Uber South Africa is hiring, and the job description for the position of “public policy senior associate” makes for a very interesting reading.
The firm is looking for a lobbyist – preferably fluent in isiXhosa or isiZulu as well as English – to raise its profile and negotiate with government around public transport regulations. Put simply it’s looking for like-minded people to help convince government to relax regulations around who can operate public transport services.
The reforms needed are relatively simple: the right for one citizen to drive another citizen across town so long as certain important consumer protections requirements are met. The idea is not all that radical. But in many cities outdated regulations are holding back progress —and in places where reform has been possible, entrenched interests often try to turn the clock back.
Our public policy team is responsible for working with policy makers and third parties to make the positive case for change. That’s partly about building lasting relationships in the cities where we operate with politicians and their staff so they understand the benefits of this new model. It also about figuring out the best local regulatory framework and then developing campaigns to push reform through.
If you want to apply the application calls for (ideally) six to eight years experience in governmental laws. It also requires candidates to be self-starters with a ‘willingness to engage in debates, that can often become heated’, presumably so they won’t be put off by the prospect of metered taxi drivers barricading the doors to government buildings.
This posting was one of four that were recently put on Linkedin. The other three are: “community operations coordinator in Johannesburg“, “operations coordinator in Johannesburg” and “operations coordinator in Cape Town”.
The new job listings could mean Uber is ramping up for expansion in SA. We’ll keep our ears to the ground and let you know if we get a lead on any of those guesses.