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Employment

MPC is now accepting applications for a full-time Director of Research

MPC offers unpaid Research Assistant positions, an unpaid Marketing and Communications Intern position and an unpaid Development Intern position. We are now accepting applications for Fall 2018 (details below). The priority application deadline for Fall 2018 is August 22, 2018, but applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until all positions are filled.


Director of Research

MPC is hiring a full-time Director of Research responsible for the oversight, execution and growth of all of the organization’s research activities. The Director of Research provides cross-organizational leadership to enable MPC to create a more equitable, sustainable and prosperous region. 

MPC is seeking a highly motivated individual with a background in public policy research. Strong writing, external relationship-building, project management, analytical and policy development skills are required. The ability to work in teams and lead others is essential. The position offers the opportunity to work closely with multiple colleagues, functions and teams, both internally and externally. 

The Director of Research contributes to the development of organization-wide research strategies and ensures that all research activities are advancing the goals within MPC’s annual workplan. This position supervises a Research Associate and several undergraduate and/or graduate student research interns, and shapes research products of a range of project-specific staff.

Primary responsibilities:

  • Direct the organization’s research on topical areas including: housing, community and economic development; natural resources, water policy and stormwater; transportation and infrastructure finance; government effectiveness; land use; demographic trends; and more.
    • Work with staff, interns, partner organizations and consultants to identify, scope and execute MPC’s research agenda
    • Conduct primary quantitative and qualitative research and produce products for dissemination
  • Share research results in a number of formats, including MPC’s Regionalist newsletter, blogs, publications, journal articles, presentations, social media and donor reports
  • Direct and shape the production of a State of the Region report on key regional vitality and quality of life measures to coincide with MPC’s 85th anniversary in March 2019
  • Track region-wide data trends and analyze large datasets specific to MPC’s program priorities
  • Broaden MPC’s network of government, business, academic, civic and media partners to support MPC’s role as a convener and thought-leader on regional challenges
  • Work closely with MPC’s communication’s team to share primary research and articles with a variety of audiences, including elected officials and the media
  • Manage external consultants, both paid and pro-bono
  • Collaborate with MPC staff and volunteers on media inquiries, talking points, blog content, presentation collateral, etc.

Qualifications:

MPC seeks an organized, high-energy individual who thrives in a collegial work environment and is able to juggle multiple deadlines. The ideal candidate holds a degree in an area requiring integrative and analytical thinking (e.g. Social Sciences, Economics, Finance, Statistics, Public Policy, Journalism, Urban Planning or other relevant field) and has at least five years of relevant work experience.

Knowledge, skills and abilities:

  • Demonstrable team management expertise
  • Strong quantitative and analytical skills (i.e. familiarity with platforms such as Microsoft Access, ArcGIS, etc.)
  • Extensive knowledge of dataset content/availability and strong ability to quickly gather and analyze large datasets
  • Established credibility through an innovative portfolio of research and policy work that complements MPC’s mission
  • Ability to multi-task among competing, often changing needs
  • Knowledge of relevant actors, institutions and the political process in Illinois and the Chicago region
  • Excellent communications, both oral and written, to convey complex data and information to the public and audiences with different levels of expertise
  • Ability to engage and motivate colleagues and volunteers at all levels
  • Entrepreneurial self-starter who can work independently and in teams to deliver high-quality work on deadline in a fast-paced, intellectually stimulating environment
  • Mature judgement
  • Curiosity about challenges facing the Chicago region and ideas for solutions
  • Passionate about the body of issues that MPC addresses and commitment to supporting the organization’s mission
  • High degree of professionalism with a demonstrated ability to manage responsibilities with alacrity, integrity and tact

The ideal candidate will also have the following core competencies of highly successful MPC employees:

  • Entrepreneurial: a self-starter, able to proactively identify, prioritize and complete tasks, handle multiple projects and deadlines and work in a fast-paced environment, able to chart a course and map out the path to a problem solution, and extremely detail-oriented
  • Relationship Builder: able to develop sincere connections and establish rapport with diverse groups and individuals, able to maintain and cultivate relationships even during conflict
  • Passionate, Eager and Positive: passionate about the issues that MPC addresses and committed to supporting the organization’s mission, able to contribute positively to group problem solving, always seeking solutions, volunteering and taking initiative
  • Curious: demonstrates desire for lifelong learning and self-improvement, engaged in the news and current events, not afraid to ask why and seek to understand context
  • Team Player:capable and willing to work collaboratively with staff and volunteers, consult the team for guidance, value positive contributions, tap strengths of all staff and ask for help when needed
  • Strong Communicator: an excellent writer and communicator who can competently represent the organization and its work to the public, board members, donors and audiences of all kinds
  • Analytical Thinker: able to identify root causes and causal relationships, challenge assumptions and identify pros and cons of possible paths forward
  • Socially and Emotionally Intelligent: able to read people and situations, anticipate reactions, read between the lines, and be aware of emotional reactions

How to apply:

Please send the following materials by e-mail to manager@metroplanning.org: 

  1. A cover letter detailing how your experience relates to the job description; 
  2. Your résumé;
  3. A brief writing sample; and 
  4. Three professional references.

Skyler Larrimore 
Metropolitan Planning Council
140 S. Dearborn, Suite 1400
Chicago, Ill. 60603
manager@metroplanning.org  

No phone calls please.  For more information on MPC, please visit our website: www.metroplanning.org

MPC is proud to be an equal opportunity employer.


Research Assistant

We are now accepting applications for Fall 2018 Research Assistants. The priority application deadline for Fall 2018 is August 22, 2018, but applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until all positions are filled.

Current needs: 

Research assistants (RAs) play an important role at MPC, offering essential support for our projects, working with staff on a daily basis, attending meetings, and learning about how urban planning/policy works in the real world. We especially like RA applicants who are talented writers, investigators, communicators, and/or GIS users.

We’re currently recruiting RAs for Fall and/or Winter 2018, particularly for the following priority projects:

Great Rivers Chicago. This project is working to implement an exciting vision for the next 100 years of Chicago’s rivers. Community engagement, GIS, research, writing, and design skills needed.

Cost of Segregation. This project is looking to quantify the negative impacts of our economically and racially segregated region.  Phase III projects include support in launching campaign to develop an a communiyt-informed equity platform for the 2019 mayoral election, support in coordinating a diversity, equity, inclusion cohort as well as supporting the advancement of other Oure Equitable Future recommendations led by MPC. Community outreach and project coordination, qualitative and quantitative research and strong writing and communcation skills needed.

Transportation. MPC works on a wide range of transportation issues and advocates for strong regional policies.  This RA position will work on projects including a report on universal accessibility of transit, advocacy related to sustainable transportation funding, and research and a launch event on the relationship between business and transit.

Government Effectiveness. This project is identifying ways to make our governmental bodies more effective by streamlining delivery and consolidating services, both through advancement of state-level enabling legislation and through local technical assistance projects. GIS, qualitative and quantitative research and writing skills needed, and a strong interest in policy making and the legislative process is desirable.

Equitable transit-oriented development. Equitable transit-oriented development (eTOD) prioritizes the land around transit as model locations for holistic community development partnering with locals leaders to shape projects that are responsive to the social, cultural, economic and environmental needs of the neighborhood. This project works to encourage more of the region’s development to occur in areas near our public transportation lines, so as to reduce congestion, eliminate pollution and boost economic development. We are currently conducting an analysis of TOD development since the TOD ordinance passed in 2013, preparing to lead a community engagement process in East Garfield Park and Washington Heights. The RA will support MPC's Elevated Chicago work and general TOD education and outreach. Skills needed some knowledge of community development principles, data analysis, GIS, research and writing skills, community outreach and logistics coordination .

Stormwater management. MPC works to prevent flooding, improve water quality and foster social, economic and environmental benefits within communities. Through our work at state, regional and local levels on stormwater management, we are helping build resilient communities through green and grey infrastructure improvements. This RA position would support facilitation of the Calumet Stormwater Collaborative,  as well as advance our research on stormwater policies, planning and funding mechanisms. Skills needed include some knowledge of stormwater solutions, urban planning and or environmental policy/law/economics, qualitative and quantitative research and writing with GIS skills a plus.

Research. MPC's Research Team works to collect and analyze data in service of programmatic areas, as well as other relevant topics of interest for the region's residents. We are looking for research assistants with a strong interest in furthering work related to affordable housing/land use, and are also interested in analyzing key demographic trends with a specific focus on racial equity. Strong data collection and analytical skills needed, including experience using quantitative/spatial analytics platforms like ArcGIS, Microsoft Access, and Microsoft Excel.

Government outreach and legislative tracking. Supports work to develop relationships with policy makers at multiple levels, develop and advance legislative initiatives, and increase overal organizational capacity for policy change.

Urban development monitoring (to be combined with another project). MPC monitors and reviews high-impact real estate development projects on an ongoing basis in order to be more fully informed, positioning us to take a proactive stance at opportune moments. We are looking for an RA to dedicate part of their research assistantship to overseeing and updating the development tracking database, analyzing trends, and convening briefings to staff.

Climate change/resiliency. MPC works on a range of issues that intersect with environment, sustainability and climate change. We are looking for research assistance on local, regional and state policies, programs and partnerships to help us strategically prioritize our efforts on climate resiliency. 

Productive lands. This project is working to plan for productive reuses of underutilized land. Current work includes exploring opportunities for land acquisition or reuse for parks, conservation areas, renewable energy, etc. Strong GIS, research, and writing skills necessary.

Overall program: 

MPC’s volunteer research assistants are a vital part of the organization’s success. Depending on the project at hand, RAs conduct original research, write blog posts and case studies, organize community meetings, perform GIS and quantitative analysis and a range of other work.

You may apply for an RA position at any time, but as a general guideline new RAs start around May 1, September 1 and January 2. Candidates receiving school credit or compensation through a fellowship or work-study program will receive preference in staffing decisions, but all are welcome to apply. Fall and winter RAs are expected to commit at least two full days of work per week, and summer RAs at least three.

How to Apply: 

The priority application deadline for Fall 2018 is August 22, 2018, but applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until all positions are filled.  If you are interested in a position, please send the following materials by e-mail to manager@metroplanning.org:

  1. A current resume;
  2. A cover letter articulating your specific interest in MPC, the current projects you have the most interest in and what you believe you can add to them, and a proposed schedule; and
  3. A short (2-3 page) writing sample, and if applicable, examples of geospatial analysis or design work.

No phone calls please. For more information on MPC, please visit our website: www.metroplanning.org

MPC is proud to be an equal opportunity employer. 


Marketing and Communications Intern

The Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) seeks one or more intern(s) to support its marketing, communications, community relations, and event coordination efforts. All MPC interns benefit from exposure to a broad range of regional planning policy issues, hands-on communications experience, and the opportunity to connect with a variety of planning agencies, community groups, civic partners, and officials. 

The Marketing and Communications Intern will work closely with our communications team, development team, and program staff to cultivate and promote content that highlights MPC and the impact of our work, donors, and partners. We are looking for a detail-oriented individual with excellent research and writing skills. The ability to think critically and work independently is essential.

This unpaid internship will start in September 2018 and has flexible hours Monday through Friday. An ability to work at least 15 hours per week is preferred. Please include your weekly availability and desired start and end dates with your application. Candidates receiving school credit or compensation through a fellowship or work-study program will receive preference in staffing decisions, but all are welcome to apply. 

Responsibilities may include:

Marketing and Public Relations

  • Write and edit content for key communications, including MPC’s social media, blog, e-newsletter and other editorial opportunities
  • Assist with creating and updating MPC’s printed materials, including fact-based issue pages
  • Identify, summarize and share media coverage internally
  • Support projects that promote MPC’s work (i.e., organizational brochures, PowerPoint presentations, marketing push emails, impact reports to donors and other marketing collateral)
  • Research opportunities for MPC to partner with new organizations

Social Media

  • Write social media posts on topics related to MPC’s supporters, events and programs for various social media platforms
  • Monitor, track and evaluate the effectiveness of social media content for metrics of activity, reach and engagement
  • Research how other foundations and nonprofits use social media, and recommend best practices based upon this analysis

Events

  • Assist with event logistics, including Eventbrite setup and management
  • Prepare sponsorship and marketing materials for events

Desired Qualifications:

  • Preferred: Current undergraduate- or graduate-level students studying Journalism, Marketing, Communications, Business, Political Science, Public Policy, Urban Planning or related fields
  • Strong written and oral communication skills
  • Excellent project management skills
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team
  • Proficiency with various social media platforms—especially Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn
  • Proficiency with basic visual design, photo or video (and relevant software and digital tools, like Adobe InDesign and MailChimp) is a plus

How to Apply:

The priority application deadline for Fall 2018 is August 22, 2018, but applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until all positions are filled. Please send the following materials by e-mail to manager@metroplanning.org:

  • A current resume
  • A cover letter articulating your specific interest in MPC, your relevant professional experience, and a proposed internship schedule
  • Two or more writing samples from a wide range of formats (i.e., press releases, fact sheets, articles and social media content)
  • Any information regarding school credit/work study available to you

No phone calls please. For more information on MPC, please visit our website: www.metroplanning.org.

MPC is proud to be an equal opportunity employer.


Development Intern

The Metropolitan Planning Council is seeking a detail-oriented individual with excellent communication and multi-tasking skills for an unpaid Development Internship in Fall  2018The priority application deadline for Fall 2018 is August 22, 2018, but applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until all positions are filled.

Candidates receiving school credit or compensation through a fellowship or work-study program will receive preference in staffing decisions, but all are welcome to apply. 

This individual should have a strong understanding of and/or interest in fundraising, philanthropy, marketing, and nonprofit management. The individual will contribute and receive exposure to a variety of projects associated with the front and back-end operations of a Development department.

The individual work in collaboration with a team of five other staff and will have the opportunity to help shape innovative fundraising ideas for MPC.   

Over the course of the internship, the individual will have responsibilities involving support for fundraising campaigns; major gifts; marketing; gift acknowledgement; Raiser’s Edge database entry; and fundraising research.

Responsibilities:

Fundraising Campaigns

  • Assist with creation, copywriting, and production of solicitation and stewardship materials including direct mail letters, e-mails, online ads, social media, blog posts, and donor acknowledgement correspondence

Marketing

  • Assist with projects that promote the work of MPC (i.e. brochures, fundraising pitches in the Regionalist e-newsletter, Impact Reports to donors)

Database, Gift Processing/Acknowledgement

  • Train on Raiser’s Edge donor database
  • Support gift acknowledgment letter processing, and database clean-up projects
  • Perform basic level analysis (For example, research trends in MPC’s 2017 Annual Luncheon giving)

Research

  • Conduct research on corporate and foundation prospects
  • Assist with research on potential and current individual donors

Events

  • Assist with preparation and execution of MPC’s signature Annual Luncheon fundraising event on Sept. 22
  • Support MPC’s Communications and Development team to create unique Urban Think & Drink, Roundtable and other special public events.

Desired Qualifications:

  • Preferred:Current (or newly graduated) graduate-level students studying Nonprofit Management, Social Work, Marketing, Business, Communications, or related field. Current undergraduate junior or senior students pursing a relevant degree will also be considered.
  • Outstanding writing skills and an effective communicator
  • Detail-oriented, inquisitive, and thoughtful
  • Efficient and effective multi-tasking and time management skills
  • Excellent interpersonal skills
  • Team player with the ability to work independently and self-direct
  • Computer Skills: Microsoft Office, Database experience (Raisers’ Edge preferred)

How to Apply: 

The priority application deadline for Fall 2018 is August 22, 2018, but applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until all positions are filled. Please send the following materials by e-mail to manager@metroplanning.org:

  1. A current resume;
  2. A cover letter articulating your specific interest in MPC, your relevant professional experience, and a proposed internship schedule; and
  3. A short (2-3 page) writing sample, preferably related to fundraising.

No phone calls please. For more information on MPC, please visit our website: www.metroplanning.org

MPC is proud to be an equal opportunity employer.

Notices for available positions at MPC are posted here.

Submit applications by e-mail or mail only; no phone calls please.

MPC is proud to be an equal opportunity employer.

This page can be found online at http://www.metroplanning.org/about/Employment0.html

Metropolitan Planning Council 140 S. Dearborn St.
Suite 1400
Chicago, Ill. 60603
312 922 5616 info@metroplanning.org

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Shaping a more equitable, sustainable and prosperous greater Chicago region

For more than 80 years, the Metropolitan Planning Council (MPC) has made the Chicago region a better place to live and work by partnering with businesses, communities and governments to address the area's toughest planning and development challenges. MPC works to solve today's urgent problems while consistently thinking ahead to prepare the region for the needs of tomorrow. Read more about our work »

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