Job Opportunity for Associate Director (Strategy, Planning & Policy) at A-PAG in New Delhi

Website A-PAG

About the organisation

Air Pollution Action Group (A-PAG) was set up in 2019 by Ashish Dhawan (Founder and Chairperson, Ashoka University and Central Square Foundation), Vijay Chadda (previously  CEO of Bharti Foundation) and Mohit Beotra (previously Chief Brand Officer of Airtel). Ashish is a member of the Commission for Air Quality Management in NCR and  adjoining regions.

A-PAG is focused on strategic implementation of solutions to combat air pollution and has created a niche for itself within the broader ecosystem in the last 2 years. In this time, A-PAG has made significant progress in its quest with a focus on supporting Government at the national & state level. Some of the major projects A-PAG is driving are as follows:

A-PAG works closely with the Punjab Government to combat stubble burning. Our  efforts are focused on convincing farmers to adopt alternative solutions. These efforts include mass media & social media campaigns, mobile first initiatives as well as tech-enabled solutions to ease hiring of implements.
In Delhi, we have worked on multiple programs. Currently, we are engaged with all 4  Municipal Corporation (South, North, East, NDMC) on a massive program aimed at dispersed sources. This covers all ~300 wards across the city.
In Uttar Pradesh (UP) we are retained by the UP-Pollution Control Board (UPPCB) to  help reduce air pollution in the state. The dispersed sources program is running in Lucknow. Other initiatives are being planned for roll out.
As part of our program with Bihar State Pollution Control Board (BPSCB), we are active in Patna, Muzaffarpur & Gaya. Various initiatives are underway to address air pollution  across the state of Bihar.
All our support to Government is offered on a pro-bono basis.

About the role

Our strategy is based on 2 pillars:

  • We work alongside Government, at the national, state & city levels. This is implemented  through the setting up of Project Management Units (PMU) that work closely with the  relevant authority to roll out initiatives.
  • Our focus is on implementing pilot programs, with the intention of codifying learning  which can then be scaled across cities. These programs can target any of the key sources of pollution.

As Associate Director, you will lead the design & development of programs. Your primary  responsibilities would be as follows:

  • Clarity on the policy landscape: There are multiple national & state level policy initiatives aimed at mitigation of air pollution; any program has to be planned within the ambit of these policies. Hence, understanding the exact policy landscape is key to the role. Importantly, this includes identifying policy gaps which need to be addressed at the center or state.
  • Developing the right strategy: You would lead the design of any program that A-PAG is  involved with. This requires thinking through the most effective implementation model  i.e., one that can be implemented on ground in a manner that effectiveness can be established quickly & efficiently. The challenge is to create an operating model that is easy to roll out given the resources available at the state/city level.
  • Monitoring & evaluation: You will be required to ensure that the impact of our programs is measured in a manner consistent with M&E norms. Additionally, you need to lead the codification of learning for each of the programs. This is critical to enable us  to roll out these initiatives across multiple cities, including those in states where we may not have a direct presence.
  • Driving Government engagement: From Government officials in the Central Ministry to State level officials, you will be required to deal with Government officials at very senior levels. You would be expected to manage these & myriad other Government relationships in a manner that ensures that A-PAG is recognized as a professional & effective partner. Importantly, you will have to ensure that the recommendations are accepted & implemented at various levels.
  • Managing partnerships: Our strategy involves banking on partners for their technical  expertise. You would be expected to play a key role in enabling these partnerships. This  also includes managing donor relationships along with the leadership team.
  • Leading the team: You need to scale the existing team to bring on board the necessary skill sets required to deliver across our various programs (current & planned). Leadership of the team is a key expectation from this role; as is the expectation that you  will engage effectively with the Project Implementation teams.

You are part of the leadership group at A-PAG & report directly to the CEO/Director.


  • Master’s degree in relevant fields, including business or development sector  management, environmental studies or public policy with a strong track record of outstanding academic performance
  • 18-20 years of work experience with managerial responsibilities, demonstrating excellent  project delivery and relationship development with Government officials
  • Experience working in the space of environment/ air pollution would be preferred but is  not essential – however, passion to solve the air pollution crisis in India is critical

Skill sets required

  • Being able to lead the research on policy, and developing white papers that capture our thinking
  • Entrepreneurship – success in this role depends heavily on your making things happen  on the ground
  • Ability to work alongside senior Government officials, while being able to convince  them to accept our recommendations
  • Team management is key – you will need to lead a fairly large team and keep them  motivated and excited
  • Project Management skills are needed to ensure programs are delivered against agreed  timelines with requisite quality
  • Ability to learn quickly – air pollution is a relatively nascent space and new knowledge is constantly emerging which we need to understand & utilize to our benefit


New Delhi


Will be commensurate with the best among social sector norm

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