Communication for Development Specialist

UN Children's Fund, Dakar, Senegal

Skill RequiredMedia and Communication
Preferred Experience: 
8 to 10 Year
Closing Date for Applications: 
9th January, 2018

Job Description

UNICEF works in 190 countries and territories to protect the rights of every child. UNICEF has spent 70 years working to improve the lives of children and their families. Defending children's rights throughout their lives requires a global presence, aiming to produce results and understand their effects. UNICEF believes all children have a right to survive, thrive and fulfill their potential – to the benefit of a better world.

How can you make a difference?

Under the general guidance of the supervisor, and in close coordination with the Communication Officer, responsible for the design, formulation, management, execution, monitoring and evaluation of a behavioural change and social mobilization strategy, plan of action and programme activities in support of the country programme.

Key functions, accountabilities and related duties/tasks

Summary of key functions/accountabilities:

Programme communication programme strategy, plan and implementation for behavioural change

  • Designs, manages, and facilitates the implementation of programme communication strategy, plan of action and activities for strategic communication and promotion for social and behavioural change in support of country programme delivery.
  • In collaboration with UNICEF management and decision makers and planners of government, donor organizations and the private sector, the Communication for Development Specialist designs, manages and facilitates the implementation of communication policy, strategy and plans of action aiming at general public and service providers through: (a) behaviour development/change at individual/household levels; (b) social mobilization of civil society organizations; and (c) increased community participation in development programmes for positive social change.
  • Makes viable recommendations on operational strategies in the areas of participatory communication, social mobilization and behaviour change and on appropriate materials and media to reach target audiences.

Programme communication materials

  • Organizes the research, development, pre-testing, and production of culturally relevant communication materials.
  • In collaboration with partners, the Communication for Development Specialist organizes and manages the formative research, development, pre-testing and production of culturally relevant communication materials to ensure effective and efficient programme delivery, including facilitating behaviour change, where necessary.
  • Supports the UNICEF global communications objectives and strategies through development of complementary country specific and local community materials.
  • Ensures the quality, consistency and appropriateness of communication materials that are developed, produced, and disseminated to local communities, government officials, other partners and the press.

Partnerships for social mobilization

  • Develops and enhances strong partnerships with community groups, leaders and other partners in the community and civil society for promotion of participation in social and behavioural changes supportive of programme goals.
  • Develops partnerships with various religious groups, traditional leaders, teachers, artists and other organized groups in the community, as well as civil society organizations, to orient them on country programme goals and to solicit their involvement in the implementation of the country programme.
  • Promotes a better understanding of children's and women's issues by assisting in or managing a country level behaviour change and social mobilization strategy supportive of effective and efficient programme delivery.
  • Promotes and influences behaviour development/change at individual/ household levels, social mobilization of civil society organizations and increased community participation in development programmes.

Capacity building support

  • Develops training materials and activities to build capacity for participatory and behaviour change communication.
  • Develops training materials and activities to build capacity in participatory and behaviour change communication for personnel who are involved in the planning, implementation and evaluation of programme communication intervention, in support of programme sustainability.

Coordination and collaboration with government and partners.

  • Provides effective coordination and technical support to government counterparts and other partners in the development and strategic use of communication for social development.
  • Coordinates with government counterparts in the development and appropriate use of communication for social development aimed at both individual behaviour change and collective action. Provide technical support as required.
  • Collaborates with government officials, community leaders, UN, and bilateral agencies and NGOs in the organization of activities, operational research, advocacy and exchange of information and ideas supportive of programme communication goals and strategies.

Monitoring and evaluation

  • Monitor and evaluate programme activities and prepare monitoring and evaluation reports. Exchange findings, experiences, lessons learned and new methods with partners.
  • Monitors and evaluates programme activities on the basis of applied communication research and frequent visits to project sites.
  • Analyzes and evaluates data to ensure compliance and achievement of objectives and recommend corrective action, when necessary, to meet programme/project objectives. Prepares monitoring and evaluation reports in accordance with the established guidelines, methods and procedures. Provides technical advice to programme staff, government officials and other counterparts, and coordinates and manages the evaluative elements of country programme milestone meetings, such as mid-term reviews, strategy meetings, previews and reviews and annual reviews.
  • Disseminates communication research findings, ensures exchanges and sharing of experience, lessons learned, best practices, and new methods to government officials, programme staff, and other UNICEF partners.

Budget planning and management of program funds

  • Participate in the budget planning and ensure the compliance and the optimal appropriation of allocated programme funds.
  • Participates in and contributes to the budget and programme review and planning. Establishes programme work plans, allocation of resources, and monitors progress and compliance.
  • Monitors the overall allocation and disbursement of programme funds, making sure that funds are properly coordinated, monitored and liquidated.
  • Takes appropriate actions to optimize use of programme funds. Improves programme efficiency, quality and delivery through a rigorous and transparent approach to programme planning, monitoring and evaluation.

Impact of Results

The impact of results will contribute to systematic convergence with other sectors through more efficient and timely planning, strengthen regional strategic representation and partnerships in the region, quality assurance and oversight for Country offices, develop skills and capacities for regional staff, knowledge management and intellectual leadership, and resource leveraging and reporting.

Competencies and level of proficiency required

Core Values

  • Commitment
  • Diversity and inclusion
  • Integrity

Core competencies

  • Communication [ III ]
  • Working with People [ II ]
  • Drive for Results [ II ]

Functional Competencies:

  • Leading and Supervising [ I ]
  • Formulating Strategies and Concepts [ II ]
  • Relating and Networking [ II ]
  • Persuading and Influencing [ II ]
  • Applying Technical Expertise [ II ]
  • Entrepreneurial Thinking [ II ]

To qualify as a/an [champion or advocate] for every child you will have

Education: Advanced university degree in the social/behavioural sciences, (Sociology, Anthropology, Psychology, Health Education) with emphasis on strategic communication planning for behaviour development, social mobilization, participatory communication, and research.

Experience: Minimum eight years of progressively responsible professional work experience in the development, planning and management of social development programmes, including several years in developing countries, with practical experience in the adaptation and application of communication planning processes to specific programmes.

Language Requirements: Fluency in French and English

For every Child, you demonstrate

  • Our core values of Commitment, Diversity and Integrity and core competencies in Communication, Working with People and Drive for Results.
  • This position is classified as “rotational” which means the incumbent is expected to rotate to another duty station upon completion of their tour of duty,
  • UNICEF is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages qualified candidates from all backgrounds to apply.


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