Our Team

Social development specialists with decades of
International development sector experience

Our Senior Associates


Cathy Gaynor

Senior Associate

Cathy is an SDDirect Senior Associate with over 30 years experience in international development, focusing on social change, social development, strategic planning, results based management and the interface between aid effectiveness and cross cutting social policy issues (human rights, gender equality, HIV&AIDS and environmental sustainability).

Her specialist areas of expertise include gender equality, including addressing social/gender norms; and strategic and results based planning. She has supported a number of bilateral (DFID, Irish Aid, Danida) and multilateral (UN Women, ILO, WFP) donors; and INGOs (Concern Worldwide, Sight Savers International, Christian Aid) in design, appraisal and evaluation of programmes to address social inclusion, equity and accountability

A particular feature of her approach to design is working with stakeholders to articulate a clear understanding of the change process, and then using this to validate the change theory and to explore and test interventions. She is a firm believer in the reflect and adapt approach and laterally has undertaken several evaluations, including a global evaluation of joint gender programmes in the UN system.

She is Technical Director for the DFID Voices for Change Programme for the life time of the project, involving regular provision of strategic directional oversight and quality assurance of products. She is an experienced mentor, with well-developed team leading and facilitation skills, including of multi-cultural teams. Cathy holds a Masters of  Economics  in Social Policy & Planning for Developing Countries from the London School of Economics.