Lead - Digital Economy Practice

The Innovation Village


The Innovation Village is Uganda’s launchpad for leading innovators and entrepreneurs. We are building an entire ecosystem of entrepreneurs and innovators in what is growing to become a business solutions provider for our biggest challenges or opportunities. From helping entrepreneurs launch and grow high-impact ventures to attracting regional and global opportunities, our ecosystem approach converges multiple partners including public, private, academia, research, and civil society as one force for good.


In partnership with the Mastercard Foundation and Mastercard Inc, The Innovation Village is launching the Digital Economy Program to transform the digital economy in Uganda. Digital transformation is rapidly re-shaping our global economy, permeating every sector and aspect of daily life – changing the way we learn, work, trade, socialize, and access public and private services and information. With this trend in technology, a new digital economy is emerging as a critical enabler for accelerating opportunities for young people, women, and small businesses. We strongly believe that the digital economy can play a significant role in boosting job creation in Uganda in the next decade by enabling growth, innovation, efficiency, and expansion of Uganda’s markets into new frontiers and creating the new future of work for young people.

As an organization, we have invested in building an ecosystem for innovators and entrepreneurs to launch and scale their ventures. To ensure they are at the forefront of the current global digital transformation we are deepening our work in the sector by ensuring we have the right team and resources to support entrepreneurs. Our work will involve ensuring Ugandan entrepreneurs and the ecosystem have access to digital infrastructure, tools, and technical support to enable effective participation in the digital economy to transform and drive growth in all sectors.


The Lead - Digital Economy Practice will be responsible and accountable for leading the Digital Economy Program, including strategy and program design, implementation, resource planning and management (human capital and finances), monitoring, learning, impact reporting, and business integration. The ideal candidate should have extensive experience in the Digital Economy sector in Uganda or another East African country and be able to leverage this wealth of knowledge to improve pro- gram outcomes and overall business strategy and growth at The Innovation Village.

The Lead - Digital Economy Practice must be capable and excited about visioning, designing, and executing all program activities, leading direct engagement with pro- gram partners and contractors, and collaboration across local ecosystem. He or she should be driven by a desire to learn and able to translate concepts into viable interventions with clear and timely measurable outcomes.

The ideal candidate must have experience leading within a diverse, cross-cultural environment and comfort using data to inform decisions. Driven by a strong sense of purpose and commitment to enabling young entrepreneurs (especially women), the Lead - Digital Economy Practice must pay strict attention to detail and have a keen eye to scope for possible collaborative opportunities. A critical component for success will be their ability to create structure from inception, have ability to understand the wider context while paying close attention to the intricacies of the program design and implementation, and support the integration of a Digital Economy strategy that can be implemented by the business beyond the program period.


1. Leadership and Strategy

  • Liaise with the Programs Lead and CEO to develop the overall program strategy and design, including business model and business case development for the program to graduate into a viable service offering for The Innovation Village.
  • Coordinate and integrate the program delivery team and processes, ensuring a clear line of site on procurement, finance, monitoring and evaluation, inclusion, and communication functions to guarantee seamless program delivery.
  • Own the planning and implementation design; ensure ongoing alignment with the Mastercard Foundation, Mastercard Inc. and other program stake holders to ensure ongoing iterations are well managed and communicated. Serve as the overall contact person for the day-to-day operations of the Digital Economy Program, both internally at The Innovation Village, and across the ecosystem.

2. Talent Management

  • Manage effective human resourcing including the recruitment, onboarding, and performance management of staff.
  • Ensure accountability and reporting of program performance and building the staff capacity to deliver according to promise.
  • Together with the HR Department, support the continual recruiting, hiring, and on boarding of a growing team, as well as ongoing training and career development of all team members, as needed.

3. Policy Formulation and Implementation

  • Support the Programs Lead with designing standard operating procedures for the Program and promote their implementation.
  • Work in collaboration with the Procurement Team to outline the program procurement process and coordinate material and resource allocation for the Digital Economy Program.
  • Ensuring that The Innovation Village runs with legality and conformity to establish regulations and contracts within the purview of the Digital Economy Program.

4. Program Operations

  • Oversee the Digital Economy Program implementation, by planning, monitoring, and analysing key metrics for the day-to-day performance of the program operations to ensure efficient and timely completion of tasks and other contractual obligations.
  • Contribute to the development of an impact framework, including measures, tools, and resources for the program. Work in collaboration with the Monitoring & Evaluation & Learning team to monitor performance with tracking and establish corrective measures as needed, and prepare detailed reports, both current and forecasting.
  • Develop and manage a robust resourcing strategy, including the development of internal capabilities, to ensure the effective delivery of the program.
  • Promote excellence and quality in programming through people-centred, systems thinking, and evidence-based approaches to both design and implementation.
  • Provide technical, risk management and problem-solving support, and lead issue management across the program portfolio.
  • Manage relationships / agreements with external partners/ vendors across the program period.
  • Ongoing financial review and burn-rate monitoring; work with the Finance Programs team to adjust operational budgets to drive efficient use of resources to derive the required impact as required.
  • Support systematic planning and reviews of the program, drive reflection and learning, and promote the application of adaptive management practices. Understanding of youth education and employment issues in Africa, and emerging global trends in the field of digital innovation and emerging technology education.



  • At least 10-years’ work experience with a minimum 5 years in project design, imple- mentation, and management of projects in an international NGO or private sector. Extensive knowledge in the digital economy, digital payments is an added advantage. Experience engaging and managing stakeholders from the private, government and development sector in either Finance, Agriculture or Fast-moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) goods
  • Previous experience designing and taking a digital payment product to market includ- ing business model and business case development
  • Knowledge or experience of the challenges faced by Micro Small and Medium Enter- prises in Uganda in the sectors of Agriculture, Education and FMCG.
  • Knowledge of the challenges faced by young people in Uganda to access skilling and work opportunities, especially young women, refugees, and people with disabilities. Exposure to systems and design thinking with an ability to understand and engage with stakeholders in a digital ecosystem and design programming that addresses root causes and critical needs.
  • A proactive, engaged self-starter who demonstrates personal ownership for finding new opportunities for improving processes, practices, or resolving problems. Comfortable and highly effective when faced with ambiguity and/or complexity. Able to formulate and develop new or creative ideas and approaches and execute effectively on strategy.
  • Strong, persuasive communicator across a variety of stakeholders. Able to understand diverse needs and remain sensitive to addressing those needs.
  • Demonstrable experience in all phases of project management. Demonstrable experience in monitoring budgets.
  • Proven team and personnel management experience.
  • You describe yourself as a self- starter that’s excited to work in a fast paced, start-up environment.

Academic Qualifications

1. Master’s Degree in Business Management, Information Technology, or Program Design and Management.

2. Certification in Project Management is an added advantage.

Core Competencies

1. Commercial Focus: Has the ability to drive operational excellence and financial results by focusing on delivering customer value and cost efficiencies.

2. Global Perspective: Exemplifies a global and diverse outlook in approaching busi- ness ideas, products, and solutions. Has the ability to maneuver cross-cultural relation- ship s to his/her advantage.

3. Program Management & Optimization: Ability to strategically plan, manage and coordinate a long-term or ongoing program as well as continually adapt it for imple- mentation across business units and markets.

4. Ownership and initiative

5. Innovation and agility

6. Drive for results

7. Thinking and problem analysis

8. Resilience and resourcefulness

9. Relationship building

10. Communication and influencing


If interested, please use the following link to submit an application: https://smrtr.io/7Lq3t by 28th January 2022