Associate/Senior Associate – Greater China Portfolio

About this job

Location Shenzhen or Hong Kong
Posted 07/21/2020
Application Deadline August 14, 2020 (HK Time)
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When you join GDI, you join a unique team of mission-first pioneers who build start-ups, programs, funds, and partnerships to create a positive impact in the world. You will be empowered to create and build social impact initiatives that will improve the lives of thousands.

We are recruiting top talent for our fast-growing Greater China team – our team has doubled in size over the past year, and we are looking to expand our efforts at the forefront of the Chinese social sector.

Our Greater China portfolio works with partners who are as “all-in” as we are on achieving impact at scale across critical social issues in the region, including the aging population, disadvantaged children and youth, mental health and well-being, disability inclusion, and social sector building. We work with our partners end-to-end: from strategy to execution and incubation. We are highly selective and work with fewer projects over the longer term; our average engagement is 12-24 months.

Example projects in 2019:

  • Strategy:
    • We continued our long-term partnership with EPM to demonstrate new models for scaling social impact in China through replication. EPM identifies interventions and services that serve the elderly, vulnerable children, persons with disabilities and environmental protection and supports the replication of these interventions to local organizations and communities around China at scale. In four years, EPM has supported 49,477 distinct “replications” through 8,607 local community partners, reaching ~65m beneficiaries.
    • We shaped the Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust’s next phase of strategy for addressing the ageing population challenge in Hong Kong in 2019, which has directly influenced their 100m USD annual spend. Dementia was one of the major issue areas identified and we are now supporting the Trust to develop their dementia-specific strategy.
  • Execution:
    • We continued our three-year implementation partnership with Huiling on their scale-up journey, China’s largest grassroots NGOs serving adults with intellectual developmental disabilities. In 2015, before working with GDI, Huiling expanded at one new centre per year and was in 21 cities. Today, they are in 38 cities and consistently average 4-5 new centres per year.
  • Incubation:
    • We are incubating Disability Impact Fund to address two major challenges: inclusive employment and access to assistive technology.
    • Together with GDI globally, we incubated the Global Fund to End Modern Slavery – now an 80m USD fund aiming to make modern slavery economically unprofitable.

Job Summary:

In Greater China, we are looking to embark on our next stage of growth and are recruiting at two levels: associate/senior associate and manager/senior manager. We are seeking professionals who are passionate about solving the most challenging social problems in the region.

Associates are the backbone of GDI’s work and are at the frontlines of the problem-solving designing, and building of our initiatives. As an Associate/Senior Associate at GDI, you are expected to operate at senior levels, possess strong maturity, and be comfortable with a high degree of autonomy.


  • Master the foundational strategy consulting toolkit to deliver structured thinking, problem-solving, strategy development and a pathway to scale for initiatives in the China portfolio
  • Conduct research, data collection, and analysis to guide the team’s decisions
  • Facilitate and directly support clients and partners in strategy development
  • Manage work plans, tasks, and milestones for a variety of initiatives and engagements
  • Facilitate implementation by coordinating activities of multiple partners and stakeholders
  • Track risks, issues, and communicate directly with clients and partners
  • Cultivate key relationships with executives at leading foundations, corporates, funders
  • Actively pitch new ideas/projects to secure new business
  • Collaborate closely with GDI senior leadership to help shape and execute the overall China portfolio strategy
  • Contribute actively to develop thought leadership


  • Demonstrated passion for Greater China’s social impact issues and mission-alignment with GDI
  • Proven team player and strong cultural fit with our values below
  • Strong analytical and communication skills – experience with conducting research and quantitative/qualitative analysis and able to communicate the “so-what” clearly and concisely
  • Strong work ethic and ability to meet deadlines in a fast-paced, flexible environment
  • 1-5 years of professional experience with the following – strategy consulting and/or in-house strategy development (required), impact measurement and evaluation, non-for-profit organizations,
  • Demonstrated understanding of Chinese culture and working environment
  • Expertise in our core issue areas (ageing population, disadvantaged children and youth, mental health and well-being, disability inclusion, and social sector building) is advantageous
  • Bachelor degree is required, and a Master degree in related fields is preferred
  • Willing to be based in Shenzhen or Hong Kong, with regular travel to other cities in Mainland China
  • Spoken/written business fluency in Mandarin/English (Shenzhen office) and Mandarin/Cantonese/English (Hong Kong office) is a must

Instructions to apply:

  • Applications close on August 14, 2020 (HK Time); early applications encouraged!
  • Please send your cover letter and resume in one PDF document (in English) to using “Associate/Senior Associate” as the subject line.
  • In your cover letter, please cite where you learned about this position.
  • We will be in touch with suitable candidates by end of July.

What’s GDI’s Greater China team culture like?

  • We value diverse and complementary strengths – we are a small team of 10, bringing together experiences from strategy consulting, top global foundations, Fortune 500 corporates, impact investing and NGO management. Collectively we have lived in all continents except for Antarctica!
  • We collectively own our results and impact – if we see a problem, we own it. We don’t wait to be told what to do; we manage each other to outcomes, not processes, and we challenge ourselves constantly to confront if we’re really making an impact on the ground.
  • We engage authentically with ourselves and our partners – we respect one another and speak our views openly and candidly. Your opinion will be listened to, and you will be expected to speak your mind to anyone in the team, regardless of seniority.
  • We are “all-in” on China’s and Asia’s role in impact globally – we are excited and challenged by the growth of the social sector in China, and we look forward to building Asia-grown and led impact initiatives in the future.

What’s in it for you to join?

  • Steep learning curve and opportunities to take on significant responsibilities from day one
  • Direct working opportunities with leaders in the Chinese social sector
  • Dynamic start-up culture and work hard play hard environment
  • Flexible working environment (opportunities to work remotely, casual dress policy)
  • Competitive salary and benefits package

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