA is an equal opportunity employer, committed to achieving diversity within the workforce and creating an inclusive working environment. We therefore we welcome applications from all qualified candidates irrespective of gender, sexual orientation, ethnicity, beliefs, age, disability or other characteristics. Applications from women are encouraged.

This post is classified A2-A4 on the Coordinated Organisations’ salary scale.


ESTEC, Noordwijk, Netherlands with a resident assignment to Brussels, Belgium.


Development and Validation Officer in IRIS² Integrated Programme Team in Secure Connectivity Programme Department in the Directorate of Connectivity and Secure Communications.

On 15 March 2023, the European Parliament and the Council of the European Union adopted Regulation (EU) 2023/588 establishing the Union Secure Connectivity Programme for the period 2023–2027.

The objective of the EU Secure Connectivity Programme is to deploy an EU satellite constellation, IRIS² (Infrastructure for Resilience, Interconnectivity and Security by Satellite). The Programme will provide an EU satellite‐based, multiorbital communication infrastructure for governmental use while integrating and complementing existing and future national and European capacities in the framework of the GOVSATCOM component of the EU Space Programme.

The ESA Programme Related to EU Secure Connectivity is intended to support the effective development and validation of the EU Secure Connectivity (IRIS²) governmental infrastructure, which is to be developed, deployed and operated under a concession contract signed by the EU with a private consortium, and the services provided by it, as well as the validation and demonstration of services based on the commercial infrastructure developed by the contractors delivering the EU Secure Connectivity governmental infrastructure.

The European Commission and ESA will set up an Integrated Programme Team (IPT) to manage the EU IRIS² Programme and, in particular, the related concession contract, and to ensure close coordination between all activities relating to IRIS².

Reporting to the Deployment Manager of the Integrated Programme Team, you will be responsible for the timely validation of the overall system, interfacing with and relying on ESA for supervision of the related industrial activities and the validation and qualification of the governmental infrastructure and aiming to ensure coordination in accordance with the agreements between ESA and the European Commission.

Initial assignment to Brussels is until Q1 2028 with the possible extension, in line with the 12 year Contribution Agreement between ESA and EC. At the end of the assignment, you will be reassigned to a position within CSC Directorate.


Your tasks and responsibilities will include:

  • have overall responsibility for the timely validation of the IRIS² governmental infrastructure;
  • conduct all IPT activities aiming to the timely development and validation of the Secure Connectivity system of systems, including space, ground and user segments;
  • liaise with ESA Head of Secure Connectivity System and Validation Office, with ESA Head of Secure Connectivity Space Segment Office and with ESA Head of Secure Connectivity Ground and User Segment Office aiming to ensure coordination, and rely on ESA for supervision of industrial activities related to development and validation of the governmental infrastructure, as per the Agreements between ESA and the EC;
  • similarly liaise and coordinate activities with any entity in charge of development and validation of any part of the IRIS² system not covered under the concession contract (e.g. EUSPA);
  • contribute to the maintenance of programme-level schedule management, risk management, and configuration control;
  • contribute to the maintenance of the programme-level Cost Plan and Key Performance Indicators;
  • propose programme-level corrective measures to respond to deviations from performance, schedule and cost targets;
  • participate in all relevant reviews related to development and validation of the IRIS² system of systems;
  • support the IPT Deployment Manager in all its tasks, in particular in reporting to EC management and ESA management, as well as in ensuring EC-ESA coordination;
  • work in close coordination with other IPT Officers, including the Satellite & Production Officer, the System & Ground Officer, the User terminal, Spectrum and Signal Officer, the Concession Contract Officer, and the Security team.

Technical competencies

Strong technical background in the area of large space mission system design and development and demonstrated experience in the validation and qualification of such systems, preferably in the telecommunications domain

Experience with the implementation of large space programmes or projects, ideally in the telecommunications domain

Demonstrated experience of working as part of a team of technical, contractual and legal specialists working towards a common goal

Experience in the management and monitoring of industrial activities, including technical and contractual negotiations, and the management of technical reviews

Multi-disciplinary and comprehensive knowledge of “system of system” architecture, definition of related technical requirements and on-ground and in-orbit validation activities.

Experience in managing industrial activities from a cost and schedule point of view.

Experience with product assurance and safety standards and their application in a project environment.

Experience with complex project risk management processes

Behavioural competencies

Result Orientation

Operational Efficiency

Fostering Cooperation

Relationship Management

Continuous Improvement

Forward Thinking


A master’s degree in telecommunications, space systems engineering or a related technical or scientific discipline is required for this post.

Additional Requirements

Frequent travel to the ESTEC (Netherlands) and in Europe may be required.

In addition to relevant expertise and experience, you should have:

  • proven relationship management and communication skills;
  • capability to think and communicate in a structured way;
  • capability to synthesise complex technical issues and communicate them concisely and clearly;
  • capability to focus on the “big picture” while being able comprehend and manage detailed technical issues when needed;
  • problem‐solving skills to deal with day‐to‐day operational challenges, together with demonstrated planning and organisational skills;
  • result orientation with the ability to set priorities and present practical solutions both orally and in writing.

Other Information

For behavioural competencies expected from ESA staff in general, please refer to the ESA Competency Framework.

For further information please visit: Professionals, What we offer and FAQ

The working languages of the Agency are English and French. A good knowledge of one of these is required.

Knowledge of another Member State language would be an asset.

Applicants must be eligible to access technology and hardware which is subject to European and US export control regulations and for security clearance by their national security administrations.

The Agency may require applicants to undergo selection tests.

At the Agency we value diversity and we welcome people with disabilities. Whenever possible, we seek to accommodate individuals with disabilities by providing the necessary support at the workplace. The Human Resources Department can also provide assistance during the recruitment process. If you would like to discuss this further please contact us email

Please note that applications are only considered from nationals of one of the following States: Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and Canada, Latvia, Lithuania, Slovakia and Slovenia.

According to the ESA Convention, the recruitment of staff must take into account an adequate distribution of posts among nationals of the ESA Member States*. When short-listing for an interview, priority will first be given to internal candidates and secondly to external candidates from under-represented Member States*.

In accordance with the European Space Agency’s security procedures and as part of the selection process, successful candidates will be required to undergo basic screening before appointment conducted by an external background screening service.

In principle, recruitment will be within the advertised grade band (A2-A4). However, if the selected candidate has less than four years of relevant professional experience following the completion of the master’s degree, the position may be filled at A1 level.

  • Member States, Associate Members or Cooperating States.