From urban to rural areas, mobile networks have become the predominant infrastructure in emerging markets and up to 772 million people are now covered by mobile networks but don’t access to electricity. Similar figures exist for water and sanitation. The GSMA’s Mobile for Development Utilities Programme explores how the mobile industry can support commercially viable energy, water and sanitation services in underserved communities.
Launched in January 2013, the programme carries the following activities to support these innovative mobile enabled utility services across Asia and Africa:
- Innovation Fund: Grants are competitively awarded to organisations trialling or scaling energy, water, or sanitation service models that leverage mobile technology. Though these grants we aim to answer the following questions and share these insights with the broader mobile industry, development sector, innovators, and funders:
- How can mobile support utility services?
- For a mobile-enabled solution to be adopted at scale, what building blocks are needed?
- What are the social and commercial impacts of delivering community services to underserved mobile subscribers
- Knowledge Sharing and Convening: We produce industry-leading reports that share trends and key insights about how mobile can enable energy, water and sanitation services for underserved customers in order to advance the sector. We also convene key stakeholders engaged or interested in these models at regional working groups, GSMA industry events and other external leading events to share best practices.
- Advisory Services: We support mobile operators to understand the potential benefits for them to engage in these services and support knowledge exchange across the mobile industry.
The M4D Utilities team is currently seeking an Insights Manager to support the programme’s on-going work on research and insights. We are seeking highly motivated self-starters that believe in the catalytic role that technology can play in access to basic infrastructure in emerging markets. The Insights Manager will report to the M4D Utilities Senior Insights Manager.
The M4D - Utilities Insights Manager will be based in London and spend a limited proportion of their time in the field (<20%).
The Insights Manager will be involved with the following:
- Knowledge Sharing: the manager will lead and develop Insight reports related to mobile and utilities. Information will be collected through desk based, field research and working with the M4D Utilities market engagement team to call out thematic learnings from the grants.
- Programme Module Creation and Delivery: The M4D Utilities programme will provide curriculum for mobile operators and service providers to give them improved and targeted guidance for launching mobile-enabled utility services. These will be delivered at industry events as well as some in-country workshops for mobile operators. The Insights Manager will have two roles: 1) Lead the planning, development and delivery of the service provider curriculum, with module development and delivery support from the market engagement management team. 2) Support the Market Engagement Manager on the development and delivery of the mobile operator modules.
- Instant Payment Notification Hub: the IPN hub is a joint project with the Mobile Money team aiming to provide a single point of integration for service providers and mobile operators to facilitate mobile money integration. The manager will work with the M4D Utilities Senior Insight Manager, M4D Utilities Market Engagement and the Mobile Money teams to support the IPN hub expansion to new African markets, engage with local service providers and mobile operators and conduct data analysis.
- Internal Engagement: The Insights manager will be the primary liason to to the insights teams within other M4D programmes to improve knowledge sharing within M4D and wider GSMA and support cross departmental initiatives. This will include participation and/or presentation at internal meetings and events.
- External engagement: the manager will provide expertise for new and existing external research engagements, that support similar stakeholders and objectives (e.g. increased energy access). This might include research meetings (ex. with UNCDF on their energy ladder research, University of Edinburgh on blockchain & energy), private sector engagement (ex. Toilet Board Coalition) or review of investment proposals.
- Contribute towards shaping the overall direction of the Research and Insights team jointly with the Sr. Research and Insights Manager and M4D Utilities team to ensure that the programme delivers value to the industry and achieves its goal of creating more scalable and sustainable business models for energy, water and sanitation service provision.
- Strong technical background in at least one of: mobile networks, mobile devices, M2M communications, renewable energy, water or sanitation
- Strong commercial background with experience in at least one of: impact investing, rural distribution, marketing, raising capital for startups
- Project Management, New Product Introduction and/or Management Consulting experience is attractive
- An MBA, International Development, Engineering or Business post-graduate degree is preferred
- Minimum of three to four years of relevant work experience.
- Comfortable managing relationships with various internal and external stakeholders, including C-level executives and dedicated entrepreneurs
- Strong analytical skills: Able to manipulate large quantities of data, and be able to present the results of analysis in a succinct manner to key stakeholders
- Excellent communicator: able to express complex technical, commercial or regulatory issues in plain language, without losing the important points
- Excellent team-work abilities to effectively work with the whole M4D utilities team and the wider GSMA in order to achieve collective programme and industry goals
- Fluent and compelling written and oral communications skills, particularly in English
- French competency is a plus
- Genuinely interested in both the commercial and social benefits that are presented by the programme
- Excellent cultural awareness and a desire to work with teams around the world. Enjoys international travel and learning about new markets
- Able to quickly grasp new concepts and ideas (given the level of innovation in our sector and the wider industry)
- Naturally curious, able to think beyond business-as-usual scenarios, and dream big.
- Process-oriented individual, that takes ownership and responsibly without unnecessary management from above.