Gillian Cooper

Gillian joined the Commonwealth Foundation in 2014.

Gillian has had a long career in the start-up, management and capacity development of civil society organisations. Her expertise is in environmental justice and in approaches that build the power of people to participate in decision-making. She has worked internationally for over 20 years.

Gillian leads the Foundation’s work in capturing, distilling and communicating the knowledge generated from the Foundation’s programme, assessing programme effectiveness and supporting the evolution of working practices for continuous improvement.

Between April 2014 – June 2017 Gillian was the Senior Programme Officer for Capacity Development at the Foundation, responsible for capacity development support to regional civil society organisations and networks engaged in policy reform processes and social accountability projects.

Previously, Gillian worked in West Africa, as the West Africa Partner Development Officer for RSPB and BirdLife International; in the Caribbean as Associate Director of the Caribbean Natural Resources Institute in Trinidad and Tobago and as Executive Director of the Environmental Awareness Group in Antigua and Barbuda where she began her career as an environmental justice activist in 1995. Gillian also worked as an Associate of Green Park Consultants, and in East London to facilitate community engagement in a large urban regeneration programme.

Gillian has an MSc in Globalisation and Development from the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS).