Head of Strategic Dissemination


The South African Institute of International Affairs (SAIIA) is an independent think tank, producing policy research that contributes to a well-governed, economically sustainable, and globally engaged Africa. It has been consistently ranked among the top think tanks in Africa.

SAIIA is embarking on the next phase of its growth strategy and is looking for fresh talent to drive its success. We are looking for people who are thinkers, writers and doers – team players who bring creative thinking and passion to the wide-ranging and inter-connected issues our continent faces. The SAIIA team holds itself to the highest international standards, so be prepared to be challenged!

Are you deeply interested in international affairs and with a desire to influence the way our research is seen and heard by key audiences? Do you have demonstrated experience creating, leading, and overseeing inspiring communications content and external engagement to make it happen? Do impact, measurement and analysis drive you to build a narrative that makes our research stand out in a cluttered field? If you have a relevant post graduate qualification combined with 5-8 years senior level strategic communications experience in a think tank or non-profit environment, then this role is for you!

SAIIA seeks to appoint a Head of Communications (Ref HOC11/2021) to be based in Gauteng.

Permanent Contract (Salary band: R780k-R900k)

The Head of Communications will envision and deliver on SAIIA’s external communications strategy. Reporting to the Chief Executive, the successful candidate will be responsible for leading and managing the communications efforts of the Institute and coordinating its public communications (media, online, publications and events). This position requires a strategic, creative and online-savvy person who will bring the relevant communication tools together into one cohesive strategy, developing targeted methods of engagement that optimise the impact of our work.

Key Responsibilities:

Designs and implements SAIIA’s overarching communications and dissemination strategy, integrating online, events and multimedia elements to maximise the influence and impact of its work.
Develops new ways to make SAIIA’s work relevant to key audiences, developing timely content and analysis, and creating innovative opportunities for engagement with key external audiences.
Oversees the production of meaningful and engaging content; quality assures all external communications content; and ensures it complies with SAIIA’s brand style guide.
Oversees relevant staff and service providers to ensure that the technical aspects of SAIIA’s online platforms are robust and responsive, are updated regularly in line with best practice, and are accessible and attractive to the target audience.
Manages and co-ordinates the reporting for the communications department, with a strong focus on measurement, analytics and learning; undertakes audience analyses to develop and monitor the effectiveness of the above strategies; and makes any necessary corrective changes.
Is responsible for leading and developing team members and enhancing the communications skills of programme staff members.
Manages all budget and expenditure requirements relating to the communications department

Experience, skills, qualifications

A post-graduate qualification in social sciences, journalism or brand marketing.
Between 5 and 8 years in a senior strategic communications role
Proven experience working with diverse teams at various levels
Knowledge of SEO and CMS
Detail orientated
Preference will be given to candidates with working experience in the think tank or policy research sector
For more information on SAIIA and its research agenda please visit www.saiia.org.za. Applications, clearly quoting the reference number of the position that you are applying for and with your contact details, should be submitted to [email protected] Please note that only short-listed candidates will be contacted for an interview. Incomplete or late applications will not be considered.

Preference will be given to South African citizens and employment equity candidates. SAIIA reserves the right not to make an appointment.

For more about South African Institute of International Affairs, refer to www.saiia.org.za