March 7, 2023

Managing Director of Outreach – Mercatus Center – Arlington, VA

Mercatus Center
March 7, 2023
Arlington, VA
Job Type


Managing Director of Outreach

Mercatus Center at George Mason University

Arlington, VA 

“Practical men, who believe themselves to be quite exempt from any intellectual influences, are usually the slaves of some defunct economist,” wrote John Maynard Keynes. We agree: ideas have real and serious consequences in society, the economy, public policy, and beyond. We are looking for a humble, curious, and a practical strategist to advance Mercatus research in the service of a free, open, and flourishing society. 

If you are the right candidate, you will have a track record as a builder, a strategist, and a convenor. You believe in the power of markets and ideas and the importance of public policy, but you are not a political partisan. You crave the intellectual stimulation of working in an environment where your colleagues come from a variety of disciplines, backgrounds, and points of view but share a normative commitment to freedom and pluralism. You believe that ideas should be evaluated on their merits, not on who expresses them.

As the leader of an experienced team of outreach professionals, tactical knowledge is a distant second in importance to alignment with mission and having thought deeply about how ideas effect public policy, culture, and institutions. 

You will have experience designing and executing strategies that promote and/or market academic research, intellectual initiatives, and policy analyses to external stakeholders (including but not limited to policymakers, media, scholars, and the public).

You will have thought deeply about how changes to intellectual, epistemic, scientific, educational, eleemosynary, and governmental institutions have changed the world of ideas, scientific inquiry, and public policy. 

You will not blanche upon learning that this job description was written in part by ChatGPT.

Position title is subject to revision based on the successful candidates experience.

Role Responsibilities

  • Collaborate with colleagues to develop iterative strategies for engaging multiple networks.
  • Develop method and practices to evaluate those strategies and assess whether our ideas are getting put into practice and if not, why not.
  • Manage an outreach team of seven whose members will contribute to those strategies and work to carry them out.
  • Provide regular evaluation of activities of network engagements and progress in advancing ideas.
  • Develop and strengthen relationships with partners, collaborators and thought leaders. 
  • This role will involve a great deal of time traveling (approximately 35%) to conferences, events, and meetings. You are unlikely to develop relationships and create outcomes by just sitting in your office.


  • Minimum of 10 years’ experience in a university, academic institution, think tank, research center, trade association, advocacy group, or similar. Experience can be in the business, non-profit, or public sectors
  • Some experience, either as a primary or secondary job function, in working to connect and market ideas to groups and networks in and/or around policymaking
  • Minimum of 5 years management experience
  • Demonstrated knowledge of how policy implementation works
  • Demonstrated resilience in the face of failure
  • Curiosity, Practicality, Humility, and Gumption
  • Passion for Mercatus’ mission and belief that markets solve problems and can help us lead happier, healthier, and more fulfilling lives

How to Apply

Qualified candidates should submit the following application materials in one PDF document:

  • Cover letter detailing your interest in this role and the mission of the Mercatus Center, as well as your salary requirements
  • Resume

Applications should be submitted to Talent Market via this link: 

Questions can be directed to Claire Kittle Dixon, Executive Director of Talent Market, who is assisting with the search: [email protected]

There is no application deadline for this position. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. 

This job will remain posted on our site until it is filled. Only direct applications will be considered. No phone calls, please.

Talent Market is a nonprofit entity dedicated to promoting liberty by helping free-market nonprofits identify talent for critical roles. We provide consulting and recruiting services at no cost to 501(c)3 nonprofit organizations that clearly and directly focus on advancing the principles of economic freedom, free enterprise, free trade, free speech, property rights, rule of law, and limited regulation.

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