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Meet Our International Technical Practice Experts

Abt Global’s International Technical Practice is a cutting-edge, in-house technical team that focuses on innovation to deliver quality services for our partners across the US, Australian, UK, and European markets. Our team of technical experts develops, tests, and applies interdisciplinary approaches to complex development problems. Our approach focuses on inclusion, power and politics, evidence and adaptation, and sustainable, locally led solutions. The team’s expertise covers a broad spectrum of critical issues: economic growth; governance; health; monitoring, evaluation, research, and learning; and gender equality, disability, and social inclusion.


Meet the people who can help your organisation achieve your goals:

 

Alexandra Nastase

Alexandra Nastase

Chief Technical Director, Abt Britain

Alexandra Nastase brings more than 15 years of experience to lead a technical team that covers health, equity, climate change, governance, economic growth, and monitoring, evaluation, reporting, and learning. She has experience in design, implementation, and evaluation of large reform and technical assistance programs to improve government performance. She has worked on five continents with leaders at all government levels. Nastase has held leadership and senior advisory roles for multi-million technical assistance programs funded by such organizations as the World Bank, European Commission, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Department for Foreign Affairs and Trade, United Nations Development Program, and Foreign, Commonwealth, and Development Office. Visit Alexandra’s full bio.

Climate and Environment

Jane Wilkinson

Jane Wilkinson

Principal and Head of Climate Change and Environment Practice, Abt Britain

Jane Wilkinson is Abt in Britain’s Senior Adviser for Climate Change, leading a growing team and portfolio of work in climate mitigation and adaptation, climate equity, and nature-based solutions. A published author on the impacts of climate change in Commonwealth countries, she represents Abt in high-level climate change fora and discussions. She has 18 years of experience advising governments and organisations on strategies to implement climate action. Jane served as an Australian diplomat before joining the Australian Department of Climate Change, where she led policy and negotiation teams on climate finance, trade and carbon markets. She played a key role influencing the design of the climate finance framework, including the USD 100 billion climate finance goal and the Green Climate Fund. She led research programmes at the Climate Policy Initiative and co-founded the Global Innovation Lab for Climate Finance. Visit Jane’s full bio.

Rosa Amboage, Ph.D.

Rosa Amboage, Ph.D.

Senior Technical Adviser for Climate Change and Environment, Abt Britain

Rosa Amboage is senior advisor of climate & environment for Abt in Britain. She is an environmental economist with multisectoral expertise in nature-based solutions (NbS), land use policy, environmental markets, green finance, and natural resource management. Amboage leads Abt programme design and delivery in NbS, climate adaptation and resilience. She contributed to the UK’s post-Brexit agri-environmental policies and designed its first national scheme promoting a natural capital approach to economic and climate goals. Previously, she was the lead economist of the £640M GBP ($740M USD) Nature for Climate Fund, helping UK industries and communities realize net-zero ambitions. Visit Rosa’s full bio.

Economic Growth

Education

Francesca Lawe-Davies

Francesca Lawe-Davies

Technical Practice Lead and Senior Adviser

Francesca Lawe-Davies leads Abt’s International Technical Practice, a technical team that focuses on innovation to deliver quality services for marginalised populations. She is a senior development specialist with more than 18 years of experience in government, non-government, private sector, and multilateral development organisations. She has broad experience leading teams on complex development programs across Southeast Asia and the Pacific. Her areas of expertise include education, decentralised service delivery, equity and inclusion, social development, and conflict and fragility. Before coming to Abt, Francesca worked as a senior consultant with Alinea International. Before that, she worked for a decade with the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT), designing, managing, and reviewing large scale programs for DFAT and the World Bank across Asia and the Pacific. She directly advised government partners in Indonesia and Timor-Leste. Visit Francesca’s full bio.

Gender, Equity, Disability, and Social Injustice (GESDI)

Leisa Gibson

Leisa Gibson

Principal and Head of Gender, Equality, Disability, and Social Inclusion (GEDSI) and Localisation, Abt Britain

Leisa Gibson, Abt Britain's Senior Adviser for GEDSI and Localisation, has more than 18 years of international experience working for governments, the United Nations, and civil society organisations. Her expertise includes strategic and operational planning, program formulation and delivery, change management, coordination and partnerships, quality assurance, and targeted interventions. She works on such issues as disability, development, inclusive leadership, gender and gender-based violence (GBV) in humanitarian action, child marriage, women’s economic empowerment, and organisational capacity development. Visit Leisa’s full bio.

Dr. Rebecca Devitt

Rebecca Devitt, Ph.D.

Technical Adviser for Gender Equality, Disability, and Social Inclusion (GEDSI), Abt Australia

Dr. Rebecca Devitt is an international specialist in GEDSI. Dr. Devitt brings 15-plus years of experience in policy development, corporate strategy, and program design and implementation of large-scale, technically complex development programs across Southeast Asia and the Pacific. She has achieved development outcomes by engaging with governments, civil society, research, multilateral, and donor partners. Dr. Devitt’s expertise extends to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander equality, inclusive governance, and civil society-led reform. Visit Rebecca's full bio.

Dr. Annemarie Reerink

Annemarie Reerink, Ph.D.

Senior Adviser Equity and Localisation, Abt Australia

Dr. Reerink has 25 years of experience promoting gender equality in the Asia-Pacific region. Prior to joining Abt, she worked for U.N. agencies in Asia and, more recently, spent eight years as the senior gender advisor for Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. In the latter role, she was responsible for setting the department’s technical direction, capability development, and quality and reporting of gender equality results across Australia’s aid program. As a senior member of our International Technical Practice, Dr. Reerink leads Abt Australia’s equity and localization work. She holds a Ph.D. in International Relations from the Australian National University. Visit Annemarie's full bio.

Governance

Graham Teskey

Graham Teskey

Principal Global Lead of Governance Practice, Abt Australia

Graham Teskey, based in Canberra, Australia, is Abt’s Principal Global Lead for governance. With 35 years of governance experience, he leads Abt’s governance portfolio and cadre, serving as the chief governance advisor on international development projects and shaping global debates—such as on thinking and working politically—through his thought leadership work. He began his career as an economist with appointments in Fiji, Vanuatu, and Tanzania. He joined the UK Government’s Overseas Development Administration in 1993 and served in Fiji, Kenya, and London, where he was Head of Governance and Social Development. Teskey left the Department for International Development—now the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office—in 2009 to join the World Bank in Washington as Senior Governance Adviser. In 2012 he moved to Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, where he was Principal Governance Specialist. In 2013 he established the international ‘Community of Practice’ on Thinking and Working Politically, which he co-chairs. Teskey has degrees in economics, urban and regional planning, and business administration. Visit Graham’s full bio.

Matilda Nash

Matilda Nash

Technical Adviser for Governance Practice, Abt Britain

Matilda Nash is a development professional with seven years of experience in programme management, business development, and technical assistance in governance and health. She currently supports the growth of Abt Global in the UK and European marketplaces. She has experience in managing Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) proposals and then mobilising and operationalising programmes that require complex stakeholder management. Visit Matilda’s full bio.

Health

Jane Pepperall

Jane Pepperall

Principal Health Technical Lead, International Technical Practice

Jane Pepperall is our Health Lead in Abt’s International Technical Practice, which focuses on good practice, evidence, and innovation to deliver equitable, quality services. Jane has extensive experience contributing to global health policy and supporting national health sectors in the Pacific, Asia, and Africa. She has provided strategy, policy, and technical health advice to the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade at global, regional, and country levels as their Senior Health Adviser for the last seven years. Jane worked for the UK Department for International Development (now the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office) for 20 years, including health adviser postings in Uganda, Kenya, Zimbabwe, Lesotho, Pakistan, and Fiji. Jane has a bachelor in Biological Anthropology from Cambridge University and a Master’s in Health Planning and Financing from the London School of Economics and London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. Visit Jane’s full bio.

Amanda Quintana

Amanda Quintana

Climate and Health Technical Lead

Amanda Quintana is a global environmental health professional with over seven years of experience in international health and development, program management, and implementation. Amanda works at the intersection of climate and health, supporting the integration of climate change into health programs, climate risk management, climate and health strategy development, and broader stakeholder engagement in the intersecting area. To date, she has worked with projects—such as USAID’s Abt-led LHSS project in Colombia—to integrate climate change considerations into project activities. Visit Amanda’s full bio.

Paul Smithson

Paul Smithson

Principal and Head of Health Practice, Abt Britain

Paul Smithson is Abt’s Senior Adviser for Health, with expertise in health strategy, financing, and reform. He has more than 30 years of experience in developing countries spanning a range of roles including: specialist technical adviser; aid strategist and steward; programme manager, and institutional reform lead. Smithson has worked for a variety of national governments, international organisations, and nonprofits institutions. His core area of expertise is health system performance, and he was a pioneer of sector-wide approaches in health. He has worked extensively in Africa, with shorter spells in Asian countries. Visit Paul’s full bio.

Olga Zues

Olga Zues

Senior Health Economist, Abt Britain

Olga Zues, a Health-system and Financing Specialist, has 20 years of experience in international development. She focuses on the design and implementation of comprehensive reform strategies to strengthen health systems and public finance management. Her expertise includes benefits design to move towards universal health coverage, arrangements to support efficiency gains and service delivery improvements, innovative payment mechanisms, sustainability strategies, and institutional development. She has worked with the World Health Organisation (WHO), World Bank, Global Fund, United Nations, Soros Foundation, U.S. Agency for International Development, the Department for International Development, and numerous ministries of health, finance, justice, and education. Visit Olga’s full bio.

Monitoring, Evaluation, Research, and Learning (MERL)

Mbuso Jama

Mbuso Jama

Senior Adviser for Monitoring, Evaluation, Research, and Learning (MERL), Abt Britain

Mbuso Jama, is a Senior MERL Specialist at Abt, with more than 17 years of experience . His work has involved humanitarian, rehabilitation, and development efforts in Africa, Asia, and Eastern Partnership countries. His broad spectrum of experience includes impact evaluations and designing MERL and research frameworks for various sectors from health to governance. He has experience designing, monitoring, and evaluating projects funded by the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office, United Nations, US Agency for International Development, Canadian International Development Agency, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, European Union, European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations, and private donors. Visit Mbuso’s full bio.

Dr. Fiona Mactaggart

Fiona Mactaggart

Senior Adviser – Monitoring, Evaluation, Research and Learning (MERL), Abt Britain

Fiona Mactaggart is a MERL Specialist at Abt, with 10 years of experience assessing health programs. As a senior member of Abt’s MERL practice, she contributes to program design and implementation, and institutional strengthening in four key areas: research (e.g., survey design), evaluation methodologies (e.g., contribution analysis), lessons learnt (e.g., peer-reviewed publications), and company capabilities (e.g., adaptive management). Visit Fiona’s full bio.

Didar Ali Didar

Didar Ali Didar

Technical Adviser for Monitoring, Evaluation, Research and Learning (MERL), Abt Australia

Didar Ali Didar is Technical Adviser for MERL in Abt’s International Technical Practice. He has more than 10 years of experience in MERL, project design, and management in the areas of agriculture, food security, economic inclusion, civil society, governance, health, and education. Didar has a master’s in sociology and experience in women’s rights advocacy, including designing and implementing advocacy plans and organizing national and international events. Visit Didar’s full bio. Visit Didar’s full bio.

 
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