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Designation:Deputy Head of Programmes – Conflict Pool


Profile Details

Ms. Zia has seven years of national and international project management experience in Pakistan, USA, UK and Australia. She is a project management specialist with experience of working with various donors including DfiD, EU, Japan, Italy and Saudi Arabia. She has focused on programme delivery in the thematic areas of Disaster Risk Reduction, Early Recovery, Conflict Prevention, Peace Building, Humanitarian Response, Community Restoration, Trade and Economic Development. Ms. Zia is also a certified Program Management Professional (PMP) with a background in Public Policy, Management, Economics and Business Studies. She holds a Masters degree in Public Policy and Management from Carnegie Mellon University, H.John Heinz III College and Bachelors (Hons) in Economics from Lahore University of Management Sciences. She has also spent a year at WASEDA University in Tokyo during undergraduate degree.

Almost a year and a half ago, Ms. Zia joined the British High Commission, assuming the senior role of Senior Portfolio Manager in 2013 for the Conflict Pool programme. The Conflict Pool in Pakistan is a c. £20m per annum programme, delivering grants and contracts ranging from small tactical interventions with local NGOs, to multi million pound contracts with development consultancy organisations. It is an exceptionally challenging portfolio, which balances highly politically sensitive work with senior actors in the Government of Pakistan, with ambitious development and conflict reduction objectives. It is a key instrument for the UK Government in delivering their political objectives in Pakistan.

Before joining the British High Commission, Ms. Zia worked as a Project Manager with Mercy Corps Pakistan where she led a politically sensitive project to promote cross line of control (LoC) trade between two parts of Kashmir. This role involved strong networking with concerned stakeholders including governments of Pakistan and Pakistan Administered Kashmir (AJK), something she managed skillfully and successfully. Before that and immediately after returning from Australia, she also served as the Young Professional Officer at UNDP Pakistan. As part of this role, she helped in establishing UNDP’s youth caucus for the first time. She was also awarded innovation award to acknowledge her contribution in this regard.

In all these three roles, Ms. Zia has been doing research in her respective thematic areas and has authored and co-authored a number of papers and reports. She has also penned down public policy pieces on youth programming in the newspapers. Ms. Zia’s professional experience since her return from Australia has been the example of exceeding expectation.

                                                                                                     (Updated On December 2014)