Terms of Reference for the Development of an APHRC Media Engagement Strategy

Deadline: May 26, 2024
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The African Population and Health Research Center (APHRC) is a premier research-to-policy institution, generating evidence, strengthening research and related capacity in the African research and development ecosystem, and engaging policy to inform action on health and development. The Center is Africa-based and African-led, with its headquarters in Nairobi, Kenya, and a West Africa Regional Office (WARO) in Dakar, Senegal. APHRC seeks to drive change by developing strong African research leadership and promoting evidence-informed decision-making (EIDM) across sub-Saharan Africa.

Background and Project Scope

In 2022, APHRC developed its Strategic Plan, articulating the Center’s vision to be a transformative force on the continent, building on 20-plus years of experience in evidence generation, and promoting its use to guide decision-making for Africa’s development. The organization currently implements over 100 projects in 35 countries, with a spectrum of global, regional, and national stakeholders. Over the years, APHRC has built strategic partnerships and meaningful engagement with partners, funders, governments, academia, researchers, policymakers, media, civil society, communities, and internal staff.

In line with this, APHRC is keen to develop a comprehensive media engagement strategy. The specific roles are as follows:

Media Engagement Strategy: This will guide APHRC’s visibility as a research-to-policy organization, profiling as a thought leader in the research and development ecosystem and brand positioning. Through enhanced engagement with the media, APHRC can influence and enlighten decision-makers on population, health, and policy issues. This strategy will identify the most effective ways of media engagement, identify the target audience, and different media channels to convey APHRC’s message.

The purpose of this assignment is to develop a media engagement strategy for APHRC for the period of 2024-2026, including an implementation plan. APHRC is therefore, seeking an expert consultant/firm to develop this strategy. The consultant is expected to develop the strategy in liaison with the Center’s Policy Engagement and Communications Program’s Visibility Unit team.

Specific Tasks/Deliverables

  1. APHRC media audit: This will be conducted through interviews, desktop research, and reviewing all available records/documents. The results will be shared in a report.
  2. Inception report: The report will include activity details with proposed methodologies, timeline/ delivery dates, and the media engagement strategy outline.
  3. Zero drafts: The draft zero media engagement strategy will be shared in Word and PDF for feedback and comments.
  4. Draft 1: The media strategy document will be presented to the supervisory team for validation.
  5. Submission of draft 2: The media engagement strategy document (incorporating inputs made during the validation meeting) for final feedback, comment, and approval.
  6. Final copies: A clean copy of the media strategy document (e-copy in Word and PDF) in English.
  7. All deliverables will be submitted to the supervisory team on the date agreed upon during the inception meeting.


The consultant will propose the design methodology and prepare an inception report to develop the media engagement strategy. The inception report will include the proposed methodology, a matrix, instruments to develop strategies, conduct interviews, undertake desk studies, collect data, and the proposed timelines for the entire process.

Specifically, the consultant will be responsible for undertaking the following tasks:

  1. Conduct a thorough desk review of existing documents, including the Center’s Strategic plan, reports, and policies.
  2. Identify media engagement gaps and possible solutions.
  3. Identify opportunities for media engagement and influencing relevant stakeholders.
  4. Conduct consultation meetings with key stakeholders and partners in Kenya and the region.
  5. Develop a comprehensive media engagement strategy outlining the objectives, target activities, media channels, partner organizations, deliverables and indicators, and an implementation plan for 2024-2026.
  6. Provide recommendations and develop tools for operationalizing and implementing the media engagement strategy in alignment with the Center’s strategic priorities.

Mode of Operation

The consultant must conduct the above deliverables through scheduled meetings via Zoom and in person, in liaison with the Visibility Unit Communications Manager. The consultant will work closely with the Manager to set up meetings, exchange information, and provide documentation. All the work will be concluded with a feedback session where findings and recommendations are presented to the Visibility team, the Head of PEC, and the Executive Director.

Essential Requirements/Qualifications

The consultant or the firm must have:

  1. Master’s degree in media and communications or related field.
  2. A media, communications, and public relations expert with a proven track record of developing media engagement strategies.
  3. A minimum of five years’ work experience in media engagement development/implementation, research, and analysis.
  4. Proven experience in developing and implementing media engagement programs in multi-sectoral working contexts, specifically focusing on research.
  5. Desired expert knowledge and experience working with international non-governmental organizations (INGOs), specifically those in the research and science realm.
  6. Understanding of the media environment in Kenya and the African region.
  7. Excellent communication, reporting presentation, and writing skills.

Other Requirements

  1. Under this agreement, consultants are NOT to be paid for weekends or public holidays.
  2. Consultants are not entitled to overtime payment. All remuneration must be within the contract agreement.
  3. No work may commence unless both APHRC and the consultant sign the contract.
  4. No consultant may travel without a signed contract and authorization to the duty station or to the field.
  5. Consultants will not have supervisory responsibilities or authority.
  6. All materials and other intellectual property produced while working under this contract, including, but not limited to, documents, presentations, white papers, photographs, and other media, will remain the property of APHRC, and these materials MUST be submitted to the supervisor on a regular basis.
  7. The successful applicant must abide by the Center’s Code of Conduct to carry out their duties professionally, transparently, participatory, and culturally appropriate.
  8. In the case of unsatisfactory work quality, payments will be withheld until quality is assured.

Budget and Planning

The consultancy is expected to submit remuneration based on the submission of deliverables, provided that the report meets the specified requirements as stated in the Term of Reference.

The proposed budget should also include all evaluation expenses and applicable taxes. The contractor must make provisions to cover all costs associated with the assignment.

The consultancy work will take an estimated maximum of twenty (20) days, excluding travelling days.

Payment shall be made upon completion of the project.

How to apply

The application for the consultancy should include the following:

  1. A technical proposal detailing the consultant’s understanding of the task, proposed methodologies, expected activities and deliverables, proposed work plan, and the composition of the consultancy team to be engaged, if any, in PDF format.
  2. A financial proposal detailing the costs that the consultant expects to complete the assignment in PDF format.
  3. At least three samples of previously developed media engagement strategies.
  4. Detailed and updated CV.
  5. Three professional references from previous clients with full contact details of the referees.
  6. The proposal must be in English.

Submission of a technical and financial proposal to consultancies@aphrc.org and cc procurement@aphrc.org by close of business May 26, 2024.

*Please note the APHRC procurement team may request for additional business documents.       

Special Notice

APHRC is an equal opportunity employer that is committed to creating a diverse and inclusive workplace. All employment decisions are made on the basis of qualifications and organizational needs. Reasonable accommodation may be provided to applicants with disabilities upon request, to support their participation in the recruitment process.