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Careers at ADB

With employees from more than 60 countries, ADB is a place of real diversity. Join us to find fulfillment in sharing your knowledge and skills, and be a part of our vision in achieving a prosperous, inclusive, resilient, and sustainable Asia and the Pacific.

What We Look For

Come work with us if you...

  • are committed to contributing to the development, cooperation and integration of countries in Asia and the Pacific
  • are a citizen of an ADB member
  • have a strong academic background, preferably with a postgraduate degree such as an MBA, Masters, or Ph.D.
  • have considerable expertise and experience in your profession
  • have experience in projects and programs for developing countries
  • are proficient in both written and spoken English
  • can work with individuals of different nationalities and cultures

We embrace diversity and value a wide spectrum of views, cultures, academic and professional backgrounds. Staff of different nationalities come together to work for a common goal regardless of age, gender, religion or disability. Women are highly encouraged to apply.

Meet Our People

Making a difference in the world doesn’t have to be a choice between a successful profession or a fulfilling personal life. Women working at ADB, who share many of the same personal circumstances as others around the world, are given the benefits and opportunities they need to have both meaningful careers and rewarding personal lives. “I’m Every Woman” tells the stories of professional women working at ADB’s headquarters in Manila and in its 28 offices across Asia and the Pacific.

Shaista Hussain, Results Management Specialist

Young family moved far from home in Islamabad, Pakistan

Cleo Kawawaki, Deputy Director General

Keeping family ties close from Japan to Manila

Ayako Inagaki, Human and Social Development Director

Professional growth though working with clients

More profiles of ADB staff

We take pride in our highly qualified, experienced, dedicated, and motivated employees. At ADB, economists, engineers, lawyers, accountants, administrators, editors, statisticians, agriculturists, and various specialists with expertise and experience in different sectors of development come together to fight poverty in Asia and the Pacific.

Eleonora WindischEleonora

When the opportunity arose to work for the Asian Development Bank in 2004, I embraced it as it provided me with an opportunity to marry my personal interests with a compelling mission and cause.

Eleonora Windisch
Eleonora Windisch, Advisor and Head, Portfolio, Results and Quality Control Unit, South Asia Department

What made you join ADB?

I always wanted to work internationally and in development. My career as a diplomat in the Austrian Foreign Service brought me to Mexico and Indonesia in the 1990s, where I observed first-hand the fragility of economic success being threatened by global financial crises. At the same time, I was taken aback by the political oppression, extreme income disparity, and widespread poverty in the countries I worked in. These realities reawakened my interest in development work that had begun while I was studying political science in Vienna. When the opportunity arose to work for the Asian Development Bank in 2004, I embraced it as it provided me with an opportunity to marry my personal interests with a compelling mission and cause.

What do you enjoy about working at ADB?

No matter where you work in ADB you know that you are contributing to a larger cause. ADB’s mission is very compelling. When I joined the bank in 2004 in the Office of Administrative Services, I was tasked to build a community outreach program. It was a modest program but it gave me an entry point into working on larger corporate social responsibility matters, which then led to ADB’s first Sustainability Report in 2007. Even though I was part of a support department at the time, I was able to contribute to the bank’s core mission in a meaningful way. And this is what I value most about ADB: the opportunities it provides for professional growth and continued learning. Most colleagues enter ADB as specialists. I, on the other hand, was a generalist. I embraced the opportunities that I was given at each level and gained a wealth of new skills and knowledge, which helped me build my competency and reputation in a wide range of areas.

I also thrive in the diverse work environment at ADB. I find the cultural differences invigorating and stimulating. Working with colleagues from more than 50 nationalities forces you to constantly adjust your views and see problems from a different angle. But it is not always easy to ensure smooth collaboration. One way to build cohesion is through annual staff retreats which help to break down barriers and create a bond amongst staff.

Eleonora Windisch
Bangladesh Resident Mission in Dhaka, 2014

Eleonora Windisch
South Asia Department staff retreat, 2016

ADB also provides ample opportunities to volunteer in the local community, in particular through the Staff Community Fund. As part of our benefits package, staff members are given one day of leave for volunteering. Our department took advantage of this and on 3 February 2017 a group of about 80 staff members, led by our senior management, collaborated with Habitat for Humanity to support a local backwater fishing community in Navotas, here in the Philippines.

Eleonora Windisch
ADB staff volunteering with Habitat for Humanity, 3 February 2017

Eleonora Windisch
With scavenger children on a dumpsite in Manila, 2006

Lastly, I like ADB’s physical work environment. Manila may not be the easiest place to live, but ADB makes huge efforts to create a working environment that is conducive for its staff. We have a wealth of services at our headquarters building (cafeteria, coffee shops, bakery, banks, medical clinic, dry cleaning, convenience store, library, fuel station etc.). Those who prefer to skip lunch and be active can go to the gym or attend yoga or Pilates classes. ADB also sponsors other club activities, such as diving, tennis, photography, hiking and biking, and others.

How does ADB support the development of its professionals?

ADB offers an incredible amount of learning opportunities to develop its workforce, no matter in which area of the bank staff work. It really depends on how proactive you want to be in taking advantage of what’s being offered. We are given ten days per year for training – be it in-house or at an external venue. In addition, there are many opportunities to attend conferences, seminars, and workshops where one can hone one’s skills. ADB even provides a subsidy for continued education. Many staff members are taking advantage of it when they want to maintain their professional certifications or pursue further studies. Aside from these more formal areas of development, ADB also offers plenty of opportunities to learn from colleagues, mentors and experts. The biggest impact on professional growth, I find, comes when going to the field to witness progress on projects.

What advice would you give to prospective candidates?

Eleonora Windisch
Working with the Correctional Institution for Women in Mandaluyong, Philippines, 2007

Prospective candidates should demonstrate passion for development and a genuine interest in the organization and its work in the region. While strong technical expertise and international experience are a prerequisite, a candidate’s soft skills are equally important. ADB looks for candidates who can work well in teams and are willing to be flexible and adaptable.

Candidates need to be patient when looking for a job at ADB. Often the first application or interview may not get them in. Managers have many constraints when hiring, such as expertise, regional experience, diversity of the team, etc. If candidates cannot get a regular staff position immediately, they should look for consulting opportunities. These tend to be an excellent opportunity for the candidate to get to know the work and how they can contribute to the organization.

Kelly HewittKelly

If you have innovative ideas and knowledge that can improve the lives of many and you want to work at a place where knowledge and ideas matter, then you must join ADB.

Kelly Hewitt
Kelly Hewitt, Senior Advisor to the Vice President (Administration and Corporate Management)

What made you join ADB?

I'm an optimistic realist. I believe that individual lives can be improved with focused joint effort, that we are globally interconnected, and that the challenge of one group of people is not to be borne in isolation or solitude. International development in its rawest essence captures this and more. As both a bank and an international development institution, ADB aims to improve the lives of the poor and vulnerable in Asia and the Pacific. ADB, and the people whom the bank serves, are diverse in nationality, ethnicity, and geography. I joined ADB because I wholeheartedly embrace its mission.

What do you enjoy about working at ADB?

I enjoy working at ADB because of the importance it places on knowledge. As a top tier knowledge institution, ADB provides continuous training and learning to its staff. Each ADB work day presents staff with the opportunity to apply knowledge and appropriately choose optimal instruments that support our clients in meeting a myriad of development challenges. ADB as a banking institution offers loans, grants, equity, guarantees, technical assistance, and transaction advisory services. Its knowledge base is solid and its fiduciary responsibilities are steadfast.

Kelly Hewitt
Kelly on an ADB mission to Sri Lanka

Kelly Hewitt
Attending a workshop on mitigating unconscious bias in the workplace

What makes ADB a great place to work?

ADB’s people make it a great place to work. They are your team members, mentors, co-leads, and community of knowledgeable practitioners. It is a place where life-long friendships are forged.

What advice would you give to prospective candidates?

If you have innovative ideas and knowledge that can improve the lives of many and you want to work at a place where knowledge and ideas matter, where action delivers effective results, where the desire to improve lives matters, and where the vulnerable are the primary concern, then you must join ADB.

Martina TonizzoMartina

ADB is unique in being a multilateral development bank that hosts public and private sector operations under the same roof.

Martina Tonizzo
Martina Tonizzo, Investment Specialist, Infrastructure Finance Division 2, Private Sector Operations Department

Why did you choose ADB?

It’s hard for me to summarize in a few lines why I chose ADB. I guess the main reason is that ADB is unique in being a multilateral development bank that hosts public and private sector operations under the same roof. ADB strategy focuses on providing clients with solutions that combine public and private financing.

I firmly believe that sustainable development can only happen when the private and public sector collaborate in achieving the same goal of providing good basic services, such as access to clean energy and water, or access to markets through better transportation.

I was right in my choice because during my five year tenure at ADB I have had the opportunity to work on both public and private operations. I joined the Young Professional Program as an Energy Specialist in the Pacific department that funds projects in the Pacific region. I then moved to the Private Sector Operations Department after two years and have been here ever since.

Another important reason to choose ADB is the focus on Asia, a region that hosts among the most populous and fastest growing economies in the world. I love the cultural variety of the region, as well as the challenging projects that need ADB assistance.

Can you tell us about the projects that you have worked on and how those have supported ADB’s objectives?

Last year I worked on several transactions in Indonesia and the Pacific. One transaction I loved is a $400 million loan to expand an existing liquefied natural gas (LNG) facility called Tangguh. The facility is located in West Papua, one of the poorest and socially complex areas of Indonesia. The financing, other than being large, was also challenging to structure. It is one of the most prominent deals in Asia in 2016 and ADB had a major role in ensuring that environmental and social safeguards best practice were followed.

Martina Tonizzo
Martina with local women in West Papua

The project contributes to ADB’s objectives in many ways. First, at the local level, the project is having a positive environmental impact. For instance, by limiting traffic of large ships other than LNG tankers, illegal fishing in the area has decreased. As a consequence, marine life has grown and thrived over time. The community also benefits from the project by having expanded access to health, education, and electricity, services that are partially funded by project revenues. The LNG facility purchases fish and vegetables from the local community and supports livelihood programs that teach the community how to grow crops and help fishermen store the catch. Secondly, the majority of the LNG produced by the expanded facility is going to be sold domestically, contributing to the generation of power from an indigenous energy source that is cleaner than coal.

Projects I am working on for ADB simply inspire me. The intellectual challenge of structuring the transaction as well as the reward of meeting communities that are helped and supported by ADB-funded projects is priceless: I feel like I am making a difference!

Does ADB provide good work-life balance?

Over my five years in the organization, I have seen an improvement in work-life balance policies and initiatives. The arrangement to temporarily working outside a duty station has gained acceptance and this helps many of us who have partners working in other cities or countries. In my case, my partner works in Hong Kong, China and I am able to spend part of the month working from there.

In addition to the increasing focus on timely outputs, rather than office inputs, ADB has numerous policies that support family life and self-improvement. For instance, special time off is granted to care for family members during emergencies or for continuing education.

What advice would you give to potential employees?

There is still a lot to be done in improving the lives of people in Asia and the Pacific. Bring your passion, energy and expertise to ADB and come make an impact!

Hisaka KimuraHisaka

I'm making my dreams come true at ADB. When I joined ADB there were no private sector clean energy projects in the PRC. Over the past 6 years, thanks to strong support from the management and team, we built a wide variety of green projects in the PRC.

Hisaka Kimura
Hisaka Kimura, Private Sector Operations Department

When did you join ADB and what is your current role?

In 2006, I joined ADB as a “green banker,” and have since focused on environmental infrastructure projects, including clean energy and energy efficiency. In the People's Republic of China (PRC) and Mongolia, I'm responsible for exploring opportunities for ADB's involvement in new technologies, structuring and implementing projects.

I’m making my dreams come true at ADB. When I joined ADB there were no private sector clean energy projects in the PRC. Over the past 6 years, thanks to strong support from the management and team, we built a wide variety of green projects in the PRC.

What brought you to ADB? Did it turn out as you expected?

Previous to joining ADB, I worked in London for the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and Ernst & Young. The first International Conference for Renewable Energies inspired me about the green market potential of Asia, the PRC in particular. I find, because I was looking at the Asian market from outside, that I appreciated it more and was excited by the opportunity to do something that might make a difference.

I’m making my dreams come true at ADB. When I joined ADB there were no private sector clean energy projects in the PRC. Over the past 6 years, thanks to strong support from the management and team, we built a wide variety of green projects in the PRC.

What are you currently working on?

I'm currently processing municipal environmental projects based on public-private-partnership. In addition to ADB's direct loan and equity, I also try to mobilize commercial co-financing for our projects through syndication. Evolving technologies and emerging contractual structures are challenging the tolerance of commercial banks’ credit committees. While the challenges of the current financial market are enormous, I believe that by addressing issues through supporting a wider structure, we have an opportunity to fundamentally restructure the traditional financing approach to development and bring about a more substantial impact.

What's it like for you to work in ADB's Manila HQ and Resident Mission (RM)? What kind of adjustments did you need to make, if any?

I worked in HQ in the first two years and then was seconded to PRC Resident Mission (PRCM) in Beijing. HQ and RM have different roles to play, but work together as a team. My core work remains same. The main difference between working in HQ and RM is in whom I primarily interact with during office hours.

At HQ, I benefited from the close mentoring of senior bankers inside the department. I also enjoyed a wide range of interdepartmental networks though various brown bag workshops arranged by sector experts. It has helped me deepen my understanding on what ADB can do and what’s our priority.

In PRCM, I'm more exposed to the market. Many people just drop by my office without prior appointments. My typical day is filled with back-to-back meetings for project development and project implementation. It’s quite busy, but as a technology geek, it is a lot of fun to learn what’s new in the market. I also participate in the country partnership strategy formulation process to understand the government’s future direction.

How do you see your future in ADB?

Realizing our member countries’ vision for green development will require constant innovation. I view ADB’s future role as that of a regional hub which will help the member countries’ innovation by supporting cutting-edge clean technologies, game changing business models, and new processes to do things differently.

Furthermore, I think we can act as a curator – we have been very selective. That in itself is a creative process. Thus each of our projects has a great story, and the project portfolio embodies our vision. We can exhibit Asian model projects for current and future reference for the private sector and government stakeholders beyond the region. It would be great if we can create a butterfly effect from Asia.

Marzia LorenzoMarzia

Because of the passion and motivation that inspire me to work with ADB, I derive a lot of satisfaction from my job. I really believe in the overall objective of ADB of poverty reduction and improvement of lives of people in Asia.

Marzia Lorenzo
Marzia Lorenzo, East Asia Department

What makes ADB a great workplace?

I have been in ADB for 10 years and time has gone by quickly because of the job I’ve been doing. I have been working for 9 years on designing and implementing projects in the field for rural development and for the empowerment of women in several countries. Because of the passion and motivation that inspire me to work with ADB, I derive a lot of satisfaction from my job. I really believe in the overall objective of ADB of poverty reduction and improvement of lives of people in Asia.

I have been working on a special project which I consider a very important project for ADB. It is for a country in South Asia aimed at helping low-caste women to empower themselves in terms of social issues, economic issues, and legal issues. I designed the project and unfortunately, only partially implemented, but that was a great achievement for myself in my career and it made coming to work every day very self-fulfilling and made my effort less of a burden than it would be if you do not believe in what you do.

Because of the passion and motivation that inspire me to work with ADB, I derive a lot of satisfaction from my job. I really believe in the overall objective of ADB of poverty reduction and improvement of lives of people in Asia.

What made you decide to work for the Asian Development Bank?

I wanted to work in development to change the world, to improve the world. Because I’ve seen there are some countries, some people that are luckier than others. I believe that everybody should have a decent life and a good life. I studied poverty reduction and development in university because I really believe that we need to change something in this world.

How does ADB encourage and support the development of its professionals?

I came here as a Young Professional and was quite young. I had some work experience, but basically I grew with the institution mainly by learning-by-doing. There is a lot of mentoring in the field during missions – and that’s where you learn the tools of the trade. I also attended several courses for specific subjects that I was interested in based on my work plan. For instance I went to Holland for a couple of weeks to do a specialization course on agri-business because that was main focus starting from 2006. There is a mix of learning-by-doing and courses which are not really formal. You select the topics you wish to deepen your knowledge on by attending courses either internally or externally. ADB allows you to take a few weeks off per year to attend external training courses.

What is the role ADB plays in the career development of its professionals?

When I joined, I was assigned a formal mentor who helped me understand the institution and help me with more logistical issues with respect to adjusting to living in Manila, which is a big city. Initially there was some adjustment to the living environment.

However, the mentors I consider most valuable are the ones I encountered when I started going on missions – senior mission leaders. They really helped me understand the project cycle, the way ADB does business, how to do business with government officials in the field – key things you need to know when preparing for and implementing projects.

How do ADB’s employee benefits help the Bank’s female professionals?

ADB just approved the extended maternity leave which allows employees to use an additional 3 months of leave without pay but inclusive of all other benefits. I took advantage of this and think it is a very important benefit for women because the 12-week official maternity leave may not be enough depending on the situation that you have at home.

In addition, when I came back to work, I was allowed to work half-day. This is not an official benefit but it can be arranged internally and I thought it was an excellent arrangement. Until my child turned 8 months old, I was either at home or working half day. So that was very useful for me.

How has your work specifically created an impact in the countries ADB serves?

We had a specific project which had a condition for the government. We were only going to grant the loan if the government was willing to change 118 laws which discriminated women and contradicted portions of their own constitution. When the government was ready to pass the changes, I already felt it was a huge achievement. It was more a change at the framework level but I thought it was the first step in improving the lives of those women.

When the project was approved and implemented, it changed the lives of women in many small ways. For instance, the project trained police officers to be more gender-sensitive so women would feel safe to report crimes or report to the police. We trained judges to learn how to treat women in sensitive cases.

The project also funded the establishment of pathways – we are talking about a country with a number of remote areas – women were forced to walk for hours to fetch water (which is a classic in remote rural areas). By establishing the footpath, we were able to cut the time to fetch water by a few hours, which gave women more time to spend with their families or initiate a small economic activity.

The project funded a series of small things but made a big difference in the lives of those women living in remote areas. I am very proud of the project although it took a long time to start. But in the end, the results were quite impressive.

Ayako InagakiAyako

By working with the clients, I learned how to understand and match their needs with what ADB can do as a lending agency. At the same time, I'm learning a lot from my colleagues. So it helps me grow everyday as a development professional.