10 Jun 2016

World Bank Jobs : Financial Sector Specialist

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Background / General description

The Consultative Group to Assist the Poor (CGAP) is a global multi-donor partnership dedicated to advancing financial inclusion for the poor. CGAP develops innovative solutions to address barriers to financial inclusion through practical research and active engagement with financial service providers, policy makers, and funders.

Established in 1995, CGAP initially played a critical role in building a sustainable microfinance industry, facilitating consensus around good practice standards and helping to professionalize the field. Starting in the mid-2000s, CGAP focused on promoting a diversity of financial services and providers and in particular technology and business model innovations that have the potential to dramatically increase the scale and lower the costs of financial services for poor people.

Today, CGAP is widely recognized as a leading global resource on financial inclusion through its high-level advocacy, research and knowledge sharing on client demand, support for product and business model innovation, policy advice, and guidelines and standards for donor effectiveness.

CGAP is supported by more than 30 partners including bilateral and multilateral development agencies, development finance institutions and private foundations committed to advancing financial access for the poor. CGAP is housed in and administered by the World Bank.

CGAP’s structure comprises its Council of Governors (CG), the membership and governance body of CGAP, its Executive Committee (ExCom), which operates as CGAP’s Board, and its Operational Team. The Operational Team, led by a CEO, is responsible for implementing CGAP’s work in partnership with a wide range of private, social, and public sector organizations

CGAP is guided by a five-year strategy and annual workplan. The current five-year strategy, CGAP V, covers the period July 1, 2013 – June 30, 2018 and was developed in consultation with a wide range of stakeholders. CGAP V was endorsed in May 2013 by the CG and focuses on the following five priority areas

  • Understanding poor people’s demand for financial services, and the impact of these services on poor people’s lives
  • Advancing financial innovation for smallholder families
  • Developing robust provider ecosystems
  • Building an enabling and protective policy environment
  • Promoting effective and responsible funding for financial inclusion.

Implementation of CGAP V is carried out by the Operational Team through a ‘portfolio of initiatives’ designed to achieve the market development outcomes articulated in its new five-year strategy.

While operating as a global organization, CGAP recognizes the need for regional and country level engagement. CGAP’s 2014-2018 strategy includes identifying opportunities to work together with key partners to become more deeply engaged in a few key countries both to create country level ‘demonstration success cases’ that will help deepen learning around strategic CGAP themes to generate solutions that can have global influence and impact.

Please note that the location for this position can be Nairobi or Dar es Salaam, which shall be decided once the Recruitment process commences

Note: If the selected candidate is a current Bank Group staff member with a Regular or Open-Ended appointment, s/he will retain his/her Regular or Open-Ended appointment. All others will be offered a 2 year term appointment.

Duties and Accountabilities

CGAP will work in partnership with its members to demonstrate country level success in building ubiquitous digital financial inclusion ecosystems that serve the interests of and are used by most people, including the poor. This work will address key barriers associated with the five key elements of an inclusive digital financial services country ecosystem: payments ecosystem: enabling regulations, enabling infrastructure, dynamic and diverse service providers, payment interoperability, and compelling use cases that work for poor people. CGAP expects to contribute to the creation of more markets where multiple providers are successfully demonstrating viable business models to provide a variety of digital financial services and where the majority of people actively use digital accounts.

A central element of this position is to lead CGAP’s global learning agenda and country work on digital financial services interoperability. In particular, this involves managing an East Africa regional initiative to pursue an interoperable mobile payment system. While prior knowledge of this topic is desirable, the successful candidate does not have to be an expert on it beforehand as long as s/he has enough insight into DFS in general coupled with a strong drive and ability to learn.

In addition, this position is intended to support or lead CGAP work in one or more countries in Africa as well as to lead other learning topics as relevant. The position may be based in Nairobi, Kenya or in Dar es Salaam, Tanzanina.

Key responsibilities

  • Become CGAP’s global lead on the topic of DFS interoperability. Help shape CGAP’s thinking and strategy with respect to digital financial services interoperability and how it can contribute to financial inclusion. Provide technical guidance and support to interoperability work in CGAP focus countries in Africa and Asia as well as collaborating with other teams on interoperability related work. Extract key learnings from global work and produce knowledge products on interoperability for the global financial inclusion community.
  • Become CGAP’s lead on a regional initiative to pursue an interoperable mobile payment system in East Africa. Work closely with and influence stakeholders such as senior policy makers, funders, businesses and other organizations such as GSMA. Manage consultants, vendors and a variety of projects ranging from market demand studies to analysis of existing cross border transfer arrangements to adaptation of generic interoperability rules to create an ‘East Africa’ rule set. Where obstacles arise in implementing strategy, proactively use creative and independent judgment to generate solutions.
  • Support and eventually lead CGAP country strategies to develop financially inclusive DFS ecosystems in one or more markets. Develop and sustain over time a deep knowledge of those markets and define CGAP’s role and activities in each market in a way that strategically maximizes CGAP’s unique strengths. Build relationships at the CEO or senior management level of banks, telcos and other DFS providers in order to influence decision-making at the highest levels. Manage the work of other staff and consultants towards the implementation of country specific strategies as required.
  • Work with CGAP members interested in creating digital finance based inclusive market ecosystems to promote cooperation and facilitate ‘crowding in’ relevant investments and inputs.
  • Contribute towards implementing CGAP strategy and coordinate with other CGAP initiatives to contribute to appropriate market ecosystem development and as they do work in focus countries.
  • Make regular and significant contributions to CGAP’s global knowledge agenda. This includes structuring and developing the best way to tell a story via outputs such as blogs, decks, papers and podcasts.
  • Contribute to the overall CGAP decision-making process for inclusive markets.
  • Represent and be a spokesperson for CGAP.

Selection Criteria

  • Master’s degree in Business, Finance, Economics, Development Studies, International Relations, or other related field and a minimum of 5 years of relevant work experience.
  • Significant experience working in emerging markets on financial inclusion/private sector development, preferably including sub-Saharan Africa.
  • Demonstrated in-depth understanding of and practical experience in access to finance for low-income populations, with a strong focus on digital financial services.
  • Understanding of payment systems and how interoperability fits into the broader financial inclusion agenda.
  • Demonstrated ability to him/herself produce or manage others in defining learning agendas, designing research strategies (can be in business or academic setting) and executing on them in a timely and effective manner.
  • Track record of conducting relevant dialogue with senior policy makers and business leaders.
  • Direct project-level experience in implementing financial sector projects in multiple geographies. This requires a high level of organizational and administrative skills to manage a variety of projects and consultants within a given budget.
  • Demonstrated research skills, fluency in English, strong English writing skills, and excellent presentation skills; Strong verbal and written skills in French preferred.
  • Demonstrated ability to structure and write written products (blogs, papers, PowerPoint decks) ideally on topics related to financial inclusion.
  • Ability to operate effectively with all levels of staff, working both as a peer and as a lead that provides a role model and enhances the team-leadership skills of team members. Comfort working outside a traditional office environment with team members based in various locations.
  • Intellectually curious, innovative by nature, and energetic.

Candidates must possess the following competencies

  • Lead and Innovate – Develops innovative solutions.
  • Deliver Results for Clients – Proactively addresses clients’ stated and unstated needs.
  • Collaborate within Teams and Across Boundaries – Collaborates across boundaries, gives own perspective and willingly receives diverse perspectives.
  • Create, Apply and Share Knowledge – Applies knowledge across WBG to strengthen solutions for internal and/or external clients.
  • Make Smart Decisions – Interprets a wide range of information and pushes to move forward.
  • Project Design for Impact and Sustainability – Carries out, under senior staff guidance, data collection on and analysis of relevant issues, and provides inputs to key documents.
  • Sector Dialogue – For use in client discussions and advice, conducts effective data collection and analysis of relevant issues.
  • Operational Project Management – Demonstrates broad knowledge of project management tools & methodologies; identifies key risks and mitigation measures; interprets background analysis and proposed solutions.
  • Operational Policies Application to the Project Cycle (fiduciary, disbursement, safeguard and GAC policies) – Has a basic understanding of operational policies, sufficient to review project documents and reports and to help develop procurement plans and action plans; takes steps to expand his/her knowledge of operations.
  • Team Leadership – Leads teams to achieve objectives, providing the needed direction and structure, and resolving problems of both a technical and interpersonal nature.


How to Apply

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