Full Job Description
The Rockefeller Foundation is seeking a Director, Dialogue Design & Community Engagement to join the Convenings & Networks group on the Innovation team. The Innovation team multiplies the impact of The Rockefeller Foundation initiatives by partnering with different teams across the Foundation in support of programmatic objectives.
Within the Innovation team, the Convenings & Networks group leads the Foundation’s work to thoughtfully convene key stakeholders to envision a common future, ideate, align on an agenda, and advance knowledge and partnerships for sustainable impact. The centerpiece of our convening work is the Foundation’s Bellagio Center, where we annually host ~1,000 people through ~60 convenings and 150 month long residencies. Bellagio has launched the Global Alliance for Vaccine Initiatives, the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research, and the Global Impact Investing Network, among many others. We build convening methodologies using techniques like human centered design to develop and customize tailored convening experiences that produce distinctive outcomes that advance signature priorities of the Foundation. We also grow and nurture the Foundation’s network of leaders that come through Bellagio, and through new partnerships such as 17 Rooms with the Brookings Institution. Maintaining an active network is critical to sustain momentum and extend the impact of the Foundation.
Principal Duties and Responsibilities
You’ll work hand-in-hand with our initiatives and partner organizations —identifying opportunities for design, imagining new possibilities, and bringing those ideas to life through engaging convening and community engagement experiences.
We seek a Director who can integrate strategic rigor with creative thinking and has significant experience with the full life cycle of design—from concept to prototyping to execution. They should have a healthy dose of curiosity that helps experts in different fields imagine new possibilities. Part researcher, part strategist, and part maker, in this role you might be learning about our initiative team plans to build a more equitable food system, or to end energy poverty, sketching wireframes for achieving those goals through convening, hosting a co-design workshop, and wrapping up the week building prototypes for community engagement and connection. You will have a dynamic portfolio and will stay on top of it with exceptional project management and client service.
You see yourself as a hybrid designer you may have started in one specific field of design but gradually developed a generalist mindset. For example, you may have built your career as a UX designer, engagement strategist, or in service design. You’re comfortable flexing your skills in several ways, and leading teams through the design process.
You will have strong facilitative skills, adapting your style to the range of situations and audiences that the Rockefeller Foundation works with, from formal global policy discussions with public sector leaders to creative brainstorms with technologists. You will also have consultative skills that can help partners - internal and external - clarify their goals, identify opportunities, shape strategies, and design implementation approaches.
Lead multidisciplinary teams through the design process—from research and prototyping through execution and implementation
Instill confidence in the design process among our partners, and ensure they are equipped to steward the solutions we design to market
Create or guide the creation of prototypes of different levels of fidelity to help determine design direction for a project
Construct or guide the development of information architecture, interaction models, schematics, and visual design that bring new ideas to life
Be solution-focused and medium-agnostic, willing to step out of your core skill set or discipline to find the correct solution to a challenge
Convening & Conversation, Community Engagement
Design convening strategies, an arc of convenings (virtual and physical) of different types over a period of time to achieve a certain goal, in partnership with program team counterparts (expected ~40 in first year)
Provide technical expertise on convening and conversation design, considering specific goals, attendees, audiences, and timeframe
Maintain and update our convening design methodologies library, informed by lessons and feedback in the spirit of continuous improvement
Lead engagement with external expert consultants and deploy their time and expertise where most needed
Manage your diverse and dynamic portfolio, including scope, timelines, budgets and client expectations, all with dedication to excellent client experience
Advise on community engagement strategies and tactics to maintain the network built through our convenings and residency program at the Bellagio Center, and through other flagship programs like 17 Rooms
Education, Experience and Skills
Minimum ten years’ experience leading design for project-based professional service firm or rapid growth start-ups; some experience in social sector or deep intellectual curiosity and ability to learn about a range of topics and speak to them confidently
You lead with genuine connection and charisma; You are high-energy and thrive on connecting with people, yet you are calm in the face of the inevitable storm and can always find your center
You are resilient to changing circumstances and goals, changing course when appropriate. You can advance work in complex situations with high ambiguity
You have a strong client service orientation and take pride in seeing partners succeed
You have the confidence and ability to engage with experts in different fields and can add value in a range of conversations
You are culturally sensitive, creative, and resourceful
You have a thoughtful approach to leading creative process and teams
You are able to translate complex topics into simple language
You can participate appropriately in executive settings and tailor engagements to a range of clients from diverse backgrounds and perspectives
You are committed to the mission of the Foundation to incorporate inclusion, equity and diversity in every aspect of your work, and to challenging conventional wisdom through evidence, reason, and amplifying dissenting, unconventional and marginalized voices.
You are fluent in the human-centered design process from qualitative research and synthesis to ideation, prototyping, and implementation
You are a strategic thinker and an implementer and you see them as two sides of the same coin
You think in systems not silos, and understand the value of connections, but can also simplify abstractions into concrete ideas and plans
You are adept at synthesizing data, distilling complexity, and storytelling
You are well versed in online convening platforms as well as in-person production
You understand and have worked in a variety of convening models and sizes
You have exposure or experience working with a variety of facilitation methods
You have extensive experience managing client or partner relationships
You are an exceptional project manager and have the ability to juggle multiple projects and timelines, while remaining attentive and proactive with clients
We are currently fully remote, but once restrictions ease, this role will be based in the New York office.
As an organization, we focus on six values to advance our culture and to continue our success. We are dedicated to being Transparent, Optimistic, Accountable, Collaborative, Trusted and Equitable. We operate from a strong commitment to equity, diversity and inclusion in everything that we do. It’s not only the right thing to do – we couldn’t make an impact without the diverse perspectives and experiences of our team members. We expect all employees at the Foundation to contribute by developing their unique perspective and talent, and to challenge conventional wisdom through evidence and reason, and by amplifying marginalized voices.
The Rockefeller Foundation is committed to the principles of equal employment opportunity and to compliance with all federal, state, and local laws concerning employment discrimination, including the Americans with Disabilities Act. To this end, the Foundation ensures equal opportunity to all employees and applicants regardless of race, color, age, gender, sexual orientation, religion, marital status, national origin or ancestry, citizenship, lawful alien status, physical, mental, and medical disability, veteran status or liability for service in the United States Armed Forces.
The Rockefeller Foundation is an Equal Opportunity Employer.