Communications and Knowledge Mobilization Manager (Research for Social Change Lab)

At the Research for Social Change Lab, we have observed that local public discourse related to social issues often proceeds without any grounding in evidence. 

We are seeking a skilled communicator to support the lab’s efforts to increase local awareness of evidence-based solutions to the social challenges facing our community. 

The ideal candidate will be a self-starter who can develop and implement effective communications strategies to help the citizens of Peterborough-Nogojiwanong understand and engage with the evidence regarding social issues. This person should have familiarity with knowledge translation, knowledge mobilization, or research communication practices.  

Drawing on the lab’s own research as well as that done by others, the communications and knowledge mobilization manager will create research communications materials that meet local citizens where they’re at and share knowledge in a way that is accessible and non-alienating. Our target audiences include residents of Peterborough-Nogojiwanong as well as local decision-makers in organizations and government seeking to improve their knowledge of research and use evidence to make decisions. 

The ideal candidate will have strong writing skills and a research background in sociology, criminology, health care, or a related field. They will have an eye for visual communication and basic graphic design skills, or the ability to learn them. And they will be fluent in current discourses and debates surrounding the causes of and solutions to the social issues facing Peterborough and cities like it across Canada.

Responsibilities
  • Manage the RSCL’s website (we currently use Squarespace). This would involve minor routine maintenance, occasional content creation (web posts, project updates, etc.), and a strategic rethink of how we use our website to communicate  and how we could use it more effectively (this would most likely involve migrating to a different CMS) 
  • Develop and implement communications strategies to increase local knowledge of evidence-based solutions to social issues, including the housing crisis, drug use, poverty, and access to health care
  • Monitor local discourses surrounding social issues to identify opportunities to inform the public and decision-makers and support evidence-based solutions 
  • Monitor national and international discourses surrounding these issues to identify and translate relevant research and scholarly perspectives for local residents and decision-makers 
  • Develop and implement strategies for quickly countering misinformation with evidence 
  • Synthesize findings from academic articles and other research reports, identifying the most salient points for the public and translating them into plain language for local audiences 
  • Support other lab members to produce public communications about their research projects 
  • Build networks and relationships with local evidence-led practitioners and support them to communicate their perspectives and knowledge
Skills and Other Key Attributes
Candidates who demonstrate the following skills and attributes will be strong applicants for this position. 
  • Strong writing skills, with a demonstrated ability to write clearly, compellingly, and persuasively
  • Basic graphic design and publication layout skills 
  • Basic website skills 
  • An understanding of academic research methods and an ability to identify and distill key findings 
  • A knowledge of Peterborough’s social service sector and the city’s media ecosystem (both traditional and new media) 
  • An empathetic attitude towards those who disagree, and a desire to build bridges and mutual understanding
Experience
Candidates who demonstrate the following experiences will be strong applicants for this position. 
  • Experience conducting and/or supporting research in a post-secondary setting 
  • Knowledge mobilization and knowledge translation for diverse audiences 
  • Writing and communicating with a general audience
Education
Candidates will ideally have an undergraduate or master’s degree in a relevant social science discipline. 

The Details
Hours
To be determined in collaboration with the successful candidate. We have some flexibility, but are envisioning something around half-time, or 17.5 hours per week.

Salary Range
$32 to $37 per hour + medical benefits if eligible

Start Date
Flexible, May 2024 preferred

Contract
One year with option to renew, funding permitting

How to Apply
Please send a cover letter and resumé to williampearson@trentu.ca by April 22, 2024.

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