Herman Schepers

Founder & Managing Director

Herman is a global public policy and government affairs leader who has been at the forefront of technology policy and advocacy work with innovators, governments and regulators for over twenty years. During this period he has built highly effective public affairs teams, managed relations with ministries and regulators across EMEA and APAC, and directed government affairs for some of the biggest names in corporate tech.

Before founding Policy Impact Partners he was responsible for spectrum and broadband advocacy at the mobile industry association – the GSMA.  In this role he led the global campaign to secure more spectrum for broadband services at the UN’s World Radiocommunication Conference in 2015.  He also designed and coordinated multiple advocacy programmes across key markets in the Middle East, Africa and Asia Pacific to advance the release and licensing of the ‘digital dividend’ spectrum for mobile.

Herman has built a strong global network of senior level contacts both in government and across industry, and has a trusted reputation for effectively advocating policies that align business and societal goals. He is an accomplished speaker and moderator, and a regular contributor to capacity building programmes for regulators and government representatives across the world.

Earlier in his career Herman established and led the EU public affairs technology practice in Brussels of the global communications consultancy, Waggener Edstrom Worldwide, directing accounts with Amazon, Adobe, Microsoft and the Business Software Alliance. He also held operations, strategy and policy positions at British Telecom, and worked for the Dutch Industry Federation. He has an MSc in Political Science and International Economics and an MBA.

Africa

Mortimer Hope

Associate Director and Africa Lead

Mortimer has over 20 years’ experience in telecoms policy development across the African continent. He has a deep understanding of both the regional drivers that impact policies and the specific in-country contexts that shape them. His career has covered both the public and private sectors, and through this he has developed a keen sense of how to align the positions of industry and regulators.

As Head of Africa for the GSMA he was responsible for advancing mobile’s policy agenda in the region and developing effective and sustainable relationships with government departments, legislators, and regulators. He led the GSMA’s public policy team in Africa, and directed the operations of its regional office out of Nairobi, focussing on priority issues such as spectrum, infrastructure sharing, taxation, and mobile financial services.

Prior to the GSMA, Mortimer spent ten years at Vodacom South Africa where he was responsible for all technical regulatory matters, and for policy support to Vodacom’s operating companies in Lesotho, Mozambique, Tanzania, and Democratic Republic of Congo. Over this period, he played an instrumental role in helping the mobile industry secure digital dividend spectrum at the United Nations World Radio Conferences in 2007 and 2012.

Before joining the private sector, Mortimer spent six years in engineering and management positions at the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa. He has an MSc in Telecommunications Engineering from the Moscow Technical University of Communications and Informatics, and an MBA from the University of Pretoria. He is registered with the Engineering Council of South Africa, is a Fellow of the South African Institute of Electrical Engineers, and also a member of the Institute of Directors of Southern Africa.

Annie Kithima Badjoko

Senior Policy Advisor, Central Africa

Annie is a lawyer specialising in legal and regulatory ICT affairs. She was the legal adviser to a major MNO in the Democratic Republic of Congo for twelve years, also chairing the regulatory subcommittee of GSMA. Her public sector roles include chief of staff to the Minister of Trade in Kinshasa and Legal advisor in the office of the president of the Republic of Zaire (DRC). Educated in Belgium and USA, she is fluent in English, French, Swahili, Luba and Lingala.

Cecilia Mamelodi-Onyadile

Senior Policy Advisor, Botswana

Cecilia has over twenty years’ experience in the telecommunications and ICT industry in Botswana and the SADC region covering regulation, policy and infrastructure development. Her association with SADC spanned more than a decade, during which she: was instrumental in coordinating the fifteen member states in the development of a region-wide, integrated, cost-effective and reliable telecommunications and ICT infrastructure; had oversight of the work of implementing agencies; and facilitated high-level discussions between Ministers of member states in relation to the 4th industrial revolution. Earlier in her career, Cecilia was Head of Regulatory Affairs at the Botswana Telecommunications Corporation and a founding Board Member of the Communications Regulatory Authority.

Kwaku Antwi

Senior Policy Advisor, Ghana

Kwaku is an effective and dynamic ICT policy advocate with over ten years experience covering multiple sectors across Caribbean and African markets. He has worked at the Jamaica National Bank and the Jamaica Early Childhood Development Foundation, and taught at the Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration. He regularly delivers research and consulting support for government reform projects and businesses looking to bridge the Caribbean and African Markets.

He is a regular contributor to international conferences on the future of the internet and speaker at ICT forums and workshops, as well as a trainer and lecturer in both business and academic contexts. Kwaku is also active in policy groups and forums including the Alliance for Affordable Internet (A4ai), the Ghana Coalition, the Internet Society and various community based initiatives.

Kwaku specialises in ICT policy and regulation and has a particular interest in the key role next generation and community-based networks can play in developing digital ecosystems and addressing the needs of the underserved and unconnected. He is a strong believer in the importance of addressing policy issues through a multistakeholder approach focused on consensus building and delivering holistic, impactful solutions.

Kwaku holds a BBA in Marketing from the University of Technology, Jamaica and an MSc. in Telecommunications Policy and Technology Management from the University of the West Indies.

Osondu C. Nwokoro

Senior Policy Advisor, Nigeria

Osondu is a communications law, policy and strategy specialist who has been actively involved in the development of Nigeria’s telecommunications industry policy and regulatory framework from its partial liberalization in the mid 1990s through to the present day. He is an experienced regulator and business representative and this broad perspective serves him well as a strategic advisor and industry commentator.

At the Nigerian Communications Commission, he helped craft pioneering regulatory guidelines and, as Head of License Documentation, was responsible for drafting operating and frequency licenses, including the landmark GSM license awards in 2001. He was a member of the Telecommunications Sector Reform Implementation Committee of the National Council on Privatization that wrote the National Telecommunications Policy of 2000, and was also actively involved in the conception and drafting of the Nigeria Communications Act.

Following his distinguished career as a regulator, Osundu was hired by Econet Wireless Nigeria Limited (now Airtel Networks Limited) in 2002, where he rose to become Regulatory Affairs Director in 2008. During his tenure, Airtel developed its reputation as a thought leader on communications industry policy and, in 2010, he was appointed as the mobile network operator’s representative on the Ministerial Committee for the Review of the National Telecommunications Policy. From 2015 to 2018, Osondu was External Affairs Director at Natcom Development and Investment Limited.

Osondu holds degrees in law, is a member of the Nigerian bar, and an alumnus of the Lagos Business School and Wits Business School of South Africa, from where he obtained certifications in Advanced Management and General Management respectively. He is also an Accredited Management Consultant (AMC) and a Fellow (FIMCB) of the International Management Consultants Board.

Vitalis Olunga

Senior Policy Advisor, Kenya

Vitalis has worked in the ICT industry of Sub-Saharan Africa for the past twenty-five years. He has delivered on major strategic projects including formulating the National Broadband Strategy for Kenya, establishing the national regulatory authority in Federal Republic of Somalia and conducting regulatory profile assessments for Cameroon, DRC, Cote d’Ivoire, Malawi, Mozambique, Senegal and Zambia. He was ITU expert on ICT wireless broadband strategy for countries in Africa as well as chairing ITU and CTO forums for operators in Africa.

Earlier in his career, Vitalis was Chair of GSMA Africa Regional Interest Group. Vitalis has an extensive understanding of market trends, industry priorities and operational requirements of MNOs in this region. He is also an accomplished speaker and trainer in ICT policy, regulation and technology

APAC

Irene Ng

Senior Advisor, APAC

Irene is an international lawyer with substantial telecoms regulatory and government relations experience.  In a career spanning more than twenty years, she has advised governments on high-level telecoms policy and legislative drafting as well as corporate clients (mainly US and European MNCs) on commercial and investment related matters together with corporate governance issues.

As a former telecoms regulator, Irene headed the licensing functions of a national telecoms regulatory agency and was responsible for developing appropriate policies, licensing new types of services and facilitating the introduction of technologies such as 3G, broadband over powerline and free space optics into the market.  Due to her broad experience, Irene has a deep understanding of the political and regulatory dynamics of policymaking and brings a collaborative approach when advising clients and interacting with government stakeholders – thus ensuring successful linkage between commercial initiatives and underlying policy objectives.

Irene was GSMA’s first regional head for Asia and was instrumental in building the local public policy team, strengthening relationships with key government stakeholders and member operators, and driving the strategic and policy agenda for the mobile industry in the region.  She successfully led the GSMA Capacity Building initiatives in Asia which culminated in a Memorandum of Understanding with the Multimedia University of Malaysia to co-develop a Masters course in Converged Telecoms Policy and Regulation for policymakers that was announced at the Mobile Asia Expo in 2014, as well as partnership with the Ministry of Communications and Information in Myanmar on telecoms policy and skills training following the Myanmar government’s decision to liberalise its telecoms sector.

In recent years, Irene has started to work more closely with the tech start-up community in Toronto, Canada and to support the growing innovation ecosystem that is taking place there.  Canada has seen an upsurge in new investments in the technology sector, especially in the area of artificial intelligence, and from companies such as Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Samsung and Uber.

Throughout her career, Irene has been a frequent speaker at industry forums and continues to share her knowledge on a wide range of topics through various collaborative initiatives and publications.  She has a LL.B (Hons) from Lancaster University and a LL.M from the University of London.  Irene is also a Barrister-at-Law and a member of the Honourable Society of the Middle Temple.

Europe and Middle East

Roberto Ercole

Associate, Europe and Middle East

Roberto is a chartered engineer in Europe, is a senior spectrum and mobile radio systems expert with global expertise and experience of engaging with senior government officials at Ministerial and Director General level. He works as a consultant for several clients across the MENA region and Europe, including SAMENA Council.

Between 2006 to 2016 he was Senior Policy Director for spectrum at the GSMA responsible for the WRC campaigns in 2007 and 2012, as well as a number of market interventions. Prior to joining the GSMA he worked as an independent consultant advising on radio spectrum engineering issues, as well as in spectrum valuations. Roberto has assisted governments developing spectrum liberalisation policies and in helping to promote competition in mobile markets by encouraging new entrants. He has also worked as a radio spectrum regulator in the UK for 7 years, and for the UK telecoms competition regulator (Oftel) focused on spectrum competition issues and spectrum auctions.

Roberto has a degree in Applied Physics, a Masters in Electronic Engineering a post graduate certificate in EU and UK Competition Policy and Law.

Latin America

Sebastian Cabello

Associate Director and Latin America Lead

Sebastian Cabello is an accomplished digital and ICT expert with significant experience in driving collective action, public-private partnerships and technology and public policy advocacy in Latin America.  Until December 2018 he was Head of Latin America at the GSMA, the global association of the mobile industry, and led the organisation’s activities in the region.

Cabello is a recognised Latin American industry leader, who has shaped regional discussions in all matters related to mobile and broadband expansion, the use of spectrum, infrastructure development, taxation, security and innovation. He is a regular spokesperson at conferences across the region and globally.  He was a Member of the National Committee on Spectrum of Colombia and the Latin American Internet for All Advisory Committee of the World Economic Forum.

Prior to joining the GSMA, Sebastián worked as Market Research Director at TechPolis and as a consultant on international trade issues for the Foreign Affairs Ministry of Argentina and the Organisation of American States (OAS). He was also involved in academic activities teaching ad hoc ICT courses at the Universidad de Palermo (Argentina) and as associate researcher at the Centre of Technology and Society (CeTyS) of Universidad de San Andres (Argentina).

Sebastian Cabello holds a master’s degree from the Graduate School of International Relations and Pacific Studies (IR/PS) of the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) with a specialisation in International Economics and a Licenciado degree in Economics from Universidad Nacional del Sur (Argentina). In 2003, he received Fulbright Grant.

Catalina Diaz-Granados

Associate Latin America

Catalina is a consultant with over 20 years of professional experience in telecommunications / ICT regulation, public policy, and competition.

An economist by training, she worked for 15 years at the Colombian telecommunications regulator, where she was responsible for the planning and execution of the regulatory agenda in areas such as competition promotion and consumer protection, amongst others. Since moving to Argentina she has worked as an independent consultant focused on  ICT regulation and public policy.She has also been working as media and digital economy correspondent for Cullen International.

Catalina holds a degree in Economics from University of los Andes in Bogotá, Colombia and a Master’s Degree in Economics and Regulation of Public Services from University of Barcelona, Spain.

Geraldine Gonzalez Santibanez

Senior Advisor, Chile

Geraldine is an engineer expert on telecom regulation and spectrum with significant experience in Subtel as Chief of the Division of Regulatory Policy twice (2011-2014 and in 2018) and other public sector agencies. Currently, an independent consultant, she continues to be well connected at Subtel. She was responsible for defining last two spectrum assignment processes of 700 MHz and 2600 MHz bands.

Research and Policy Communications

Sarah Schepers

Co-founder and Research and Operations Director

Sarah is co-founder and Research and Operations Director at Policy Impact Partners where she is responsible for business and project management and leading work on research and policy communications. She has a wide ranging experience operating at the interface of social science research and policymaking. She recently managed  the Transformative Innovation Policy Consortium comprising researchers and science, technology and innovation policymakers from Colombia, Finland, Ghana, Mexico, Norway, Senegal, South Africa and Sweden. Prior to this she was Head of Strategy for the Science Policy Research Unit at the University of Sussex (UK) leading on international programmes and policy engagement and also managed the £5m EPSRC funded research centre the Centre for Innovation and Energy Demand. Prior to working in research and policy she held senior marketing roles in the private sector. Sarah has an MBA from Henley Business School and a BA in English Literature.

Professor Antonio D'Amico

Associate, Europe

Antonio’s twenty-five-year international career in public affairs and project management has spanned corporations, consultancies, international organizations, academia and the European institutions.  He complements PIP’s policy impact activities by providing European programme and project management services. He is highly experienced at identifying funding opportunities and building project partnerships across a range of different sectors including digital, telecommunications, utilities and agriculture. 

Antonio’s passion is innovation and the impact of digitization across the economy and society. His strategic focus and organizational flair ensure the delivery of effective results on even the most complex multi-party projects. He is a sought-after advisor and mentor in this field and leads courses on Europroject and Project Management at the University Unitelma Sapienza in Rome. His strengths lie in communication and consensus building, which he believes are at the core of project management excellence. 

Earlier in his career Antonio was based in Brussels for over ten years, initially in the corporate sector with Fiat Europe, before being recruited by the European Commission for its General Secretariat, then its Directorate General for Research and Innovation. Antonio subsequently entered the consultancy business with Price Waterhouse, managing pan European projects for multiple clients. 

After studying Socio-economic sciences in Italy and Computer and Law in France, Antonio obtained a Law post graduate degree in “Governance, management, egovernment of public administration”; he also holds an ISIPM certification in project management.

Dr Chux Daniels

Dr Chux Daniels

Associate, Innovation Policy

Chux is a Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) policy researcher, expert, and consultant. He is based at the prestigious Science Policy Research Unit (SPRU)where he is a Research Fellow in STI policy.

Chux is highly skilled in connecting research to public policy. He has delivered research, consultancy and policy projects for the United Nations, African Union Commission and various national governments in Africa, Asia-Pacific, Europe and the 'Americas'.

His academic qualifications include a PhD in Science and Technology Policy Studies, from, University of Sussex, an MBA, a Postgraduate Executive Diploma in Strategic Management and Leadership, an MSc in Business Information Systems and Management and a Bachelors in Agriculture.

David Pringle

Senior Advisor, Media

A former business journalist, David is an analyst, writer and editor working with organisations in the telecoms, media and technology sectors. A regular moderator of panel discussions at major industry conferences, David has extensive experience developing content for events, for television and for print media. He also oversees STL Partners' Reconnecting with Consumers research stream, analysing how telcos can compete with the leading Internet players.

Prior to founding Pringle Media in 2009, David worked at the GSMA, providing media relations support to the CEO, chairman and other senior executives in the mobile industry. Between 2000 and 2005, David was the European technology and telecommunications correspondent for The Wall Street Journal covering Vodafone, Nokia, Ericsson, BT and other major multinationals. He has also served as deputy editor of Information Strategy, a pan-European title owned by The Economist Group.

David combines a flare for writing and presenting with extensive knowledge of the telecoms, media and technology sectors. He is adept at straddling the divide between the sceptical world of journalism and the bullish enthusiasm of executives working at the cutting-edge of high tech. David can cut through the jargon and fluff to pinpoint the real story.

With an English/Politics degree from York University, David retains a healthy interest in the wider world, enjoying London's theatre productions and live music, while following the cut and thrust of global affairs. In his spare time, he hangs out with his family, plays football and rides his road bike around the North Downs.

Client Services and administration

Jyoti Kakad

Client Services Manager

Jyoti is Client Services Manager and looks after PIP administration and quality control, including editing and proof reading documents. She is a lawyer by profession with a background in professional regulation and public administrative law. She was Head of Compliance at the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy in London for 14 years and previously worked in private practice and legal publishing in Hong Kong.