About the Department

The Energy Policy Institute at the University of Chicago (EPIC) produces data-driven research that advances the world’s understanding of the global energy challenge: the need for societies around the word to ensure access to the reliable, affordable energy needed for growth, while simultaneously reducing emissions of pollution that harms human health and carbon dioxide that causes climate change. EPIC’s world-class group of affiliated faculty in economics, public policy, and law are leading frontier research in all areas of the global energy challenge in order to uncover new ways of thinking about difficult problems and identify novel solutions. EPIC’s team of communications and policy professionals works closely with faculty to maximize the practical impact of research ideas through strategic outreach to leaders in business and government. The institute is headquartered in Chicago but has established a substantial presence and partnerships in India and China, two countries central to addressing the world’s most difficult energy and environmental challenges.

Job Summary

The Executive Director reports to EPIC Faculty Director Michael Greenstone and is responsible for overseeing EPIC’s daily operations. Competitive candidates will have a proven record in research management and administration, partnership development, policy engagement, fundraising, and staff management. This is a senior level position that works closely with Professor Greenstone and other EPIC leadership to develop all aspects of EPIC’s strategic planning, including research support, programming, and outreach and communications, including in India and China. EPIC offers a significant opportunity for entrepreneurial, creative leadership of an outstanding team and a prominent platform through which the Executive Director can help EPIC to achieve impact in the energy and climate policy space.


  • Organizational Development – quickly gains familiarity with EPIC’s mission, culture, and leadership priorities. Develops and executes strategic planning to continue building EPIC’s brand and impact in energy and climate research and policy, in line with institute leadership’s goals and vision. This includes planning around faculty research support, internal and external (public) programming, outreach and communications, partnership development, and more. Identifies and secures funding sources for EPIC’s work.
  • Partnership Development – meets and builds relationships with key partners in governments, non-profits, foundations, multilateral aid agencies, and the private sector. Gives presentations on EPIC’s work and disseminate research findings to policymakers and the media. Builds partnerships with other UChicago units to increase interest in energy policy around the campus.
  • Core Management and OversightDesigns and directs administrative systems and operational policies in consultation with the EPIC leadership. Oversees all financial administration and human resource issues, including budget planning and execution, grant-management, staff recruitment and retentions, etc. A resource on funding, staffing, research management, and administration to affiliated faculty.  Hires, mentors and supervises staff.  Prioritizes, delegates, and manages effectively. Contributes to ground-level event, outreach, and programmatic execution as needed.
  • Provides leadership for a Center with senior management and serves as a liaison to academic departments, professional organizations and administrative units of the University.
  • Manages related teams. Establishes department priorities, may be responsible for the management of the center budget, allocates resources and executes strategic plans.
  • Works closely with faculty, students and other leaders across campus to foster experimentation and multi-disciplinary inquiry and teaching by coordinating and developing Center programming. This may include workshops. Conferences, colloquia, training programs, community outreach, etc.
  • Performs other related work as needed.

Minimum Qualifications


Minimum requirements include a college or university degree in related field.

Work Experience:

Minimum requirements include knowledge and skills developed through 7+ years of work experience in a related job discipline.


Preferred Qualifications


  • Advanced degree in economics, energy/environmental policy, public policy, management, law or a closely related field.


  • Over seven years of relevant work experience, preferably in a similar policy and research environment.  The ideal candidate for this position will be very knowledgeable about energy issues in the U.S. and globally.
  • Experience in a university setting or other not-for-profit organization.

Technical Skills or Knowledge:

  • A strong understanding of energy policy is necessary to ensure an ability to translate and communicate EPIC’s work in an accurate and effective manner.
  • Demonstrated proficiency using software such as the Microsoft Office Suite (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook).

Preferred Competencies

  • Excellent organizational and analytical skills with high-level of accuracy and sharp attention to detail.
  • Superior interpersonal skills and the ability to work effectively with a wide range of individuals and constituencies in a diverse professional environment.
  • Demonstrated excellence in written and verbal communication.
  • Proven ability to multitask and successfully complete projects on tight deadlines with little supervision.  A willingness to work hard, be self-motivated, and learn will be essential for doing well in this position.
  • Experience with hiring well-qualified, diverse, motivated staff in research, policy and capacity building roles, supervising their work and helping in their career development.  Creating and maintaining a collegial work culture that emphasizes teamwork, results and good work-life balance.
  • A high level of confidentiality and discretion.
  • Effectively manage a heavy workload, competing priorities, and tight deadlines.
  • A quick, self-learner with ability to initiate, organize, prioritize and complete multiple, high-level projects; meet tight deadlines; and work effectively with minimal supervision in a fast-paced environment.
  • Demonstrated ability to anticipate and respond to future needs.
  • Works well independently and in a team environment.
  • Use appropriate resources and follow an issue through to resolution.
  • Demonstrated sound judgement, ability to solve problems and make effective decisions.

Working Conditions

  • Travel mostly within the US, but there is potential for international travel as well.

Application Documents

  • Resume/CV (required)
  • Cover Letter (required)
  • Professional References Contact Information (3)(required)