Join A2EI and push the boundaries of innovation for the off-grid sector!
We’re looking for a hard-working, analytical, creative, and inspiring individual to serve as our Director of the Access to Energy Institute Lab based in Arusha, Tanzania. As Lab Director, you’ll work with a team of 7 permanent staff and 3-7 temporary international researchers and entrepreneurs conducting on-the-ground field research and testing new products for off-grid markets.
Why should you be our Lab Director?
Engage your whole brain!
Don’t get stuck doing the same thing every day – as Lab Director, you’ll spend your time engaging with execs and officials, speaking with rural farmers, tinkering in the lab, deploying new products to market, and supporting innovators and entrepreneurs to bring their ideas to life!
Move the needle and make a difference!
Our sights are set on the biggest challenges in the off-grid sector, like replacing 20 million petrol generators with affordable and clean energy. Up for the challenge?
Foster a team and grow an organization!
A2EI is less than a year old and we’re always looking for ways to grow. As Lab Director, you’ll lead a tight-knit team of researchers and techies and help carve A2EI’s strategy to building a more sustainable future.
See the world!
As Lab Director, your work will take you from rural parts of Tanzania to bustling Nigerian cities to R&D labs in Berlin. Your home base will be in Arusha, starting point for some of Africa’s most iconic safari destinations like Mt. Kilimanjaro, the Serengeti, Ngorongoro Crater, Lake Natron, and Mt. Meru.
Your responsibilities as Lab Director:
Lead a team and support them to conduct field research, design and prototype off-grid and weak-grid technologies, carefully monitor and evaluate pilots of new products, and publish academic-quality papers about the research results and case studies
Foster a research and innovation environment that equips innovators and entrepreneurs as they conduct field research and testing
Manage relationships with industry stakeholders (start-ups, private companies, academic institutions, governmental organizations, NGOs, funders) and position A2EI as an ecosystem contributor by developing mutually beneficial and output-focused partnerships
Skills - Qualified candidates will possess the following:
Excellent communication skills – must be able to work across cultures and adapt to wide range of communication styles
Solution-oriented, entrepreneurial spirit – must be proactive about driving organizational achievement
Project management abilities – must be able to manage complex projects and ensure on-budget and on-time delivery of results
Skills - Highly qualified candidates will possess the following:
Experience conducting field research: user research, project M&E, or other social-science research
Experience with product development: human-centered design, product design, product management, product R&D, or other similar experience
Experience working in the renewable energy sector
Experience working in Tanzania and/or sub-Saharan Africa
Prior management experience or demonstrated ability to lead and manage teams
University degree related to engineering or research
Fluency in English and Kiswahili
Additional Note: There will be significant handover time with the outgoing Lab Director. Passionate candidates that are highly motivated to grow into this role are encouraged to apply.
About the Access to Energy Institute
The Access to Energy Institute (A2EI) is a newly founded non-profit R&D think tank that supports product development for the off-grid sector. With one R&D lab in Berlin, Germany and one customer research lab in Arusha, Tanzania, A2EI aims to be the place where off-grid innovation thrives. More info at www.A2EI.org.
What does the Access to Energy Institute do?
Support innovators and entrepreneurs in the off-grid sector
Conduct practical field research to understand user needs
Conduct R&D and build impactful, user-friendly products
Run field tests of new products to validate their appropriateness for market
Work with industry stakeholders to bring great products to off-grid markets