Short-Term Consultancy, Corporate Capture Project



  • Location: Flexible
  • Rolling application

'Research & Communications Consultant'

The International Network for Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ESCR-Net) is seeking a short-term consultant to advance research and communications related to its Corporate Capture Project, coordinated by a Project Advisory Group of members, including: Citizen News Service (India), Defend Job (Philippines), Above Ground (Canada), Habi Center (Egypt), PODER (Mexico) and SiLNoRF (Sierre Leone).  The Corporate Capture Project is one of the principle activities of the ESCR-Net Corporate Accountability Working Group (CAWG).

ESCR-Net connects over 270 NGOs, social movements and advocates across more than 70 countries to build a global movement to make human rights and social justice a reality for all.

This consultant will report to Program Coordinator of the CAWG and work in close collaboration with the Corporate Capture Project Advisory Group (PAG), particularly the Citizen News Service (CNS), who is guiding online research and communications work within the PAG. CNS specializes in in-depth and rights-based reporting from the frontlines of struggles for health, gender and development justice, and syndicating content to online and print media.


  • Strong knowledge of human rights and corporate accountability issues
  • Demonstrable experience developing written content for websites including online newsletters/bulletins
  • Experience undertaking online media scanning/research
  • Experience undertaking human rights-related desk research
  • Experience utilizing social media platforms
  • Experience uploading written content to websites
  • Fluency in English, as well as written and verbal proficiency in Spanish
  • Comfort working remotely
  • Capable to consistently produce deliverables according to deadlines
  • Detail-oriented
  • Knowledge of French and Arabic are desirable

Scope of Work:
Over the next six months, with oversight by the Project Advisory Group:

  1. 1.      Undertake surveying on key corporate capture themes and develop short online case studies on emerging advocacy efforts.
  • Finalise an online survey and detailed follow-up questionnaire for CSOs together with the ESCR-Net CAWG Coordinator and assist in disseminating a version translated into multiple languages.
  • Receive and collate a minimum of 40 online survey responses by the end of June.
  • To supplement the list of already identified ESCR-Net Members working on corporate capture that can be surveyed for this research, undertake online research into other CSOs working on corporate capture at national and sub-national level that would be suitable to complete this survey (identifying in total no less than 20 organizations beyond ESCR-Net’s existing membership)
  • From these initial surveys, identify and develop at least 8-10 relevant cases from across three or more regions, and develop these cases found into short (1-2 page) case studies. Conduct online research and phone/Skype interviews to support the development of these cases. For each case, highlight effective civil society strategies/responses to the corporate capture identified in the case research.  At least two reviewed and translated case studies should be published each month during the first four months of this project.
  1. 2.      Formulate findings from the survey and additional interviews into the production of a research report (15-20 pages, including images/graphics) analyzing trends in the findings, in particular centered on two or more themes.  This report should be accessible to and usable in advocacy by a wide range of civil society organizations challenging corporate capture. Initial scoping and strategic exchange has suggested two initial themes: a) the human rights impacts of national or sub-national policies governing natural resource management which have been drafted by corporate officials (either in their corporate capacity or while temporarily working for state authorities before returning to work for corporations); and b) strategies used by companies to unduly influence the operations of local-level administrations at the site of corporate projects, involving human rights impacts that result from community division / militarization of local areas; ideally, the consultant would identify one or more additional trends identified via this research.  Research questions relating to these and other pre-existing corporate capture themes will feature in specific sub-sections of the survey and subsequent interview questions.
  • In addition to interviews to develop cases studies outlined above, conduct or support members of the PAG in conducting at least ten additional interviews with organizations focused on the two identified themes and perhaps a third theme emerging from the research.
  • Develop a cross-cutting analysis that emerges from the surveys, in-depth case studies and additional interviews, which highlight common characteristics, challenges and opportunities for advocacy/action.
  • By 1 September, provide an outline of the draft report, including an emerging themes, for review and input by PAG.
  • By 19 September, provide a working final draft of the research report to the PAG for review.
  • Work with ESCR-Net CAWG Coordinator and Communications Coordinator to refine a final draft of the report based on feedback, translate into Spanish and upload to ESCR-Net’s website.
  1. 3.      Produce three online newsletters (one every two months for six months). 
  • Every two weeks, upload summaries of and links to at least 3 relevant news items from different regions to the website, utilizing an existing online media aggregator to identify national and sub-national cases that match the case criteria for the corporate capture project; undertake additional online research as needed to develop summaries. Work with ESCR-Net CAWG Coordinator to assess relevant items and with Communications Coordinator to ensure translation and uploading.
  • Develop a template for the newsletter in conversation with members of the PAG (who will have ultimate decision making over the format and content).
  • Inviting input from PAG —select at least 5 news items covering a minimum of three regions – to highlight in each newsletter, which should also include at least one case study of an organization challenging corporate capture (described above).
  • Work with ESCR-Net Communications Coordinator to facilitate translation into Spanish and dissemination of newsletter, including relevant social media posts.  


The working group has budgeted US$4000-$4500, to be provided in two equal installments. The first installment will be provided upon completion of the first draft of the research report and the first newsletter, and the second installment will be provided following the completion of all remaining items in the scope of work.  The entire time span for the contract will be six months.

Ideal Start Date:
15 June 2016

To Apply:

Please send a CV and cover letter toDominic Renfrey at: [email protected]Please title your email as ‘Research & Communications Assistant’.