International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) Published: July 28, 2017
Washington, Dist. Columbia
Post Type
Experience (minimum)
2-5 Years
Education (minimum)
Travel Required?



HarvestPlus seeks a highly-motivated Communications Specialist I/II to join our team. The successful candidate will thrive in a dynamic and innovative environment, and produce a range of written and online content to support the organization’s communications strategy. This exempt position is a one year, fixed term, renewable appointment and is located at HarvestPlus headquarters in Washington, DC. 


HarvestPlus improves nutrition and public health by developing and promoting biofortified food crops that are rich in vitamins and minerals while providing global leadership on evidence and technology. HarvestPlus is part of the CGIAR Research Program on Agriculture for Nutrition and Health (A4NH). CGIAR is a global agriculture research partnership for a food secure future. Its science is carried out by its 15 research centers in collaboration with hundreds of partner organizations. The HarvestPlus program is coordinated by two of these centers, the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT) and the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).


The Communications Specialist will be responsible for developing and editing a range of written content to support HarvestPlus’ communications efforts. He/she will identify potential angles for written content, develop written material and work with vendors and other teams to oversee the design and production of the final communications product. The Communications Specialist will also be responsible for managing the website (using Drupal) including: developing the content, managing search engine optimization, identifying photos and videos, designing website pages and uploading material, processing security updates, as well as general trouble shooting.

Specific duties include but are not limited to:


  • Compose clear, concise, grammatically correct and original copy using different writing styles that appeal to target audiences. This may include articles for newsletters, briefs, online blogs, opeds, news articles, briefing documents, whitepapers, annual reports and other written material
  • Lead the copy development through editing and approval process, ensuring copy is in line with organization’s positioning, search engine optimized and appropriate for target audience
  • Edit written material composed by researchers, scientists and other communications staff at HarvestPlus 

Content Management

  • Provide input for overall editorial pipeline for the communications team
  • Maintain and update HarvestPlus’ website, including identifying content development opportunities, developing content and managing the publishing process online
  • Identify an overall theme and narrative, and manage the content development for the annual report, including collecting relevant information, writing key sections and setting timetables for completion
  • Manage the ongoing update and maintenance of key HarvestPlus collateral, including brochures, fact sheets and web collateral
  • Work with country teams to gather information and insight to support the production of content for HarvestPlus
  • Manage the HarvestPlus Working Paper and Research for Action series
  • Manage distribution of HarvestPlus briefs, press releases, and other promotional materials to target audiences and forums
  • Help analyze web, social media, and other data to help drive content strategy decisions

Team Management

  • Supervise communications associate position on website, social media, and other tasks as determined (10-15% of time)


  • Bachelor’s degree in Communications, International Development, or a related field, plus three years of relevant experience
    • At the Communications Specialist II level, a Master’s degree in Communications, International Development, or a related field, plus five years of relevant experience
  • Demonstrated ability to communicate complex research results in a concise and engaging fashion, in both oral and written English communication
  • Excellent copyediting skills, and highly effective and versatile communication skills – both oral and written
  • Solid project management skills, and the ability to prioritize and manage multiple competing priorities
  • Good working knowledge of Drupal
  • Strong interpersonal and collaboration skills; proven ability to be flexible in a team-oriented environment with diverse groups of people
  • Conversant in social networking tools
  • Creative and a professional level of attention to detail
  • Ability and willingness to travel internationally if needed


  • Experience working agriculture or nutrition field
  • International experience, especially in Asia or Africa
  • Proficient in a language other than English
  • Familiarity with desktop publishing software (e.g. PageMaker, InDesign)



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