Head of Communications

The Centre for Disaster Protection works to change how the world prepares and pays for disasters. Identifying, planning for and financing disasters before they strike saves lives, reduces suffering and protects livelihoods and economies, especially for the poorest and most vulnerable communities.

Head of Communications

Fixed Term Contract until End of June 2025, renewable if project funding is extended.


The Centre for Disaster Protection was launched by the UK Prime Minister in July 2017 to strengthen resilience in developing countries through better preparedness and planning backed by risk-based financing arrangements. The Centre is funded with UK aid from the UK government.

The Centre for Disaster Protection works to change how the world prepares and pays for disasters. Identifying, planning for and financing disasters before they strike saves lives, reduces suffering and protects livelihoods and economies, especially for the poorest and most vulnerable communities. The Centre brings countries together with international development, humanitarian and private sector organisations to find solutions and advocate for change. We find ways to stop disasters devastating lives by supporting countries and the international system to better manage risks. To do this, the Centre provides advisory services, builds knowledge, catalyses innovation and creates partnerships across the development, humanitarian and financial sectors.

With Covid-19, the world is more aware than ever of the importance of being prepared and working together to address risks. The Centre’s work has never been more crucial. With a recent funding uplift from the UK government to mid-2025, the Centre is entering a new period of organisational growth, evolving beyond its start-up phase to tackle the increasingly urgent impact of climate change and frequency of disasters around the world.

The Centre’s technical work is focused on cross-cutting goals as set out in our five-year strategy (2019-2024): 

1.      Advice – quality assurance and advisory services and training: We will have a respected and widely used quality assurance function that has increased the quantity and quality of risk financing products and services. Our effective technical assistance and capacity building will have supported high risk, vulnerable countries to make better disaster risk management decisions through knowledge exchange and genuine skills transfer.

2.      Evidence and Learning: We will be internationally recognised as driving change through evidence, experimentation and learning which will strengthen the global evidence base on disaster risk financing.

3.      Advocacy and Influencing: Through advocacy and influencing and being a positive disrupter, we will have improved the quality and quantity of disaster risk financing through the multilateral system.

Additionally, we are focused on building effective systems and processes for people and operations that support the Centre to rapidly yet strategically scale and grow in a way that promotes diversity, equity and inclusion and ensures the organisation is a great place to work.

The role

As part of our organisational growth plan, we are looking for an exceptional candidate to support the Centre to achieve its mission and goals through strategic communications.

As the Centre evolves beyond its start-up phase, the Head of Communications will be critical to guiding the strategic delivery of the Centre’s communications strategy, both internally and externally as we deliver on our ambitious work plan.

Key to this will be working with the Senior Leadership Team to ensure that the communications function is an enabling one, working across the Centre’s goals to drive results and uphold the Centre’s culture and values.

The role will require:

·       Leading a bold and ambitious multi-channel, integrated communications strategy to support the strategic priorities of the Centre.

·       Working across Centre teams and the Centre’s portfolio of evidence, policy thought-leadership and advisory programmes to identify innovative opportunities for effective strategic communication and outreach activities.

·       Overseeing and managing media relations to ensure timely and accurate coverage of the Centre’s work and further the reach of the Centre’s organisational objectives.

·       Acting as a senior adviser working in close collaboration with the Senior Leadership Team.

·       Leading an ambitious programme of events and compelling evidence-driven communications products for a variety of different audiences and targets.

·       Elevate the Centre’s external reputation through demonstrating the impact of our work.

·       Ensure consistent, accurate messaging and alignment of content as well as developing the Centre’s brand voice, maintaining brand integrity across all communications activity.

·       Contributing to work-planning and budgeting decisions.

·       Managing and developing the communications function.

·       Directing, managing and collaborating with a comprehensive service communications agency to assist us with our external communications activity.

·       Ensuring the Centre’s values and our commitments to diversity, equality and inclusion are at the heart of our communications activities.

Skills and experience

Successful candidates will be able to demonstrate the following skills and experience:

·       Significant experience working in media, strategic communications and/or public relations – preferably in a relevant field of humanitarian, international affairs, development, or disaster management.

·       Ability to work effectively with a broad mix of clients and partners, as well as diverse teams of people.

·       Excellent written and oral communications skills and able to articulate complex messages into accessible and straightforward language.

·       Providing strategic communications focus and showcasing projects and expertise to support policy thought-leadership and influencing objectives.

·       Guiding the development of an organisational communications culture and demonstrating commitment to the development of professional skills and expertise.

·       Demonstrating broad integrated communications knowledge across PR, social and digital media, corporate and stakeholder communications.

·       A strong and demonstrable track record of developing brands and storytelling to a wide range of audiences.

·       Experience of working with research, technical and policy content for communication purposes.

·       Commitment to joining and contributing to a values-based organisation and culture.

Person Specification

Ideal candidates will:

·       Bring strong strategic leadership on communication.

·       Demonstrate confidence and enjoy problem solving and delivering impact.

·       Welcome diverse feedback and take genuine pleasure in helping a team develop.

·       Enthusiasm to work in a team dedicated to learning and development, with the opportunity to build and lead a talented team in a period of growth.

The offer

After a successful probation period, the contract will be until the end of June 2025, renewable if project funding is extended. The roles will be contracted by DAI Global UK, who are the Centre’s managing agent.

A competitive salary in the region of £60-80,000 depending on experience.

A generous benefits package including 25 days annual leave (plus public holidays) and a contributory pension scheme.

We have an office in the City of London, but we are open to considering flexible, part-time and remote working arrangements. Remote locations are dependent on whether DAI has an office or active project, for contracting purposes.

The Centre is committed to building a diverse and inclusive workplace and so we particularly encourage applications from diverse backgrounds that are typically under-represented in this sector and from citizens of countries affected by disasters.

DAI is a global development company with corporate offices in the USA, the UK, the EU, Nigeria, Pakistan, and Palestine, and project operations worldwide. DAI tackles fundamental social and economic development problems caused by inefficient markets, ineffective governance, and instability; it works on the frontlines of global development, transforming ideas into action—action into impact. DAI is committed to shaping a more liveable world.

Application process

Interested applicants should apply, including a cover letter (no more than one page) and CV, via DAI’s recruitment portal 

Any questions about the role or the recruitment process should be sent to: jobs_CDP@disasterprotection.org (please do not send applications to this email address).

If you require any adjustments during the recruitment process please email Victoria_tres@dai.com (please do not send applications to this email address).

Candidates must be eligible to live and work in their preferred location within the USA, UK, EU, Nigeria, Pakistan.

All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, colour, religion, sex, disability status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or national origin. This job description details the key elements of the role and is not an exhaustive list of duties. Job roles evolve over time and job-holders may be required to complete additional tasks in line with business needs.

You will be pleased to know that we strive to uphold the highest ethical standards and that we are working with our clients to reduce the opportunity for people who are known to have breached ethical standards to work in our field. Any staff and/or consultant contract with DAI, therefore, will be subject to satisfactory reference checking and vetting. 

If this role sounds interesting and you would like to be part of DAI’s growing business, bidding for and managing donor-funded projects round the world, we look forward to hearing from you.