Skoll World Forum
About the Initiative:
The Initiative for Digital Public Interest (IDPI) envisions a world in which digital transformation protects and promotes human rights, advances social justice, and serves the full participation, agency and dignity of all people.
Our mission is to infuse the development of digital public infrastructure with robust engagement by globally diverse, informed, and well-resourced public interest and grassroots stakeholder communities. IDPI seeks to build the discourse, policy and practice of digital transformation around the lived reality of the communities who stand to lose the most from being left out of decision-making, sidelined by structural disadvantages, dismissed or ignored as digital public infrastructure (DPI) projects launch and mature. IDPI is focused on supporting the practical realization of principles of equity and inclusion in digital transformation.
The consultant will play a critical role in shaping the start-up and overall strategy of IDPI, including by designing a programmatic strategy; devising a role and identity for IDPI in the field; developing and formalizing a network of partners; hiring and overseeing a small staff; and developing an operational structure to both get the initiative off the ground and become sustainable in 3 to 4 years’ time. The consultant will take on tasks that are equivalent to the level of an “interim executive director” working closely with the Advisory Committee.
The role is an opportunity to build up a new, game-changing initiative that empowers civil society organizations from around the world to achieve a fair and just digital future for all. The consultant is expected to execute and build upon the vision, mission, and initial work of IDPI which was developed and led by its Advisory Committee. As the author of IDPI’s business plan for the next 3 years, the consultant must have the management skills and entrepreneurial vision to launch and carry this work to great heights. The consultant must possess keen insights into major trends regarding digital public infrastructure and an ability to navigate and engage in the complex politics surrounding it across sectors, geographies and levels of government.
Furthermore, the consultant must be adept at operating in an environment with significant ambiguity and be dynamic and creative in order to build the necessary coalitions, manage a diverse, remote team and navigate a complex international political environment.
There is no geographic requirement for the location of the consultant.
Program vision, strategy and leadership
- Develop and execute IDPI’s 3-year strategy and develop annual work plans and grantmaking strategies in close consultation with IDPI’s Advisory Committee and in line with IDPI’s vision
- Foster IDPI’s network of partners from civil society and representatives from governments and multilateral institutions.
- Develop an initial network engagement and support plan including grantmaking and efforts to convene and connect stakeholders
- Develop an external facing identity and communications strategy that clearly explains and situates the IDPI in the field of CSOs, governments, funders and other stakeholders; identify a niche for IDPI’s research and public engagement
- Develop effective systems to track and evaluate progress, so that successes can be measured and communicated to the Advisory Committee, funders, and other relevant constituents
Organization building and development
- Manage IDPI’s relationship with its fiscal sponsor, RPA
- Oversee, and, as necessary, revise IDPI’s grantmaking structure and processes
- Develop a strategy for organizational structure, operations and staffing for the launch and first 3 years of operation
- Design a lean, nimble team structure that can respond quickly and flexibly to the needs of partners
- Recruit, onboard, develop and retain the IDPI’s core working team
- Develop and document systems and processes for managing the IDPI’s operations including payroll and other office administration
- Create a plan to ensure compliance with all applicable laws and regulations in the various jurisdictions in which the initiative is located and operates
- Develop processes and systems for engaging and supporting the IDPI’s Advisory Committee
Fundraising and sustainability strategy
- Develop a short- (3-year) and long-term sustainability plan that seeks to diversify sources of funding
- Develop donor-facing collateral to support fundraising
- Develop system for engaging Advisory Committee in fundraising efforts
- Advanced degree and/or 12+ years of progressively responsible experience in technology and social change or transferable experience in social impact.
- Deep commitment to IDPI’s mission, human rights and social justice and the dignity and agency of people experiencing digitalization.
- Expertise in and experience working in the fields of digital ID, digital public infrastructure or relevant topics at the national, regional or global
- Demonstrated success developing relationships with CSOs, international organizations and leaders in the field of digital public infrastructure, human rights, digital rights and development that could be leveraged in the initiative’s wor
- Deep experience in the conception, design, and execution of organization or initiative design and management.
- Demonstrated management skills in government, international organizations, not-for-profit organizations and/or the private sector, particularly in organizations working internationally.
- Experience in fundraising and otherwise supporting nonprofit organization
- Aptitude to work with flexibility, creative thinking, non-traditional approaches and diplomacy.
- Ability to operate in ambiguous environments and adapt quickly to changing circumstances.
- Demonstrated experience in staff and partnership management; demonstrated expertise in handling personnel issues.
- Flexibility and ability to work simultaneously on a wide range of tasks and projects.
- Excellent written and oral English skills are required, with fluency in one additional language strongly preferred.
- Ability to undertake frequent travel.
To apply for this position, please send the following materials to firstname.lastname@example.org email.
- A C.V.
- A 1-page letter of interest, describing your interest in and qualifications for this role
- A recent writing sample that you are proud of and exemplifies your thinking, argumentation and communication skills.
- A list of 2-3 references and their contact information. (We will not contact them without notifying you first.)
We will accept applications until 11:59 on 24 November 2023. We expect to select a final candidate in winter, 2023-4.