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Position: Director General, NCAER Qualification: As described below
Job Location: New Delhi Experience: As described below
Functional Area: As described below    

NCAER announces the Selection Process for its next Director General


The Governing Body of the National Council of Applied Economic Research (NCAER) has announced the selection process for a new Director General in view of the current Director General Dr Shekhar Shah’s term coming to an end in 2021.  Dr Shah over his two terms has led a successful transformation of the institution, including its human capital and its physical infrastructure and campus. Under his guidance, NCAER has become an increasingly networked institution with a strong focus on outreach and communications.  NCAER is well poised to contribute to the many challenges India will face in the post-pandemic world of priority structural reforms, fiscal, monetary and trade policy choices, globalization, digitization and data analytics as the country seeks to accelerate and sustain a robust, post-pandemic recovery. The Search Committee will seek to build on Dr Shah’s legacy in the choice of his successor. 


NCAER was established in 1956, just nine years after Independence, as a non-partisan, independent, not-for-profit, research institution that would serve as a sounding board for governments and private industry. NCAER’s first Governing Body included the entire Cabinet of economic ministers, including C D Deshmukh, the then Finance Minister, and the leading lights of industry, including J R D Tata and John Matthai. The promise of NCAER—asking the right questions, gathering good evidence, analysing it well, and sharing results widely—has endured over the past 65 years. As India’s economic model evolves, NCAER will continue to contribute to the understanding, analytics and strategy of policy making in its five focus areas: a) Growth, Macro, Trade, and Economic Policy, b) the Investment Climate, Industry, Infrastructure, Land, Labour, and Urban, c) Agriculture, Rural Development, Natural Resources, and the Environment, d) Poverty, Equity, Human Development, and Consumer Behaviour, and e) the scientific collection and curation of high quality economic and social data. NCAER Annual Reports, research output, and more details are available at www.ncaer.org.


The Director General is the CEO of NCAER and an ex-officio member of NCAER’s Governing Body, is based in New Delhi with a five-year term that is renewable, and as its CEO is responsible for all research, analytical, operational, financial, and strategic aspects of the institution. NCAER has just completed a multi-year upgrade of its physical facilities with the addition of the nine-storey, John Matthai Tower and a superb, ultra-modern auditorium in the heart of India’s capital. Our original 1961 office building is scheduled to undergo a sensitive architectural restoration. We hope to make this new NCAER India Centre a hub of India’s economic and intellectual ecosystem over the next decade. NCAER’s work in health, public economics, data analytics, and surveys is particularly relevant as the economy emerges from its worst economic downturn in modern history and the challenges facing the country demand persuasive, evidence-based policymaking, regional and sector customisation, and the ability to see strategically into the future.


The ideal candidate for this position would be an economist with a distinguished career who is research- and policy-oriented and with a proven track record, professional credibility, and over 20 years’ of professional experience. This experience could encompass academic, public policy, multilateral, research management, and policymaking roles.  The candidate should have a firm commitment to the work, values, objectives, and independence of NCAER; proven leadership and research management abilities; demonstrated writing, communications and networking skills; and a strong record of fund-raising. This substantive experience should be complemented with a demonstrated capacity for delegated management and leadership appropriate for an organization with a growing head-count currently in excess of 120 persons. The candidate’s expertise in macroeconomics, fiscal and monetary economics, public finance, econometrics, machine learning and big data analytics, and cutting-edge data collection will merit additional consideration. The NCAER Governing Body seeks a candidate with the ability to set the research agenda for NCAER’s next decade that energizes researchers and stakeholders, is rigorous and relevant to India’s policy challenges, and builds on NCAER’s legacy of relevance, quality and impact highlighted in its logo. 


Applications and nominations for this position can be submitted by email to searchcommittee@ncaer.org until January 31, 2021 and should include: (a) a comprehensive resume, with an optional list of at most five chosen links to websites, publications, and profiles that best represent the candidate, and (b) a maximum 700-word cover letter on the suitability of the candidate for this position and/or a possible vision for NCAER over the next decade.


All initial applications/nominations will be acknowledged. Only short-listed candidates will be contacted thereafter. The NCAER Governing Body reserves the right to fill the position by invitation