Now Accepting Applications! Summer Institute 2015 - Reform Communication: Leadership, Strategy and Stakeholder Alignment

This story was originally published in The World Bank website on Nov.13, 2014

How can leaders and change agents be more successful at achieving sustainable reforms? Can the strategic use of communication increase the likelihood of success? If so, what types of communication strategies are the most effective?

While few would dispute the important role of communication in building support among key stakeholders in the pursuit of reforms, many are unsure of exactly how to go about creating and launching a communication campaign for reform.

This is one impetus behind the 2015 Summer Institute in Reform Communication: Leadership, Strategy and Stakeholder Alignment, designed and led by World Bank Group's External and Corporate Relations (ECR), Operational Communications unit, the World Bank’s Leadership, Learning, and Innovation Group (LLI), the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Pennsylvania, and the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism at the University of Southern California.

The Summer Institute will be held at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, June 1 - June 12, 2015. 

The program was developed on the premise that successful implementation of policy reforms depends significantly on non-technical, real-world issues that relate to people and politics. Communication strategies, therefore, are essential to overcoming a lack of political will among key stakeholders and vested interests, a lack of citizen demand for reform, or hostile political barriers.  Communication, when done right, may be the key to converting reform objectives into achievements.

During the 10-day program, participants will learn the most recent advances in communication and proven techniques in reform implementation. Participants will develop the skills required to bring about real change, leading to development results.

Participants will acquire critical skills in five key areas:

- Interpreting and using political economy analyses
- Crafting multi-stakeholder collaboration, coalition and network building strategies and tactics to support reform
- Developing strategic communication skills that lead to development results
- Leveraging social/digital media tools and analytics effectively
- Building communication metrics and applying monitoring and evaluation frameworks relevant to reform.

The course is designed for leaders, strategists and advisors who want to strengthen the critical competencies necessary to support change agents and reform leaders in developing countries.  Senior development practitioners and communication professionals from countries in Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East attend the course each year, creating a global network of development professionals working on initiatives in the public, private and non-profit sectors, with which leaders can connect. Please see our promotional video featuring 2013 participants.

Please visit the program’s website for more information, including materials from previous Summer Institutes, the online application and a link to the flyer.

Also, check out blog posts on previous Summer Institute sessions!

The deadline for applications is December 31, 2014.

Photograph from 2013 Summer Institute program courtesy of the course Flickr page