The story of one Ethiopian innovator illustrates the far-reaching benefits and importance of investing in bright African solutions, writes Walter Fust...
The purpose of the African Innovation Foundation is to increase the prosperity of Africans by catalyzing the innovation spirit in Africa. We want to see needs-based innovation and change happen.
Our Activity Areas
Our areas of activity encompass innovative programs in the fields of access to technologies, law and governance, and
social impact development. The Foundation seeks to establish co-operation platforms for institutions, investors and innovators, and to promote ideas to support them.
Our Thematic Focus
INNOVATION & TECHNOLOGY
we release untapped potential in Africa, driving pragmatic, African-led solutions (Africans for Africa)
GOVERNANCE & COMPLIANCE
we promote African governance and access to law and legal resources
SOCIAL IMPACT DEVELOPMENT
we sustain livelihoods through empowering the local population and through income generation.
We are inspired by People Participation Partnerships
We work with multi-sectoral audiences and focus on diverse industries and disciplines where innovation is needed in Africa, always exploring opportunities for making impactful interventions in line with serving our mandate. Our core programs seek to support & strengthen the African innovation ecosystem, promote African governance and access to law, and realize social impact.
African Law Library
Developed in 2012, the ongoing African Law Library (ALL) is a “one-stop-shop” free online portal and database for Africans from multi-disciplinary sectors, including business, government and civil society. ALL aims to deepen the continent’s integration agenda and renew commitment to a sustainable path of growth and development through free and innovative access to African law and governance. The online library is easy to access with a simplified registration process, and offers:- downloadable and printable full legal texts, selected court decisions and secondary literature from African countries - a multi-lingual platform, searchable by subjects, keywords, country, type of document - collections classification by country, themes, type of organization and document, including secondary literature - online articles on law and governance in Africa harvested from diverse sources.
Through networking and comparative research, our online platform provides an opportunity for peers to interact and exchange ideas, a searchable directory of African experts on Law and Governance, online workgroups (national, continental, intercontinental) and virtual thematic research groups.
Innovation Prize for Africa
The Innovation Prize for Africa (IPA) was initiated in 2011, to strengthen the African innovation ecosystem by rewarding and mobilizing for African innovators. IPA honours and encourages innovative achievements that contribute towards developing new products, and increasing efficiency or saving costs in Africa. Specifically, IPA targets breakthroughs in the following key areas: manufacturing and service industry, health and well-being, agriculture and agribusiness, environment, energy and water and ICTs. The IPA focusses on: ◦ Mobilizing leaders from all sectors to fuel African innovation ◦ Promoting innovation across Africa in key sectors through the competition ◦ Promoting science, technology and engineering as a rewarding career path among African youth ◦ Encouraging entrepreneurs, innovators, funding bodies and business development service providers to exchange ideas and explore innovative business opportunities. By providing USD 150 000 to winners who deliver market-oriented solutions for African-led development, the IPA acknowledges and encourages the endeavours of innovators and entrepreneurs, and works to raise their profiles on the development agenda. Beyond the prize, IPA aims to contribute to Africa’s socio-economic growth through sustained, home-gown solutions to social and development challenges.
Social Impact Program for Angola
The Social Impact Program for Angola (SIPA) focusses on innovation for social impact. Its core function is to solve pressing social problems via socially responsible sourcing of solutions, through collaboration, products or services. SIPA looks at providing solutions to specific issues such as basic access to medical diagnostics, low-cost services in health, water and sanitation or energy provision, education and rural development. The program engages models that serve communities in need and employ the poor, with an emphasis on demand-driven services and market approaches. The aim of SIPA is to empower the local population through poverty alleviation, based on the following approach: - finding solutions that emerge through forging strategic partnerships - skills building and job creation for socio-economically disadvantaged people - high-quality and sustainable services/support to domestic and international public and private sector clients - focusing on building relevant skills for employment in the areas that are needed - organizing knowledge on social development focused on a few sectors of activity as well as on innovative approaches developed in Africa to solve similar problems.
Founding Board Member
Jean-Claude Bastos de Morais is an entrepreneur, venture capitalist and philanthropist with a deep interest in African socio-economic development. In 2003, Mr. Bastos de Morais founded Quantum Global Group (QGG) an international group of companies focused on African development, particularly in the fields of corporate finance advisory, asset and private wealth management, real estate and investment consulting.
As the Chairman of the QGG Advisory Board, he provides instrumental expertise on financial markets, especially across Africa and other emerging markets. More recently in 2014, he established Quantum Global Research Lab, which aims to provide bottom up econometric models for inclusive development in Africa. In 2008, Mr. Bastos de Morais founded Banco Kwanza Invest, Angola’s first investment bank. As a Member of Board, he advises on the bank’s strategic direction.
At the core of his philanthropic work is the African Innovation Foundation (AIF), an organization he founded in 2009 to drive African-led development through fostering innovation. Key programs of the AIF include the Innovation Prize for Africa (IPA), the African Law Library (ALL) and the Social Impact Program for Angola (SIPA).
The AIF initiated and implements the annual IPA which was launched in 2011 in partnership with the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA). In 2012, the African Union (AU) and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) passed a resolution to promote an innovation-based society in Africa.
Mr. Bastos de Morais is on the advisory board of the Official Monetary and Financial Institutions Forum (OMFIF) and the University of Cape Town Graduate School of Business. He is also a member of the international Board of Foundation for Globethics.net, a leading global network that advocates ethical corporate and social practices.
He began his career as a management consultant and holds a Master of Arts in Management from the University of Fribourg in Switzerland.
Elodie de Warlincourt is Director of the African Innovation Foundation, responsible for overall management of the Foundation, with a key emphasis on social impact programming. She focuses on market-based approaches for poverty reduction, promoting entrepreneurship and innovation in Africa.
Elodie has 14 years’ experience in private sector development and project management in international development programs and humanitarian aid. Prior to joining AIF, she worked for the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs, managing a portfolio of programs that supported SME finance and entrepreneurship in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Earlier in her career, Elodie focused on development strategies, donor policies and coordination with the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) countries, as well as accompanying the OECD peer review of Swiss cooperation. She represented the International Committee of the Red Cross in Kosovo and Eritrea, and has worked for the Inter-parliamentary Union in Geneva and Moscow, as well as at UNCTAD in Geneva.
Elodie has an MSc in Philosophy and in Development Management. The values of her work, the potential to transform her environment, identify new opportunities and innovate, as well as achieving tangible performance-related results are her main motivation.
Elodie is married and has two wonderful daughters. She lives with her family close to Zürich.
IPA Program Officer
Laura Yuego is the Program Officer for Innovation Prize for Africa, a flagship program of the African Innovation Foundation. Her main responsibilities include supporting the IPA team on all operations, as well as program and administrative assistance.
Laura is from Cameroon where she initially studied for her Masters in African Business Law, after which she began her teaching career as a PhD Assistant at the Faculty of Law at the University of Yaoundé 2 in Cameroon. She then obtained a Masters in Management of Development programs in Africa from the University of Paris 11 in France.
Prior to joining AIF, Laura worked as a Program Officer for a Swiss NGO, assisting livelihoods in the Himalayas. As a lawyer, she also worked for a humanitarian NGO inspired by Christian faith to relieve human suffering in some of the world’s most remote and devastated areas.
Laura has over seven years’ experience working in the non-profit sector in Africa and Switzerland. She joined AIF because the Foundation’s mandate was a right fit with her desire to work for an organization focused on increasing growth in Africa through African human potential.
Laura is married and has 2 daughters.
Aulora Suerga Stally is the Communications Manager for AIF, responsible for shaping the Foundation’s overall communications and media outreach, as well as branding and marketing.
Aulora has more than 12 years’ experience in leading, managing, designing, implementing and monitoring communication programs in Africa. She has served as the Africa communications focal point for leading agencies such as Gates Foundation, International Media Women’s Foundation, Open Society Institute, UNAIDS, SAfAIDS, World Bank, EU, Water Supply and Sanitation Council (WSSCC).
Having worked in both the private sector and in development, Aulora has spearheaded extensive training and facilitation on public health and knowledge networking in east, west and sub-Saharan Africa. She authored a capacity building program series for African NGOs in Botswana (Academy for Education Development), designed and implemented the payroll audit communications plan (World Bank, Zimbabwe), conceptualized the east African health media strategy (USAID, Kenya) and supported SADC in advocacy communication towards the 2015 Millennium Development Goals.
Aulora has written several development publications and training manuals, targeting wide audiences, including the media and young people in Africa. She has an MA in Mass Communications from the University of Leicester, United Kingdom.
She is based in Zurich with her children, and is a Zumba dance fitness enthusiast.
Chairman of the Foundation Board
Ambassador Walter Fust is Chairman of the Board for the African Innovation Foundation, providing strategic guidance to the Foundation’s mandate. After studying Public Administration at the University of St. Gallen in Switzerland, he commenced his diplomatic career, serving Swiss embassies in Baghdad and Tokyo.
He subsequently assumed various functions in the Federal Administration and in the private sector, including the role of Personal Assistant to Federal Councilor Dr. Kurt Furgler, Minister of Economy and President of the Swiss Confederation. W. Fust then became Managing Director of the Swiss Trade Promotion Office (OSEC) and Secretary General of the Ministry of Interior. He headed the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) for 15 years.
Since his retirement, Amb. Fust holds mandates in the Broadband Commission for Digital Development (ITU/UNESCO) and the UN Committee of Experts on Public Administration (CEPA). He chairs the Global Crop Diversity Trust (Bonn) and serves on the boards of the Coalition for Dialog on Africa/CoDA, the Library of Alexandria, CATIE, the American University for tropical agriculture and forestry in Costa Rica, and different national Foundations.
Amb. Fust is a well-known and a widely-connected personality in international development, with particular knowledge and expertise in trade, development and humanitarian affairs.
Pelthia is a South African native based in Switzerland since several years. She worked at the World Health Organization (WHO) where she organized outbreak response’s web and media activities in major programs such as Epidemic and Pandemic Alert and Response (EPR) and the Global Influenza Programme (GIP); as well as served as an assistant to the communications team of the Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases (TDR). She also worked with the WHO’s office of the Governing bodies during the World Health Assembly and Executive Board meeting’s yearly event. Her previous job was with the Council on Health Research Organisation (COHRED) where she oversaw general office management including the human resources, finances and assisting the Director’s office. She has strong IT skills and holds a diploma in creative writing and is certified in accountancy, billing and file management.
IPA Process Manager
Robinson Esialimba joined the African Innovation Foundation in September 2013 as Process Manager, responsible for operational running of the Innovation Prize for Africa (IPA) and related activities.
Prior to joining AIF, Robinson founded and was managing an online platform that provided African technology startups with business strategy consulting and connections to viable sources of financing.
Robinson comes with a wealth of management experience of over 10 years, having worked in senior management positions in international organizations and UN agencies in Africa and Europe. He was a Senior Technical Officer with the United Nations World Health Organization (WHO) in Geneva, Switzerland, advising on patent licensing for vaccine and pharmaceutical companies in Africa.
Robinson holds a law degree from the University of Nairobi in Kenya, and a Masters in Law from the University of Lund in Sweden, specializing in intellectual property law and innovation. In addition to intellectual property law, he has interests in private equity financing, international trade law and project management.
Sophie is the Director of the African Law Library, a core program of the African Innovation Foundation that advocates for open and free access to African legal resources.
Sophie joined the Foundation in June 2014, and speaks French, English and Spanish. She holds a Masters in Political Science as well as an MBA degree, and is a member of the advisory board for Africa Business and Legal Expertise (ABLE) an international network of lawyers who specialise in African business law.
Prior to joining the Foundation, Sophie was Senior Manager for the Africa region at the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Geneva. In this role, she was responsible for key relationships and strategic initiatives with African governments and business leaders.
Sophie also worked in the Geneva's audit department of Ernst & Young (EY) one of the "Big Four" global audit firms, as well as the tax division of Lenz & Staehelin, Switzerland's largest business law firm.
She started her career as Public Relations Manager for Summit Motors in Cameroon. Sophie is passionate about contributing to - and realising - Africa's growth story.
Member of the Foundation Board
Bethlehem founded SoleRebels, the fastest growing African footwear brand and the 1st global footwear brand to emerge from a developing nation. In doing so, she has created jobs and prosperity, empowering her community and country while presenting a galvanized dynamic face of African creativity to the global market.
She was the first female African entrepreneur to address the Clinton Global Initiative as a speaker and panelist (September, 2010) and was named one of the World Economic Forum’s 2011 Young Global Leaders. That same year, Bethlehem was selected as 2011’s Outstanding African Business Woman by the African Business Awards.
Most recently, FORBES magazine published their 2012 World's 100 Most Powerful Women list and named Bethlehem as Woman to Watch! This followed featuring her AS “Africa’s Most Successful Women” AND one of its 20 Youngest Power Women in Africa in 2011.
A trailblazer in every respect, Bethlehem has shifted the discourse on African development from one of poverty alleviation orchestrated by external actors, to one about prosperity creation driven by local Africans maximizing their talents and resources.
Pauline Mujawamariya Koelbl joined the African Innovation Foundation in July 2011 as the IPA Program Director, but is also responsible for managing the innovation and technology programs of the Foundation. Pauline focuses on cultivating market-orientated solutions for African-led development across the continent, building an innovation ecosystem that will invigorate economic growth across Africa.
Pauline has more than 15 years’ international development experience with organizations such as UNICEF and GTZ in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, ENDA Tiers Monde in Senegal, and the Jewish Family and Children’s Service and TANGO International in the USA.
Prior to joining the AIF, she worked for the World Health Organization in Geneva and the Research Corporation for Science Advancement Foundation in USA. Pauline currently serves as a board member of the Flame Tree Initiative, a US-based NGO that focuses on using ICTs to address the digital divide through collaboration with African universities. She is also one of the Bellagio/PopTech Catalysts, a joint initiative between the Rockefeller Foundation and PopTech which brings together a global community of innovators and thought leaders from different fields to share insights and work together to create lasting change.
Pauline has a BA Honors degree in international studies from the University of Arizona with a core focus on sub-Saharan Africa development. She also has a Master’s degree in Poverty and Development from the Institute of Development Studies (IDS), Sussex University, United Kingdom where she was a Fulbright Scholar. In addition, Pauline served as a Fulbright Fellow at UNESCO, Paris, focussing on freedom of expression, democracy and peace.
Pauline has a passion for people and their development, and dedicates her time towards ensuring the economic and social empowerment of Africans. Recently, she received the Social Responsibility Alumna Award from the University of Arizona Honors College for her commitment in promoting social responsibility throughout her life.
AIF Board Member
Mr Omar Balafrej is a Board member of the African Innovation Foundation since 2014, providing strategic advice and technical support to build the innovation landscape across Africa. Omar Balafrej is the CEO of MITC, a Moroccan public private partnership that manages Technopark.
Casablanca and Rabat technoparks host 230 start-ups and SMEs with a natural 20% turnover. Several business services are offered in both technoparks, ranging from hosting to coaching and assistance to finance. Technopark’s ecosystem has been significantly enhanced lately with the installation of various entities that aim to support start-ups and a host of SMEs in Morocco. A new technopark shall open in 2015 in Tangiers (north of Morocco).
Omar Balafrej is also President of MITC Capital, entity that manages the Maroc Numeric Fund (MAD 100 million venture capital fund) mnf.ma and board member of the CMI, Moroccan center for innovation cmi.net.ma .
Besides this, Omar Balafrej is a member of the city council of Rabat and is actively involved in supporting various associations in Morocco. He has been president of the Abderrahim Bouabid Foundation (fab.ma) from 2009 to 2012 and is a Board member of The Cinémathèque de Tanger (www.cinemathequedetanger.com)
Linda joined the AIF in May 2015 as Legal Officer for the African Law Library (ALL) program. Her main responsibility is to ensure the efficient gathering and posting of all relevant legal content on the ALL platform, through legal research and partnership development.
Linda is originally from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). She has five years’ experience working in non-governmental and international organizations. Prior to joining AIF, she worked at the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). Before that, Linda worked with various organizations such as Human Rights Watch in the UN Advocacy Division in Geneva, Switzerland, Anti-Slavery International in London, UK and the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) in New York, USA, where she developed strong skills in policy research, report writing, campaigning and project management.
Linda holds a Bachelor in English Law with French Law, and a Master of Arts in Human Rights from Kingston University in London, UK. She is bilingual in French and English, and proficient in German. Linda is passionate about Africa’s development.
Sandra Teixeira is the Administrative Assistant for the African Innovation Foundation. She is responsible for the office management support tasks. In addition to her duties as Administrative Assistant, she also undertakes translations in English, German and Portuguese.
In 2007, she concluded her degree in English/German, after five years of higher education at the University in Trás-os-Montes and Alto Douro, in Vila Real, Portugal. After her degree, she worked as an English teacher at Mirandela secondary school in Portugal. Between 2008 and 2011, she worked as a Portuguese teacher on Portuguese Teaching Abroad (EPE) in Switzerland and Liechtenstein.
In 2012, she joined AIF as a Portuguese teacher. When she is not working at the Foundation, Sandra teaches Portuguese at various language schools in Switzerland.
Sandra has also written articles focusing on education for the magazine “Lusitano” in Zurich. In 2013, her first book of poems entitled “Cantos do (A) Mar” was published, in partnership with Miguel Passarinho, a Portuguese writer.
Sandra currently lives close to Zurich in Switzerland.
Head of Finance and Accounting
Gerald Marzano joined the African Innovation Foundation in November 2015 as Head of Finance and Accounting, and supports the Foundation’s business plan, providing program support.
Gerald is a United States and Swiss citizen, and holds degrees in International Management, Finance and Accounting. He has 12 years’ non-profit sector experience, having worked for Medair, Oak Foundation, Green Cross and World Vision International in various programmatic and financial roles. His latest engagement with World Vision International was as a core team member for a technology project called Last Mile Mobile Solutions (LMMS) digitizing manual paper processes used by NGOs to register, manage and report on beneficiary activity. LMMS has been deployed with 13 humanitarian agencies in over 23 countries, and was a Computer World top five award finalist for the social sector technology.
Gerald is married to Irene, and they have 3 children - Emma-Maria, Raphael and Donatello.
Country Director, SIPA
Carlos Figueiredo joined the African Innovation Foundation in September 2014 as Country Director of the Social Impact Program for Angola, SIPA which focuses on innovative ways to respond to Angola’s social and development challenges. He is responsible for facilitating links between donors and those requiring program support to foster growth and equity in Angola. Carlos is an Angolan agronomist and rural development planner with extensive experience on development projects since the early 1990s. He has worked with Angolan and international NGOs such as Development Workshop and SNV, as well as UN agencies such as UNDP. Carlos served as a volunteer in different Angolan and southern African organizations, and is a member of the Socio-Political Observatory of Angola (OPSA). He has been a member of various boards, mainly Action for Rural Development and Environment (ADRA) and the Center for Development and Partnership (CDPA). He was also an active board member of Open Society Institute for Southern Africa (OSISA) and the Southern Africa Council of ICCO, a Dutch inter-church organization for development cooperation. Carlos graduated in Agronomy and his areas of expertise include rural development, social housing and water and sanitation hygiene. His key interests include participative development and engaging use of appropriate technology.
Shella Hurree joined the AIF in May 2015 as Online Librarian, responsible for building the collection of the African Law Library.
Shella began her professional career as a librarian, and has over 10 years’ experience in various roles under this line of work. Prior to joining AIF, Shella was the Local Law Librarian in the Office of the Director of General Prosecutions in Mauritius. Her previous positions include Collection Developer at the University of South Africa and Team Leader for the Radio Frequency Identification Tag (RFID) project at the UNISA Library in South Africa. She was also Library Clerk at the Municipal Council of Curepipe, Mauritius.
Her experience is enhanced by her Bachelor of Art Honours in Information Science from the University of South Africa. A native Mauritian, Shella is bilingual in French and English. She is a member of the Association of International Librarians and Information Specialists (AILIS) and has her focus on work ethics.
She loves travelling, music and enjoys reading.
Program Assistant for Knowledge and Documentation
Miguel Watangua leads SIPA’s knowledge management and development research area. Between 2011-2014 he was the focal point for international organizations on issues of fair trade and consumer protection policies at Angola’s Ministry of Trade, liaising with the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, Southern African Development Community, World Trade Organization and United Nations Development Program. He holds an MSc in global political economy from City University of London, U.K., and a BSc in International Studies from the University of Pretoria, South Africa.
His goals: I am always striving for greater personal and professional growth and trying to contribute towards positive societal change and development.
Office Manager, African Law Library
Eloïse Ouedraogo joined the African Innovation Foundation in February 2015 as Office Manager for its Geneva-based African Law Library program. She is delighted to share her strong IT and organizational skills in her new position at the Foundation.
Eloise has more than 10 years’ experience in the private sector, having worked with firms in the communication, financial and legal areas. Prior to joining AIF, she was team coordinator in a law firm that specialized in Intellectual Property. Her main role included dispatching and organizing workflows, managing information exchange and office systems, and providing support to legal and paralegal team members.
Eloise is a French national. In addition to French, she speaks English, Italian, German and Norwegian. She has studied Languages and International Commerce.
Eloise has been living in Geneva for several years. She enjoys playing the cello in orchestra and participating in music chamber groups
Program Officer for Innovation
Oliveira Paulo has 20 years of experience working in both humanitarian and development programs with Concern World Wide, Advance Africa, Joint Aid Management and other organizations. In the last decade, as Economic Development Officer with World Vision, he managed microfinance and business development projects. Oliveira has a BSc in Businesses Management and is at the final stages of his MSc in Quality and Innovation. His areas of expertise include business and project management, mentoring, quality, innovation and entrepreneurship. What makes him tick? Finding creative ways to boost young people’s entrepreneurship, innovation and competiveness.
Idris joined AIF as the Senior Legal Advisor for the African Law library (ALL) program in January 2016. Idris is a Beninese, French and Swiss citizen. He is a qualified attorney, admitted to the New York bar, and holds a Master of Laws (LL.M.) from Harvard Law School, a Bachelor of Public Administration, a Master of Laws and a PhD in Public Law (summa cum laude) from Aix-en-Provence Law School in France.Idris won several academic awards, including a Fulbright scholarship and was a visiting researcher at New York University School of Law. He has worked as a Research Fellow and Teaching Assistant at Aix-en-Provence Law School, teaching constitutional law, administrative law and human rights law. He has also published numerous articles in constitutional law, international law and human rights law in academic journals.Idris previously worked at the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) in Geneva, Switzerland and interned at the Conseil Constitutionnel in Paris, France.
Open Positions (3)
click a position to view its requirementsCompany Summary for Job Ad
The African Innovation Foundation is a mobilizer and facilitator for innovative projects aimed at releasing untapped and/or blocked potential in Africa. AIF aims at stimulating African ideas and perspectives within emerging industries and across diverse disciplines. AIF’s purpose is to increase the prosperity of Africans by catalyzing the innovation spirit in Africa.
AIF is looking for a Innovation Hub developer for the Soap Factory, a new hub located in a poor peri-urban area, North of Luanda. The chosen candidate will report to the Program Director of the Social Impact Program for Angola (SIPA). AIF is expecting the chosen candidate to work on the spot for a duration of 2 years.
The Hub developer will lead structuring the activities for the hub (finalize construction work, design business plan, structure key activities instrumental in building the hub community), and actively reach out to a broad range of stakeholders (Ministries, small entrepreneurs, relevant institutions, local community, external consultants) to build strategic partnerships. AIF is focusing on the following activities at the Hub: a cultural connector, a maker space focused on urban gardening, recycling and waste management, incubation for small businesses and creativity training. The position is limited in time as it is expected that the candidate will train one or a few people from the community to gradually take over the responsibilities.
The successful candidate will have strong interpersonal, organization and administrative skills; ability to speak publically; ability to manage a challenging workload; ability to work independently and as a team member; excellent writing, communication and presentation skills. Applicants must be experienced in working in a highly collaborative environment with people and institutional partners in diverse contexts and with different work styles. Applicants must be committed, focused, motivated, trustworthy and result-oriented.Duties & Responsibilities
Skills & Specifications
- Lead development activities including the identification of key pilots, outreach to the community and partnerships building with local communities and other relevant partners.Set up tools and approaches to support networking within the community.
- Set thematic priorities and create a clear business plan for the AIF at the Soap Factory
- Structure construction and accompany implementation work
- Monitor local mobilizers in the key areas of work identified.
- Oversee the organization of workshops and pilot projects, focusing on design of the interventions, as well as on setting solid incentive mechanisms.
- Establish credibility as Innovation hub expert by sharing thought leadership pieces (radio, social media, print media), and train local recruits to gradually take over.
- Work with the Program Director in setting annual work plan and team deliverables.
- University degree with focus on STEMs or Project Management.
- At least 5 years of professional experience with more than 3 years working in/on Africa in a similar role, ideally in international environments.
- Proficiency in MS Office applications (Word, Excel, Powerpoint)
- Strong personal affinity with the African continent and willingness to contribute to its development.
- Excellent organizational, time management, interpersonal, communication and network-building skills
- Strategic thinking with a drive and passion for collaboration and tactical implementation
- Fluency in written and spoken English and French. Knowledge of Portuguese is a plus.
- Understanding innovation ecoystems models is a plus
Uniqua Consulting GmbH will be in charge of this recruitment process.Interested candidates are invited to send their CV with Motivation letter in English and copies of certificates by email to the attention of Mrs. Sara Ramos at email@example.comFor further references, we advise you to check on AIF‘s website, www.africaninnovation.org and www.sipangola.org
Company Summary for Job Ad
The African Innovation Foundation is a mobilizer and facilitator for innovative projects aimed at releasing un-tapped and/or blocked potential in Africa. AIF aims at stimulating African ideas & perspectives within emerging industries and across diverse disciplines. AIF strives at ensuring that the local population receives the greatest possible benefits from its activities.
To support its Innovation Prize for Africa (IPA Program) AIF is looking to add to its team in Zurich an experienced,
IPA Process Manager The IPA is an annual competition and the associated Awards ceremony is held in a different country each year. The ideal candidate must be familiar with innovation and African socio-economic develop-ment, and he/she reports to the IPA Program Director.
Duties & Responsibilities
Skills & Specifications
- Responsible for implementation and coordination of all activities linked to IPA (Innovation Prize for Africa) applications selection process including the pre-selection, shortlisting, technical valida-tion, database management, the selection of nominees, winners and the associated Awards cer-emony
- Develop IPA Process timeline on yearly basis and implement key activities - from launch of the competition till the announcement of winners
- Identification of potential IPA judges and validators based on their expertise and reputation within the African innovation ecosystem
- Development of a database of reputable institutions and independent researchers interested in being a part of IPA validation process
- Conducting post-prize assessments/surveys and propose follow up actions
- Following up with Nominees and winners to agree on concrete post-prize activities/priorities
- Management/coordination details around AIF Forum and IPA Awards ceremony including concep-tion, design, invitations and implementation of this Forum.
- Assistance in work planning, follow up , and production of reports and guides
- Assistance in drafting contracts with Partners, review and follow up.
- Minimum 5 years of relevant experience, ideally in Africa
- Solid Project Management experience with familiarity in managing a competition or similar activi-ties
- Master degree in relevant fields such as Business management/Administration/entrepreneurship, sciences (including social science), IT, Economics etc.
- Excellent analytical skills and structured thinking with ability to pay attention to details. The usual computer skills including good knowledge of navigating databases, using Excel and some knowledge of event management tools/platforms.
- Ability to work under pressure and have the willingness to succeed and get jobs done according to the deadlines
- Availability to travel as per business needs
- Excellent coordination and interpersonal skills with experience working with people from various backgrounds (cultures, level of educations, positions etc.)
- Ability to think strategically and act diplomatically combined with independent and precise work
- Business/entrepreneurship skills and scientific background would be an advantage.
- Fluency in English and French (excellent verbal and writing skills). Arabic or Portuguese language knowledge is a plus
- Candidates of African origin will be preferred with a valid permit to work in Switzerland.
Interested candidates are invited to send their applications to firstname.lastname@example.org to the attention of Ms. Rose Anto. Recruitment for this position will be handled by Uniqua Consulting GmbH, http://uniqua.ch/ on behalf of AIF. Only direct applications with CV and motivation letter in English will be considered and applications will be treated as confidential.
IntroductionDo you have a passion for things made in Africa by Africans? Are you excited at the idea of seeing more African innovations on the markets and also competing at the international stage with other world class innovations? Would you like to be part of a movement that brings design thinking to African innovation and engineering? If yes, then the African Innovation Foundation (AIF) is looking for you!
AIF is organizing an exciting ten day design “do-tank” workshop where we select a few of the most promising product innovations coming from our Innovation Prize for Africa (IPA) participants and then work with some of the best experts in design and engineering to develop fresh new designs that address structural integrity, ergonomics and aesthetic appeal. We then want to bring those designs to life through rapid prototyping. AIF is looking for an intern to help in organizing this workshop and the process leading up to the workshop.BackgroundThe African Innovation Foundation (AIF) is a private not for profit organization whose purpose is to increase the prosperity of Africans by catalysing the innovation spirit in Africa. Through the our initiative of the Innovation Prize for Africa (IPA), we have identified low levels of design integration in African inventions making/engineering processes as one of the key barriers to making African innovations competitive, commercial viable and this hinders their scalability. This initiative is being organized to address this deficiency.
We are proposing to run a ten-day hands-on workshop on design and innovation as a part of our post-prize support to IPA participants. The workshop shall be organized in collaboration with key African experts in design, making and engineering and international designers would also be welcomed.
The role of the internThe intern will work closely with relevant IPA team member(s) and assist in the following areas:
- To assist in selecting from our IPA database, those innovations that will be the subject of the design do-tank;
- To liaise with originators of the innovations and help in developing a technical brief that will be shared with experts participating in the do-tank;
- To help in identifying technical experts and resource persons that would be most suited to assist in achieving the objectives of the workshop;
- To assist in coordinating event logistics with the hosts of the do-tank
- To assist the innovation originators, technical experts and resource persons in executing the final designs
Desired SkillsThe ideal candidate should have the following skills:
- Fluent in French with a working knowledge of English
- Background training in industrial design or engineering
- Experience with developing computer aided designs and 3D modelling
- Prior experience working on a product development project from conceptualization to final 3D model design
- It would be desirable to have some familiarity with CNC machining and 3D printing
This work can be done remotely but with regular team meeting with relevant IPA team member over phone or Skype. An initial face to face meeting might be required for proper briefing. The candidate will only be working about 50% during this period at the hours of their choosing doing mostly desk work, except during the workshop and two weeks prior to the workshop. Because the selected candidate will have access to confidential information including those related to IPs, she/he will be required to sign an NDA. The successful candidate should be ready to start immediately and work with the team until end of June 2016 when the workshop and related follow up will be completed. This is not a formally paid position, but a stipend of US$ 750 per month will be paid out to the successful candidate.
If you are Interestedplease send your CV and motivation letter to: Attn: R.Esialimba@africaninnovation.org by 21st December 2015
in the Media
Africa Celebrates It's Top Innovators
CNBC Africa brings you coverage from the 2015 Innovation Prize for Africa Awards, a pan-African event that celebrates African ingenuity. Taking place in Morocco, this year's event promises to be a spectacular one, featuring Africa's top innovators, and No. 1 music extraordinaire Youssou N'Dour.
Relive all the activities of the 4th edition of the Innovation Prize for Africa that took place from the 12th to 13th of May 2015 in Morocco.
Actunet Innovation Prize for Africa
May 2016May 09, 2016
African ingenuity this year showcases breakthroughs in malaria and other public health burdens, smart solutions for farmers and dynamic power initiatives …
Apr 2016Apr 20, 2016
African Innovation Foundation (AIF): On the Founder, Its Objectives and Africa as the New Innovation Hub
I recently got to interview Jean-Claude Bastos de Morais, Innovation Influencer and Founder of African Innovation Foundation (AIF) and Pauline Mujawamariya Koelbl, the Director of Innovation Prize for Africa, one of AIF’s key programs. They shed some light on what AIF is all about, sharing insights on Africa’s untapped potential and its innovation opportunities.
Jan 2016Jan 20, 2016
Botswana to host Pan-Africa’s most celebrated innovation event of the year - Innovation Prize for Africa!
The African Innovation Foundation (AIF) in a joint collaborative effort with the Government of Botswana (GoB) represented by the Ministry of Infrastructure, Science and Technology and the Botswana Innovation Hub (BIH) today announced that the next Innovation Prize for Africa (IPA) event will be held in Gaborone, Botswana in June 2016*.
Dec 2015Dec 11, 2015
AIF welcomes Dr. Nkosana Moyo who joins the team as an ALL Envoy, representing Anglophone Africa. This appointment is timely for the Foundation and its work in supporting national and regional law and governance agendas in Africa
Sept 2015Sept 28, 2015
The African Innovation Foundation (AIF) today announced the launch of two additional social media channels to support its growing stable of online community users for its flagship program, the African Law Library (ALL). Dubbed “Access to African legal resources for all” the e-library’s brand new Facebook link is
May 2015May 29, 2015
In a glittering ceremony in Skhirat, Morocco, three African innovators emerged as winners in the annual Innovation Prize for Africa competition. The African Innovation Foundation, which organizes the event, focuses on identifying homegrown and scalable innovations that address local problems in Africa.
Read MoreMay 29, 2015
The African Innovation Foundation (AIF) seeks to catalyse the innovation spirit in Africa with the aim of cultivating needs-based inventions.
Read MoreMay 18, 2015
A Kenyan social entrepreneur Alex Mwaura Muriu clinched second position in this year’s Innovation Prize for Africa which was won by an agricultural researcher who took home $100,000 (Sh9.64 million) in cash award at a ceremony in Skhirat
Read MoreMay 17, 2015
This year’s winners embody the Pan African essence of the prestigious Innovation Prize for Africa award, representing North, East & Southern Africa Skhirat, Morocco, 13th May 2015 – In a glittering ceremony hosted by the African Innovation Foundation (AIF)
April 2015April 13, 2015
What do an environmentally-friendly minicab, a water distillation system and a fire alert detector have in common? They all represent outstanding innovation talent across Africa, applied for the celebrated Innovation Prize for Africa (IPA) award this year, and are now being considered for the grand share prize of US$150 000! Since its inaugural launch in 2011, IPA has gathered great momentum, and is now recognized for leading the innovation
Read MoreApril 13, 2015
Ten African entrepreneurs have been chosen as finalists for the Africa Innovation Prize, which is intended to recognize those individuals whose grass-roots efforts are making important advances in addressing some of the continent's social and technical problems. Nominees this year come from Burundi, Cameroon, Kenya, Morocco, South Africa and Uganda.
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