Location: United States (Washington, D.C. preferred)

Accountability Counsel amplifies the voices of communities to protect their human rights and environment. As advocates for people harmed by internationally financed projects, we employ community driven and policy level strategies to access justice. Since our founding in 2009, our team has partnered with communities and advocates from 50 countries to defend their rights, demand justice, and achieve historic victories. We are seeking a motivated, mission-driven Policy Associate to help us secure accountability for the environmental and human rights impacts of international finance. This role would be ideal for a junior advocate who is passionate about human rights, environmental justice, and corporate accountability and who is eager to take on responsibility quickly and make an impact.

We work toward change through three programmatic approaches. Our Policy Advocacy program advocates for accountability offices that are accessible, transparent, and fair tools for justice; advocates in our Communities program provide grassroots legal support and assist communities to use accountability offices effectively; and our Research team delivers concrete research and tools for the movement for accountability more broadly. Our respect-based approach underlies all that we do: internally, it guides how our team treats one another, and externally, it ensures that marginalized people, particularly Indigenous Peoples, women and girls, are included as full participants in community-led strategies seeking accountability.

Accountability Counsel is seeking a talented advocate for its Policy program, reporting to a Senior Policy Associate. The Policy Associate will advocate to international financial institutions to increase their accountability to communities. For more information about the range of institutions on which we focus, please visit the Policy Advocacy page of our website.

The Policy Associate’s primary responsibilities will be:

  • Advancing our organizational strategy by advocating to: (1) shift policy and practice of existing accountability offices to be more effective for the communities who require them, and (2) close accountability gaps by arguing for creation of new offices where no such accountability offices currently exist.
  • Conducting policy analysis and drafting technical submissions recommending improvements to existing accountability office and financial institution policies and procedures;
  • Collaborating with, and supporting advocacy of, civil society organizations committed to advancing good governance for environmental and social safeguards through improved accountability;
  • Attending meetings and conferences to advance the goals of the Policy program;
  • Drafting written materials for internal and external use, including letters, memoranda, opinion pieces, policy analysis, and other materials; and
  • Depending on location, managing fellows and interns.


  • Personally committed to Accountability Counsel’s mission and values and respect-based approach. You believe in the agency of communities around the world to protect their human rights and environment. You are committed to meaningfully partnering with those communities and disrupting the systems of power, privilege, and injustice that undermine their rights and interests.
  • An advocate for social and/or environmental justice that is committed to centering the voices of communities in those struggles. You have a degree in law or a graduate degree in a related field, such as development studies, international finance, human rights, or public policy. While early in your career, you can demonstrate a commitment to justice for human rights and environmental harm through 1-2 years of relevant professional or volunteer experience.
  • Aware of key policy issues related to business and human rights, corporate accountability, environmental justice, and/or non-judicial accountability mechanisms.
  • A thoughtful relationship builder who develops rapport and trust, both internally and externally. You have a high degree of empathy, patience, and ability to work among diverse coalitions, including across different languages and timezones. We are seeking someone as equally talented at sensitively working with communities at the local level, as they are effective at international advocacy.
  • A strong communicator who can convey complex issues in an accessible, compelling, way.
  • A critical, strategic thinker. You have excellent written, verbal, research, and analytical skills, including the ability to review and evaluate highly technical information related to international financing and related policies. You can craft and implement advocacy strategies alongside insightful research findings and recommendations.
  • A self-directed, yet collaborative team member. You are comfortable working independently with remote supervision. You can organize and prioritize your workload. At the same time, you proactively, openly, and actively escalate issues to, and welcome feedback and direction from, the rest of Accountability Counsel’s team. You generously share knowledge and empower peers and partners.
  • At home in a lean, fast-paced nonprofit environment working at the cutting edge of international environmental and human rights law, with the ability to stay both focused and nimble in the face of change.
  • Fluency or advanced language proficiency in English, ideally with additional language skills relevant to the regions in which we work.

This full-time opportunity will begin as soon as possible. Although we have a preference for this position to be based in Washington D.C., we will also consider strong candidates located near existing team members and partners (including in Bangkok and Nairobi). This position will require close communication with Policy team members in Washington, D.C., and regular communication with the rest of our global team. This position will require occasional travel internationally. Although our team is currently working remotely, we anticipate returning to a hybrid in-person/remote model once it is safe to do so.

Accountability Counsel is committed to competitive, equitable, transparent, and progressive compensation and benefits for staff and consultants. The compensation and benefits for this role will be commensurate with experience and location and informed by our Compensation Equity and Transparency Framework. We expect the successful candidates will qualify for the Policy Associate I or Policy Associate II bands (with compensation between USD55,000 and USD75,000 if the candidate is located in Washington D.C. or a similar cost of living setting). Team members are encouraged to take every other Friday off (Wellness Fridays), as part of our commitment to team wellbeing.

If this opportunity calls out to you, please complete the form below with: 1) your reason for applying, 2) a tailored, authentic cover letter that explains why this mission calls to you and why this particular role is a fit, 3) your resume, and 4) a short writing sample (no more than 5 pages) reflecting your strengths as a compelling communicator, such as a blog or other public-facing piece of writing. Please address your cover letter to Margaux Day, Policy Director. We will review applications on a rolling basis starting on February 4. Due to the volume of candidates anticipated and size of our organization, we regret that only shortlisted candidates will be contacted regarding further steps in the application process.

Accountability Counsel is an equal opportunity employer that does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, disability, gender, nationality, ethnicity, sexual orientation or other prohibited category. We strongly encourage people of color, LGBTQIA+ individuals, people with disabilities, people from disadvantaged backgrounds, and all qualified persons to apply for this position.