Chief Communications and Marketing Officer

Organization icon

World Resources Institute

Location icon

Washington, DC, United States

Clock icon

8 days ago

Program Overview:

Communications, Marketing, and Engagement plays a crucial role in WRI’s efforts to achieve rapid, systemic change to address the climate emergency and other urgent global challenges at the nexus of environment, economic growth, and human well-being. The Chief Communications Officer leads WRI’s global network of over 150 communications, marketing, and engagement professionals in a combination of direct and dotted line reports.

Job Summary:

Communications, Marketing, and Engagement plays a crucial role in WRI’s efforts to achieve rapid, systemic change to address the climate emergency and other urgent global challenges at the nexus of environment, economic growth, and human well-being. The Chief Communications Officer leads WRI’s global network of over 150 communications, marketing, and engagement professionals in a combination of direct and dotted line reports.

Reporting to the Managing Director for Global Delivery, you will serve as a key member of WRI’s management team and lead the strategy for communications, marketing, and engagement. In your role, you will be advising members of the global executive team and management team, identifying internal and external communications and marketing priorities to create and deliver timely, effective messages that advance WRI’s mission.

You will manage a diverse, international team of staff and will work closely with WRI offices in Africa, China, Europe, India, Brazil, Indonesia, Mexico, Colombia, and the United States to advance WRI’s brand and communications effectiveness, as well as its overall mission.

As a recognized leader in your field, you bring forth an energetic, inspired, and structured approach to your work You will lead the creation of narratives, communication strategy and messaging, digital communications, branding, design and visual communications. editorial content creation, media relations, marketing, events, and internal communications.

Throughout, you will ensure WRI remains true to evidence and that our work is customized to resonate with the actors whose behaviors and decisions we are striving to change. You will also champion engagement - the systematic cultivation of external relationships with partners, decision-makers, and influencers.

Job Responsibilities:

Strategic leadership and vision: People management is a key element of this responsibility. You will provide vision and leadership to enhance WRI's position as a leader in driving positive action toward our mission and the impacts we seek to achieve.

  • You will inspire, motivate, problem-solve, and appreciate the staff across WRI’s global communications network, to ensure top outcomes such that everyone brings their best.
  • You will oversee the robust financial management of the department’s budgets.

Narrative, Strategy, and Messaging: With growing emphasis on the pillars of people, nature and climate, just transition and diversity, equity, and inclusion, WRI narratives are underpinned by WRI’s large volume of research and data analysis, as well as global trends.

  • You will lead the creation and dissemination of clear, compelling narratives and theories of change about the state of the world, WRI itself, and the solutions we work to advance, as important tools for catalyzing change.
  • You will oversee the preparation and implementation of WRI’s five-year communication strategy, and annual communication plans.
  • You will identify potential communications risks and oversee WRI’s strategic responses to them.

Digital Communications: WRI’s robust digital communications presence is key to reaching a global audience of opinion leaders and decision-makers. Our digital toolkit encompasses the flagship platform, dozens of free-standing websites for WRI-led partnerships, email newsletters, and an active presence on social media platforms.

  • You will oversee WRI’s digital communications team, with a technology-forward mindset, encouraging them to set and meet ambitious metrics-based goals.
  • You will set the direction and support WRI's country offices in entering into and maintaining participation in a global digital strategy and architecture.

Branding, Design, and Visual Communication: WRI’s brand – that of an independent, global network that partners with a wide range of stakeholders to advance evidence-based solutions to our greatest global challenges – is central to our value proposition.

  • You will oversee a branding and design team that ensures WRI’s visual presentation supports this brand.
  • You will oversee the setting and enforcing of visual brand standards in the design of more than 100 research publications per year, which include data visualizations, motion graphics, and compelling videos that enhance public understanding and advance solutions.

Editorial Content: WRI publishes editorial content every day of the week. Our editorial content represents the full range of WRI’s programmatic and institutional activities around our global network and are key to our strategy.

  • You will be responsible for overseeing the quality and timeliness of our editorial content..
  • You will be responsible for overseeing the preparation and dissemination of WRI’s Annual Report and our ‘Stories to Watch’ flagship event.
  • You will be responsible for overseeing the development and implementation of a compelling and impactful range of editorial content, determining the right channels, editorial content and cadence for each of our audiences
  • You will always be on the look-out for opportunities to thoughtfully and sensitively relate WRI’s editorial content to current events.

Events: WRI hosts more than 100 publicly available virtual and in-person events per year, including a growing number of events led by our country offices.

  • You will oversee the quality of event programs, topics covered, key messages, diversity of speakers, and state-of-the-art technology to support participant interaction.

Media Relations: WRI earns thousands of media mentions a year. Earned media – citations of WRI’s work by independent outlets – are an important channel for WRI to reach our audiences k.

  • You will guide the overall media relations strategy and ensure the effectiveness of this work across WRI’s global network.
  • You will keep abreast of new technologies and media including social media to steer global reach.

Internal Communications: WRI relies on effective internal communications to inform and listen to staff in addition to sustaining a sense of belonging and esprit de corps

  • You will be responsible for the effectiveness of internal communications by overseeing two-way communications tools such as intranet, email, and events.
  • You will introduce new cutting-edge approaches that suit the future of work and the expectations of our increasingly diverse and dispersed workforce.

Engagement: WRI defines ‘engagement’ as the systematic cultivation of collaborative relationships with decision-makers and influencers who can advance WRI’s solutions to urgent global problems. WRI’s more than 50 engagement specialists work with program and communications professionals to identify targets of influence and build relationships with them.

  • You will support and guide WRI’s engagement and impact strategies by sharing information, and best practices in this evolving specialty across the institute including the engagement community of practice
  • You will oversee fit-for-purpose techniques and systems for optimizing engagement across WRI

Marketing: WRI’s marketing strategies play a vital role in the creative influence, development, and execution of our strategy.

  • Working closely with our Executive Vice President for Governance and Development, you will support the generation of revenue through successful marketing campaigns.
  • You will lead market research, marketing strategies, advertising, and public relations to drive impact customized to our respective audiences

Measurement and Results: Measurement, evidence and learning are core to WRI’s strength and reputation.

  • You will introduce cutting-edge approaches to assess the impact of our marketing and communications both to support continual improvement and to show by example that WRI applies the principles we expect from others to our own work.

Job Qualifications:

  • Passion for working on environmental and/or development issues
  • Proven track record of advancing big ideas that have accelerated the pace of change.
  • Proven leadership and communication skills
  • Outstanding interpersonal and mangagerial skills and demonstrated ability to work collegially with others with the highest standards of integrity
  • Minimum of 20 years of relevant work experience with at least 8 in a leadership role.
  • Bachelors Degree in related field required. Master degree preferred.
  • International experience, including living in a developing country and/or being multi-lingual, is highly desirable.
  • Ability to thrive in a multi-cultural institution with diverse views and perspectives .
  • Ability to contribute to key institutional decisions, applying a balanced approach to risks and opportunities.
  • Ability to be technology forward to increase WRI’s influence and impact.
  • Commitment to employee well-being, Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and other institutional priorities.
  • Curiosity, creativity, and strong listening skills are necessary. A lively sense of humor and a commitment to stay up to date with a variety of fields and media are desirable.

Potential Salary:

$149,000 - $201,000. Salary is commensurate with experience and other compensable factors.

How to Apply:

Please submit a resume with a cover letter. Applicants must apply through the WRI Careers portal to be considered.

WRI Overview:

World Resources Institute (WRI) is an independent, nonprofit global research organization that turns big ideas into action at the nexus of environment, economic opportunity, and human well-being. We are working to address seven critical challenges that the world must overcome this decade in order to secure a sustainable future for people and the planet: climate change, energy, food, forests, water, sustainable cities, and the ocean.

We are passionate. We value our diversity of interests, skills, and backgrounds. We have a flexible work environment. And we share a common goal to catalyze change that will improve the lives of people. Our shared ideals are at the core of our approach. They include integrity, innovation, urgency, independence, and respect.

The foundation of our work is delivering high-quality research, data, maps, and analysis to solve the world’s greatest environment and international development challenges and improve people’s lives. We work with leaders in government, business, and civil society to drive ambitious action and create change on the ground. Equally important, we bring together partners to develop breakthrough ideas and scale-up solutions for far-reaching, enduring impact.

We have been growing rapidly: our staff has doubled in size over the past 5 years and our operating budget is now $150 million. Founded in 1982, WRI has a global staff of 1,000+ people with work spanning 60 countries. We have offices in Africa, Brazil, China, Europe, India, Indonesia, Mexico, and the United States as well as a growing presence in other countries and regions.

WRI is committed to advancing gender and social equity for human well-being in our mission and applies this principle to our organizational and programmatic practices.