Strategic Advisor, Economic Law and Policy Program (Africa, Europe, UK remote)

International Institute for Sustainable Development

The International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) is an independent think tank that delivers the knowledge to act. Our mission is to promote human development and environmental sustainability. Our big-picture view allows us to address the root causes of some of the greatest challenges facing our planet today—a changing climate, ecological destruction, social exclusion, and unfair laws and economic rules. With offices in Ottawa, Toronto, Winnipeg, and Geneva, our work affects lives in nearly 100 countries.


The Strategic Advisor for the Economic Law and Policy (ELP) Program at IISD will work closely with the Senior Director of the ELP Program/Executive Director of IISD Europe, providing guidance on key issues pertaining to international trade, investment law and policy, taxation, and other subject matters directly related to IISD’s work areas, such as mining, infrastructure, and agriculture. This role also involves liaising with ELP research and policy analysts, guiding the ELP communications team, and other colleagues within IISD with the purpose of identifying emerging opportunities and building IISD’s reputation as a leading voice and trusted partner in influencing and shaping international economic governance frameworks for sustainable development.

The successful candidate will have a proven track record of utilizing research for evidence-based advocacy and policy influencing. They will have excellent writing and communication skills and the ability to synthesize complex data and policy-speak into compelling arguments for real-world change. They will have a good sense of technical language, nuance, and political sensitivities at the international level and the savvy to navigate complex issues, processes, and relationships. We are looking for someone with a proven understanding of international relations, sustainable development, and international economic governance, such as the context of the World Trade Organization, UN and regional processes on international investment law, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, the G20, and the UN economic commissions, among others. Familiarity with multilateral environmental processes, such as on climate and biodiversity, are also valued.


  • Stay abreast of the latest news, trends, debates, and ideas emerging in the fields of international trade, investment law and policy, and taxation, and identify strategic opportunities for IISD senior staff to engage in and influence these conversations and processes. This may include developing reactive thought pieces to news events, suggesting concepts for op-eds or blog posts, drafting key talking points for a panel discussion, etc.
  • Provide strategic inputs on a regular basis to programmatic research, policy engagement, and communications plans across all ELP workstreams, identifying key avenues and opportunities for achieving the program’s vision, mission, and objectives.
  • Undertake regular reviews of these plans and outputs, and work with research and communications leads to adjust where needed in order to take advantage of emerging trends or developments in the sector.
  • Build and maintain trusted relationships in the international economic policy communities in which IISD works and identify opportunities for meaningful engagement, partnerships, and positioning within these communities.
  • Advise and coordinate the ELP communications team, liaising with senior researchers and program leadership on how to respond to new and emerging policy issues, identify reputational risks, and seize opportunities to create meaningful change.
  • Liaise on a regular basis with IISD’s central communications team and senior leadership to coordinate on institute-wide objectives, strategies, and outputs that involve global economic governance issues and frameworks.
  • Serve a central role in steering the programmatic activities of ELP’s Senior Director, including by identifying thought leadership opportunities and advising on external engagements.
  • Manage the Senior Director’s strategic participation in and positioning of IISD’s work within international policy networks (e.g., Think Sustainable Europe, Green Trade Network, etc.) and at major international policy events (WEF Annual Meeting, WTO ministerial conferences, etc.).

Knowledge and Qualifications:

  • 8+ years of experience in policy analysis, policy influencing, and strategic engagement at the international level, with preferred experience working with or in UN agencies, the WTO, OECD, World Bank, or similar institutions
  • Master’s degree in international law, economics, public policy, international relations, or a related discipline, combined with a demonstrated interest in and knowledge of issues related to sustainable development.
  • Evidence of strong communication skills and exceptional attention to detail.
  • Experience utilizing research findings to inform communications and engagement strategies and support evidence-based advocacy and influence; appreciation of how research can drive sustainable development outcomes.
  • The flexibility and adaptability to work effectively across different topics and themes at the same time and to pick up knowledge on new topics quickly.
  • The ability to work in a dynamic and fast-paced environment.

Skills, Competencies, and Attributes:

  • Strong interpersonal skills with the ability to communicate effectively with people from a wide range of backgrounds.
  • Excellent analytical, research, and writing skills.
  • Fluency in English (additional languages are desirable, especially French or Spanish).
  • Strong presentation and networking skills.
  • Excellent IT skills (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Sharepoint, MS Teams).
  • Ability to work effectively in a remote, asynchronous team.
  • Ability to work on own initiative and under minimal supervision.
  • Strong commitment to the ideals, values, and mission of IISD.

For more details on what we are looking for in our candidates, please refer to the IISD competencies on our website.


Geneva (office based, hybrid) or

GMT, CET, CEST, WAT, or CAT time zone (home-based): with regular travel to IISD Europe’s office in Geneva (approximately every two months). We especially encourage applications from candidates in Africa, continental Europe, or the United Kingdom.

Candidates must hold appropriate work authorization for locations where they expect to be based without any sponsorship from IISD.


Salary commensurate with experience and locations

Employment type: Full-time, permanent

Start Date: ASAP

Closing date: October 31, 2022, at 11:59 PM CET.

The candidates will be reviewed on a rolling basis, and the position will be closed once filled.

Application Procedure

Applications will only be accepted through Bamboo HR. Please include the following:

Only those candidates we wish to interview will be contacted. Resumes will be kept on file for one year.

IISD has implemented a COVID-19 Vaccination Policy that requires employees who are required or choose to be at an office or participate in in-person team events or in-person meetings/events to be fully vaccinated. Anyone unable to be fully vaccinated, either because of a sincerely held religious belief or a medical condition or a disability that prevents them from being fully vaccinated, can request a reasonable accommodation.

IISD is committed to fostering a more equitable and sustainable world and welcomes candidates who uphold our values of diversity, equity, and inclusion. In addition, to correct the conditions of social injustice and disadvantage in employment around the world, we encourage candidates from historically marginalized groups, including women, Indigenous Peoples, people with disabilities, people from different racial and ethnic backgrounds, and those who identify themselves as 2SLGBTQIA+ to apply for this position. Preference will be given to the equity-deserving groups during the hiring process. We offer reasonable accommodations in our recruitment process and seek applicants’ advice on how best to accommodate their needs. Please self-identify and answer our employment equity questions on our applicant tracking system when you apply.

How to apply

Application Procedure

Applications will only be accepted through Bamboo HR. Please include the following: