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Communications Officer


  • Organization: FAO - Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
  • Location: Santiago
  • Grade: Mid level - P-4, International Professional - Internationally recruited position
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Communication and Public Information
  • Closing Date: Closed


• FAO is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality, background and culture
• Qualified female applicants, qualified nationals of non-and under-represented Members and persons with disabilities are encouraged to apply
• Everyone who works for FAO is required to adhere to the highest standards of integrity and professional conduct, and to uphold FAO's values
• FAO, as a Specialized Agency of the United Nations, has a zero-tolerance policy for conduct that is incompatible with its status, objectives and mandate, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination
• All selected candidates will undergo rigorous reference and background checks
• All applications will be treated with the strictest confidentiality
• FAO staff are subject to the authority of the Director-General, who may assign them to any of the activities or offices of the Organization.

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) contributes to the achievement of the 2030 Agenda through FAO Strategic Framework by supporting the transformation to MORE efficient, inclusive, resilient and sustainable agrifood systems, for better production, better nutrition, a better environment, and a better life, leaving no one behind.

Organizational Setting

The Office of Communications (OCC) is responsible for both external and internal communications of the Organization. It aims at making FAO’s communications strategic, coherent, focused and impactful, while ensuring effectiveness and efficiency in communication-related operations. The Regional Office for Latin America and the Caribbean (RLC) is responsible for leading FAO's response to regional priorities for food security, agriculture and rural development through the identification, planning and implementation of FAO's priority activities in the region. It ensures a multidisciplinary approach to programmes, identifies priority areas of action for the Organization in the region and, in collaboration with Offices, Centres and Divisions at headquarters, and develops, promotes and oversees FAO's strategic response to regional priorities. RLC also advises on the incorporation of regional priorities into the Organization's Programme of Work and Budget and implements approved programmes and projects in the region, monitors the level of programme implementation and draws attention to problems and deficiencies. RLC develops and maintains relations with region-wide institutions including the Regional Economic Integration Organizations (REIOs).

The Regional Office supports regional policy dialogue on food security, agriculture and rural development issues, facilitates the emergence of regional partnerships, and supports capacity development and resource mobilization for food security, agriculture and rural development in the region.

The post is located in the Office of Communications (OCC) with duty station RLC, Santiago, Chile.

Reporting Lines
The Communication Officer reports to the Assistant Director-General/Regional Representative (ADG/RR) for Latin America and the Caribbean (RLC), under the technical and functional guidance of the Office of Communications (OCC), which is responsible for both external and internal communications of the Organization.

Technical Focus
The Communications Officer provides technical advice or expertise for the planning and delivery of OCC programmes in line with FAO's priorities for food security, agriculture and rural development in the region.

Key Results
Comprehensive communication and media relations expertise for the planning and delivery of OCC programmes, products and services and the development of related policies and specialized tools and systems.

Key Functions
• Leads projects and/or work teams, leads and/or participates on Office teams, provides services and/or professional expertise in internal committees and working groups and represents FAO at inter-agency meetings;
• Plans and delivers programmes, products and services including related policies, systems and tools to facilitate the effective media relations and internal as well as external corporate communication;
• Analyses information, data, statistics, relativities, trends, problems and/or issues to support effective communication delivery, new initiatives and the preparation of plans, strategies, reports, policies and/or other products;
• Provides specialist advice and expertise to internal and external partners on specific or complex cases, strategic communication, written communication, policy interpretation issues and/or best practices, etc.;
• Manages special projects and provides guidance to consultants for the development and implementation of new products, tools and systems;
• Develops information, training materials and products to increase understanding of programmes, services and policies; promotes capacity development;
• Develops relevant performance criteria and indicators to evaluate programmes, products and services.

Specific Functions
• Leads and supervises the design and implementation of an innovative regional communication strategy, taking into account corporate priorities;
• Leads and manages RLC's communications team, represents RLC communications inorganization-wide committees and represents FAO at regional-level inter-agency communications meetings;
• Leads the Regional Communications Network and supervises the work of its coordinator; provides guidance, support and monitoring of the work of communication specialists throughout the region;
• Coordinates communication around Flagship Publication launches, Regional Conferences and High-Level visits in the region;
• Ensures a significant presence of FAO in top-tier media in the region, maintaining close working relations with regional media representatives, including print, broadcast and digital media, ensuring the timely preparation of press releases, editorial articles, press conferences, interviews of FAO experts, replies to specific enquiries from journalists, etc.; monitors regional print, broadcast and on-line media coverage of FAO and reports on issues of importance to the Organization;
• Provides support, as needed, to the elaboration and implementation of communication plans for each of the Regional Initiatives;
• Provides support, as needed, to the elaboration and implementation of communication plans at subregional and country levels in the region;
• Designs and supervises capacity building plans, to increase the communications skills of Officers, FAO Representatives and members of the Regional Communications Network;
• Supervises the work of publications (books, brochures and leaflets) produced in the region, establishing and supervising an effective quality assurance system;
• Develops communication products and services in line with the Organization's communication policies and style guidelines to support regional resource mobilization and partnership strategies

In close coordination with specific technical OCC teams:
• Coordinates and provides support to FAO Representatives (FAORs) in organizing outreach and promotion activities (World Food Day, celebration of International Years and Days, international campaigns, Goodwill Ambassadors, etc.);
• Supervises the updating and development of the Regional Office’s website and provides support to subregions to develop their own national webpages, and promotes, strengthens and monitors activities related to FAO's profile and presence in social media channels and networks in the region, in line with the Organization's communication policies and style guidelines for multimedia communication products;
• Develops and supervises the implementation of a monitoring and evaluation mechanisms that allow the ADG/RR, the regional management team and the FAOR to assess the results of their communications activities, at the regional, subregional and country levels;
• Manages the RLC Communications budget, including that of the Communicators Network.


Minimum Requirements
• Advanced university degree in communication, social science, journalism, political science or a related field.
• Seven years of relevant experience in communication, web publishing and/or social media networks.
• Working knowledge (proficient - level C) of English and Spanish.

• Results Focus
• Teamwork
• Communication
• Building Effective Relationships
• Knowledge Sharing and Continuous Improvement

Technical/Functional Skills
• Work experience in more than one location or area of work, particularly in field positions.
• Understanding of FAO policies and programmes is considered a strong asset.
• Extent and relevance of experience in the field of communication services for prominent organizations, particularly at the international level, including substantive experience in journalism.
• Extent and relevance of experience in drafting high-quality written materials for a wide variety of audiences in a deadline-driven environment.
• Experience in the field of outreach for prominent organizations, and/or interagency initiatives (including campaigns, events, exhibits, social marketing, media relations, sponsorship arrangements, branding), particularly at the international level is an asset.
• A broad range of media experience as a journalist and/or producer and/or communications expert is desirable.
• Experience in working with the United Nations, governments and the private sector and other key actors in UN projects and programmes is desirable.
• Working knowledge (proficient – level C) of additional languages of the Organization in particular French would be an asset.

This vacancy is now closed.
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