Head of Communications and Knowledge Management

International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) Director of Communications
Location Nairobi, Kenya
Application deadline 30 June 2017
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The International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) seeks to recruit a Head of Communications and Knowledge Management (CKM) to manage and lead ILRI’s communications and knowledge management work to deliver on ILRI’s mission.

The Communications and Knowledge Management team at ILRI provides central leadership in knowledge sharing, communication and information facilities and expertise to ILRI researchers, the organization and its partners. Activities are intended to enhance ILRI’s effectiveness and outcomes through four main activities:

  • Communicate evidence for wider influence – by engaging with decision-makers and other audiences;
  • Translate science-based practices into impact – by communicating research outputs towards potential development outcomes;
  • Link and connect people and knowledge to enrich collaboration, within ILRI and beyond, learning, interaction and exchange;
  • Access, organize and manage, document, publish, communicate and disseminate research knowledge, information and data, products and outputs for wide accessibility and use.

This is an important institutional role leading diverse efforts to help achieve ILRI’s strategic influencing, capacity development and science uptake objectives. The CKM team works across ILRI, contributing to institutional and project activities, spanning public awareness, advocacy, publishing, knowledge sharing, engagement and facilitation. The team presently comprises 20 individuals based at ILRI campus in Addis Ababa and Nairobi, with associated project communications specialists embedded into different research programs and projects.

The ideal candidate should brings a wide expertise and ability to guide a multi-faceted team as well as depth in any of the substantive areas falling within the terms of reference.

The International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) works to improve food and nutritional security and reduce poverty in developing countries through research for efficient, safe and sustainable use of livestock. It is the only one of 15 CGIAR research centres dedicated entirely to animal agriculture research for the developing world. Co-hosted by Kenya and Ethiopia, it has regional or country offices and projects in East, South and Southeast Asia as well as Central, East, Southern and West Africa. www.ilri.org


The Head of ILRI Communications and Knowledge Management will work directly with ILRI’s teams covering (1) Information, Publishing and Curation; (2) Knowledge, Engagement and Collaboration; and (3) Communications, Awareness and Advocacy as well as working closely with other communications colleagues within ILRI, CGIAR and our donors and partners; and with ILRI directors, managers, scientists and other program staff and consultants. Working closely with three team leaders, this person will:

  • Help raise the level of ILRI and partner livestock-research-for-development information, knowledge and communications.
  • Work across a range of mediums and topics to turn out compelling communications materials that help translate ILRI’s research into real-world impacts.
  • Skillfully coordinate efforts to inform, educate and publicize ILRI’s work in collaboration with scientists and communications colleagues across the centre.
  • Be an expert in science or technical communications, with broad experience and familiarity with emerging social media tools and trends.
  • Be exceptionally experienced in creating systems that enable every CKM activity and product to add value to others.
  • Take pleasure in designing communications products for greatest and cost-efficient impacts
  • Demonstrate an ability to frame complex research findings so that these are understandable and useful to a wide range of audiences.

Skills and requirements

The ideal candidate will be:

  • Someone who enjoys reading research publications and engaging with scientists
  • An astute judge of what communications best suit what audiences and purposes
  • Equal parts communicator, knowledge manager and people manager
  • Scrupulous about maintaining high standards of accuracy
  • Passionate about finding fresh ways to communicate
  • Inspired by the ideas of others and an inspiring team member for others
  • Someone who thinks across multimedia platforms and experiments with new media
  • Self-directed and resourceful


  • Master’s degree in a relevant subject area.
  • At least 10 years’ experience in research or science communication, information/knowledge management, public awareness or publishing, ideally in an international development context.
  • Experienced manager with strong skills in budgeting and financial management, engaging with communications ‘clients’ and partners, and delivering products and services in busy and time-pressed environments.
  • Demonstrated experience in the development and implementation of communications and knowledge management strategies.
  • Experience in leading communications and knowledge management initiatives at an organisational level and engaging with multidisciplinary teams across diverse locations and in a multicultural environment.

How to apply: Applicants should send a cover letter and CV expressing their interest in the position, what they can bring to the job and the names and addresses (including telephone and email) of three referees who are knowledgeable about the candidate’s professional qualifications and work experience to the Director, People and Organizational Development through our recruitment portal http://ilri.simplicant.com/ on or before 30 June 2017. The position title and reference number IP/HCKM/05/2017 should be clearly marked on the subject line of the cover letter.

We thank all applicants for their interest in working for ILRI. Due to the volume of applications, only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.

ILRI does not charge a fee at any stage of the recruitment process (application, interview meeting, processing or training). ILRI also does not concern itself with information on applicants’ bank accounts.

To find out more about ILRI visit our websites at http://www.ilri.org

To find out more about working at ILRI visit our website at http://www.ilri.org/ilricrowd/

ILRI is an equal opportunity employer.

  • Post location: The position is based in Nairobi, Kenya.
  • Position level: The position level is 5B.
  • Duration: 3 years with the possibility of renewal, contingent upon individual performance and continued funding.
  • Benefits: ILRI offers a competitive salary and benefits package which includes 15% Pension, Medical insurance, Life insurance and allowances for: Education, Housing, Relocation, Home leave, Annual holiday entitlement of 30 days + public holidays.