Organisation: Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (IDMC)

Position: Strategic Communications Adviser

Location: Geneva, Switzerland

Salary: Competitive for the sector


Closing date: 28/07/2019 (day/month/year)

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Strategic Communications Adviser

Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (IDMC)


The Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (IDMC)is the world’s authoritative source of data and analysis on internal displacement. Since our establishment in 1998 as part of the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC), we offer a rigorous, transparent and independent service to the international community, and inform policy and operational decisions to improve the lives of people living in, or at risk of, internal displacement.

With a team of 30 people in Geneva and an annual budget of 5 million USD, we monitor more than 200 countries in the world for which we provide verified, consolidated and multi-sourced estimates of the number of people internally displaced or at risk of becoming displaced by conflict, violence, disasters and development projects. We complement this global data with interdisciplinary research into the drivers, patterns and impacts of internal displacement. Using this evidence, we provide tailor-made advice and support to inform global, regional and national policy-making. Our data and evidence are published on our website and via our Global Internal Displacement Database. Our flagship report, the Global Report on Internal Displacement, published every year in May, is the world reference on IDP statistics, featuring trends and thematic analyses, country and regional spotlights.

Job description

At a time when Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) and the issue of internal displacement are increasingly in the world news, and interest in this topic from policy-makers and the wider public is growing, the Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (IDMC) is recruiting a Strategic Communications Adviser to develop an institutional communications strategy for the organisation’s main spokespersons, and to work towards more sustained and strategic engagement with the media.

The post-holder will be responsible for strengthening the traditional and social media presence of IDMC’s senior management, in particular the Director, and for developing a coherent institutional narrative and messages in line with evolving media and political discourse on the topic of internal displacement. Working closely with the Director and Special Adviser, the post-holder will contribute to consolidating IDMC’s role and reputation as the world leader and reference on internal displacement, and to keeping the situation of IDPs high on the international agenda as well as within broader debates on displacement and migration.

The post-holder will be expected to develop and nurture strategic partnerships with journalists and media outlets with a view to ensuring that IDMC becomes the go-to source of expertise and commentary on internal displacement, including in connection with key related topics (e.g. cross border migration; conflict and security; disasters and climate change; sustainable development; Disaster Risk Reduction; urbanisation; transitional justice), and that IDMC’s Director is recognised as a key spokesperson on this topic. The post-holder will be responsible for identifying new opportunities for promotion and commentary, including through media interviews, panel discussions, opinion pieces, etc., for supporting the Director’s public and media engagements through the writing of speeches and talking points, and for ensuring that IDMC is visible and impactful at events relating to its work and mandate.

Role and Responsibilities

The Strategic Communications Adviser provides communications and media support to IDMC’s Director by:

1. Developing the Director’s long-term media engagement strategy and building and maintaining a network of media partners and relationships between the Director and key journalists/media outlets.
2. Developing and implementing a strategic communications strategy and providing advice and support on effective communications, speeches, talking points and other content for interviews, presentations and events.

Media engagement

• Identify new opportunities for positioning IDMC’s work in global, regional and national media and for influencing the way internal displacement is reported on by key news outlets.
• Secure new strategic partnerships with renowned international media outlets.
• Organise information and capacity-building sessions on internal displacement for journalists.
• Create and implement public information and media campaigns – both global and regional/national – to promote IDMC’s activities, including its publications, events, initiatives, partnerships and/or new thematic issues.
• Develop institutional communications plans around the launch of IDMC’s major publications, events and partnerships, and draft press releases to promote these in the media.
• Develop and maintain a global network of journalists and media partners to ensure quality coverage of the findings of IDMC’s publications, events and initiatives.
• Facilitate access for journalists to IDMC spokespeople.
• Mentor, train and support the Director and senior management staff on media engagement and communications.
• Manage high-level press trips by the Director to the field, drafting media plans, pitching media interviews and organising press conferences for each visit. Where relevant, accompany the Director on her travels.
• Write and publish opinion pieces on behalf of the Director in international media outlets.
• Manage the Director’s social media platforms in collaboration with IDMC’s events and social media officer.

Strategic communications

• Keep abreast of any political and policy developments in the field of internal displacement in order to write and edit high-quality briefing notes, Q&As, and speaking notes for the Director and IDMC Heads of Departments engaging in external communications.
• Produce high quality communications products including public statements, speeches, commentary, and social media content.
• Promote, advocate for and raise awareness about IDMC’s activities through a variety of communication channels, in close collaboration with IDMC’s Department of External Relations.
• Work collaboratively with IDMC’s departments of Data and Analysis, Policy and Research, and External Relations to ensure consistency in messaging and an integrated communications approach.
• Tailor messages and styles to suit a variety of audiences and communication mediums/channels including intranet (SharePoint), email, video, presentations, workshops, events and webinars.
• Build partnerships with other like-minded organisations that the Director can partner with in public communications and media.
• Provide Heads of departments with strategic and operational advice and recommendations on the best communications approaches and tools to help them effectively promote the impact of their work.
• Support the IDMC team during peak periods with any other communication and media work.

Critical interfaces for this position are:

• IDMC Director
• IDMC Special Adviser to the Director
• IDMC Head of External Relations
• IDMC Political Analyst
• IDMC Social media and events officer
• IDMC Digital content manager
• IDMC Heads of Policy and Research & Data and Analysis
• NRC Head of Advocacy and Media.

Candidate requirements

Professional competencies

• At least 8-10 years in progressively senior media & communications advisory roles.
• Demonstrated knowledge of and experience working on displacement and migration-related topics. Practical experience working in countries affected by internal displacement.
• Solid experience managing media relations for Directors and CEOs, and developing and implementing strategic communications plans for senior management.
• Outstanding English writing and verbal communication skills.
• Demonstrated ability to find new creative media angles and to develop impactful messaging and opinion pieces.
• Experience in managing the social media accounts for high profile figures, training and coaching senior management, and acting as spokesperson.

Master’s degree or equivalent in journalism, communications, foreign affairs, international development or related field.

Native level English and working knowledge of French, Spanish and/or Arabic desirable.

Personal qualities

• Outstanding communicator with excellent networking skills.
• Committed and passionate about the issue of internal displacement.
• Highly professional, collaborative, diplomatic and decisive.
• Able to translate complex ideas into clear and accessible language.
• Well-structured with an ability to deliver on short deadlines.
• Out-of-the box thinker, creative and flexible, with a good sense of humour.
• Able to handle a large workload, to cope with stress and to work under pressure, independently and with limited supervision.

How to apply

Please send a letter of application stating the skills and approach that you would bring to the post with your CV/resume (no photos) in strict confidence by email only to: (see email below).

Please ensure that they are sent as Word or PDF documents with the titles “your name cover letter” and “your name CV” Please put “IDMC – Strategic Communications Advisorin the email subject line.

Deadline for applications: Sunday 28th July 2019

Contact person: Zoe Oldham

Response email: Click here to email the recruiter


Preferred method of response: Email

Closing date: 2019-07-28

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