President, International Development Research Centre

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Global Affairs (International Development)
Position title:
Salary range:
$244,800.00 - $287,900.00/Year
National Capital Region
Application Review Date:
December 30, 2022
Opportunity number:

The International Development Research Centre (IDRC) was established in 1970, by an Act of Parliament, to initiate, encourage, support, and conduct research into the problems of the developing regions of the world and into the means for applying and adapting scientific, technical, and other knowledge to the economic and social advancement of those regions

With more than 50 years of experience in facilitating international development through quality research, IDRC is one of the world’s leading institutions in generating and supporting the application of innovative solutions to some of the most complex global challenges. IDRC finances research conducted by developing country researchers, and fosters collaboration and knowledge sharing amongst scientific, academic, policy and practitioner communities globally.

IDRC is seeking a new President to amplify results achieved to date. IDRC’s President is both the Chief Executive Officer of the Centre and a member of the Board of Governors. The President is responsible for initiating strategies for the Centre, directing and supervising the work and staff of IDRC, and working effectively with the Government of Canada, the Board of Governors, and all stakeholders. The President leads the Centre in fulfilling its mandate, and the President reports to and is accountable to the Chairperson and Board of Governors. IDRC reports to Parliament through the Minister of International Development.

For the duration of their term, the President will ensure that the Centre is fit for purpose through focusing on the following activities: operationalizing Strategy 2030 and achieving planned results, leading a mid-term strategy review, building cohesive national and global partnerships for results, and leading the Centre’s efforts to grow funding for the global mandate. The President will also provide visible leadership for the promotion of research supported by IDRC and identify opportunities to use research to influence policy and sustainable development.

Diversity and Official Languages

We are committed to providing a healthy and accessible workplace that supports one’s dignity, self-esteem and the ability to work on one’s full potential. With this in mind, all appointees will be expected to take steps to promote and maintain a healthy, respectful, inclusive and harassment-free work environment.

Preference may be given to applicants who are members of one or more of the following groups: women, Indigenous peoples, persons with disabilities, and members of a visible minority group.

The Government of Canada will consider bilingual proficiency and diversity in assessing applicants. You are therefore encouraged to include in your online profile your ability to speak and understand your second official language.

To be considered, please ensure that the information provided in your curriculum vitae and cover letter clearly demonstrate how you meet the following requirements:

Education and Experience

  • A Master’s degree from a recognized university in a relevant field of study, or an acceptable combination of education, job-related training and/or experience;

  • A PhD degree will be considered an asset;

  • Experience in a leadership role in a large organization with multiple office locations in developing regions of the world and with a multi-disciplinary staff;

  • Experience in building partnerships and working with global public and private sector partners to advance sustainable development goals and influence development outcomes;

  • Experience working with internal and external stakeholders to develop, promote and assess organizational strategies;

  • Experience in knowledge sharing and translation to influence public policies for the achievement of sustainable development goals;

  • Experience representing an organization/major initiative to various stakeholders, including government officials;

  • Experience working effectively with a multidisciplinary international board of governors;

  • Experience in design and delivery of diversity, equity and inclusion work policies and practices; and

  • Experience in the field of international development and lived experience in developing regions of the world would be considered an asset.

If you move on to the next stage of the selection process, the following criteria will be assessed:

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

  • Knowledge of best practices in corporate governance and management, including financial, enterprise risk, human resource and change management;

  • Knowledge of international sustainable development, and Canada’s international assistance policy;

  • Knowledge of research institutions and funding bodies in Canada and internationally;

  • Ability to provide strategic direction and thought leadership on policy research issues of national and global significance;

  • Ability to provide effective leadership and oversight of an organization’s work while promoting good governance and effective communication at the level of management and board of governors;

  • Ability to develop and maintain effective working relationships with boards of governors, Ministers and their staff, and other government agencies that are central to IDRC’s mission;

  • Ability to build an effective, accountable and inclusive institution focused on achieving results; and

  • Superior communications abilities, both written and oral, including the ability to act as a spokesperson to governments, elected officials, other stakeholders, and media.

Language Requirements

Proficiency in both official languages is an operational requirement of this position. You will be expected to demonstrate your proficiency during the interview process.

If you move on to the next stage of the selection process, we will contact your references to confirm that you meet the above selection criteria and that you possess the following Personal Attributes:

  • Personal and professional integrity

  • Superior judgement

  • Superior interpersonal skills

Eligibility Factors and Conditions of Employment

  • Appointees must comply with the Ethical and Political Activity Guidelines for Public Office Holders throughout their appointment as a term and condition of employment. The guidelines are available on the Governor in Council Appointments website under the Forms and reference material.

  • All appointees are subject to the Conflict of Interest Act. Public office holders appointed on a full-time basis must also submit to the Office of the Conflict of Interest and Ethics within 60 days of appointment, a confidential report in which they disclose all of their assets, liabilities and outside activities. For more information, please visit the Office of the Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner's website.

  • Appointees must uphold the highest standards of probity and are expected to demonstrate behaviours in the workplace that afford respect, equality and dignity, to everyone they interact with at work at all times. The Values and Ethics Code for the Public Sector outlines the values and expected behaviours for public servants, including valuing diversity and creating workplaces free from harassment and discrimination. Governor in Council appointees are expected to uphold and respect these values and principles in a positive and active manner.

  • If you are appointed to this position, you must reside in or be willing to relocate to the National Capital Region, or to a location within a reasonable commuting distance.

  • If you are appointed to this position, you must be willing to travel across Canada and internationally.

A link to this notice will be placed in the Canada Gazette to assist the Governor in Council in identifying qualified candidates. It is not, however, intended to be the sole means of recruitment.

A list of qualified candidates may be established and may be used for similar opportunities.

How to Apply

Review of applications (more information available here) will begin on December 30, 2022. Candidates should apply online via the Governor in Council Appointments website. Candidates are strongly encouraged to submit their applications by this date. After this date, your application will be retained and may be considered up until an appointment to the position is made. Your cover letter should be addressed to the Director of Selection Processes, Senior Personnel Secretariat, Privy Council Office, and should be sent only through the online application.

Instructions on how to apply for an appointment opportunity can be found on the Governor in Council Appointments website.

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