Communications Lead, UrbanShift

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World Resources Institute

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Washington, DC, United States

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27 days ago

This position is remote-eligible and only for consideration within the United States where WRI is state registered. Existing work authorization is required at the time of application submission. WRI is unable to sponsor any visa work sponsorship for this position.


About the Program:


The Communications Lead is part of the WRI Cities Urban Development team and Global Communications team and reports to the UrbanShift Senior Manager and the WRI Ross Center Director for Global Communications and Engagement. The Communications Lead will manage communication and storytelling efforts for UrbanShift (formerly called the Sustainable Cities Impact Program). UrbanShift was officially launched in September 2021 during Climate Week NYC and supports cities in Asia, Africa and Latin America to adopt integrated, equitable and low-carbon approaches to urban development. The program is funded by the Global Environment Facility (GEF) and led by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), working in partnership with WRI, ICLEI, C40, the World Bank, UNDP and the Asian Development Bank. In its current iteration, UrbanShift brings together 23 cities from 9 countries (Argentina, Brazil, China, Costa Rica, India, Indonesia, Morocco, Rwanda and Sierra Leone) and a wide range of stakeholders to facilitate sustainable and integrated urban transformation in the regions of practice. Our approach to achieving this transformation is two-fold: local, city-level pilot projects combined with a global knowledge and capacity-building platform. WRI manages UrbanShift’s global platform.



Job Highlight:

In this role, you will initiate, produce and promote communications products that align with UrbanShift’s brand and showcase our local and global activities to key external and internal audiences. These products include publications, blogs, emails, newsletters, social media, webinars, videos, online courses, in-person workshops, international conferences, and an overall communications strategy for the program. You will also have the opportunity to engage with cutting-edge research and learning on urban sustainability topic such as nature-based solutions, circular economy, climate action planning, climate finance, geospatial analysis and gender-sensitive urban planning. You’ll assist the project management team in coordinating with UrbanShift’s international partners and organizing virtual and in-person capacity-building events, and you’ll liaise with consultants and vendors to manage the production of deliverables that require specialized skills. Your work will be coordinated through the WRI Cities Global Communications team in order to ensure consistency and amplify the impact of the project, while also providing additional capacity for key activities.

For more information about UrbanShift, visit the website, check out the teaser video, follow us on Twitter, and consult the Annual Report, which was launched at UrbanShift’s side event at COP27.


What will you do:

  • Manage UrbanShift’s brand, ensuring that all communication products are high quality and consistent with the brand guidelines and strategy.
  • Manage the UrbanShift website, including but not limited to creating and posting new content, updating existing content, ensuring technical maintenance, and optimizing for SEO.
  • Manage UrbanShift’s social media channels (Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn), maintaining a regular schedule of original and partner content, promoting UrbanShift’s events, and devising a strategy to amplify engagement.
  • Manage and coordinate maintenance of the UrbanShift Resource Library, including curating knowledge products and publications relevant to UrbanShift’s work streams and target audience and uploading them to the website.
  • Coordinate the production of UrbanShift’s external-facing annual reports, including gathering, writing, and editing content, selecting photos, and providing design direction.
  • Craft marketing assets and strategy for each UrbanShift event (for e.g., webinars, advocacy events, workshops), including messaging, social media cards, emails, event pages, and print collateral, as needed.
  • Create four newsletters per year to send to UrbanShift’s subscriber list, highlighting recent work and achievements and newly published blogs and research.
  • Manage UrbanShift’s blog, coordinating the creation of original content and the cross-posting of partner content, with a focus on UrbanShift’s capacity-building events, new research and analysis in relevant workstreams, success stories from UrbanShift’s local projects, interviews with city and national stakeholders, and more.
  • Support the production, launch and promotion of UrbanShift’s City Academy, a series of eight online self-paced courses dedicated to specific urban planning themes, including brand and design guidance and a marketing plan to drive online enrollment.
  • Coordinate with WRI, ICLEI, C40, GEF, and UNEP communications teams to expand UrbanShift’s presence in the sustainable urban development space, leveraging each organization’s existing expertise and networks. This work includes cross-promoting key events, compiling material for and disseminating UrbanShift publications, and collaborating on web content, such as blogs.
  • Devise strategy to grow UrbanShift’s subscriber list and increase engagement with web and email content.
  • Manage communications-related projects with external vendors as needed, including writing TORs, reviewing Expressions of Interests, maintaining regular communication, processing payments, and providing feedback on deliverables.
  • Support the team with general communications tasks as needed, such as hosting webinars, taking meeting notes, preparing talking points and slide presentations, etc.
  • Manage UrbanShift’s video and photo libraries on YouTube and Flickr.



What will you need:


  • Education: You have a completed Bachelor’s degree in communications, journalism, international relations, public policy, or related field
  • Experience: You have a minimum of 7+ years of full-time professional experience in creating and implementing communications strategies and high-level content
  • Excellent writing and editing skills (journalistic writing and annual report writing experience a plus)
  • Excellent web content, social media, and email marketing skills (Hootsuite/Emplifi/Pardot/Salesforce experience a plus)
  • Strong organizational, coordination, and project management skills
  • Professional experience at an environmental or scientific organization and understanding of issues related to the environment, climate, sustainability and urban development, especially as it relates to sustainable cities
  • Ability to communicate clearly and persuasively in conversation and in writing
  • Excellent design sense and visual storytelling ability (Adobe InDesign/Illustrator/Premier Pro skills a plus)
  • Critical thinker who can analyze complex and technical content and convey it in engaging infographics and other visual forms
  • Ability to work cooperatively with others, demonstrate flexibility in fulfilling assignments, and be proactive in planning, researching, and pitching ideas
  • Strong computer skills, including knowledge of website content management systems (Drupal/WordPress/CSS skills a plus)
  • Ability to work calmly and enthusiastically under high pressure
  • Ability to assess impact of communications strategies and outputs, familiarity with Google Analytics
  • Detail oriented and organized thinker who can juggle multiple, competing priorities
  • Languages: Fluent in English (fluency in one of the UrbanShift languages a plus: Spanish, French, Portuguese, Mandarin, or Bahasa Indonesia)
  • Requirements: Existing work authorization in the US is required at the time of application.

Potential Salary:

Salary is commensurate with experience and other compensable factors.

How to Apply:


Please submit a resume with cover letter by the date of February 3, 2023. You must apply through the WRI Careers portal to be considered.


What we offer:

  • A competitive salary
  • Access to the WRI global network with the opportunity to exchange with and learn from passionate colleagues working at the cutting edge of their fields across Asia, Africa, Europe, Latin America and the US.
  • The chance to have an impact and to develop your career within a mission driven organization with access to varied learning and training opportunities.
  • A workplace that strives to put diversity and inclusion at the heart of our work.
  • The opportunity to join and get involved in different working groups and affinity groups to shape the future of WRI.
  • Long-term commitment to hybrid working model with flexible working hours.
  • Generous leave days that increase with tenure.


About Us:

Founded in 1982, 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 to secure a sustainable future for people and the planet: climate change, energy, food, forests, water, sustainable cities, and the ocean. WRI has a global staff of over 1,800 people with work spanning 60 countries. We have offices in Africa, Brazil, China, Europe, India, Indonesia, Mexico, Colombia and the United States, as well as a growing presence in other countries and regions.

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.


Our mission and values:

WRI’s mission is to move human society to live in ways that protect Earth’s environment and its capacity to provide for the needs and aspirations of current and future generations.

Our values are shared ideals that bind us together: Integrity, Innovation, Urgency, Independence, Respect.


Our culture:

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. We are committed to providing equal opportunities in employment, we embrace all diversity and encourage women, the LGBTQ+ community, persons with disabilities, Afro-descendants, and Indigenous people to apply. Recognizing our strong commitment to gender equality, WRI has also been awarded EDGE certification.


Our team in Human Resources carefully reviews all applications.