• International Office


Job description

Location: Amsterdam, Barcelona, Brussels, Geneva, Paris
Contract: open-ended, full-time
Starting date: April 2020
Deadline for applications: 2 February 2020

Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) is an international, independent, medical humanitarian organisation that delivers emergency aid to people affected by armed conflict, epidemics, healthcare exclusion and natural disasters. MSF offers assistance to people based only on need and irrespective of race, religion, gender or political affiliation.

MSF International is the legal entity that binds MSF’s 21 sections, 25 associations and other offices together. MSF International provides coordination, information and support to the MSF Movement, as well as implementing international projects and initiatives as requested.



The International Communication Coordinator oversees daily support to MSF’s five Operational Centres for the overall messaging and positioning in relation to complex emergencies and global dossiers, stimulates collaboration and resource-sharing across the MSF communication network, contributes to the Management Team of the International Office, leads the IO communication team, develops IO communication resources to the best possible support for the movement. The position is based in any of the five Operational Centre HQ: Amsterdam, Barcelona, Brussels, Geneva or Paris.



The International Communications coordinator (ICC) reports to the Secretary General and is part of the IO management team. On an ongoing basis the ICC works closely primarily with Directors of Communications and operational communications coordinators in the OCs. When required the ICC may work with other members of OCs in HQ or the field such as with comms, operations, or other departments as appropriate. The ICC also liaises regularly with the heads of comms across the movement.

On major crises and global topics, the International Communication Coordinator works directly with the International Medical Secretary, the International President and the Humanitarian Advocacy and Representation Coordinator. When needed, he/she also works closely with fundraising, finance, logistics, HR coordinators in the international office and the international legal department.

The International Communication Coordinator leads the IO communication team, providing the general oversight and direction for the team. The International Communications Project Manager oversees the day-to-day running of the IO comms team, works on key international comms projects, and acts as deputy for the ICC.

The IO communication team manages movement-wide communications tools and together with the legal department oversees the correct use of the logo. Movement-wide tools notably include the international media data base,, the International Activity report, @msf, among others, as well as internal comms tools such as Comms Week ahead, emailing lists, and international comms sites on sharepoint. The team provides support and helps coordinate a variety of comms groups such as the digital steering committee and working groups, AV, editors, Arabic language editors, and on an adhoc basis provides support to field communications.



The purpose of the position of International Communication Coordinator is to strengthen the impact of MSF’s public communication and maximise the use of resources across the network. This includes:

  • Coordinate the DirCom platform and operational Comms Coordinators;
  • On an ongoing basis, support communications around emergencies and operational priorities;
  • Stimulate coherent positioning and joint institutional messaging on major complex crises and global dossiers;
  • Through the management team, contribute to the direction and policies of the IO;
  • Coordinate the IO communication team and resources;
  • Stimulate collaboration and resource-sharing across the MSF communication network and provide visibility on intersectional comms investments;
  • Broker agreements on the implementation of international communication dossier at the level of the DirCom and broader MSF communication network;
  • Manage the MSF brand internationally.



1. Coordinate the DirCom platform:

  • Facilitate and chair discussion at the Dircom, helping to drive strategy, and alerting when the direction taken is at odds with the joint commitments
  • Ensure appropriation and when required guidance on messaging and positioning on major complex crises and global dossiers, including reputational crisis
  • Organise, prepare and record meetings of the DirCom platform and the annual dircom meeting
  • Monitor progress on the DirCom Work Plan and dossiers;
  • Identify needs for exchange between the DirCom platform and other platforms (ExCom, RIOD, DirFund)
  • Ensure decisional link between MSF communication entities and between communication platforms and other relevant entities or platforms

2. Coordinate and support the operational Communication Coordinators (CoCo) identify priorities and planning for MSF’s operational communication

  • When faced with a new major emergency, initiate immediate contact between the Communication Coordinators on the initial response
  • Work with Communication Coordinators and Advisors on selected issues / contexts, aiming for relevant content and timely publication

3. Stimulate coherent positioning and joint institutional messaging on major complex crises:

  • On major crises with high levels of complexity work with the DirCom platform and/or others in Access & OCs – including operations - and the IO management team (HRT, Finance FR) as needed on timely and relevant public positioning;
  • Support senior IO staff, particularly the International President and Secretary General, in public communication, reflecting the priorities and concerns of the Operational Centres;
  • Analyse MSF’s overall operational communication and report on trends to the DirCom platform, the CoCos, and comms movement, and the IO management team

4. Through the management team, contribute to the direction and policies of the IO:

  • Be an active contributor to the IO management team on an ongoing basis and during meeting;
  • Contribute to the ongoing development of IO best practice and giving active support to the internal communication on IO policies, priorities and achievements;
  • Report to the IO management team on the priorities and achievements of the IO communication team and movement wide comms

5. Coordinate the IO communication team and resources:

  • The International Communications Project Manager takes charge of all aspects of HR management for the IO comms team, including recruitment and evaluations;
  • The International Comms coordinator is ultimately responsible for the global oversight of the IO communication team, and setting the overall objectives and guidance
  • The ICC stimulates coherence and collaboration between the IO communication team and the broader communication network of MSF; taking into account movement-wide and operational communications priorities.
  • Is responsible for the budgets for all activities of the IO communication team.

6. Stimulate collaboration and resource-sharing across the MSF communication network:

  • Work with the Heads of Communication of all MSF entities on exchanging best practice, collaboration on projects, exchange of staff, and sharing of tools;
  • Stimulate mutual accountability on the deployment and use of communication resources across the movement;
  • Broker agreements on the implementation of international communication dossier at the level of the DirCom and broader MSF communication network;
  • Source communication staff for leading – or contributing to – dossiers identified by the DirCom platform;
  • Propose and initiate projects that lead to optimisation of resources and sharing of tools;
  • Promote visibility and accountability around MSF communications investments and activities.

7. Manage the MSF brand internationally:

  • The International Communications Coordinator provides support as needed, to the International Content Manager (IO Comms) and the legal department who work together on the correct use of the MSF brand and logo. (They advise sections and new entities on the correct use of the MSF logo; develop logo guidelines; monitor the use of MSF logo and intervene when incorrect use may impact MSF activities, trademark and reputation)

Job requirements

  • A minimum of 5 years’ experience in communication management for MSF
  • Strong leadership skills, coupled with a well-developed sense of diplomacy and collaboration
  • Solid understanding of dilemmas associated with humanitarian assistance
  • Native or near-native command of English, spoken and in writing
  • Spoken French; other languages are an asset
  • A strong affinity with the principles of MSF
  • Professional experience in crisis communication management
  • Experience in managing reputational crisis an asset
  • Good understanding of both traditional and new media
  • Excellence in leading and organising work on various dossiers simultaneously
  • Flexible and willing to travel often to MSF offices and the field



Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted


MSF is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality and culture. Individuals with disabilities are equally encouraged to apply.