Position in: South Africa, Kenya or Nigeria

Do you want to help drive an investment portfolio of high-impact civic technology and digital democracy projects?

Code for Africa (CfA) has an immediate vacancy for a Senior Programme Manager in its New Initiatives team. 

The role would preferably be based at any of CfA’s primary hubs in Kenya, Nigeria or South Africa. CfA has full-time staff in 21 African countries, and is therefore also open to exceptional applicants from elsewhere on the continent.

You would work closely with the CEO to manage the team that drives two key portfolios at CfA, namely our Business Development (BizDev) team and the Impact Accelerator. The BizDev team is responsible for CfA’s fund-raising and other revenue generative partnerships, while the Accelerator helps incubate/scale CfA grantees and initiatives.

CfA currently has staff in 21 African countries, with active digital democracy or watchdog technology projects/investments that reach beyond the continent. 

In order to thrive in this role, candidates should enjoy fast-paced creative problem-solving and systems building, in a multicultural transnational environment, and should have experience in programme/project management or leadership roles in the digital media and/or technology space.  

Senior Programme Managers provide leadership for both the BizDev and Accelerator teams, with a strong focus on securing new resources through fundraising and growing partnerships that advance CfA’s strategic objectives. Candidates with experience working with business development, international funders, and proposal writing are therefore encouraged.

Required: minimum requirements include:

  • 4+ years of demonstrable relevant experience in a programme/project management role in either the media or digital innovation space
  • Proven track-record for creative problem-solving in fast-paced impact-driven environments, where solutions involve balancing human/technology considerations 
  • Demonstrable ability to self-manage, creating your own and wider team timelines and milestones, with clear systems/processes
  • Evidence of nurturing leadership skills, for building and growing effective and happy teams of ambitious multicultural and multilingual domain experts
  • Digital first workplace skill-sets, including proficiency in collaborative work solutions such as Google Drive (Google Docs, Slides, Sheets, etc) and Slack (or equivalents such as Teams), as well as project management tools like Trello (or equivalents)

Preferred: candidates who are able to demonstrate the following will have an advantage:

  • Experience managing new product or business development teams in the media or technology industries
  • Alternatively, experience with impact investment and/or grant-making/management, including portfolio management 
  • Proposal/pitch writing for impact investment and/or international philanthropies in the digital innovation or digital democracy space
  • Experience managing a diverse portfolio of projects/products/partners across multiple timezones/cultures

Language and Location Requirements:

  • Location: Kenya, Nigeria or South Africa preferred, but open to candidates based elsewhere in Africa 
  • Languages: English primary language 
  • Preferred but not required: Arabic and French, plus major African languages such Fulani, Kiswahili, isiZulu, Yoruba, etc

About the Role:

Your role is to work with CfA’s rainmakers to help ensure that CfA’s partnerships and projects live up to their full potential.

As one of a small team of Senior Programme Managers for New Initiatives, you will oversee in-country teams across the continent who actively manage incubated projects, such as africanDRONE, the iLAB, PesaCheck and sensors.AFRICA. You will help build their teams and shape their systems, and improve their products. In addition to incubated projects, you will help supervise CfA’s portfolio of external investments and grant-making, into digital democracy NGOs or civic technology startups. This will include helping set expectations, monitoring progress on deliverables and solving challenges.

You will also work closely with the CEO to identify new funding or partnership opportunities, and to develop compelling proposals that align strategically with CfA’s development roadmap. This will include liaising with CfA’s funding partners, both traditional donors and global technology companies, to set expectations and then ensure that CfA delivers on its commitments.

Creative solutions will be important, alongside obsessive attention to detail and deadlines. Your team will include mid-level project/programme managers, supported by specialist teams of technologists, data analysts and content specialists elsewhere in CfA.

Responsibilities: Your daily responsibilities will include:

  • Nurture and grow your team of programme/project managers and support staff, proactively keeping the team focused, removing roadblocks and instilling efficiencies.
  • Proactively manage CfA’s relationship with external partners/donors, keeping them informed about project progress, managing expectations and synchronising partnership activities.
  • Actively monitor and evaluate implementation and qualitative progress on CfA projects and grantees, including ensuring that expenses and workplans remain on-track, preemptively identifying challenges and opportunities.
  • Develop fundraising leads and co-develop competitive funding proposals and manage the submission process in consultation with the CEO.
  • Ensure the programmes’ quality standards, project milestones and reporting deadlines meet donor expectations.
  • Oversee product development and project rollout, guided by coherent documentation, with appropriate risk management strategies in place.

What We Offer:

  • A competitive salary, subject to experience, with opportunities for performance-based growth, both in terms of career path and public stature
  • A dynamic workplace, with a transnational team, occasional international travel, and generous vacation benefits. This includes an organisation Summer Holidays break over the December festive season, over and above employees annual leave.
  • Ongoing opportunities to learn new cutting-edge skills and techniques/technologies to future-proof yourself in a rapidly evolving industry
  • A chance to shine on a global stage, writing for international audiences and interacting with colleagues around the world

How to apply:

Please fill in this form by 30 June 2021


About Us:

Code for Africa (CfA) is the continent’s largest network of indigenous African civic technology and investigative data journalism laboratories, with over 70 staff in 19 countries, who build digital democracy solutions that are intended to give citizens unfettered access to actionable information that empowers them to make informed decisions and that strengthen civic engagement for improved public governance and accountability.

This includes building infrastructure such as the continent’s largest open data portal, open.AFRICA, and largest open source civic software portal, commons.AFRICA, as well as the largest repository of investigative document-based evidence, source.AFRICA, as well as incubating initiatives as diverse as the africanDRONE network that gives citizens their own ‘eyes in the sky’, the PesaCheck fact-checking initiative in 12 African countries, and the sensors.AFRICA remote-sensing citizen science initiative to combat air/water pollution.

CfA also incubates the African Network of Centres for Investigative Reporting (ANCIR), as an association of the continent’s best investigative newsrooms, ranging from large traditional mainstream media to smaller specialist units. ANCIR member newsrooms investigate crooked politicians, organised crime and big business. The iLAB is ANCIR’s in-house digital forensic unit, with teams in east, south and west Africa. ANCIR uses its resources to strengthen newsrooms’ own internal capacity, by providing access to the world’s best whistleblower encryption and investigative semantic analysis technologies, as well as skills development, and seed grants for cross-border collaboration.


At CfA, we don’t just accept differences – we celebrate it, we support it, and we thrive on it for the benefit of our employees, our products and our community. CfA is proud to be an equal opportunity workplace and is an affirmative action employer. If you have a disability or special need that requires accommodation, please let us know. 

To all recruitment agencies: CfA does not accept agency resumes. Please do not forward resumes to our employment application line, CfA employees or any other CfA contact. CfA is not responsible for any fees related to unsolicited resumes.