Director General Recruitment.

The Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) welcomes applicants for the Director General (DG) role.

Job Title: Director General, Institute of Economic Affairs

Reports To: Board of Trustees


The Institute of Economic Affairs is a unique organisation looking for a highly skilled individual to become our new Director General (DG). We are looking for a visionary leader who will provide strategic direction to promote the growth and effectiveness of the IEA.

We expect our new DG to have a deep understanding of free market economics and classical liberal principles and experience in both the educational and policy research sectors.

The DG should display a flair for communicating and expressing complex concepts in an accessible and engaging fashion to a wide range of audiences. They will have the personality and management talents to lead a highly skilled in-house team.

The ideal candidate will make significant contributions to thought leadership in free market economics, fundraise effectively, manage teams, and interface with public and regulatory bodies.

We anticipate our new DG will dedicate their time equally to promoting free market ideas and policies, developing relationships with current and potential donors, and attending to the IEA’s internal business.

If you possess all – or even most – of these skills and are looking for the challenge of a lifetime, I hope you will consider applying to lead our dynamic team.

Linda Edwards

Chairman, Board of Trustees
Institute of Economic Affairs

Key Responsibilities:

  • Strategic Leadership: Develop and execute a strategic plan to advance the organisation’s mission and objectives, fostering (i) research initiatives, (ii) academic outreach and (iii) growth. A measure of success will be whether the ‘Overton window’ has shifted towards a freer economy,

  • Fundraising: Lead fundraising initiatives, cultivate relationships with existing donors and identify potential new funding sources. Engage a wide range of stakeholders to ensure sustained financial growth.

  • Public Representation: Act as the spokesperson for the IEA, representing it at conferences, in the media, and in other public forums.

  • Thought Leadership: Contribute to public discourse by writing articles, policy papers, social media posts, and appearing on news programs, podcasts, conferences, and other media platforms.

  • Team Management: Lead, develop and delegate to an effective senior management team, fostering a culture of mission alignment, collaboration and shared commitment to excellence.

  • Financial Oversight: Oversee budget development, financial management, and effective implementation of financial strategies and controls.

  • Academic Engagement: Maintain strong ties with the academic community, collaborating with professors, writers, and researchers to increase free market economic scholarship and amplify the case for classical liberal economics in the marketplace of ideas.

  • Regulatory Compliance: Ensure compliance with all relevant legal and regulatory requirements, fostering a good relationship with the Charity Commission and other relevant bodies.

  • Board Relations: Work closely with the Trustees, providing them with comprehensive updates about the organisation and supporting informed decision-making.

Ideal Qualifications & Experience:

  • Leadership experience, preferably within a think tank or related organisation.

  • Fundraising and financial management skills and experience.

  • Strong public representation skills, with experience in media appearances and public speaking.

  • Ability to develop and implement strategic plans.

  • Experience managing and developing high-performing teams.

  • Familiarity with the regulatory landscape for think tanks and non-profits in the UK, particularly in relation to the Charity Commission of England & Wales.

  • Respected standing within academic and policy circles.

  • Proven track record of contributing to thought leadership in the field.

  • An advanced degree in a relevant field (economics, politics, international relations) is desirable but not essential.

Personal Attributes:

  • Deep commitment to the charitable mission of the IEA.

  • Collaborative leadership style that promotes team spirit and a culture of excellence.

  • Strategic thinker with the ability to drive innovation and change.

  • High level of integrity and accountability.

  • Strong interpersonal skills and the ability to engage with a diverse range of stakeholders, including staff, board members, external partners, donors, and the public.

The above description is intended to provide a comprehensive overview of the DG’s responsibilities and qualifications. It is not exhaustive, and the specific duties and requirements may vary based on the organisation’s evolving needs.


Salary will be commensurate with the level of responsibilities and personal experience. The IEA provides competitive employee benefits, including a personal pension which matches up to 5% of salary, death in service, critical illness, group income protection, private medical insurance coverage and 25 paid holidays per annum.

To Apply

Interested candidates should submit:

  1. Curriculum vitae (CV);

  2. Personal statement (2-3 pages);

  3. Writing sample (e.g. opinion piece, feature article, research report, peer-reviewed article, etc); and

  4. Link to video or audio clip of public appearance (e.g. radio or television clip, public speaking recording, etc) (Optional);

to [email protected].

Applications Close

Sunday, 20 August at 12.00 am

About the IEA

The Institute of Economic Affairs, founded in 1955, is the UK’s oldest and largest free market think tank. The IEA aims to produce and disseminate intellectually rigorous and academically grounded research. The IEA has published thirteen Nobel Prize-winning economists.

Our core conviction is that a free society (associated with smaller government, lower taxes, and less regulation) represents the most compelling model and effective mechanism to solve economic and social problems. We challenge people to think about the role of institutions, property rights, and the rule of law in creating a society that fosters innovation, entrepreneurship, and the efficient use of environmental resources.

Our activities include:

  • Publishing books, reports, briefings and articles;

  • Appearing on broadcast and online media;

  • Engaging with students and teachers;

  • Hosting lectures, conferences, seminars, the book club, and special events;

  • Communicating digitally through our website, social media and videos.

  • Working with international partners (through EPICENTER, The Initiative for African Trade and Prosperity, and Network for a Free Society)

The IEA holds no corporate position. Our staff, authors, fellows, and spokespeople hold a wide range of views. Nevertheless, all those associated with the Institute support free markets. Those promoting the IEA’s mission believe that individuals, companies, and other voluntary associations are better equipped than the state to solve society’s challenges.

The IEA is an educational charity (No CC 235 351) and an independent research institute limited by guarantee. Ideas and policies the Institute produces are freely available from our website for any individual or organisation to adopt, but we do not “sell” policies. The Institute is independent of any political party or group. We are solely funded by voluntary donations from individuals, companies, and foundations who support our work, plus income from book sales and conferences. We accept no money from any government sources.

Mission statement: The mission of the IEA is to improve the understanding of the fundamental institutions of a free society by analysing and expounding the role of markets in solving economic and social problems.