2031 Associate Director, International Forum for Democratic Studies

Washington, District of Columbia, United States | IFDS | Full-time


Associate Director, International Forum for Democratic Studies (Job #2031)

National Endowment for Democracy (NED)

Washington, D.C.


The National Endowment for Democracy (NED), a federally funded, private, nonprofit grantmaking organization that works to support freedom around the world, seeks an Associate Director for the International Forum for Democratic Studies team.  The position is based in Washington, D.C.


Position Summary:

The Associate Director will assist in managing wide-ranging aspects of the International Forum for Democratic Studies’ research and conference initiatives. The Associate Director will play a central role in helping to define the Forum’s strategy, events, and substantive outputs, and should possess a demonstrated track record of engaging (through public speaking, published writing, and private fora) at a high level with senior-level decision makers. The Associate Director will work closely with the Forum’s Senior Director to supervise financial planning and coordination of multiple activities, publications, and other products. The Associate Director will also deepen links with other NED programs and departments as well as with counterpart organizations in the democracy community.

The ideal candidate will possess strong expertise in the NED’s overall mission, coupled with highly developed political acumen and excellent leadership and management skills to be applied in the Forum’s multidimensional activities. The candidate should have a proven ability to oversee multiple streams of activity (including budgetary and administrative procedures) while also engaging substantively on ideas and projects relating to major opportunities and challenges for democracy around the world.



  • Assist the Senior Director in providing leadership and strategic direction for Forum research and conference activities
  • Assist the Senior Director in preparing and overseeing Forum financial planning, in cooperation with relevant staff and internal departments
  • Oversee expenditures for multiple streams of activity
  • Represent the Forum and NED at high-level internal and external meetings
  • Oversee timelines relating to conferences, meetings, and the preparation and publication of reports and other products
  • Serve as expert or moderator for public and private events convened by the Forum and/or other organizations in a variety of settings
  • Assist the Senior Director in day-to-day team management, such as monitoring and managing efficient and appropriate use of staff time and other NED resources, helping the Senior Director set management and workflow priorities, and seeking process improvements
  • Assist the Senior Director in resolving management issues relating to staff performance, team dynamics, and other personnel matters
  • Supervise and mentor junior staff and act on behalf of the Senior Director when needed
  • Other duties as assigned, including occasional travel




  • Knowledge/Experience:
    • Undergraduate degree in a relevant discipline is required; graduate degree or equivalent knowledge and experience is preferred
    • 11+ years of progressively responsible work experience in democracy studies or a closely related field; 4+ years of management experience preferred
    • Demonstrated publications track record and ability to oversee publishing processes
    • Track record of managing resources, designing and implementing strategies that maximize staff potential, connecting horizontally and vertically


  • Other Qualifications:
    • Mission-driven. Expertise in (inter alia) democracy/democratization studies, authoritarian influence, emerging trends in related fields such as disinformation
    • One or more areas of regional expertise and interest
    • High degree of competency, comfort, and sensitivity in public speaking and providing public-facing organizational representation
    • Native-level proficiency in English is required; proficiency in a foreign language desirable
    • Willingness and ability to travel
    • Authorized to work in the United States


  • Competencies:
    • Demonstrated leadership, management, problem-solving skills
    • Excellent writing, editorial, and oral communication ability
    • High degree of organizational sensitivity, political acumen
    • Self-motivated with respect to prioritizing, meeting, and overseeing critical project milestones and deadlines
    • Ability to work effectively with all levels of staff to build good working relationships


 To Apply:

Applications must include a cover letter, resume, desired salary, and contact information for three professional references, one of which should be a supervisor.

Please, no phone calls; direct inquiries to careers@ned.org with 2031 -Associate Director, IFDS - YOUR NAME in the subject line. 

 The NED is an Equal Opportunity Employer.  For more information, please visit our website at www.ned.org