Senior Officer, Planning, Strategy (Environment)

The Pew Charitable Trusts

Posted: 10/27/2020

Position Type: Full-Time (Paid)

Function: Strategic Planning

Primary domain: Environment

City: Washington

Postal code: 20001

State: Washington, DC

Country: United States

Organization Information:


$0 - $1M


Mission statement:

The Pew Charitable Trusts uses data to make a difference. For more than 70 years, we have focused on serving the public, invigorating civic life, conducting nonpartisan research, advancing effective public policies and practices, and achieving tangible results. Through rigorous inquiry and knowledge sharing, we inform and engage public-spirited citizens and organizations, linking diverse interests to pursue common cause. We are a dedicated team of researchers, communicators, advocates, subject matter experts, and professionals working on some of todays big challenges and we know we are more effective and creative collectively than we are individually.

Position Details:

Job Description:


The Pew Charitable
Trusts uses data to make a difference. For more than 70 years, we have
focused on serving the public, invigorating civic life, conducting
nonpartisan research, advancing effective public policies and practices,
and achieving tangible results. Through rigorous inquiry and knowledge
sharing, we inform and engage public-spirited citizens and
organizations, linking diverse interests to pursue common cause. We are a
dedicated team of researchers, communicators, advocates, subject matter
experts, and professionals working on some of today's big challenges –
and we know we are more effective and creative collectively than we are
individually. With Philadelphia as our hometown and the majority of our
staff located in Washington, D.C., our U.S. and international staff find
working at Pew personally and professionally rewarding.

stewardship of resources allows Pew employees to pursue work that
strategically furthers our mission in significant and measurable ways.
We collaborate with a diverse range of philanthropic partners, public
and private organizations, and concerned citizens who share our interest
in fact-based solutions and goal-driven initiatives to improve society.
Pew attracts top talent, people of integrity who are service-oriented
and willing to take on challenging assignments. We provide competitive
pay and benefits, a healthy work-life balance, and a respectful and
inclusive workplace. Pew employees are proud of their colleagues, proud
of where they work, and proud of the institution's reputation.

The Strategy Portfolio within Program
goal of the strategy portfolio is to inform critical institutional
decisions about Pew's programs, strengthen the design and implementation
of Pew's work, and generate knowledge that advances Pew's program
objectives. We pursue this goal by (1) enhancing the organization's
efforts to generate ideas for new initiatives and larger bodies of work;
(2) applying a wide range of planning approaches to help programs turn
ideas into effective action; (3) using evaluation to improve program
performance and inform decision-making; (4) ensuring that staff has
access to information that meets their needs to design, implement, and
manage high-performing strategies, initiatives, and campaigns; and (5)
collaborating with colleagues in preparing a wide range of planning and
other types of documents for consideration by Pew's board of directors.
The strategy portfolio was created in 2017 through the merger of Pew's
longstanding planning and evaluation department and a new program unit
focused on strategy and idea development and has approximately 30
professional staff.

planning unit, within strategy, works in partnership with program and
portfolio leadership and staff to identify, develop, and refine
high-profile initiatives in line with institutional and programmatic
needs and priorities. Specifically, in partnership with and support of
program and portfolio leadership, the unit identifies and explores new
public policy and research issues in which Pew might play a role;
develops program designs, strategies, and initiatives to address these
issues; and reviews, informs, and strengthens existing strategies and
initiatives to meet new or revised objectives.

Position Overview
senior officer will assist the project director in carrying out the
strategy team's duties, including providing planning support to the
environment portfolio, which currently consists of 21 projects across
three focus areas – environmental policy, land and freshwater
conservation, and marine conservation and fisheries. The senior officer
will provide high-quality consultative guidance to environment portfolio
leadership and staff with emphasis on ensuring program strategies and
plans are rigorous, clear, and innovative by problem solving with the
program teams to address substantive issues.

The position, as
needed, will be expected to take the lead on certain research and
analysis activities to answer questions that arise as part of planning
engagements, including facilitating third-party explorations of new
topic areas. This may include: conducting literature reviews and primary
research; interviewing external and internal experts; preparing written
and verbal strategic recommendations for program senior management and
Pew colleagues and leaders; and managing timelines and budgets. The
senior officer will also support the project director on Pew's annual
planning process, with a focus on the environment portfolio, including
reviewing documents and ensuring deadlines and guidelines are met. For
certain projects, the senior officer will work with other colleagues on
the planning team through a matrixed team structure. Additional specific
duties are detailed in the responsibilities section below.

position requires an experienced public policy or strategic planning
expert with strong knowledge of domestic and international environmental
issues. The ideal candidate has a demonstrated ability to quickly
master new topics and understand the interests and needs of an
organization and its target audiences. The senior officer displays
excellent interpersonal, communication, and analytical skills and
approaches partnership with the portfolio leadership and staff with an
adaptable, creative, and solutions-oriented attitude.

The position,
based in Pew's Washington, D.C., office, will report to the project
director, planning – environment and annual planning, strategy.


  • Support the project director and collaborate with the environmental portfolio through an array of planning activities including:

    • Support and collaborate with the
      program portfolio colleagues in identifying and exploring new ideas for
      possible program development through a variety of activities, including
      facilitating program planning sessions, engaging with internal and
      external experts, scoping problems and potentials solutions, and
      building consensus around a shared vision.
    • Conduct in-depth topic research in
      both prospective and current program areas to address knowledge gaps and
      inform decision-making.
    • Support the development and use of
      planning tools and frameworks, such as theory of change diagrams, logic
      models, impact maps, problem statements, and the identification of
      approaches that could contribute to potential solutions, including
      technical assistance, policy development, and advocacy.
    • Facilitate project team discussion and problem-solving and assist in solutions-oriented decision-making.
    • Pose questions to identify and test
      underlying assumptions in project design components and provide
      impartial guidance to strengthen the team's approach.
    • Undertake a rigorous vetting process
      to determine the technical, economic, and political viability of project
      design solutions and provide recommendations on the potential role for
    • Assist in translating planning
      analyses into proposals, including documents intended for Pew's board,
      by providing guidance on the appropriate content and level of detail,
      and sharing substantive feedback on drafts.
    • Support the effective development,
      tracking, and occasional course-correcting when necessary, of projects
      and plans, including strategies, objectives, and deliverables.

Support the project director and the program department in annual planning:

  • Support the project director in designing, implementing, and overseeing the organization's annual program planning process.
  • Provide, update, and answer questions
    on guidance to create meaningful milestones that meet Pew's criteria and
    address the strategic objectives.
  • Ensure board deadlines are met efficiently and effectively.


  • Communicate clearly, efficiently, and persuasively in professional engagements with a wide range of internal stakeholders.
  • Develop succinct, executive-level summaries, including findings and recommendations.


  • Offer support to the project director
    and program leadership and staff in connecting the dots across project,
    portfolio, and program areas to improve organizational coordination,
    information sharing, and impact.
  • Build and maintain productive working relationships with internal colleagues and external stakeholders.
  • Serve as a mentor to and contribute to professional development of other staff on the planning team.

Project management:

  • Support the project director in
    developing and periodically updating work plans, timelines, and scope of
    work documents that summarize the strategic planning engagements with
    the environmental portfolio, applying effective project management
  • Develop and manage contracts as necessary.

Special projects:

  • Work with the project director to
    respond efficiently and effectively to inquiries from Pew leadership and
    other special projects in the strategy portfolio.
  • As a senior officer within the
    strategy department, share expertise and knowledge, and contribute to
    ongoing improvement and learning both within and outside the department.



  • Bachelor's degree or equivalent
    experience is required. Advanced degree in environmental public policy,
    strategic planning, or other fields relevant to formulation of
    environmental programs, or equivalent years of experience, preferred.
  • At least 10 years of applicable
    experience demonstrating intellectual leadership and designing,
    launching, and implementing strategies or projects aimed at informing
    and advancing effective environmental policy and programs at the local,
    state, national or international levels required. Consulting experience
  • Knowledge of current domestic and
    international social, political, and economic trends, leading thinkers,
    and major concerns within public policy and society relevant to
    environmental issues.
  • Demonstrated expertise in one or more
    fields of environmental domestic or international policy. Demonstrated
    ability to manage and deliver tangible results from complex projects,
    including significant experience working as part of interdisciplinary
  • Strong research and analytical skills
    and the ability to organize diverse and complex information into a clear
    and coherent narrative.
  • Resourcefulness in identifying and gathering relevant information and data, including interviewing high-level experts.
  • Excellent written and oral
    communications skills, including the ability to present, write clearly
    and effectively, convince and persuade, and listen carefully.
  • Excellent facilitation skills
    including the ability to quickly synthesize and frame key themes during
    meeting discussions and to drive project teams to solutions-oriented
  • Strong interpersonal skills; proven
    ability to work productively with a wide array of stakeholders and
    perspectives and approach issues with a nonpartisan, objective mindset.
  • Ability to think strategically and
    creatively, juggle multiple priorities, adjust to changing
    circumstances, organize time efficiently, remain attentive to details,
    and identify resources for projects. Proven project management skills
    and knowledge of project management methods preferred.

This position requires occasional travel to meetings and conferences.

Total Rewards
offer a competitive salary and benefit program, including:
comprehensive, affordable health care through medical, dental, and
vision coverage; financial security with life and disability insurance;
opportunities to save using health savings and flexible spending
accounts; retirement benefits to help prepare for the future; and
work/life benefits to maintain a good balance.

The Pew Charitable
Trusts is an equal opportunity employer, committed to a diverse and
inclusive workplace. Pew considers qualified applicants for employment
without regard to age, sex, ethnicity, religion, disability, marital
status, sexual orientation or gender identity, military/veteran status,
or any other basis prohibited by applicable law.

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