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What is the objective of the programme?

The Fellowship Programme is designed to match qualified insurance professionals with organizations working on the frontiers of impact insurance in order to meet the skills gap and create a new generation of professionals with relevant experience. The Fellows support the Facility’s Research and Innovation (R&I) initiative by providing technical and program management support to each partner within the R&I initiative. The Facility’s Fellowship Programme provides a unique opportunity for professionals to gain hands-on experience in microinsurance and learn to adapt their expertise to the low-income market. At the same time, with the fellow working on-site, the host organization can leverage the expertise of the fellow to build its own capacity.

How will this programme achieve its objective?

This programme aims to help insurance professionals who are committed to working in microinsurance gain in-depth hands-on experience by working on an innovation scheme in the field 12-24 months under the guidance of a mentor. Through immersion in the daily operations of a microinsurance scheme over a substantial amount of time, the fellow will gain a deep understanding of the issues faced by the scheme. Check out our Current Fellows and Past Fellows to read how Fellowship is changing their lives.

How does the programme operate?

This programme partners with the wider microinsurance community, which includes microinsurance providers, intermediaries, capacity building institutions, technical assistance providers and banks, to create supportive and effective learning opportunities for our fellows. The programme is jointly administered by the ILO and MicroSave.

Who is qualified to participate?

Young and/or mid-career professionals with relevant backgrounds, predominately in insurance, and keen on applying their skills to benefit the low-income market may participate. They must be able to commit 12-24 months to working on a microinsurance scheme on the site of the host organization. The typical fellow has worked in a technical capacity in the insurance industry for at least three years, and has an interest in using his/her skills to tackle microinsurance challenges. S/he could be young or mid-career. Check out Become a Fellow for more information.

What does a fellow do?

Fellowship duties and activities vary from case to case, depending on the learning agenda of the fellow and the needs of the host organization. The Facility makes every effort to facilitate an appropriate match of the fellow’s skills and learning needs and the host organization’s project context and gaps in expertise.

At the outset of the fellowship, the fellow, mentor and host organization will draw up a plan of action for the duration of the fellow’s engagement. The fellow will work on the project at the site of his/her host organization, addressing issues ranging from daily operations to performance evaluation and risk management, as per the action plan. The mentor can be contacted to provide advice and feedback as necessary. At the end of the fellowship, the three parties will reconvene to debrief and complete a full circle evaluation.

Where do fellows work?

Fellows will be stationed in developing countries to work on-site on innovation schemes. These duty stations are predominately in Africa, but we may also place fellows in Asia and the Pacific, Latin America and the Caribbean and the Middle East. Fellows may work in cities or towns, with frequent visits to remote towns and villages as required by the host organization.

Do fellows need any special skills?

Fellows are typically young and mid-career professionals with substantial experience in the insurance industry who have limited exposure to the low-income market. They are expected to provide insurance expertise, while learning to adapt that expertise to the low-income market for the benefit of the host organization. Specifics are described in each call for fellowship applications. Follow the Become a Fellow page for new opportunities.

How long is a fellowship?

The fellowship lasts between 12 and 24 months. The length will depend on the availability of the fellow and the needs of the host organization.

Do fellows get to choose the host organization?

The matching process typically involves an initial viewing of selected host organizations’ terms of reference by the fellowship candidate, and the viewing of the CVs of selected fellowship candidates by potential host organizations. Where there is initial mutual interest, the Facility then connects the two parties for further discussion, selection and mutual acceptance. Once a match is established, the Facility will then assign a mentor to the partnership. While the Facility is flexible in its placement and encourages applicants to list their preferences and interests on their application, it is unable to guarantee any direct requests for a specific host organization, project, or geographical placement. Lastly, not all pre-selected fellowship candidates are guaranteed a placement as it is highly dependent on requests and requirements of the host organizations.

What’s in it for a Fellow?

The two-year fellowship provides a unique learning opportunity through a hands-on experience being hosted by our innovation partners, mentorship by experts and involvement in other events and projects of the Facility. Other benefits include: a monthly stipend (not a salary) to cover for living expenses of the fellow, a settling in allowance, basic health insurance, reimbursed travel costs for learning events, round trip air ticket to the host organization and a repatriation allowance.

What other benefits come with the fellowship?

There are numerous benefits for the Fellow, among those are: access to the network of fellows and a continued relationship with the Facility. While the Facility does not guarantee employment at the completion of a fellowship, participation in the events and access to the global network of microinsurance stakeholders may help fellows to identify employment opportunities on their own. Fellows may also discuss employment objectives with the Facility towards the end of their fellowship to determine whether the Facility can support them in their job search. Check out our Past Fellows to read how they benefited from the Fellowship Programme.

How many fellowships are awarded each year?

The Facility expects to provide 10 fellowships each calendar year.

When is the application deadline?

The application deadline for a fellowship is indicated in that specific fellowship announcement.

In what language should application materials be submitted?

Applications may be submitted in English or French. However, the written tests and phone interviews will be conducted in English language.

Can a fellow bring along a family member to the duty station?

Fellows may bring along family members to the duty station. However, the programme does not provide support in any form to family members. Family members needing to purchase medical insurance may contact the programme administrator to make arrangements.

What is the role of MicroSave in administering this programme?

  • contracting with the fellows;
  • providing orientation information;
  • disbursing financial support;
  • arranging insurance coverage for the fellow. 
    • The cost of the fellow’s coverage is covered by this programme (the cost of the coverage of other accompanying family members is the responsibility of the fellow);
  • addressing administrative questions from the fellows;
  • providing security notification and some emergency support.

Can’t find the answer you are looking for?

Contact Aida Lindmeier

Fellowship Programme Manager

Impact Insurance Facility

Telephone: +41 22 799 6478