Our Specialists.

Director Sharon Van Pelt

Sharon Van Pelt brings 25 years of experience in policy dialogue, transparency, local governance, civil society, conflict and violence prevention, and peace building. In 2002, she received the USAID Meritorious Honor Award for advancing policy dialogue and reform on decentralization and transparency in a difficult political environment. Ms. Van Pelt has previously worked in Guatemala, Moldova, and Sri Lanka on policy reform as well as for USAID and UNDP, as well as chief of party for a civil society and media project in Moldova. She has also directed governance and peace building efforts worldwide, including Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe, and Latin America. In 2012, she was designated as a Certified Performance Technologist (CPT) from the International Society for Performance Improvement.


Blog Posts by Sharon Van Pelt

Thinking and Working Politically to Strengthen Agricultural Market Systems

Down-and-dirty politics and political roadblocks have thwarted the success of agricultural development projects for decades. To achieve greater success, we need to consider how we can better understand and break down such blocks. Whether we like it or not, international development efforts are inherently political. Within the agriculture sector, the relationships and power dynamics among…

Think Your Project Isn’t Political? Think Again.

All changes and reforms are driven by interests and incentives. We generally understand this and, therefore, we try through our projects to foster positive incentives and collective interests that lead to the change we want to see. Sounds fairly straightforward, but clearly we know it is not, regardless of if we work in agriculture, climate…