Communication Officer (Brussels)

Communication Officer

To work on all information and communication matters relating to MSF’s work and concerns in the project countries overseen by the Operational “Cell 4” (Afghanistan, Bahrain, Egypt, Libya, Pakistan and Somaliland).


I. Background

Operational team ‘Cell 4’ is managing MSF projects in Afghanistan, Bahrain, Egypt, Libya, Pakistan and Somaliland for MSF’s “Operational Centre Brussels” (OCB). The Cell 4 team is partly based in Brussels and partly in Dubai.

The Communication Officer which MSF is recruiting will be part of this team. His/her job is to advise on, and execute, all communication and public information matters relating to the relief projects in the above mentioned countries, be in the project locations, on national level in the project countries, or internationally. The dominant objectives are to support the operations by enhancing understanding and appreciation for MSF and its work, and to signal issues on which MSF should consider taking a position publicly.

Though based in the operational team, the Communication Officer will also be fully integrated in the team of Communication Officers (known as ‘Combo’) that provide information and communication support to all projects of MSF’s operational centre in Brussels.

The Communication Officer will report in equal measure to the two Operational Coordinators involved (one in Brussels, another in Dubai) and to the Communication Coordinator in Brussels. He/She will work in close collaboration with communications colleagues based in the field (Afghanistan, Pakistan, Egypt). Though based in Brussels, the Communication Officer is expected to spend significant time in the project countries (estimated at two months per year) as well as in Dubai.


II. Objectives

  • Design and implement strategies for creating and enhancing understanding of and appreciation for MSF, its principles and its activities in the above mentioned countries.
  • Signal issues in the above mentioned countries on which MSF may need to position itself publicly, based on its medical activities and observations.
  • Be the primary source of information (reactively and actively) for the wider MSF network on the activities in the above mentioned countries.


III. Job profile

  • Be continuously informed about important development and MSF operations in the countries overseen by Cell 4.
  • Advise the Operational Coordinators and Country Representatives on communication initiatives aimed at facilitating MSF’s work in the project countries.
  • Implement agreed communication strategies.
  • In collaboration with the communications officer based in Cairo, Egypt, develop specific strategies for using Arabic media in order to increase support for MSF’s activities.
  • In collaboration with the communication officers in the field, develop strategies for using media in the project countries and in relevant languages to increase support for MSF’s activities.
  • Develop strategies for reaching out to the diasporas from the above mentioned countries.
  • Signal issues on which MSF should consider positioning itself publicly.
  • Help define strategies, messages and tools for communicating such issues.
  • Liaise closely with other MSF sections involved as well as in-house departments (Analysis and Advocacy Unit, Medical Department, Communication Department) that should be consulted on issues of public positioning.
  • Produce articles, press releases and other materials for MSF media, external media and social media on the activities overseen by Cell 4.
  • Take part in all relevant meetings and videoconferences/teleconferences of the Cell and of the Combo team.


IV. Candidate profile

To be considered, candidates need to demonstrate

  • At least three years of professional experience in communication or international journalism
  • Knowledge and understanding of how media function, internationally and on national or local levels
  • Knowledge of social media
  • Understanding of Arabic media
  • Excellent writing skills in English
  • Solid understanding of humanitarian action
  • A strong sense of initiative combined with team spirit
  • Availability to travel on short notice

In addition, the following qualifications will be highly valued:

  • Professional experience in an NGO
  • Fluency in Arabic
  • Fluency in Urdu, Pashtu, Dari or Somali
  • A sense of humour


Starting date: As soon as possible

Contract: Open-ended contract, full-time

Location: Brussels

Other conditions: Hospital Insurance (DKV), pension plan, canteen (in Brussels)

Deadline for application: 28 February 2013


To apply for this position please send your letter of motivation and CV by post to Thalia Maes, Assistante du Département Communication, Rue Dupré 94 à 1090 Jette, Belgique or email