Division Chief Competitiveness & Innovation

Inter-American Development Bank (IDB)
  • Location
    Washington, D.C.
  • Sector
  • Experience
    Mid Career
  • Posted
    Mar 30

Position description

The Chief of the Competitiveness and Innovation Division (CTI) will be responsible for leading the preparation and implementation of the Bank's strategy and action plan in the areas of competitiveness, technology and innovation. The Chief must ensure the effective management of the human capital and financial resources assigned to the Division for the production of new and improved products and services to the Bank's clients, with a view to maximizing the developmental impact of Bank activities and operations. CTI reports to the Institutions for Development Department Sector Manager (IFD) under the IDB's Vice-President for Sectors and Knowledge (VPS).

In line with the Bank's Strategy on Institutions for Growth and Social Welfare, CTI is responsible for Bank interventions aimed at:

  • Improving the policy and regulatory framework in Latin American (LAC) countries so that it is conducive to business innovation and entrepreneurship, and to the creation and growth of competitive firms;
  • increasing private sector investment in innovation and technological development;
  • Boosting the productivity of firms and their capabilities to network and compete in international markets;
  • Strengthening the capacity of institutions to design and implement innovation and productive development policies; and
  • Improve public policy to face the challenges of the digital economy, including the generation of relevant talent.

CTI uses a mix of financial and non-financial instruments, including policy dialogue, loan operations, technical assistance, and knowledge generation and dissemination, to:

  • Develop and promote specific programs and projects that foster the creation and growth of dynamic firms in LAC with the capacities and tools to innovate and compete in international markets;
  • Develop strategies, policies and guidelines for the Bank and borrowing member countries to promote increased productivity and competitiveness and accelerate the adoption and use of technologies;
  • Conduct competitiveness, technology and innovation policy analysis and impact assessments to provide advice to borrowing member governments and private entities and to Bank staff;
  • Provide support to member countries in the areas of business development and innovation, technology diffusion, competitiveness and productivity;
  • Develop and/or maintain a network of institutions in the region and around the world in the competitiveness, technology, and innovation sector.


  • Provides leadership and direction to the Division;
  • Supports and oversees the design, preparation, supervision, and execution of Bank financial operations and non-financial products in the areas of business competitiveness, technology and innovation;
  • Promotes specific programs and projects that foster institutions for business development and innovation, technology diffusion, entrepreneurship, and the competitiveness and internationalization of small and medium enterprises (SMEs);
  • Advises Management on the development of strategies, policies and guidelines for the Bank and borrowing member countries in the areas of business competitiveness, technology and innovation for increased productivity;
  • Generates and oversees applied research and the development of knowledge products on competitiveness, technology and innovation policy;
  • Represents the Bank at public forums, conferences and seminars as speaker, panelist and participant;
  • Provides support to operations and member countries in the areas of business policy and regulatory reform, institutions for productivity and business development, human capital for competitiveness, innovation systems and technology diffusion to firms, SME policy, and information and communication technologies;
  • Develops and maintains a network of institutions around the world in the competitiveness, technology, and innovation sector;
  • Provides technical oversight to borrowers, executing agencies, country offices and other units of the Bank in matters related to programs and projects in execution;
  • Manages a highly skilled interdisciplinary and multi-cultural staff, located in Washington, DC and at the Bank's country offices in Latin America and the Caribbean. Leads, coaches, establishes goals and expectations, provides feedback and technical guidance to optimize staff's performance.



Master's degree or equivalent preferably in economics or political science, public administration, business administration or other relevant fields. Ph.D. preferred.


At least 10 years of demonstrated work experience relevant to the duties and accountabilities of the position. Knowledge and understanding of the Latin America and Caribbean Region. Excellent verbal and written communications skills. Proven management track record or demonstrated potential for managing a large and technically strong team. Professional and personal stature to lead multi-disciplinary and/or cross-sector teams, with demonstrated well-honed integration skills.

Professional profile that is recognized as a leader and authority among peers in his/her specific discipline. S/he should combine intellectual leadership with: a) strong operational experience, with a track record of successful implementation of development projects and programs and b) broad experience in working with knowledge networks, knowledge dissemination and management. Demonstrated experience in leading projects that support innovation, entrepreneurship, business development services and competitiveness of private sector firms and clusters.


Proficiency in English and Spanish is essential. Working knowledge of a third official Bank language is a plus (Portuguese or French).

Core and Leadership Competencies

Acting Strategically to Deliver Results:

  • Delivers results for the client and IDB that ensure sustainability and support the organization’s strategy, mission and vision;
  • Building Engagement and Commitment: Develops engagement and commitment by setting challenging goals, acknowledging employee efforts, creating involvement and participation, hearing multiple perspectives and driving a unified approach;
  • Developing People and Teams to Deliver Results Builds talent and capability inside the organization through coaching, mentoring, training, developmental assignments and knowledge sharing.

Leading Change:

  • Accelerates organizational transformation through the management of change and support for employee innovation.

Promoting Diversity & Inclusion:

  • Improve and ensure a diverse environment and actively work to build, coach and empower teams with diverse background (e.g. gender, ethnic origin, disability, sexual orientation, background, perspective).

Application instructions

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