Established in 1944, the World Bank Group (WBG) is one of the world’s largest sources of funding and knowledge for development solutions. It is governed by 189 member countries and delivers services out of 120 offices with nearly 15,000 staff located globally. The WBG consists of five specialized institutions: the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD), the International Development Association (IDA), the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA), and the International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID).
The World Bank Group’s vision is to end extreme poverty by 2030, and promote shared prosperity by fostering the income growth of the bottom 40 percent in every country, in a sustainable manner. To achieve this vision, the WBG focuses its operations in three broad areas, adjusted to individual country context – ensuring inclusive and sustainable growth; investing in human capital, and supporting resilient development.
The organization's strategy and its priorities need to constantly respond to evolving needs of all of its members and the overall development landscape. This takes into account the changing global economic outlook as well as global agreements such as on Sustainable Development that inject enormous momentum into the work of the global development community, including the World Bank Group.
The East Asia Pacific Region
The World Bank Group serves 23 client countries in the East Asia and Pacific (EAP) region, with a total population of about 1.9 billion people and a GNI per capita of about $1,100. Clients range from middle-income countries to low-income countries, to fragile states and small island economies in the Pacific.
This region has made the fastest progress in growth and poverty reduction of any region around the world in the last quarter century. Some countries in the region are poised to reach middle-income levels, and others are preparing to join the small group of high-income countries. Such rapid transformation is leading to the largest shift in rural-to-urban population in human history, generating rising inequality within and across countries, while leaving some countries, sub-national regions and groups behind. The continuing global financial crisis also threatens the sustainability of the gains with countries across the region being forced to address the resulting impacts on macroeconomic stability, economic growth, employment and poverty.
The East Asia Pacific External and Corporate Relations Unit
The East Asia Pacific External and Corporate Relations Unit (EAPEC) is a decentralized team of communications professionals across the Region managed out of the World Bank’s Headquarters in Washington, D.C. The EAPEC team:
• Provides strategic support to operations by embedding communications into the operations project cycle and reform processes, and articulating the impact and results of World Bank support;
• Builds capacity and provides technical support to key government counterparts and program/project implementers to help them better communicate development and change/reform processes;
• Provides guidance, analysis and advice as trusted advisors to regional and country management teams to help manage risks and capitalize on opportunities;
• Strengthens strategic relationships and alliances with key influencers in civil society, media, academia, think tanks, Parliament, faith-based groups, labor groups, etc., to build political support for the WBG’s work in the region and in-country.
Note: If the selected candidate is a current Bank Group staff member with a Regular or Open-Ended appointment, s/he will retain his/her Regular or Open-Ended appointment. All others will be offered a 2 year term appointment.
Duties and Accountabilities:
The Senior Communications Officer works under the overall supervision of the Communications Manager as a member of a small HQ-based team and a larger, decentralized regional team. His/her specific duties and accountabilities include but may not be limited to the following:
• Lead and coordinate region-wide media launches of both regional and corporate flagship publications (e.g., bi-annual East Asia Pacific Economic Update, Doing Business, Global Economic Prospects, and World Development Report, etc.). This includes drafting communications collateral (press releases, key messages, feature stories, talking points, tough Q&As, etc.); coordinating with field-based colleagues on launch preparation and logistics; collaborating with EAPEC’s online team; analyzing media coverage, and preparing post-launch dissemination analysis and metrics reports.
• Serve as media coordinator for EAPEC, including representing EAPEC at the weekly global media meeting, helping to manage media-related risks and liaising with communications staff in Corporate, Global Practices, IFC and MIGA, as well as country-based staff to support communications around high-risk/high-priority projects and programs; and managing/fielding media requests
• Monitor and analyze current events and public and press opinion (newspapers, blogs, etc.) with a view to risk management. This involves advising regional management and other relevant staff and clients on trends and news developments that may impact the Bank and its work in the region, flagging risks and helping to determine appropriate responses.
• Prepare and manage major communications products to a high standard, including op-eds, briefings and speeches, news releases, feature stories, talking points, Q&As, events and launches etc.
• Oversee the editorial quality of EAPEC’s media products, including press releases, op-eds, blogs, and speeches – and ensure that products are prepared and issued on time and to a high standard of quality. This involves assisting EAPEC team members in country offices (and helping to build their capacity as needed).
• Support the planning, development, and implementation of effective communications and outreach strategies to raise awareness and understanding of the World Bank’s work and strategic priorities in the region, and for high-profile Senior Management visits to the Region. This includes message development, strategic framing/positioning, stakeholder identification, horizon risk scanning, and preparation of communications tools such as op-eds, speeches, blogs, etc.).
• Provide communications support to select operations, in cooperation with the project and country teams, helps advise on operational communications of various projects and contributes to communications strategies in support of highly sensitive projects in the EAP region.
• Master's degree and at least eight years of professional experience, or Bachelor’s degree and at least 13 years of professional experience, in a relevant discipline (communication, journalism, economics, finance, business administration, development studies, or international relations). Thorough knowledge of and practical experience in full range of communications approaches essential to planning, executing, and monitoring communications strategies – e.g., campaign management, multimedia, media operations, social media marketing, opinion research, audience outreach, message targeting.
• Strong conceptual and research/analytical skills, with the ability to think strategically and rapidly analyze and integrate diverse information from varied sources into conclusions and recommendations.
• Excellent oral and written communication and presentational skills. Spoken and written fluency required in English.
• Good knowledge of social, political and economic development issues in the East Asia Pacific region.
• Strong organizational, research and analytical skills.
• Ability to work to tight deadlines and to juggle multiple tasks and work effectively under stress.
• Strong interpersonal skills and ability to work effectively as a team player in a multicultural environment, and with external counterparts.
• Excellent computer skills; ability to use standard Bank technology packages (such Microsoft Office, Outlook, etc.)
In addition to these above criteria, the successful candidate will demonstrate the following competencies:
• Communication in International Development - High-level ability to communicate with internal and external partners, based on understanding their communication needs and possessing significant experience with international development topics and issues.
• Social Media, Information Channels, and Communication Tools Awareness – Ability to assist, consult, or lead others in assuring existing or new, upcoming communication tools and media channels are fully leveraged to assure proper communication.
• Access to Information Policy - Recognized as an authority in information access, and in the distribution, design, and delivery of communications products and in other information dissemination activities.
• Content Development - Has significant experience in and/or demonstrates broad, in-depth proficiency in this competency and is therefore able to clear for internal or external use material that is developed.
• Content and Style Editing - Has significant experience in, leads others and demonstrates in-depth proficiency in rewriting or editing complex communications products for purposeful structure, clarity of ideas, and the logical persuasive presentation of content.
• Communication Strategy, Planning, and Execution - Has significant experience in and/or demonstrates in-depth proficiency at a level sufficient to assist, consult, or lead others in the planning, development, and execution of communication strategies for complex projects.
• Relationship Management and Political Awareness - Has significant experience and/or demonstrates ability to lead and manage relationships with critical internal and/or external high-risk constituencies to foster strategic partnerships and to strengthen the Bank's image or mitigate reputational risk.
• Client Orientation - Maintains client relationships in the face of conflicting demands or directions and provides evidence-based advice and solutions based on sound diagnosis and knowledge.
• Drive for Results - Identifies the needed resources to accomplish results involving multiple stakeholders and finds solutions to obstacles affecting key deliverables.
• Teamwork (Collaboration) and Inclusion - Shows leadership in ensuring the team stays organized and focused, and actively seeks and considers diverse ideas and approaches.
• Knowledge, Learning and Communication - Leads in the sharing of best practice, trends, knowledge and lessons learned across units and with clients and partners, articulating ideas verbally and in writing in a clear and compelling way across audiences of varied levels.
• Business Judgment and Analytical Decision Making - Gathers inputs, assesses risk, considers impact and articulates benefits of decisions for internal and external stakeholders over the long term.
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