Director of Communications

Partnership for Economic Policy (PEP) Director of Communications

The Partnership for Economic Policy (PEP) is a Southern-led global organization dedicated to supporting development in the global south. We do this by providing high-quality, locally-generated evidence that informs better decisions in policy and practice.

At PEP, we believe that evidence produced from an in-country perspective, by empowered and engaged local researchers, results in better policy choices, more sustainable development outcomes, and more inclusive policy debates.

The role

PEP is currently seeking an exceptional communications professional to lead its communication efforts and the team that delivers it.

The ideal candidate will have entrepreneurial creativity; broad knowledge of economic development policy issues; the ability to craft messages that help lead to policy change; outstanding writing and editing skills; familiarity with key social media channels and trends; demonstrable managerial experience; strong knowledge of the international development policy media and donor landscapes (and related contacts); and the ability to engage collegially as a member of a diverse community of world-class scholars and policy professionals.

We recognize that the communications landscape is changing rapidly and the post-covid world will see further change in the tools, channels, and technologies for effective communication. The successful candidate should be able to visualize these changes and operationalize them in our work.

The Director of communications will report to the PEP Executive Director and work closely with senior management, program directors, board of directors and key internal and external stakeholders.

This is a remote role.

Key roles and responsibilities

Strategy, vision, and leadership

  • Be aware of emerging trends in policy and research communications and assess how best PEP should take advantage of the new communications landscape to increase its reputation and visibility as Southern-led thought leaders in economic development debates.
  • Design and implement strategies to increase the scope and scale of PEP’s impact and influence, including by raising the organization’s visibility around the world.
  • Work closely with PEP research directors and the director of policy engagement to help researchers clarify policy goals arising from their research, identify audiences, and then collaboratively devise and implement an inclusive communications plan to reach these goals.
  • Raise the visibility of PEP and its researchers with respect to global/regional/national economic development policy debates, international development funders/partners and other key PEP stakeholders through securing high-profile media placements and speaking opportunities for its Executive Director, Research Directors and other senior staff.
  • Serve as a senior advisor to the PEP’s Executive Director and contribute actively as a member of PEP’s executive leadership team.
  • Convey the scope of the PEP’s influence and impact to the board, funders, and other supporters and implement creative strategies to communicate impact.

Communications operations

  • Ensure high standards of excellence in all external communications through oversight of PEP’s publications, website, blog, newsletters, events, the podcast, social media, and press outreach.
  • Ensure that PEP’s ideas, messages, and commentary are picked up and amplified in social media, and write or edit talking points, speeches, and other supporting material as needed.
  • Plan and execute all PEP events, notably an annual policy conference/symposium, by recruiting high level speakers and providing guidance on the type and format of the event and target audience. The director may be called upon to moderate or participate in select PEP events.
  • Collaborate closely with senior management and resource mobilization team to develop imaginative and appropriate messaging and tools to support PEP’s fundraising activities.
  • Prepare periodic progress/output reports to donors for specific grants/ programs of activities.
  • Provide counsel on and oversee crisis communications plans as needed.
  • Ensure that PEP’s values including diversity, equity, and inclusion are at the heart of our communications strategy and activities.

Team development and management

  • Manage the PEP communication team and promote a culture of high performance and continuous improvement that values learning and a commitment to quality.
  • Establish and monitor communication staff performance and development goals, assign accountabilities, set objectives, establish priorities, and conduct annual performance reviews.
  • Promote communications excellence and participation among researchers, directors, and PEP senior staff, including by providing internal communication and media training for all scientific staff and core consultants (research directors, core resource persons, lead research fellows).
  • Oversee the day-to-day activities of the communications functions including budgeting and staff development.
  • Lead the establishment of shared priorities for the team, disseminate communications policies and milestones, and operationalize new, big ideas.
  • Establish and monitor an internal communications strategy and tools for PEP taking account of its decentralized nature and the involvement of numerous non-staff members (researchers, research fellows, resource persons, etc.).

Experience and skills

The successful candidate will possess the following qualifications:

  • 10 years of continuous and progressive relevant senior level work experience on research and policy communications, ideally working internationally.
  • A significant and impressive body of experience to include progressive management/leadership level positions in communications, with preference given to individuals with broad knowledge of global development policy issues and a passion for working with the global south community.
  • Outstanding speaking, presentation, writing and editing skills in English. Knowledge of other languages, notably French and Spanish, are assets.
  • Creative and visionary individual able to synthesize communication and policy goals and develop and implement customized, outcome-oriented communication strategies.
  • Demonstrable experience working with international and national media, as well as social media
  • Ability to quickly digest complex research, identify key findings and policy implications, then translate the research for a broad policy audience.
  • Experience working with policy players and stakeholders.
  • Training, knowledge in or exposure to economic analysis is an asset.
  • Strong management experience leading teams and developing individual team members, along with a management style that is warm, open, collaborative, and focused on achieving results. A proven record in mentoring and developing team members by building a culture of feedback, accountability, transparency, and mutual support is strongly preferred.
  • Ability to continually assess and improve the team structure and roles of the communication team as need arises.
  • Excellent cross-cultural interpersonal skills and an impressive history of forging strong relationships with multiple stakeholders, strong listening skills, and an ability to relate well to people at all levels. Experience contributing to the development and modeling of values related to diversity, equity, and inclusion within an organization.
  • An MA/MSC degree in communications, international affairs/development, public policy, development studies, or an equivalent is required.

How to apply

Please submit your letter of motivation with a detailed CV/resume to [email protected]. Your application must also include the following information:

  • current position;
  • current and expected remuneration
  • email and telephone contacts,
  • names and full contact details of three referees.

PEP is an equal opportunity employer and thus encourages gender and diversity in response to this advertisement.