Communications Manager (From Safety Net to Solid Ground Initiative)

Urban Institute, Washington, District of Columbia

Date PostedJanuary 26, 2018
Job StatusNot Specified
SalaryNot Specified

Who we are:

At the nonprofit Urban Institute, we believe in the power of evidence to improve lives and strengthen communities.  Our employees are empowered to open minds, shape decisions and offer solutions.  We encourage intellectual honesty, innovation, diversity, and mutual respect, and our analysis elevates the debate, wherever it takes place.

The Urban Institute has built a cutting-edge in-house communications team that is translating research for broad audiences through creative content and innovative engagement. Urban is hiring a communications manager to join our strategic communications team as part of a new initiative.

How you’ll contribute:

The Communications Manager will play an integral role in From Safety Net to Solid Ground, a new cross-disciplinary effort by policy researchers to forecast, monitor, and analyze major shifts in federal antipoverty policies and programs. In partnership with researchers and communications staff, s/he will develop strategies to raise visibility and engage target audiences through timely research content.

The Communications Manager will also lend expertise to other cross-center projects, including Urban's initiative on the social determinants of health, which manages a grantmaking program that supports research on how laws and policies improve the health, well-being, and equity of people and communities. S/he will serve also as a member of both communications and research units, reporting to the senior communications manager with a dotted line to the director of the initiative.

Responsibilities include:

  • Translate content, hone research insights, and develop products—including digital content and fact sheets—that are relevant to federal policymakers and practitioners at all levels
  • Develop outreach strategies for key audiences, using digital channels, social and traditional media, and other platforms
  • Oversee product release scheduling and execution
  • Identify opportunities within the news cycle to bring research to bear in national policy conversations
  • Manage cross-team collaborations of researchers and communications staff
  • Plan and support engagement events and activities such as webinars, panel discussions, and briefings
  • Implement a metrics strategy to measure the effectiveness of the initiative’s visibility and engagement tactics
  • Oversee a pipeline of research products for release and ensure that research insights reach key decision maker and stakeholder audiences
  • Share research within the news and policy cycles
  • Develop content for blog, social media, and newsletter channels; and support events
  • Coordinate activities among teams of researchers, communications staff, and external collaborators

What you’ll bring:

The ideal candidate is a savvy, flexible, fast-thinking policy communications professional with excellent project management skills. In leading the communications strategy for the From Safety Net to Solid Ground initiative, the manager will work across all facets of external visibility and outreach and serve as a liaison for Urban researchers and staff. The manager should understand the policy environment, identifying opportunities to share evidence-based ideas and working closely with researchers to hone insights and solutions.

  • BA or MA in Communications, Marketing, Journalism, Media Studies, or related field
  • Three to five years of communications experience
  • Excellent project management skills, with experience managing a large initiative or major project
  • Passion for social and economic policy research and knowledge of the federal policy landscape, process, and opportunities
  • Strong writing and analytical skills
  • Ability to be a team player and natural collaborator who works well within large teams
  • Knowledge of strategic communications best practices and current trends
  • Ability to translate complex research into clear, compelling content for online audiences
  • An appetite for news, with an ability to identify and leverage media opportunities
  • Ability to work under pressure and tight deadlines
  • Proven ability to set objectives, measure success, and meet (or exceed) goals

What you’ll experience:

Working in the Nation’s Capital- the epicenter of public policy- among a network of policy experts, you can expect to have an impact on policy areas you care about and work with great colleagues who are smart, mission-driven, and collaborative.  You will blend academic rigor with on-the-ground collaboration; be encouraged and supported to fulfill your potential through meaningful work that matters; and, enjoy a welcoming workplace free from harassment, discrimination and intolerance.

In addition, we offer a comprehensive benefits package that includes: medical, dental, disability, and life insurance coverage.  Competitive paid time off allowance, and eligibility to participate in a generous retirement savings plan plus elect a pretax benefit for commuting expenses.

The Urban Institute strives to be a vibrant, creative community of skilled and committed people who bring to their work a whole range of different experiences. Accordingly, the Urban Institute is committed to Equal Employment without regard for race, ethnicity, gender, protected veteran status, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or any other protected status under applicable law.

The Urban Institute is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer -- Minorities/Women/Disabilities/Veterans.



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