Lead - Program Delivery, U-CAN

Lead - Program Delivery, U-CAN

Organization: The Urban Collective Action Network (U-CAN)

Apply By: 21 Jul 2024

Location: New Delhi(Delhi) Bengaluru(Karnataka) Mumbai(Maharashtra)

About us 

The Urban Collective Action Network (U-CAN) is a network of organisations committed to improving urban problem-solving through collective working, a multisectoral systems approach and a commitment to citizen inclusion in the policymaking process. U-CAN will engage with government partners, NGOs, CSOs, academia and private bodies that are actively invested in reimagining Tier II and Tier III Indian cities. 


Our long term intended objectives as a collective are 

  • Convening: To build a safe space and an intentional form of multi sector collaboration amongst civil sector organisations, think tanks, civic leaders and individual experts that make up the diverse urban sectoral landscape in India. 
  • Capacitating: To emphasise systems building, citizen empowerment and policy change as necessary governance interventions for better urban service delivery 
  • Communicating: To increase the urgency for highlighting issues faced by Tier II and Tier III Indian cities and showcase their potential as growth engines thereby attracting more resources to this relatively underserved space within the broader urban sector. 

Our current partners/member organisations include the leading think tanks and implementation partners in the Indian urban ecosystem. Our members shape the agenda and help drive our programming through research, policy engagement, communication and outreach, implementation support and capacity building. U-CAN leverages the strengths of its member organisations to amplify the need to inclusively invest in, sustainably develop and efficiently manage Tier II and TIer III Indian cities. 

Lead - Program Delivery 

The Lead - Program Delivery will be anchoring the implementation of all activities to achieve U-CAN’s objectives. U-CAN was seeded by the Omidyar Network India (ONI), and is currently helmed by the CEO, who manages the work with the ONI team and a secretariat composed of external project management professionals. With collaboration and guidance from the CEO, ONI and support from the secretariat, the Lead-Program Delivery will ensure the achievement of following outcomes: 

  • U-CAN’s policy activities (policy webinars and roundtables, policy briefs etc) are held to a high standard of thought leadership, research and writing within the larger community of urban professionals, experts and government partners. 
  • U-CAN’s outreach activities (workshops, partnership events, newsletters, website etc.) attract a wider and more diverse participation of experts and practitioners from governance and programmatic sectors to improve the systems understanding of the Indian urban ecosystem. 
  • U-CAN’s capacity building activities such as communities of practice, fellowships etc are anchored in principles of adult learning, modern pedagogical approaches and knowledge management. 
  • U-CAN’s organisational operations (steering committee meetings, procurement, secretariat management, hiring, program management) are carried out smoothly while ensuring communication with the CEO, ONI, our member organisations and other stakeholders 

Along with the CEO and the secretariat, you’ll be part of the core team to grow the collective sustainably over the next two years as a big tent for the Indian urban ecosystem. You’ll also be called upon to support the CEO in strategic activities like fundraising, partnerships and engaging with the steering committee and ONI team on future growth pathways. You will guide the secretariat in improving their understanding and engagement with matters related to urban development in India and globally, especially of gender, economic development and community engagement. 

Do you have the following 

● A postgraduate degree in Public Policy, Urban/Regional Planning, Economics or related fields. 

● Minimum 7 years of deep immersive professional experience across the non-profit, private sector (consulting) and working with the government/public sector

● A working immersive knowledge of at least two of the following sectors in the urban context: 

○ Mobility/Transportation 

○ Housing 


○ Land use planning 

○ Climate Change 

○ Outcome measurement 

○ Public Finance 

● A fundamental understanding of least one of the following areas of universal need in the urban context: 

○ Gender 

○ Economic Development 

○ Community Engagement 

● An awareness and a nuanced understanding of national urban initiatives in India

● An ability to engage with complex issues patiently, a problem solving approach to unravel the complexity into manageable tasks, a curiosity to deliver a “+1” to any solution and an unwavering commitment to quality.

● A penchant for writing across various lengths and breadths (policy briefs, newsletters, case studies, social media posts, blogs, funding proposals etc) 

● An innate quality of ensuring project management principles (people, budget, deadlines) within the secretariat. 

● A comfort to be both an individual contributor and a team member, to both give and receive feedback. 

● A liking towards engaging with stakeholders with empathy and patience as anchors of deepening relationships across all stakeholders. 

● An honesty to reflect and learn from difficult situations, to admit lack of knowledge in particular areas and to subsequently engage with them so that knowledge is not anecdotal or broad but grounded in first principles and fact-based specifics. 

● An ease to work with different project management and office suite of tools (Microsoft, Google, Clickup, Slack, Trello, Miro etc.). 

Motivated applicants who are driven by the purpose to achieve social impact are encouraged to apply, even if they might not have all of the above criteria. 

What we offer 

  • An entrepreneurial opportunity to build an unique collective that aspires to be the big tent for all interested in urban development in India. An opportunity to combine growth in sectoral knowledge with organisational development. 
  • An opportunity to work closely with the leading urban think tanks in India.
  • A flexible work situation (full time/part time/hybrid/remote) , preferably from Delhi, Bangalore, Mumbai or Pune. 
  • A compensation package that is competitive with industry standards and focuses more on outcomes than on processes. 
How to apply

We invite you to apply for the Lead - Program Delivery position at the Urban Collective Action Network (U-CAN). If you meet the qualifications listed above and are passionate about urban development, please follow the steps below to apply: 

  1. Submit Your Resume/CV: Include details of your academic and professional experience.
  2. Answer the Question: Provide a response (maximum 2 pages) to: 
  • What motivates you to work at U-CAN, and how does this align with your past experience and future goals?" 
  • Highlight your familiarity with urban issues in India and how you believe U-CAN can address them.


Application Deadline 

Submit your application by 21st July, 2024

 How to Submit 

Email your resume/CV and response to connect@urban.org.in with the subject line "Application for Lead - Program Delivery"

The selected candidate will be expected to begin their role within one month of selection. We look forward to your application!



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