Program Officer – Knowledge Translation

International Development Research Centre (IDRC)

Position description

IDRC’s Climate Resilient Food Systems Program supports research that helps build equitable, inclusive and sustainable food systems in developing countries. Our work helps develop resilience among communities severely affected by climate change and address emerging health threats that arise from food systems.

The Catalysing Change for Healthy, Sustainable Food Systems (CCHeFS) initiative is a partnership of IDRC and the Rockefeller Foundation that is building new evidence for governments and other food systems stakeholders in Africa for designing policies, regulations, and investments that address the challenge of achieving healthy, equitable, and sustainable diets, curbing rising levels of malnutrition and diet-related non-communicable diseases. Investments in multidisciplinary consortia with policy change objectives will also benefit from cross-regional learning. The vision for the initiative is for a multi-donor fund active in more regions that brings to scale significant shifts in the relative affordability and accessibility of nutritious food, improving food environments for low income and vulnerable populations.

As a Program Officer – Knowledge Translation, you will play a key role in capturing learning, facilitating knowledge exchange and leading communication efforts for the initiative that will support efforts to scale up and scale out and achieve greater impact. You will support the team in thought leadership and facilitating research impact and uptake. Working closely with other IDRC experts in our programs and communications teams, you will:

  1. Lead strategic communication activities, including the development of high-quality publications that will ensure that the CCHeFS initiative visibly contributes to national, regional and global dialogs about food systems change;
  2. Lead and support cross-initiative syntheses, knowledge sharing, peer learning and documentation of impacts of the CCHeFS initiative; and 
  3. Support project teams with their knowledge to policy strategies, communications, outreach to stakeholders and policy influence. 

Candidate Profile  


  • Master’s or PhD degree and a record of publication in a relevant social science discipline such as nutrition, public health, food systems, or international development  


This position requires three years of work experience relevant to knowledge translation, communication and research, including:

  • Developing and implementing knowledge translation strategies and plans, including selecting channels and developing key messages and content for target audiences, and evaluating the effectiveness and impact of efforts; 
  • Analyzing, interpreting, and synthesizing technical Research for Development results, with experience on how to translate knowledge to practice for policy makers and practitioners;
  • Experience acting as an intermediary between knowledge creators and users for building and maintaining partnerships; 
  • Developing reports, policy briefs, briefing notes, and web and social media content for various audiences;
  • Experience strengthening capacity among research teams in research uptake is an asset;  
  • Developing and managing research for development projects is an asset; 
  • Experience working in developing regions, especially Africa is an asset.


  • Bilingual (English and French) at an intermediate level


  • Knowledge of, and experience with food systems challenges in LMICs, especially policies and strategies for influencing demand and improving consumer food environments  
  • Principles and best practices of research into use, knowledge translation and communication 
  • Knowledge on donor and government landscape in Canada, Africa and internationally
  • Project management principles
  • Research methodology and research to policy linkages
  • Knowledge or information management tools
  • Database management and statistical software
  • Familiarity with evaluation methods an asset  


  • Strong analytical, verbal/written communication skills
  • Ability to use a wide range of research methods (e.g. quantitative and qualitative) 
  • Ability to work in a fast-paced team with multiple demands and meet deadlines
  • Excellent interpersonal skills, able to build and maintain partnerships
  • Superior planning, organizing, coordinating and team work skills 
  • Sound judgement and ability to take own initiative

Additional Information

As a result of this process, the Centre may establish a pool of pre-qualified candidates for future permanent and term opportunities. 

For more details on the primary duties and responsibilities, view Job Details.

Application instructions

Please be sure to indicate that you saw this position on

Apply Now
To help us track our recruitment effort, please indicate in your email/cover letter where ( you saw this job posting.