Freelance writer positions

September 24, 2004.  

International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD)

United Nations office: 212 E. 47th St. Apt. 21F

New York, NY 10017 USA

Telephone: +1 212 644 0204 -- Fax: +1 212 644 0206 -- Personal Line: +1 212 644 0217

Electronic mail: <>


22 September 2004


The International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) Reporting Services will be adding six new writers to the team of freelance consultants who write and edit the Earth Negotiations Bulletin, Sustainable Developments and ENB on the Side (the “ENB Team” ) We will be accepting applications from qualified candidates only until 1800 GMT on Friday, 1 October and hope to conclude the interviewing of finalists by 8 October. During this round of recruiting we will then offer our finalists “virtual try-outs” (see below) and plan to train the six new writers in late October or early November. We hope that you will pass on this message to your colleagues or Ph.D. students who you might think are interested and qualified. Please feel free to circulate this message through your own networks.


All applicants should:

a) be enrolled in or about to begin a Ph.D. program or have recently finished the Ph.D. or LL.M degree, or have at least five years of UN environmental experience (working, lobbying or negotiating in the UN system);

b) have worked, published or undertaken research in one or more of the issue areas covered in the Earth Negotiations Bulletin;

c) demonstrate fluency in understanding and speaking English and have both recent experience in writing in English and strong language skills in one other UN language (French, Arabic, Spanish, Chinese or Russian);

d) have a good understanding of multilateral negotiations;

e) work well in small groups and have the flexibility to travel to international meetings for periods of up to three weeks at a time;

f) be able to type well enough to take legible verbatim notes;

g) have his or her own laptop computer running Windows XP.


This is not a full-time job and applicants should apply only if they are searching for part-time work. All writers should either have other freelance work or academic scholarships/fellowships to complement their salaries from working on the Earth Negotiations Bulletin. All applicants should include information about their other freelance or academic support in their application. Work on the Earth Negotiations Bulletin and our other publications requires long hours, often working in crowded offices with other members of the team. All applicants should be able to work well in small group situations and handle stress with alacrity and even in the toughest of moments show the highest respect for co-workers.


All of the finalists will be asked to participate in a “virtual try-out.” On a given day at a given time, we will ask each finalist to find a high speed Internet connection and listen to several short recorded speeches and/or negotiations (using the free RealAudio player and streaming audio from our website) and summarize these within a given time period and to a set word count in our writing style.


All candidates should be free to travel to Geneva to train at the Basel Convention COP from 27-30 October or to train at the IPCC meeting in Delhi from 9-12 November. We usually expect writers who join the team to be available for meetings over the next two-three years.


While there is the possibility of being put on teams at meetings during November and December 2004, it is more likely that work for new team members will begin in 2005. All ENB writers are paid an honorarium that varies by experience on ENB teams from US00 to US00 per week during the meetings they attend. IISD pays all business and travel expenses for our writers while they attend meetings. Most writers do four to six meetings per year.


Before applying, please make sure that you have read carefully the minimum qualifications for this position. We will carefully consider the applications of candidates who meet our basic qualifications. If you satisfy the above requirements:.


a) Send an e-mail to with a copy of your CV and a letter of introduction that explains your interest in writing for the Earth Negotiations Bulletin with a listing of any recent academic publications, specific information on your issue expertise in any of the policy issues we follow and how you meet the minimum requirements.

b) If you know other members of the Earth Negotiations Bulletin team who are willing to recommend you for a position, you should have them contact me; and

c) If you have a supervising professor or know a member of a government delegation who participates in one of the processes we cover, have him or her contact me by email at

We will be accepting applications from now until 1800 GMT on Friday, 1 October. This date is final. As in life, grammar, neatness and imagination count.



Director, IISD Reporting Services


Günther Manske

Dr. Günther Manske


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