Job Opportunities from Partners of IFMR LEAD – Call for Talent

Who we are: Future State is an entrepreneurial effort supported by the Rockefeller Foundation with the ambition to help countries accelerate progress toward inclusive digital economies. Our goal is to ensure the data revolution helps the world’s poor gain access to new services and information that can improve their lives. We are currently exploring models to support governments that want to make this transformation and to learn from countries that are already proving to be pioneers in data governance optimized for economic inclusion and improved service delivery.

What we’re looking for: We are looking for a talented communicator to help us tell India’s digital infrastructure story in a way that makes the lessons actionable for other countries to emulate. We’ll work with selected candidates to identity and design the outputs that would be most useful, but anticipate at a minimum they would encompass:

  1. Organizational design and ethos of those involved in designing the India Stack. This includes the ethos, vision, and other motivating factors of the team behind the Stack, team structure and decision-making process, factors leading to the successful recruiting and retaining of talent, and other relevant lessons applicable to other countries trying to set up similar teams within or outside of government.
  2. High-level principles guiding the choices behind digital platforms built as public goods. This includes the theory behind the role of government in fostering public goods; practical experience related to outside technical talent supporting government in technical design choices; and the theory of how individuals can benefit from digital data.
  3. Product design for each layer of the India Stack. This would include, at a minimum, the purpose/charter of each layer; list of product features and system behavior required to achieve the product feature; project management team required for implementation and maintenance; and success criteria for implementation.
  4. Policy design related to each layer of the India Stack. This would include how the team engaged with government, including key ministries and political figures, to take advantage of “policy windows,” secure support, overcome barriers, etc. It would also include details of how policies, regulations, or legislations impacted the design choices of the technology or, conversely, how they shifted to accommodate the technology. Additionally, it will be important to identify areas of policy weakness (i.e. data privacy) that have hindered the success of each layer of the Stack.

The outputs will could take a variety of forms including (a) technical documentation; (b) playbooks; (c) case studies; (d) audio or video interviews, etc.

We’re interested in skilled communicators undaunted by working alongside deep technical and engineering experts to ensure the lessons from India are relevant for other governments around the world. We will prioritize those with background or training in:

     • Journalism, anthropology, storytelling;
     • Qualitative research methods; and/or
     • Communications production including graphic design and layout, photography services, audio/video production, copy writing and editing.

Description and responsibilities: You will be responsible for (1) identifying key questions and audiences from other countries; (2) converting existing materials into coherent, engaging formats for intended audiences; and (3) developing new content of relevance to other government partners. This will entail:

     • Interviewing stakeholders involved in the design, launch, and ongoing implementation of India’s digital infrastructure, including from the government, technology, and social sectors. Interviews with critics and end users may also prove useful.
     • Interviewing policymakers outside of India to assess their key questions related to the India experience, formats for learning, and level of technical orientation.
     • Synthesizing lessons learned that answer questions about India’s experience such as the following:
     o      What have been the key ingredients to India’s progress?
     o      What barriers has India faced and how have they been overcome?
     o      What attributes explain the success of the teams that have helped advance India’s digital infrastructure?
     •Packaging lessons into effective and actionable products that can be used by digital teams in other countries to learn from the approach taken in India and accelerate their own efforts.

Desired attributes
     • 5 or more years relevant work experience
     • Pro-active, able to work without close supervision, and independently execute against a work plan
     • Skilled oral and written communicator, able to make complex learnings easily accessible and actionable

Other Information
     • Duration of employment: through the end of 2018, with the possibility of extension
     • Contract: Hired under a contract with our host organization, United Nations Foundation
     • Place of work: Bangalore, India (no relocation benefits provided)

Application Instructions
Send CV, including links to recent publications, to The position is available immediately; applications will be reviewed as received.