Director, City Solutions

The Aspen Institute
Washington, Dist. Columbia 20037 United States
Feb 07, 2023
Mar 14, 2023
Executive, Director
Full Time

The Aspen Institute

The Aspen Institute is a global nonprofit organization committed to realizing a free, just, and equitable society. Since its founding in 1949, the Institute has been driving change through dialogue, leadership, and action to help solve the most critical challenges facing communities in the United States and around the world. Headquartered in Washington, DC, the Institute has a campus in Aspen, Colorado, and an international network of partners.

Commitment to Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

To achieve our mission of a more free, just, and equitable society, we commit to working proactively to advance the principles of diversity, equity, and inclusion across our myriad endeavors such as the recruitment, compensation, training, and advancement of staff. The best people-serving institutions make this commitment, and we seek to be a leader in the ways that we do so and learn from others. Visit our website to learn more about our commitment and recent actions taken toward building and nurturing a diverse and inclusive environment

  1. Aspen Institute seeks an experienced project and event leader to expand the work of CityLab to drive year-round dialogue and action on urban issues and solutions. CityLab, a project of the Aspen Institute and Bloomberg Philanthropies, is entering its 10th annual convening of artists, academics, funders, and other public and private sector leaders focused on improving cities and spreading urban strategies that work. Since 2013, CityLab has occurred in New York, Los Angeles, London, Miami, Paris, Detroit, Washington, DC, and Amsterdam. multi-day gathering shares creative ideas and solutions with city leaders to create inclusive and thriving communities.

This new position will coordinate the Aspen Institute's existing partnership with the Government Innovation team at Bloomberg Philanthropies and the Aspen Ideas team to develop and execute content for the annual Bloomberg CityLab event, held in a major city domestically or internationally. Additionally, this position will help transition CityLab from an annual event into a year-round series of programming that connects city leaders around the world to the best, most innovative thinking on urban issues and solutions.

Candidates for this position will have a track record of complex project management, an ability to develop convenings centered on urban innovation, and a sophisticated knowledge of urban challenges and solutions. As of this writing, fundraising is not required; however, as the program develops, it may well require additional funding, for which the Director will be responsible.

Interested candidates must apply through the website and applications will be kept confidential. All candidates will be considered equally; outreach outside of the application process is not encouraged. A cover letter is required.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities

  1. Program Strategy, Management, and Implementation
  • Design, grow and implement a program portfolio to meet the ideas and issues facing cities globally by identifying new opportunities in the Urban issues space (E.G.: Conferences, day meetings, evening dialogues, podcasts, etc.)
  • Oversee and manage Aspen Institute's role in the annual Bloomberg CityLab convening and projects, including content development and curation as well as speaker outreach
  • Collaborate with Bloomberg Philanthropies team and organization to develop, implement, refine, and broaden CityLab strategy and impact
  • Ensure highest quality program activities in according with Aspen Institute mission and values, and maintain systems of accountability and impact
  • As useful and valuable, develop relationships with programs across the Institute whose work and expertise may offer strong contributions to this program's mission
  1. Financial Management
  • Develop annual program budgets with the Institute and funders including Bloomberg Philanthropies; participate in regular budget meetings to review and refine financial reports
  • Identify financial challenges and identify and implement solutions
  1. External Relations and Communications
  • Develop external partnerships as needed for greatest impact
  • Contribute to Public Programs strategic plans and support overall departmental strategy
  • Build and strengthen communications and brand of Urban Innovation

Knowledge, Education, and Experience

  • Skilled Executive with at least seven years of management experience
  • Knowledge about urban policies and innovations is preferred but not required
  • Demonstrated project planning. Thrives in big picture possibility and strategy but also attentive to the details needed for high quality execution
  • Track record of working to produce and manage a variety of events
  • Demonstrated interest in the value of convening leaders in dialogue
  • Demonstrated ability to reach out to new and existing leaders across the urban landscape to join programs relevant to CityLab mission and vision
  • Highly organized, goal-oriented, self-starter who excels at handling multiple priorities in a fast-paced environment
  • Excellent communication and management skills
  • Ability to represent the program on City Solutions at high-level events and communicate with external partners in areas related to a range of issues affecting cities and city leadership: economy, infrastructure, leadership, climate, health, et cetera.
  • Commitment to equity, diversity, and inclusion within the Institute and in public programming

A balance of remote and in-person work is expected for this position.

The Aspen Institute offers a generous benefits package including health, dental, vision, and prescription benefits, retirement benefits, and paid leave.

The Aspen Institute is an Equal Opportunity Employer and complies with all District and federal laws. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, or protected veteran or disabled status and will not be discriminated against.

Individuals needing an accommodation to complete the job application can contact or call (202) 736-5800.


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