European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD)

Principal (Competition/Agricultural Economist)

European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD)

Job Description


The Economics, Policy and Governance (EPG) Department, of approximately 100 economists and political counsellors, is organised in three main pillars: Sector Economics and Policy (SEP); Country Economics and Policy (CEP); and Governance and Political Affairs (GPA). EPG contributes to the operational, policy dialogue, governance and strategy work of the EBRD (“the Bank”) and provides intellectual leadership on the development of well-functioning market economies in the EBRD’s countries of operation (COOs).

The Sector Economics and Policy (SEP) pillar of the EPG Department works closely with the Banking and other departments in the Bank in structuring, appraising and monitoring investment projects for their transition impact and in pursuing policy engagement that advance the transition to a market economy. It also monitors sectoral reform developments and risks and assesses key remaining reform challenges along the six transition qualities of a sustainable market economy: competitive, well-governed, inclusive, green, resilient and integrated.

The Economics Industry, Commerce & Agribusiness (ICA) team, which is part of the SEP pillar of the EPG Department, is currently seeking to recruit a Principal Economist. The team supports the Banking teams in Agribusiness, Manufacturing & Services, ICT, and Property & Tourism sectors in developing the transition impact rationale of the Bank’s investment projects, monitoring their development impact and identifying their sources of additionality. The team is also instrumental in leading analytical and policy work in the areas of competitiveness and competition.

Role Overview

Working in close cooperation with the Industry, Commerce & Agribusiness Business Group of the Banking Department, the Principal Economist is responsible for the design, assessment and monitoring of the transition (developmental) impact of EBRD investments with defined sectoral and country coverage. He/she also engages in selected policy engagements relevant to the ICA sectors, in the following areas depending on qualifications and expertise:(i) agriculture and food policy; and/or (ii) competition policy, trade policy and global value chains. The Principal Economist contributes to country diagnostic studies and provides sector-wide assessments of the reform challenges in the EBRD COOs with a focus on competitive markets and institutions (the Competitive transition quality), which are used to identify operational priorities in EBRD sector and country strategies, and priority policy objectives.

Key Responsibilities and Deliverables

The Principal Economist will report to the Associate Director – ICA Sector Lead, and work with varying levels of supervision depending on experience on the following tasks:

  • Appraise and input into the design of individual investment projects in line with the Bank’s Transition mandate.

  • Establish an independent and unbiased view on project proposals by taking responsibility for transition assessments presented to the Bank’s Operations Committee / Small Business Investment Committee and make clear recommendations on each proposal. Prepare and communicate EPG positions at each stage of project approval.

  • Monitor and assess reform progress in the assigned ICA sector and the Competitive transition quality in the Bank’s countries of operation.

  • Develop and lead in cooperation with Banking and other Bank’s departments selected policy engagements in the ICA sector, including through technical cooperation/advisory projects; policy seminars, policy notes, participation in conferences and policy dialogue discussions with ministries, regulators, the private sector and other international financial institutions.

  • Provide expert economic input to drive forward specific sector or other relevant policies such as agricultural policy, trade policy and global value chains, competition or innovation, through EBRD strategy papers.

  • Contribute to Country Diagnostics studies, which focus on key obstacles to private sector development and the competitiveness of EBRD COOs.

  • Guide and coach more junior team members by assigning them analytical tasks and guiding their outputs in conjunction with management by the ICA Associate Director.

  • Participate and contribute positively to various initiatives within EPG or Bank-wide.

  • Develop and maintain contacts with relevant professionals at other IFIs, consultancy and academia, government officials, think tank to develop and spread best practices and key findings by representing the Bank.

  • Champion and role model the Bank’s Behavioural Competencies and Corporate Behaviours, ensuring adherence within the team(s) so that the highest standards of integrity and ethical conduct are exhibited at all times.

Essential Skills, Experience & Qualifications

  • A postgraduate degree in economics or related field from a leading university; a PhD in economics and a strong focus on microeconomics (e.g. agricultural economics, industrial organisation, competition policy) would be an advantage.

  • Sound sector knowledge in industry, commerce and agribusiness and work experience, gained for example through full-time employment in a relevant governmental institution, consultancy/company, think tank, international organisation or academia;

  • Experience in closely related areas including agricultural economics and/or competition and trade policy would be a distinct advantage.

  • Proven analytical and quantitative skills.

  • Excellent written and oral communication skills in English at the standard required for a professional publication, official documents and official representation.

  • Ability to communicate well at all levels and operate sensitively in multicultural environments and build effective working relations with internal/external clients and colleagues.

  • A positive attitude to problem solving, identifying solutions and finding ways to overcome obstacles, if need be through compromise and consensus building.

  • Knowledge of an additional language, which is spoken in EBRD countries of operation, is an advantage.

Diversity is one of the Bank’s core values which are at the heart of everything it does. A diverse workforce with the right knowledge and skills enables connection with our clients, brings pioneering ideas, energy and innovation. The EBRD staff is characterised by its rich diversity of nationalities, cultures and opinions and we aim to sustain and build on this strength. As such, the EBRD seeks to ensure that everyone is treated with respect and given equal opportunities and works in an inclusive environment. The EBRD encourages all qualified candidates who are nationals of the EBRD member countries to apply regardless of their racial, ethnic, religious and cultural background, gender, sexual orientation or disabilities. As an inclusive employer, we promote flexible working.

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