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May 7 / BARD CEP

Energy And Climate Associate, World Resources Institute – Washington, DC

Organization: World Resources Institute

Position Title: Energy And Climate Associate I

Location: Washington, DC

Dates and compensation: This is a three-year position

Application Deadline: Position open until filled

Description: The Associate will be a key subject matter expert and will facilitate program management and contribute to the development of high quality research products that are designed to influence targeted audiences.

The WRI Ross Center for Sustainable Cities seeks an Associate to lead the activities of a project to promote the development and transfer of transport low-carbon technologies in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC), in order to contribute to the ultimate goal of reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and reducing vulnerability to climate change in specific sectors in LAC. The Project’s strategy is to build national capacities to identify, assess, develop and transfer low-carbon technologies in LAC. In order to achieve this strategy, the Project will: i) promote regional collaborative efforts; (ii) support planning and policy-making processes at national, local and sectoral levels; (iii) serve as a platform for the demonstration of policies and enabling mechanisms; and (iv) mobilize private and public resources. The Project will pilot institutional frameworks and mechanisms for the development and transfer of low-carbon technologies for climate change mitigation and adaptation, taking into consideration and contributing directly to key design features of the Technology Mechanism as agreed under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).

The Associate will lead the planning, coordination and execution of the project activities related to the development and transfer of low-carbon technologies for the transport sector. The Associate will help carry-out the four-interlinked activities of the project: (1) development of national policy, institutional capacities, and analytical tools to address issues on low-carbon technologies in the context of national and sectoral policies and plans; (2) strengthen technology networks and centers: to support the creation and strengthening of regional low-carbon technologies networks on transport; to identify and prioritize opportunities of the adoption of transport low-carbon technologies in LAC, and promote regional partnerships and collaboration; (3) pilot technology transfer mechanisms: to identify, assess and showcase specific examples of technology transfer mechanisms and policies (e.g. regulations, standards, financial mechanisms, joint research and development, etc.). Among other analytical tools, technology roadmaps will be used to identify and discuss the concrete actions and mechanisms that are required for the adoption of specific technologies in a given context; (4) leverage private and public investments: to catalyze investment through the identification of investment opportunities, the elaboration of technology assessments and feasibility studies, and the assessment of the economic and financial feasibility of the adoption of low-carbon technologies (including cost-benefit analysis, market studies, business and financial models and the design of financial mechanisms). The project will also support the mobilization of international climate financing, supporting the preparation of project proposals and facilitating partnerships.

The position is being offered in the Energy and Climate team of WRI Ross Center for Sustainable Cities.  The Associate will contribute to the Energy and Climate team’s objective to help cities power development with affordable, sustainable electricity; significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions and vulnerability to climate change impacts; meet ambitious goals on access to urban opportunities and energy; and drive ambition in both sub-national and national climate commitments.

The candidate will be required to actively support all elements of the project’s strategy with thorough knowledge of clean technologies, sustainable low carbon urban infrastructure, public and private finance, domestic and international finance, international public climate finance (including Climate Investment Fund / Clean Technology Fund), and policy-making processes at the national and sub-national level. Therefore the candidate will need to have a firm grounding in both urban infrastructure finance and urban low-carbon policy and practice on all levels from the local to the international. The candidate will also be expected to possess an understanding of related issues, such as enabling frameworks (both domestic and international) for sustainable low-carbon urban transport, and the UNFCCC Technology Mechanism (TM), its Technology Executive Committee (TEC), and Climate Technology Centre and Network (CTCN).

The position is located in WRI’s Washington, D.C. office and will report directly to the Director of Energy and Climate of the WRI Ross Center for Sustainable Cities.

Responsibilities: The Associate’s main areas of responsibility will include the following:

Research & Knowledge (50%)

  • Lead and coordinate activities on the development and transfer of low-carbon technologies for the transport sector, including liaising with national governments, designated national entities, WRI colleagues and other project partners;
  • Organize sessions and/or side events on the development and transfer of low-carbon technologies for transport, including the preparation of agendas, the selection of speakers and liaising with project partners;
  • Establish a broad network of organizations and individuals in LAC with relevant expertise on low-carbon technologies in the transport sector;
  • Research and document emerging trends and best practices in low-carbon technologies and national systems for technology and innovation;
  • Lead the development and implementation of quantitative and qualitative research methodologies and technology roadmaps for low-carbon technologies for the transport sector;
  • Lead research, including coordinating necessary inputs, literature reviews, synthesizing findings, development of analytical framework, collection and analysis of complex data, and critical writing, editing, and revising;
  • Lead responses to requests by participating countries on issues related to development and transfer of low-carbon technologies for the transport sector under the scope of the project;
  • Draw on knowledge of WRI Ross Center for Sustainable Cities to provide research and advisory support to colleagues across WRI;
  • Follow the latest development of the UNFCCC negotiation, and especially the UNFCCC Technology Mechanism (TM), its Technology Executive Committee (TEC), and Climate Technology Centre and Network (CTCN);
  • Contribute to development and testing of analytical framework, tools and models;
  • Co-author WRI working papers and reports, and academic publications; and
  • Serve as an internal and external reviewer.

Program/Project Management (25%)

  • Prepare Terms of Reference and coordinate and supervise research and communication activities  across WRI teams and WRI international offices;
  • Supervise and review the work of consultants and consulting firms preparing products under the responsibility of WRI;
  • Lead several concurrent projects on sustainable low-carbon transport development research, impact evaluation, and institutional process toward successful achievement of outcomes;
  • Monitor and manage project deliverables, setting and clarifying priorities for project teams;
  • Monitor and manage project budget performance, expenses and revenue,
  • Develop project strategies and work plans;
  • Evaluate and report projects impacts;
  • Complete institutional and donor reporting (narrative, quantitative and financial) for projects;
  • Work closely on all management efforts above with the Director of Energy & Climate of the WRI Ross Center for Sustainable Cities;

Internal and External Communications (15%)

  • Manage writing and review of research publications;
  • Develop project influence strategies and execute them in collaboration with WRI Marketing & Communications experts;
  • Write succinct and timely content related to low-carbon urban transport technologies;
  • Develop and lead others to develop refined presentations for internal and external audiences;
  • Produce clearly and persuasively written content for print and online media;
  • Synthesize complex quantitative and qualitative information into concise info-graphics;
  • Deliver oral presentations with competence and confidence;
  • Contribute written and graphic content to reports and presentations summarizing the Energy & Climate unit, projects and related issues, trends and opportunities;
  • Contribute written content for funding proposals and concept notes;
  • Participate in conference calls and meetings;
  • Summarize content and next steps from key meetings;
  • Use positive influence to improve communications among team, partners and donors; and
  • Elevate issues to senior staff when necessary.

Program Development (10%)

  • Contribute to sustainable energy, climate and finance knowledge sharing across WRI network;
  • Draft text of partner agreements and MoUs;
  • Contribute to developing research funding proposals (both narratives and budgets);
  • Organize and lead project team meetings;
  • Proactively engage with colleagues across WRI;
  • Manage and takes responsibility for the outputs and contributions of external partners;
  • Interact with WRI’s global network members and partner institutions;
  • Effectively manage own workflow after ensuring understanding of expectations;
  • Set and continually manage project expectations with team members and other stakeholders;
  • Provide complete and timely project reporting;
  • Reliably and responsibly meet deadlines and ensure team completes high quality work;
  • Set and manage interim milestones to meet project deadlines;
  • Seek input and elevate concerns in a timely way; and
  • Support the maintenance of shared datasets.


  • Master’s Degree in engineering, urban and regional economics, urban energy policy, transport planning, urban/regional planning, finance or environmental science.
  • At least 3- 5 years of relevant professional experience  in conducting finance or economic analyses in the field of low-carbon urban transport development or in the field of technology innovation and climate change, either in a project implementation or research capacity in a developing country.
  • Expertise and experience in urban transport policy-making.
  • Demonstrated excellent written and spoken communication skills.
  • Fluency in Spanish skills is required.
  • Professional history of increasing project management responsibilities, including leading diverse teams and managing six-figure project budgets.
  • Demonstrated ability to connect research results to measurable external change.
  • Experience with external relations, communications and/or donor management
  • Ability to travel when needed

Preferred Qualifications:

  • PhD in engineering, municipal finance, urban economics, transport or urban planning, or environmental science.
  • Working experience in LAC and good understanding of the LAC political culture would be a significant plus.
  • Experience in managing projects funded by GEF would be a plus.
  • In addition to Spanish, Portuguese would be a significant plus.
  • Prior supervision and mentorship of one or more junior staff.
  • Published research in peer-reviewed journals

How to Apply: Qualified applicants should apply online at All applications must be submitted online through this career portal in order to be formally considered. 

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