Senior Operations Officer, World Bank & Leads the Gateway Academy
Click here to view Thom’s Sinclair’s Profile on LinkedIn. 2016 Keynote Speaker
Thom Sinclair is a Senior Operations Officer at the World Bank and leads the Gateway Academy, an initiative aimed at building capacity for inclusive financial service providers in sub-Saharan Africa. He is also an adjunct professor at The George Washington University.
From 2012 to 2015, Thom was a Senior Knowledge Management and Learning Advisor and the Program Cycle Capacity Building Team Lead with USAID’s Policy, Planning and Learning (PPL) Bureau. From 2001-2012 he worked in the private sector consulting with USAID on capacity building, knowledge management and learning projects developing training, e-learning, seminars/webinars and websites including Microlinks.org.
Thom has an MPA from Rutgers in International Public Service and Development and an MA in Political Science from Georgia State University.
Keynote Topic: Understanding the Market: How We Are Collaboratively Building Capacity for Financial Inclusion
CGAP (the Consultative Group to Assist the Poor) is a global partnership of 34 leading organizations housed at the World Bank. Our vision is a world where everyone has access to and can use the financial services they need to improve their lives. Or, as we refer to this– financial inclusion.
Limited human capacity is a significant challenge to advancing financial inclusion. Human capacity is a critical component of delivering financial services, yet many financial institutions consistently struggle to develop and manage their human capital. This is important as an estimated 2 billion working-age adults – more than half of the world’s total adult population – do not have an account at a formal financial institution.
A 2012 CGAP survey of 413 capacity-building providers and 221 financial service providers found that the greatest challenge faced by financial service providers was improving the capacity of their business. However, a major constraint to improving the capacity of financial institutions is limited access to affordable, high-quality training services. Only 16 percent of the financial service providers indicated that there were enough high-quality training opportunities available in the market where they operate.
Gateway Academy is an innovative project within CGAP funded by The MasterCard Foundation that will address this constraint. We are creating a curated e-learning platform that will offer both online and blended learning courses and cultivate communities of practice focused on financial inclusion in Sub-Saharan Africa.
We are currently focused on 7 sub-Saharan African countries to collectively shape the development and implementation of Gateway Academy. Gateway Academy will work with training providers, financial service providers, and e-learning experts focused in these countries to generate high quality course content, build communities and conduct on-going research to understand user needs.
With access to quality online learning, financial institutions will be better placed to meet the significant unmet demand for a range of financial services in Sub-Saharan Africa. For the platform to be successful, we need to
• Create a transformative impact on financial inclusion by increasing the reach of high-quality training content
• Create lasting impact for those working to advance financial inclusion
We know that e-learning can reach many more people than in-person learning alone. We believe that through e-learning, Gateway Academy has the potential to dramatically expand the accessibility of high-quality content and boost much-needed capacity in the sector.