Events and communications assistant/s

Background

Sense about Science is a unique campaigning charity that challenges the misrepresentation of science and evidence in public life. We advocate openness and honesty about research findings and work to ensure the public interest in sound science and evidence is recognised in public discussion.

We’ve changed many debates about science and evidence over the past 15 years by involving the public and researchers in challenging misleading claims. We introduced reviews of whether government is transparent about its use of evidence in policy proposals and run Evidence Week in the UK parliament which allows researchers to present their cutting-edge research directly to MPs and Peers. We lead the public campaign Ask for Evidence, helping people use scientific questioning to navigate debates and as the Covid-19 pandemic unfolded, Sense about Science led public calls for transparency regarding the government’s response to the situation.

The need for greater respect for the public interest in sound science and evidence has never been more apparent than during the pandemic so it’s an exciting time to join Sense about Science. Do you have what it takes to help us.

The Public engagement and communications assistants will be responsible for planning and delivering communications across both traditional and social media. They will be responsible for creating multimedia content to promote Sense about Science’s key messages across our projects e.g. blog content or Facebook posts, as well as for our flagship events such as the annual Maddox Prize and Evidence Week 2021. They will write copy for newsletters and website announcements as well as updating website content.

Sense about Science engages young scientists, the public and wider society in understanding the role of research and evidence through running workshops and testing materials (e.g. reports, websites, infographics). These roles will be responsible for all aspects of workshop support – developing written materials, identifying and communicating with participants, briefing speakers and organising venues and logistics.

Person specification

You should be educated to a degree level, ideally in the natural or social sciences and have strong writing skills, including for social media. You should have an appetite for science news, public debate and current affairs and interest in communicating these issues more widely. You will need excellent interpersonal and verbal communication skills and be able to interact with external stakeholders appropriately. You should be able to effectively prioritise and manage your workload and have strong organisation skills, with good attention to detail. Experience of organising events and meetings would be an advantage. Sense about Science is a busy and fast-paced organisation so you’ll need to be able to demonstrate flexibility and ability to use your own initiative.

Employability support

The employees will be assigned a manager wiuth whom they will be in frequent contact. They are likely to have daily contact supplemented with, at least a one hour long catch-up meeting per week. We also have monthly team planning meetings in which the employees will be able to reflect on, and evaluate their work and receive constructive feedback, They will be able to discuss their personal goal/s for the job with their manager and look for specific tasks and activities which will help them achieve these. They will also get advice and support on developing their CV, writing a covering letter and interview techniques.

In terms of specific skills training the applicants will also gain an understanding of the following:

  • How to communicate effectively within a team
  • Understanding of appropriate workplace behaviour and culture
  • Project management training – how to set appropriate goals, define your deliverables, create a project schedule/timeline, communicating your plans
  • Fundraising training – How to prepare and write a compelling funding proposal
  • WordPress training – web publishing training to create a websites or blogs

They will also be able to sit in on the training sessions that SaS run for our partners covering topics such as policy engagement, peer review, and public engagement in understanding scientific issues.

Applicants need to be in receipt of universal credit and can be referred through their work coach.