The Macdonald-Laurier Institute (MLI) is the leading federal public policy think tank in Ottawa. It exists to help ensure Canada is the best governed country in the world. We are hiring for the full-time position of Deputy Managing Director, Editorial and Operations.

MLI has created a fast-paced, newsroom-style environment. We pride ourselves in our ability to respond to unforeseen new issues nimbly and adroitly, covering all the responsibilities of the federal government. Mastering the issues, formulating clear and relevant policy advice, and then getting it out to the widest possible audience are hallmarks of our work.

We need an experienced public policy executive to take the lead on this work and take MLI to the next level in terms of productivity and impact.

The ideal candidate will have deep understanding of national affairs and an enthusiasm for the cut and thrust of the public policy debate. Senior management experience as a journalist or in think tanks or comparable institutions, or both, would be an important asset.

Reporting to the Managing Director, the DMD, Editorial and Operations will be the institute’s managing editor, overseeing the daily operations of the institute with a focus on editorial production and developing projects, but also directing MLI’s top-notch events and communications teams and finance and administration departments. The DMD, Editorial and Operations will contribute significantly to the organization’s fundraising efforts.

Above all, this job is about rallying a great team to ensure that the ideas of MLI’s experts have the greatest possible impact and reach. We want MLI to be known as the indispensable arbiter of the national interest in our key focus areas of Domestic Policy, Indigenous Affairs, and Foreign Policy. And you can help us get there.

Primary duties and responsibilities

Newsroom management and editorial standards

Including, overseeing editorial production of major research reports, shorter commentary papers, magazine articles, op-eds, podcasts, infographics and videos; leading a dramatic expansion of MLI’s capacity for visual storytelling and data visualization; ensuring the highest editorial standards and clear, attention-getting communications products; overseeing story meetings and setting the agenda for tackling the most pressing issues facing Canadians.

Project development, collaboration and fundraising

Including, overseeing the effort to take ideas generated by senior staff and fellows to create project plans, recruit the appropriate contributors and partners, and raise funds to support the work.

Program execution

Including, working with program leads on assigning authors, organizing events, commissioning surveys, and soliciting op-eds and magazine articles on hot topics.

Media relations and communications

Including, maintaining personal relationships with reporters, editors, columnists and producers; working with the communications team on responding promptly to media requests and coordinating interviews; overseeing rollout plans for publications and media engagement with events and other products; crafting MLI’s messages and branding; overseeing MLI’s social media strategy and tracking and improving upon MLI’s reach, particularly compared to MLI’s competitors.

Maintaining relations with donors and stakeholders

Including, supervising the work of staff on donor reporting and ensuring asks to key funders are submitted on deadline; supervising the work of staff on fundraising forecasting and tracking, keeping regular contact with donors, contributors and partners, and ensuring that commitments are kept and MLI’s standards for professionalism are upheld.

Planning and budgeting

Including, supervising the development of the institute’s Annual Plan and delivery on all Annual Plan goals; participating in the development of the institute's annual budget; supervising the management of project budgets and deferred revenues.

Human resources

Including, overseeing the hiring of new employees, supervising the staff, dealing with performance and HR issues, and conducting annual reviews for direct reports.

Required skills, experience and personal attributes

  • At least 10 years in a senior management role at a news organization, think tank, or equivalent experience and impeccable news judgment;
  • An advanced degree in journalism, economics, public policy or related fields, or equivalent experience;
  • A willingness to do what it takes to meet tight deadlines while producing work of the highest quality;
  • Extensive experience in managing projects and budgets;
  • A strong network of public policy thinkers and media contributors;
  • An ability to get the best out of a dedicated staff, often on tight timelines;
  • Experience with a charitable organization and donor relations is an asset;
  • Bilingualism in French and English is an asset.

This position is permanent and full-time, and based in Ottawa. Some accommodation for remote work is possible at least during the pandemic. Please note that the institute is strictly non-partisan; working for MLI is incompatible with active membership in any political party.

The Macdonald-Laurier Institute offers a pay and benefits package that is competitive with equivalent positions in Ottawa. Interested candidates should send a cover letter and CV to by December 24, 2021.

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