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Job Details

Writer/ Communications - Policy and Advocacy

Company name
Mercy Corps International

Washington, DC, United States

Employment Type

Writing, Pr

Posted on
Dec 17,2018

Valid Through
Apr 01,2019

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About Mercy CorpsMercy Corps is a leading global organization powered by the belief that a better world is possible. In disaster, in hardship, in more than 40 countries around the world, we partner to put bold solutions into action — helping people triumph over adversity and build stronger communities from within. Now, and for the future.Program / Department SummaryMercy Corps works to influence the policy, priorities, practices, and debates that affect the people we serve in fragile contexts and complex humanitarian crises. Our most compelling influence relies on substantive research on issues where we have expertise and a credible voice, combined with targeted and sustained engagement of policymakers, donors, peer organizations and other leaders. Priority issues for Mercy Corps’ research and influence efforts currently include root causes of conflict and violence, governance challenges in fragile and post-conflict contexts, climate change and resilience in complex crises.General Position SummaryWe are looking for an energetic, excellent Writer with proven research skills to play a critical role on our policy, research and communications teams. The Writer will report to the Vice President for Policy and Research in order to advance Mercy Corps as a strong, credible, and timely voice on key policy issues and research questions. This position will play a vital role in enhancing Mercy Corps’ influence agenda. The Writer will be responsible for drafting press releases, op-eds, talking points, and short reports and thought pieces that maximize the impact of, and learnings from, Mercy Corps programs and research. The Writer will support the development of policy documents based on key Mercy Corps research findings, programmatic learning, and policy positions, and play a key role in communicating and leveraging the products to influence external debates and decisions. With the support of the Vice President of Policy and Research and the Senior Director of Communications, the S/He will help Mercy Corps craft its external message, expressed through press releases, petitions, social media, and other written products.To succeed at this job will require talent, creativity and the ability to work quickly across teams, synthesizing information and expertise. The ideal candidate will be motivated by Mercy Corps’ mission, humble and collaborative, and familiar with policy debates and research questions on foreign assistance, complex crises such as Yemen, Syria, Nigeria and South Sudan, and key policy issues related to our work, including conflict, migration, climate-related debates, and the global refugee crisis.  The S/He will work closely with three teams: (1) Mercy Corps’ Policy and Advocacy team, who will provide input on policy priorities and political strategy; (2) Mercy Corps’ Research team, who will provide evidence and findings for dissemination to different audiences, and (3) Mercy Corps’ Media and Communications team, as well as other members of the Resource Development team, who will provide input on global media priorities and communications strategy. The Writer will on occasion contribute to internal communications as well.Essential Job ResponsibilitiesContent  GenerationSupport the CEO, the Vice President for Policy and Research, the Research and Learning team, and the Policy and Advocacy Team members in developing policy documents and communications as needed, including by assisting with the drafting of policy-related talking points and key messages to help guide and inform Mercy Corps staff members and advocacy efforts.Support external Communications for the Vice President for Policy and Research and CEO of Mercy Corps, including by helping to draft op-eds and statements tailored to key audiences.Support the social media team by helping to draft content based on available products.Support the development of petitions by helping to draft content in-line with key policy positions.Communication and  Dissemination Amplify the dissemination of research and policy products and messages by supporting Mercy Corps Headquarters and field teams to place and present communications and products in relevant outlets and forums.Develop strong relationships and ensure effective coordination on the content, timing, and other aspects of policy and research communications with Mercy Corps internal stakeholders, particularly field teams, technical support teams, media and communications, brand and humanitarian analysis teams.  Organizational Learning As part of our commitment to organizational learning and in support of our understanding that learning organizations are more effective, efficient and relevant to the communities they serve, we expect all team members to commit 5% of their time to learning activities that benefit Mercy Corps as well as themselves. Accountability to  Beneficiaries Mercy Corps team members are expected to support all efforts toward accountability, specifically to our beneficiaries and to international standards guiding international relief and development work, while actively engaging beneficiary communities as equal partners in the design, monitoring and evaluation of our field projects. Supervisory Responsibility  noneAccountabilityReports Directly To: Vice President for Policy and Research  Works Directly With: Policy and Advocacy team, Research and Learning Team, Regional and Country Teams, Technical Support Unit, Media and Communications Team, Brand Team, Humanitarian Analysis Team Knowledge and ExperienceBachelors/Masters degree or higher in relevant field (international development, international relations, or public policy).3- 5 years of relevant experience as a writer producing press releases, op-eds, and other external communications.Familiarity with the U.S. Executive Branch and Congress, and policy expertise in particular international crises or international issues such as conflict, governance or climate issues.Professional editing skills, including significant professional expertise editing other people’s writing.Significant experience writing external communications such as op-eds, press releases, and public letters.Strong analytical skills and the ability to effectively gather and summarize large amounts of information from various sources.Strong political and strategic skills and a strong understanding of the links between political elements, policy decisions, and development practice.Demonstrated sensitivity, skill and experience in working diplomatically and effectively within diverse cultural settings and in public relations and correspondence with a wide variety of public constituents. Success FactorsAbility to build and maintain strong relationships with colleagues, peer groups, and officials; and motivation to seek out and establish new relationships. Ability to quickly and effectively summarize complex information into clear, concise writing. A clear understanding of Mercy Corps’ mission and collaborative style of operation. Ability to work simultaneously on multiple tasks in a fast-paced environment and meet deadlines under those conditions. Strong grasp of links between research findings, policy outcomes, and field-level program impact. Ability to work as part of a team and coordinate with both HQ and country team personnel.Computer literate with strong organizational skills. Ability to operate with a significant degree of autonomy within agreed upon parameters. Flexibility and ability to adapt to changing conditions and requirementsLiving Conditions / Environmental ConditionsThis position will be based in Washington, DC. The role may involve some travel to Portland, Oregon and some Mercy Corps field sites.  Mercy Corps team members represent the agency both during and outside work hours when deployed in a field posting or on a visit/TDY to a field posting. Team members are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner and respect local laws, customs and MC's policies, procedures, and values at all times and in all in-country venues.

Company info

Mercy Corps International
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Company Profile
The world is more fragile than ever. Food shortages have left millions of people hungry, while violent conflict has sent millions on the run. From poverty and malnutrition to natural disasters and climate change, it’s easy to see a world of insurmountable challenges. Instead, we see an opportunity to create transformative change. We see the world differently. In crisis, we believe in the power of human potential. In struggle, we believe in the ability of communities to grow stronger.

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