Job Overview

Summary

About the Agency

The U.S. Department of State, our country’s lead foreign policy agency, provides a rich international experience whether at home or abroad, and opportunities to become responsible leaders.

Each day, our employees make a difference as they contribute to our global society and defend and advance our country’s interests and values. They work on the business of diplomacy and high priority issues that impact the safety, security, and prosperity of our world – human rights, environment, energy, food security, public health, and technology – all while experiencing a unique career.

Our talented workforce reflects and champions all of our strengths and diversity – personal, professional, and educational. We offer a workplace that values and rewards leadership, collaboration and innovation, and personal and professional development.

The Department’s Bureau of International Information Programs (IIP) is the principal international strategic communications service for the foreign affairs community. IIP provides worldwide outreach platforms for public diplomacy and partnerships with policy experts and missions to design and execute outcome-oriented programs that engage foreign audiences to advance U.S. foreign policy.

American Spaces are in-person engagement platforms where visitors participate in discussions on issues affecting U.S. foreign policy and learn about the U.S. The Washington-based American Spaces Office establishes overall program policy, provides technical and administrative support, coordinates centralized acquisition of digital information resources, funds and tracks American Spaces projects, and manages training programs for staff. The RPES is responsible for ensuring that American Spaces fulfill this important role within the Department.

In addition to Education requirements, applicants must possess a minimum of:

  • Three years of Specialized Experience and a required Bachelor’s or Master’s for consideration at FP-04 level
  • Five years of Specialized Experience and a required Master’s degree for consideration at FP-03 level
RPES formerly was called Information Resource Officer (IRO). The RPES duties, requirements, and qualifications differ from IRO. Read this entire Announcement to see the requirements for Specialized Experience and Education level/majors and the RPES duties.

The Department of State is developing a rank-order list of eligible hires for a limited number of FS Specialist (FSS) vacancies based on the needs of the Department.

Duties

Foreign Service RPESs provide professional leadership and project management expertise to over 700 American Spaces at U.S. embassies and consulates, partner institutions, and to the hundreds of U.S. government (USG) and partner staff who operate them. Through technology interfaces and strategic travel within the assigned region, RPESs provide professional direction and guidance to American Spaces by:

  1. Using expertise and a high level of understanding of new communications tools and technologies to conduct training for American Spaces and Public Affairs staff on a wide variety of IIP platforms, digital tools, and analytics tools. Using data driven decision making, monitor and improve performance of American Spaces.
  2. Developing new products and services by conceptualizing and proposing new program ideas and operational procedures; serving as a member of product development teams; and testing and evaluating new commercial products for use in American Spaces.
  3. Performing advisory functions for public affairs officials on IIP platforms and programs and maximizing the utilization of American Spaces as key venues to engage foreign publics on U.S. foreign policy matters. Additionally, they advise IIP on overseas program environments; monitor trends and developments; and report on the impact of IIP products and platforms.
  4. Serving as project manager for American Spaces initiatives, to include managing fiscal resources; explaining IIP policies and procedures; identifying sources of funding and assisting with funding requests; and reporting on results of American Spaces. Coordinate major projects, such as American Spaces construction or renovation, where multiple stakeholders are involved. For some American Spaces projects, serves as the official Contracting Officer’s Representative or Grants Officer’s Representative.
  5. At some posts, directly supervising Locally Employed (LE) Staff and managing their home post’s American Space(s).
An RPES must adhere to the highest standards of integrity, dependability, attention to detail, teamwork and cooperation while accepting the need to travel, to live overseas, and when necessary, to live away from family.

Travel Required

  • Occasional Travel
  • An FSS generally spends the majority of his/her career assigned to the Department of State’s overseas missions and at times, lives away from family and/or in difficult or isolated conditions. Selected applicants will be notified of an Oral Assessment (OA) requirement in Washington D.C. For the selected applicants, all travel and other expenses incurred in connection with the OA are the sole responsibility of the applicant.

Relocation Authorized

  • Yes
  • After completing orientation and initial training in Washington, D.C., an FSS usually is assigned to two overseas tours, each two years in length, directed by the Department. After the initial two tours, assignments will be for periods of one to three years overseas or in the United States.