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Job Posting: Executive Director, Renewable Cities

October 16, 2017

Renewable Cities is an international program of the SFU Centre for Dialogue in Vancouver, British Columbia whose mission is to support cities in the transition to 100% renewable energy. The program launched in May 2015 at a Global Learning Forum and has since helped to catalyze international leadership by providing the inspiration, ideas, connections, and supports towards urban energy transitions. Renewable Cities has convened multiple events and undertaken significant thought leadership work, from the local to the international level over the past three years. It works across disciplines and sectors with on-the-ground implementers to leaders on the global stage.

Renewable Cities’ current Executive Director will be transitioning to a new position in the Centre in December 2017. The SFU Centre for Dialogue is looking for a new Executive Director to lead the program into the future by providing the vision, ambition, and entrepreneurial skills to expand the program’s funding base and lead an effective team.

The Executive Director needs to be both a thought leader in their own right and an effective convener of other experts from many different fields. They must have the skills to work effectively with civil society, private sector and academic leaders, and with governmental and non-governmental organization from the municipal to the international level. The position requires a deep grounding in one or more of the fields of sustainable urban development, energy or dialogue.

Above all, the Executive Director needs to have strong partnership and fundraising skills and be able to leverage the team’s talents to achieve its ambitious agenda.

The Executive Director reports to the Executive Director of the SFU Centre for Dialogue. The Executive Director will also be recommended to the Vice President Academic and Vice President External Relations to serve as a Fellow of the SFU Centre for Dialogue and will be expected to contribute to the growth of the Centre and to the life of the wider SFU university community.


  • Lead Renewable Cities staff team within the SFU Centre for Dialogue
  • Build on the strategic direction for the program
  • Evaluate effectiveness of current strategies and identify new ones
  • Mentor staff and guide professional development to effectively achieve the goals of the organization.
  • Fundraise for the program from public and private sector donors and sponsors
  • Manage key relationships with partners at the local, provincial, national and international levels
  • Enhance the profile of the organization and its agenda through the media.
  • Represent the organization at high level meetings
  • Report to the Executive Director of the SFU Centre for Dialogue for administrative oversight and guidance on policies of the Centre and the University
  • Contribute to the advancement of the SFU Centre for Dialogue
  • Contribute to the life of SFU as a Fellow of the Centre for Dialogue

Essential Qualifications:

  • Master’s degree
  • Demonstrable track record of success in governance and leadership
  • Record of success in developing strategic partnerships
  • Exceptional fundraising skills and networks
  • Experience executing strategic plans
  • Knowledge and experience in at least one of the fields of: sustainable urban development, energy, climate change, dialogue and engagement

Asset Qualifications:

  • A track record of successfully driving transformational change on the international stage
  • Experience working with municipal governments or agencies
  • Experience working on climate change and renewable energy related projects, programs or policies
  • Experience in multi-stakeholder dialogue and/or public engagement
  • Experience in public policy design, analysis and/or advocacy
  • Experience in leadership roles in the not-for-profit sector
  • Experience working outside of Canada
  • A record of publications (in any format) and public speaking on climate change, energy, urban sustainability, or systems change

Location of Work:

SFU Vancouver Campus:  515 West Hastings St., Vancouver, British Columbia

Salary and Benefits:

  • Salary range: C$90,000 to 110,000, depending on experience
  • Benefits as per SFU University Research Associate position

Term of Appointment:

This will be a three-year appointment, renewable by mutual agreement


  • All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadian citizens and permanent residents will be given priority.
  • Please note that funding is not available to enable the successful candidate to relocate to Vancouver for this position.
  • Simon Fraser University is committed to employment equity and welcomes applications from all qualified women and men, including visible minorities, persons of aboriginal heritage, persons with disabilities, and LGTBQ-identified persons.

How to apply:

Applicants should submit the following to to dial@sfu.ca by 09:00 PST, Monday, October 16, 2017:

  • C.V. 
  • A detailed cover letter, explaining how they meet each of the Essential and Asset Qualifications 
  • A 250-word written response to the following question: Please outline one substantial barrier to cities adopting a 100% renewable energy strategy.