Our Team

Social development specialists with decades of
International development sector experience

Our Team


Barry Smith

Principal Consultant - Governance & Inclusive Public Services

Barry is a senior social development, governance and accountability professional with 35 years of multi-sector experience in social inclusion and human rights; development management and strategy; public policy; programme design and evaluation; political economy analysis and research; civil society leadership and institution-building; collaborative learning; and partnerships. In addition to his long-term experience as an NGO leader and grant-maker, Barry has provided high quality policy and technical advice to governments, civil society institutions and private philanthropy organisations. He has a proven track record in the design and facilitation of participatory evaluation methodologies and multi-stakeholder dialogue.

Currently, Barry is Senior Accountability Advisor on a five-year DFID ‘innovation lab’ initiative to test a range of strategic research and action interventions to improve accountability in Somalia. From October 2015, he will serve as Senior Institutional Strategy Advisor for the DFID/Danida/EC-funded Strengthening Transparency, Accountability and Responsiveness programme (STAR), Phase 2, in Ghana. He was Team Leader for a 2014-2015 research study on the Development and Implementation of the BRAC/DFID/DFAT Strategic Partnership Arrangement, commissioned by DFID Bangladesh in collaboration with BRAC and Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT).

Other recent assignments include: Lead Consultant (Empowerment and Accountability Strategy) for the Reducing Maternal and Child Mortality through Strengthening Primary Health Care (RMCH) initiative in South Africa, a three-year partnership between the South African Government and DFID (2012-2015); Team Leader for a global strategy evaluation, commissioned by the International HIV/AIDS Alliance (2014-2015); and Lead Consultant for the Final Evaluation of Integrity Action’s Pro-Poor Integrity Programme (PPI), a five-year multi-country initiative funded by DFID through the Governance and Transparency Fund (2013).

Barry brings first-hand experience in institutional development, foundation-building and grant-making – as the founding Executive Director of a significant social justice funding consortium in Southern Africa; as an advisor to the South African government on the design of its National Development Agency (NDA); as Technical Advisor to DFID in the establishment of the Southern Africa Trust; and as Senior Director, Southern Africa, with the Synergos Institute (fostering innovative development partnerships and the growth of  indigenous philanthropy in the region). He served as Direct of Development and Public Affairs for CIVICUS: World Alliance for Citizen Participation and also has extensive experience as a convenor, designer and facilitator of peer learning and leadership networks, such as the Leadership for Change programme for emerging civil society policy leaders in SADC; the Leadership and Innovation Network for Collaboration in the Children’s Sector (LINC) in South Africa; and the Southern Africa Community Grantmakers Leadership Cooperative.