Senior Communications Officer

Programme/ Department: Cross Department

Contract Type: Full time, Fixed Term

Salary: £34,988 - £40,573 per annum

Location: Overseas Development Institute

Hours: 35 hours per week

Closing Date: 27 October 2019

Interview: 04 November 2019

Assessment: TBC

Senior Communications Officer

Contract: Fixed-term (until 30 March 2021)

Salary: £34,988 - £40,573 per annum

Location: London

Ref: CREN/05/19


An independent, global think tank, working for a sustainable and peaceful world in which every person thrives.


About us

ODI is an independent, global think tank, working for a sustainable and peaceful world in which every person thrives. We harness the power of evidence and ideas through research and partnership to confront challenges, develop solutions and create change. ( 

We are looking for a Senior Communications Officer to increase the impact of ODI’s research through the coordination and delivery of first-class public affairs and communications activities on governance, innovation and learning.


About the work

Too often, aid fails to help poor and vulnerable people because it assumes that development is a technical endeavour- a simple matter of building roads or training teachers, and so forth. However, many of the issues that development practitioners work on are complex and intensely political: simple technical solutions rarely exist. At ODI, we take a wider perspective which involves helping partners as they interact with unpredictable systems of political, organisational and individual behaviours and incentives, while providing assistance which is technically robust. In this effort, we encourage ways of working that focus on testing, adapting and learning. 

ODI are seeking to change the way international development is done, working with donor agencies and frontline staff across the world as they seek to ‘do development differently.’ Through strategic research and advisory support, we help them integrate evidence, foresight, citizen perspectives and learning into decision-making, and to adaptively manage their efforts. We have several ongoing partnerships with donor governments such as the UK, the US, and a network of other donors interested in these ways of working, and we collaborate with them and with implementing partners and other like-minded organisations to put them into practice. This requires not only top quality research, but also a strategic approach to engagement and communications, to ensure we build on our successes to make meaningful change across the whole sector. 

This post aims to increase the impact of ODI’s research through the coordination and delivery of public affairs and communications (PAC) activities on governance, innovation and learning. The main duties and responsibilities for the initial 2-3 years are linked to the delivery of three large projects on adaptive management and public sector reform. But the position will support ODI’s efforts to inform and influence governance, innovation and learning agendas more broadly – ensuring that our PAC activities are strategic, coordinated and more than the sum of their parts. 

The main responsibilities will include: identifying proactive and reactive opportunities to further ODI’s reach and influence this agenda; building and maintaining strong internal and external relationships and partnerships to drive impact and influence; coordinating public affairs activities to strengthen ODI engagement at critical policy influencing moments; developing and implementing a strategic approach to communications; project-managing the delivery of key outputs and activities (from each project and beyond) to agreed deadlines and budget parameters; coordinating and delivering a range of events and convening opportunities; coordinating the production of publications and digital communications; and effectively monitoring, evaluating and learning from communications approaches.


About you

You will have a demonstrable interest in governance, innovation and learning agendas or political economy approaches and significant experience in strategic communications – working to inform/influence policy outcomes.
You are a self-starter – with the ability to generate plans and ideas and carry them through to completion – with excellent interpersonal skills, including the ability to liaise and communicate with colleagues at all levels of seniority and from different cultures.
You’ll be self-aware, understand situations from a variety of perspectives, and use those traits to navigate your situation and find high impact solutions. You have proven experience convening activities and events, managing publication production and coordinating digital communications.
Your excellent writing skills will support you to summarise technical research in clear, compelling language, and your organisational, prioritisation and project management skills are second to none. You thrive in a busy, fast-paced environment and approach your work with passion, dedication and a can-do attitude.


Closing date: 27 October 2019


Interview Date: 04 November 2019


For more information, please download an application pack from here. If you are experiencing difficulties downloading, please telephone 020 7922 8234 /0351 or email


Please note ODI has a legal responsibility to ensure that all its employees have the right to live and work in the UK. Therefore, if you are made an offer of employment, this will be subject to us verifying that you are eligible to work in the UK before you start work.


ODI is an equal opportunities employer                           Charity Reg. No.228248

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