Director, Public Affairs

Closing Date: Monday October 2, 2023

Reporting to the President of CIGI, the Director, Public Affairs is a member of the Senior Management Team and oversees the strategy and implementation of CIGI’s outreach and impact activities that promote and amplify CIGI’s research and strengthen its brand and reputation internationally as a leading think tank. As such, the Director is responsible for the development and execution of CIGI’s communications and government relations strategy. This position leads the Communications and Events, Digital Media and Publications teams in delivering a range of products and services including creative design, digital marketing, editorial content, media relations, multimedia, public relations, publishing, social media and web programming. The Director is also an ambassador for the organization who acts as a corporate spokesperson, builds relationships with news media and leads government relations.


  • As a member of CIGI’s Senior Management Team (SMT):
    • Play an integral role in the development of CIGI’s strategic plan and the annual Program of Work and Budget, as well as the achievement of CIGI’s mandate and strategic plan objectives.
    • Promote a culture of high performance and professional standards that emphasizes CIGI’s values of innovation, accountability, and integrity.
    • Establish positive, collaborative relationships with peers on the SMT and all cross-functional team members.
    • Represent the best interests of CIGI in all internal and external dealings and maintain the reputation of the organization.
  • Lead Communications and Government Relations
    • Develop and champion CIGI’s brand, global media presence and public profile in support of organizational objectives.
    • Provide strategic leadership in the development of outreach plans to amplify the impact of research projects with policy makers and their influencers by cultivating:
      • a broad network of relationships with journalists and editors to drive high quality coverage of CIGI and its research and serve as a chief spokesperson for CIGI on corporate issues.
      • Relationships with key government stakeholders at the global level, as well as nationally and locally.
    • Establish social media content and promotion strategies to inform, engage and influence targeted, high-level external audiences.
    • Serve as primary communications advisor to the President and Senior Management Team, advising on media, issues and crisis management.
    • Cultivate key, local community relationships to promote CIGI and its research.
  • Oversee Digital Media and Publications
    • In collaboration with the Senior Manager of Digital Media and Software, establish a digital strategy to build the organization’s digital presence and brand, both on and external sites
    • Oversee the creation of online editorial content that furthers the organization’s position as thought leader in digital governance.
    • Define content metrics, KPIs and use available analytics and data points to inform and optimize decision-making related to CIGI’s channels and content types.
    • Maintain quality assurance and quality control in research publications by ensuring wide adoption of CIGI’s Style Guide and that high publishing standards and policies are maintained.
    • Review all permissions for reproducing CIGI publications and any issues regarding copyright of CIGI publications.
    • Negotiate contracts and manage relationships external suppliers, including editors and designers.
    • Lead the production of CIGI’s Annual Report in both official languages.


  • University degree, preferably in Communications, Journalism or a discipline related to CIGI’s work
  • 15+ years of experience developing and implementing a communications, digital marketing and public affairs strategy in an innovative and creative environment
  • A minimum 10 years of leadership experience
  • Fluency in English, written and oral, with a second international language an asset
  • Demonstrated leadership in managing a comprehensive communications and government relations strategy
  • Excellent managerial and project management skills, including experience in supervising staff, managing a budget and effectively coordinating multiple projects simultaneously
  • Demonstrated ability to effectively interface with senior management, Board of Directors and staff across an organization
  • Ability to operate as an effective tactical and strategic thinker
  • Strong familiarity with national and international news media operations
  • Strong understanding of evolving social and digital media strategies, email list building and visual communication
  • Understanding of the publication processes, both digital and print
  • Familiarity with the structure and operation of the Government of Canada and global institutions
  • Highly motivated and results oriented with a passion for policy development
  • Exemplary written, verbal and interpersonal communication skills

Note: This position is a based at CIGI’s Waterloo office where employees have a hybrid work environment.

Interested applicants are invited to submit a resume with cover letter and salary expectations to [email protected] by October 2nd, 2023. Incomplete applications may not be considered. We appreciate all candidates’ applications but only those selected for an interview will be contacted.

CIGI is committed to providing an inclusive, equitable and accessible environment. Our goal is to attract and retain highly talented employees from diverse backgrounds, including Aboriginal peoples, persons with disabilities and members of visible minorities. We are committed to providing accommodation to applicants throughout the recruitment and hiring process.