Senior Fellow & Co-Director, Center on Children and Families
Job Posted: 23 November, 2020
Company: Brookings Institution, Economic Studies Program
Closing Date: Until Filled
Location: Washington, DC



Join one of the most influential, most quoted and most trusted think tanks!

The Brookings Institution is a nonprofit public policy organization based in Washington, DC. Our mission is to conduct in-depth research that leads to new ideas for solving problems facing society at the local, national and global level.

We bring together leading experts in government and academia from all over the world, rooted in open-minded inquiry and representing diverse points of view, who provide the highest quality research, policy recommendations, and analysis. Research topics cover a full range of public policy issues in economics, foreign policy, development, governance and metropolitan policy.

With fair and transparent business practices, clear communication, mutual respect, and a collaborative atmosphere that offers both professional and personal development opportunities, Brookings offers an inclusive and welcoming workplace that values the efforts of all contributors.

About the Center on Children and Families: CCF studies policies that affect the well-being of America’s children and their parents, especially children in less advantaged families. The Center addresses the issues of poverty, inequality, and lack of opportunity in the United States and seeks to find more effective means of addressing these problems. CCF also houses the Future of the Middle Class Initiative (FMCi) which seeks to improve the quality of life of America’s middle class and to increase the number of people rising to join its ranks.

About Economic Studies: The Economic Studies program analyzes current and emerging economic issues facing the United States and the world and, based on that research, provides innovative, practical policy recommendations. ES’s work covers a broad array of economic issues, including the labor market, regulation, health policy, the environment, and fiscal and monetary policy. Economic Studies scholars influence key economic policies by conducting rigorous and relevant research and then disseminating and communicating their findings to the policy community and to the broader public.

Brookings welcomes and celebrates diversity in all its forms. We welcome applications that reflect a variety of backgrounds based on ideology, race, ethnicity, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, disability, veteran status, and first generation college goers.

Brookings is proud to be an equal-opportunity employer that is committed to promoting a diverse and inclusive workplace.

Please note: This position is based in Brookings' Washington, DC office. In response to COVID-19, Brookings staff are temporarily teleworking.

The person hired for this position must be willing to move to or currently reside in Washington DC, Maryland, or Northern Virginia.


Ready to contribute to Brookings success?

Brookings is seeking a senior fellow to co-direct the Center on Children and Families (CCF) in the Economic Studies Program, leading and conducting in-depth, high quality public policy research. The Center works at the intersection of social policy and economics, with a focus on inequality and economic mobility. The co-director will have considerable latitude to determine the research agenda of the Center, alongside their fellow co-director, but current priority areas include the Future of the Middle Class Initiative; economic mobility for workers; intragenerational mobility; race equity; and gender. The Center is in the process of re-evaluating its focus areas and structure for the coming years, which the co-director will be instrumental in shaping.

In addition to conducting their own independent research, the Co-Director will collaborate with other CCF scholars and other scholars across the Institution. In concert with their fellow Co-Director, they will develop the Center’s research and policy agenda, oversee research and administrative staff, and cultivate and manage relationships with external research partners, current and prospective donors, and key economic policy stakeholders. Scholars partner with Development staff to build and steward funding for their work, and with Communications staff to effectively promote and disseminate it.


Conducts in-depth, high-quality public policy research in area of expertise, independently and in collaboration with other scholars

Develops research concepts, policy questions, and work plans for papers and reports

Authors or co-authors policy and research reports, blogs, op-eds, and other commentary

Develops and delivers presentations for research projects and policy priorities

Meets with and briefs relevant external contacts on research

In collaboration with ES Communications team, creates dissemination and promotion strategy for research products; liaises with media

Presents research and gives talks at select outside meetings or conferences

Convenes private roundtables, author conferences and public events to inform research and disseminate work

Research Direction

Develops research and policy agenda for CCF, in collaboration with other director, steering committee, and scholars in the field

Provides research leadership within CCF, including mentoring junior staff, coordinating research and findings with other project teams, and liaising with ES Management Team as needed

Engages with academics, policymakers, and industry experts to identify authors, speakers, and discussants for CCF publications and events

Collaborates with external authors and assists with the writing and direction of their papers

Oversees the work of research assistants and analysts or outside partners on selected projects


Designs, develops, and stewards funding proposals and works with ES development team and other director on development priorities as needed

Helps conceive new funding proposals and identifies potential funders (philanthropic, corporate, and individual, as needed)

In consultation with the ES development team, stewards relationships with current Brookings funders


Ready to make an impact? In this role, you will support Brookings values of collegiality, respect, inclusion, diversity and community, and bring the following qualifications:

Education/Experience Requirements:

A Ph.D. or equivalent in economics or a related field is required. At least ten years of relevant experience is required. The successful candidate will be an established, recognized leader in their field of expertise. They will have a record of distinguished experience and/or leadership in government, academia, the non-profit sector or the private sector. Must have a demonstrated ability to understand and write knowledgeably about public policy research of the economic caliber necessary for publication in a top academic journal. Must be authorized to work for any employer in the U.S.

Knowledge/Skills Requirements:
Must be able to lead independent research and competently lead issue-focused meetings, initiatives, high-level conferences, and other events without supervision. Must be comfortable working with high-ranking decision makers, senior government officials, current and potential funders, and Brookings senior management. Ability to work collegially with staff at all levels and in all job profiles. Commitment to contributing to a supportive and productive workplace with a diverse workforce. Must have an interest in or experience with mentoring junior staff and an ability to work collegially with staff at all levels and in all job profiles.

Additional Information:

What can we offer you? Brookings provides a generous benefit package that is comprehensive and includes both traditional benefits and unique offerings.

Brookings requires that all applicants submit a cover letter and resume. Please attach your cover letter and resume as one document when you apply.

Successful completion of a background investigation is required for employment at Brookings.

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