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How development jobs and career opportunities will change as a result of COVID-19

Craig Zelizer

June 3, 2020

At PCDN we were planning on launching a group career coaching option to help even more people advance careers of impact.

Then, COVID-19 happened. So here is the deal: We are opening four decades of  expertise and to help you. Once a week. For free.

Join us via every week via Zoom for a highly interactive session and come with any questions, your challenges,  or favorite tips on building a career of social impact. We will do our best to guide you in this time of crisis.

When: We will be online at Noon Eastern Standard time every Thursday for the foreseeable future as long as there interest from our community. You only need to register once to participate (see below for a full Questions & Answers on this initiative.)

Focus of the Sessions: Most weeks we will pick a theme based on the feedback from our community, but we will welcome a broad range of questions. For our Session on June 18  we will have Kate Warren, Executive Vice-President of Devex, as our guest speaker (bio below). She is one of the world's leading experts on development and relief careers and will be leading a discussion on the impact covid19 is having on careers in the sector.

The Covid-19 pandemic has had a strong impact on the international development and humanitarian relief sectors.  First, many organizations focused on providing relief and services have had to adapt their work to address the current combined health crisis, economic and humanitarian crises and to adapt their work due to limitations on staff travel. Second, a number of leading organizations have already begun to lay off staff to a decrease in funding.

Kate will share insights from recent research Devex conducted on how the covid19 crisis is impacting professionals in the field. In addition she has been doing a regular video interviews series, Careers During Covid, with Senior Human Resource Professionals from the some of the world's leading organizations including UNDP , UNHCR, and IOM to discuss how their programming and hiring is changing in this challenging period.

The session will explore questions including:

  • How is covid-19 impacting the career opportunities for current professionals and students?
  •  Which sectors are likely to see a growth in funding and which areas are likely to see more layoffs and challenges?
  • What skills can help professionals stay relevant and increase their chances for employment during the next few years?
  • There will be ample time for open discussion.


When it comes to understanding global development talent and careers, Kate is your go-to. The Devex career and recruiting guru in-residence, she has her finger on the pulse of hiring trends across the industry and insider knowledge on what it takes to break in.

As an Executive Vice President, she oversees Devex recruitment and career products and services, leading cutting-edge talent solutions for the major funding agencies, NGOs and consulting firms that make development happen. Kate also leads the strategy for career and recruiting insights content and programming across Devex and authors a popular career advice column, Ask Devex, for professionals working in global development.

Before joining Devex in 2008, Kate honed her worldwide recruitment experience with an international NGO and a global development consulting firm. (And yes, she was a Devex client).

A native Texan, Kate speaks Spanish, and has lived in Argentina, Costa Rica and Mexico and has experience in over 30 countries. When she isn’t blogging, speaking at international conferences, or advising executives on the latest talent innovations, you can find her shuttling her two kids between soccer and dance classes.

Why is PCDN doing this?  Because we are dedicated to helping changemakers at all stages access the tools, resources and information to advance careers of impact. Plus, PCDN.global was created to help as many people as possible around the globe and we're even more committed to service this trying period.

How do I sign up? Register here . Once your registration has been approved, you will receive information on how to participate.

How do I participate? Each week we will be on Zoom  Participants will receive information via email about how to login. You will either need to download Zoom on your computer, tablet/smartphone (we recommend using the app to be able to have a more engaging experience) or you can call in via phone via the numbers provided.

Is there any cost to participating? No, to help as many people as possible it is free.

Can I participate when I want? Yes, all you need to do is register. Then you can join in whenever you have time. These are designed to be dropped in chats.

How can I ensure my questions are addressed? While we will make an effort to address as many questions as possible, we cannot guarantee we will be able to get to everyone. Questions can be posted at anytime in the Social Change Career Helping Line or free to drop us an email at info(at)pcdn.global

Where else can I go for help? PCDN offers a number of ways we help our community for free including

  • We highly recommend joining our free Social Change Career Helping Line. This is the world's first free, peer and expert sourced space for building careers of impact. Members (to date we have 3600 members from over 140 countries) can get support and share their own insights 24/7.
  • We also produce the Social Change Career Podcast featuring some of the world's leading changemakers & innovators who share their journeys to building a career of impact. We cover diverse sectors from peacebuilding, social entrepreneurship, tech and social change, impact investing, humanitarian relief, startups and more. Each episode includes in-depth actionable advice for changemakers.
  • Subscribe to our newsletters and get the world's best curated content (including jobs, fellowships, funding, events, news & inspiration) connected to the SDGs and all things impact) in your inbox.
  • Read our Career Series. We have hundreds of posts on building a Career of Impact that you can access for free (and we continue to add more content).
  • Check out our Opportunity Board Find jobs, fellowships, internships, funding, trainings, events and more in nearly every corner of the world.


What happens if I need more support in my career journey? We do offer very affordable career coaching that includes customized one-on-one coaching to help you get from passion to hired. We are uniquely qualified as we have over four decades of combined experience in the social sector, have conducted groundbreaking published research on building careers of impact, have built NGOs, social enterprises, worked & consulted at leading academic institutions, NGOs and conducted programming, evaluation and impact work in multiple sectors.  We've also hired many people, mentored hundreds of people around the globe, and also had successes and of course some real failures (quitting jobs, working for organizations that run out of funding and more). We have a 20% discount on our career services during the covid-19 epidemic. If you have questions get in touch or setup a free 15 minute exploratory chat.

Will sessions be recorded/viewable later?

We are recording many of the sessions to be viewable later (we will let people know prior to each session if it will be recorded).  If you have a sensitive question that you would like us to raise in the session anonymously drop us an email with your request at info(at)pcdn.global.

What are you doing to help ensure the security/privacy of participants?

To help ensure security we are having people register and provide some basic info prior to the session.  Only those who have registered can participate. If you have a sensitive question that you would like us to raise in the session anonymously drop us an email with your request at info(at)pcdn.global



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