Pew Research Center is a nonpartisan fact tank that informs the public about the issues, attitudes and trends shaping America and the world. It conducts public opinion polling, demographic research, media content analysis and other empirical social science research in the areas of U.S. politics and policy views; media and journalism; internet and technology; science and society; religion and public life; Hispanic trends; global attitudes and U.S. social and demographic trends. Pew Research Center does not take policy positions. It is a subsidiary of The Pew Charitable Trusts. The Center’s work is carried out by a staff of about 140.
The Center’s communications and dissemination efforts encompass multiple facets, including digital publication, promotion of Center research across multiple channels (web, social media, print, data, etc.), outreach to major news organizations, developing and maintaining relationships with an elite audience of thought-leaders and influencers, and overall audience research and development. Pew Research Center is a high-volume digital publisher, producing 150+ reports, 400+ analytical blog entries, and 50+ data interactives and stand-alone visualizations a year, drawing more than 30 million visitors to its website annually and driving extensive press coverage domestically and internationally.
Pew Research Center is currently seeking an innovative and motivated Vice President, Strategic Communications and Outreach to join our leadership team. This individual will be responsible for developing and implementing the Center’s communications strategy, with the aim of promoting and enhancing the Center’s reputation for rigorous, nonpartisan research, expanding our domestic and international audiences and positioning Pew Research Center as a leader in communicating about complex data in both narrative and non-narrative forms including data visualization, motion graphics, etc.
The VP, Strategic Communications and Outreach oversees all aspects of the Pew Research Center’s communications, including media relations, website development, digital publication, audience strategy, and managing a fully integrated dissemination plan that includes staff speaking engagements, onsite and offsite events, publications, newsletters, partnerships and sponsorships.
Reporting directly to the Pew Research Center’s President, the VP, Strategic Communications and Outreach contributes to the organization’s overall planning and development. The Vice President directly supervises the Center’s Communications Director, Director for Digital Strategy and Senior Digital Editor, who in turn oversee a combined staff of more than 40 communication and digital professionals.
The VP, Strategic Communications and Outreach is expected to be a “big picture” thinker who can separate digital and data journalism trends from fads, who understands that our relevance is not only about being interesting as much as it is about being important, and who will be aggressive in both protecting and expanding the Center’s reputation for unrivalled research quality, relevance and clarity.
Externally, the VP, Strategic Communications and Outreach is a key ambassador for the organization and helps to build relationships with the media and major stakeholders. And because part of the Center’s mission is to be a leader and innovator in the field of communicating about data and research, the VP, Strategic Communications and Outreach is actively engaged in professional communities focused on data journalism, data visualization and communications technology.
Strategy, Vision and Leadership
- Design and execute a strategic communications plan that spans traditional and digital channels.
- Work with senior managers and staff to create engaging content that exploits evolving platforms and technologies, especially via mobile devices and social media.
- Lead efforts to cultivate new audiences, especially overseas.
- Identify challenges and emerging issues faced by the organization and develop solutions to meet those challenges.
- Conduct audience research and use audience analytics to steer content and technical development and promotional efforts.
- Set clear goals and empower staff to meet those goals.
- Ensure the professional development of staff through training, participation in professional conferences and other activities.
- Ensure that the Center’s work reaches, informs and engages key stakeholder audiences, including journalists, opinion leaders, policymakers and potential and existing donors.
- Oversee development and execution of events, roundtables and press conferences.
- Serve as liaison with outside partners, including major media organizations, other research institutions, conveners and donors, to ensure effective and smooth collaboration around dissemination and research partnerships.
- Protect, promote and advance the Center’s reputation for unrivaled research quality and relevance and its brand as a leader in social science methods, data visualization and data journalism.
- Advise the President on reputational risks by providing counsel about reputational cost/benefit of specific initiatives.
- Ensure consistent approach to branding, working with communications and design staff to create consistent visual look and feel.
Digital and Publishing Operations
- Oversee functional activities of the digital and communications team, including budgeting, planning and staff development.
- Oversee development of best-in-class publishing workflows and processes to support the Center’s mission and goals.
- Drive organizational processes and disciplines aimed at optimizing audience.
- Engage audiences with data presentation and visualization to enhance the Center’s direct-to-consumer capabilities.
- Investigate new dissemination strategies and delivery channels for existing material, attending conferences, reaching out to media, think tanks and other content creators, and staying informed about new technologies and trends.
- Serve as a liaison with Senior Vice President, Communications at The Pew Charitable Trusts, and other key communications staff at the Center’s parent organization.
- Oversee the collection of qualitative and quantitative performance indicators related to dissemination of research and analyze data to provide insights and high-quality, actionable information.
- Prepare and present clear, coherent and accurate dissemination reports to Pew Research Center’s Board of Directors as required.
- Deliver dissemination metrics in reporting to The Pew Charitable Trusts and prepare dissemination reports to external partners and donors, as needed.
- Work with the Center’s senior management team, building strong peer relationships with managing directors for operational and research units.
- Minimum 15 years of relevant industry experience
- Minimum 5 years’ experience in a senior management role
- Bachelor’s degree, preferably in journalism, communications or related field
- Strategic leadership experience in media, publishing, social science research, and/or non-profit sector. Experience in multiple sectors preferred.
- A proven track record of deep collaboration/influence across a complex organization of senior professionals
- A balanced network of personal and professional contacts within traditional media and digital publishing and communications communities
- Knowledge of Washington press corps and foreign press and proven record of cultivating media relationships
- Experience in marketing digital content and building and retaining large online audiences
- A proven track record in institutional external communications
- Experience in building, mentoring and coaching a growing team of communications and digital publishing specialists
Knowledge and Skills Requirements
- Knowledge of communications strategic planning and experience with a wide range of tactics
- Entrepreneurial and innovative thinker, with a track record for translating strategic thinking into action plans and measurable output
- Experienced audience strategist who can design effective audience research and segmentation
- Ability to develop appropriate metrics for measuring outreach success as well as impact
- Deep understanding of brand management and ability to quickly learn the Center’s content and voice as they relate to our brand
- Comfortable with data and able to work with social scientists to translate data into meaningful information
- Flexibility, editorial judgment, and publishing metabolism
- Extensive writing and editing experience for both print and online media
- Understanding of digital, mobile and video content platforms, including online traffic metrics and search optimization as well as social media
- Excellent judgment and creative problem solving skills, including negotiation and conflict resolution
- Energetic, flexible, collaborative team leader who empowers staff to generate and execute on ideas
- Experienced manager with a proven track record in planning and allocating resources to maximum effectiveness
- Exceptional written, oral, interpersonal and presentation skills and the ability to effectively interface with senior management, the Center’s Board of Directors and staff
FLSA Status: Exempt
Applicant should send a résumé, cover letter (indicating where you learned of the opening) with salary expectations to email@example.com. Responses can also be mailed to:
Human Resources Department
Pew Research Center
1615 L Street, NW, Suite 800
Washington, DC 20036
We are an equal opportunity employer.