Research Director, Economic Policy

Annual salary range: $100,000 to $120,000

The Institute for Research on Public Policy, one of Canada’s most trusted and influential think tanks, is looking for a research director to lead its economic policy research program, titled Building New Foundations for Economic Growth.

The economic research program is developing policy thinking that will help lay the groundwork for long-term prosperity in Canada, in the context of shifting geopolitical forces, technological change, demographic shifts, Indigenous reconciliation, and climate change.  A near-term strategic priority is a research initiative focused on industrial policy, guided by a steering committee of leading Canadian economic thinkers. The initiative includes researching and analyzing the topic, liaising with experts and governments, organizing workshops, and publishing reports with concrete policy recommendations.

The IRPP is an independent organization that supports evidence-based policy-making and inclusive dialogue. It fulfills its mission through a variety of activities, including high-quality in-depth research publications, events, its digital magazine Policy Options, and through the work of its Centre of Excellence on the Canadian Federation.

Roles and responsibilities

Reporting to the Vice President, Research, research directors collaborate with IRPP staff and external partners to produce high quality, rigorous, relevant research and mobilize knowledge to inform public debate and government policy decisions.

The research director will be responsible for:

  • developing research initiatives that align with the IRPP’s strategic direction and research streams, in consultation with the VP Research;
  • recruiting authors for research publications;
  • ensuring publications meet the IRPP’s high standards for quality and relevance through literature review, peer review and engagement with governments and external stakeholders;
  • leading the publication process and liaising with external authors and internal staff;
  • writing backgrounders, reports and articles to support strategic research priorities;
  • organizing expert workshops;
  • guiding the work of research associates;
  • engaging with government and other external representatives;
  • overseeing the execution, completion, and dissemination of research results; and
  • engaging with traditional media and social media on topics relevant to the research program.

Skills and Experience

  • Graduate degree in social science (e.g., economics, public policy, public administration, statistics) or business, or a graduate degree in another discipline combined with equivalent experience in research on economic policy.
  • At least five years of experience undertaking policy research in Canada, with previous policy research publications a significant asset.
  • Superior writing and editing skills in English or French, with an ability to convey detailed research findings in a clear and concise manner to a variety of audiences (e.g., government, industry, public).
  • Strong verbal communication and presentation skills.
  • Keen interest in Canadian economic policy issues and debates, actively following current developments.
  • Strong analytical and critical thinking skills, with significant attention to detail and accuracy.
  • Ability to find, analyze and visualize data relevant to policy research.
  • Organized project manager, able to lead multiple concurrent research projects and meet deadlines.
  • Collaborative team player with a track record of building effective internal and external working relationships.
  • Strong understanding of equity, diversity and inclusion principles both within the workplace, and in policy research.
  • Ability to read and understand English and French; fluent bilingualism is a significant asset.
  • Experience using social media to convey research findings is an asset.

Working at the IRPP

We offer a competitive salary and benefits package, and a collegial work culture that is rooted in creativity, inclusivity, integrity, and flexibility. Members of our team work on a fascinating range of different initiatives across our operations and have the opportunity to develop their own projects when they align with strategic directions. We thrive on the exchange of ideas, both internally and with external partners.

The IRPP offers a hybrid workplace based in Montreal. Candidates should expect to spend at least one day a week in the Montreal office. For candidates applying from outside Montreal, remote work arrangements are negotiable. The candidates must be Canadian citizens or permanent residents.

The IRPP is committed to employment equity within its community, and to recruiting a diverse staff. We encourage applications from Indigenous, Black, and other racialized persons; 2SLGBTQIA+ persons; and Canadians living with disabilities. Please let us know if you have accommodation requirements to facilitate participation in the selection process by reaching out to us at the email address below. Candidates are invited to self-identify in their applications.

How to Apply

Please submit a letter of application and curriculum vitae that demonstrates that you have the skills and experience required for the position by e-mail to, before Friday December 15, 2023, at 9 a.m. EST.

We thank all applicants for their interest, but only those selected for an interview will be contacted. Contact to schedule interviews for the New Year will be made before December 22.