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Laura Hopkins

Laura Hopkins joined Itad in autumn 2017 as a consultant working in Itad’s organisational effectiveness theme.

Laura’s previous work includes conducting external evaluations for DFID’s work in the Oil, Gas and Mining sector in Ghana; managing Adam Smith International’s Economic Reform portfolio in Afghanistan including relationship management with government ministries and donor counterparts, and business development; and developing and overseeing the implementation of project MEL handbooks and frameworks.

Prior to joining Itad Laura worked as independent consultant, focusing on M&E assignments, while also acting as Project Manager for Smart CSOs Lab, an international network of more than 1000 activists, civil society leaders, researchers and funders aiming to fundamentally rethink and redesign how activists and change agents in civil society can effectively work towards a systemic change.

Laura has a Masters in Economics of Public Policy from the Barcelona Graduate School of Economics and is fluent in Spanish.

Nationality: British
Languages: English (Mother Tongue), Spanish (Professional Capability), Dutch (Beginner)
Country Experience:

Afghanistan; Bolivia; Ethiopia; Ghana; Kenya; Mongolia; Peru; Rwanda; Tanzania; Uganda; United Kingdom

Qualifications:

2013 - 2014
MSc Specialized Economic Analysis (Public Policy)
Barcelona Graduate School of Economics
2006 - 2010
BSc Economics and Politics
University of Bath

Employment:

2017 - ongoing
Consultant
Itad Ltd.

2016 - 2017
Strategy and Research
Smart CSOs Lab

2011 - 2013
Project Manager
Adam Smith International, Afghanistan

2010 - 2011
Business Analyst
White Space Strategy

2008 - 2009
Project Manager
Adam Smith International, Afghanistan

Project Experience:

2018 - ongoing
MEL Capacity Development for the Global Fund Advocacy Portfolio
(The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation) - MEL Consultant and Project Manager
Building capacity for Measurement, Learning and Evaluation across a portfolio of Global Fund advocacy grantees.

Laura's role includes designing a bespoke framework for understanding the role of MEL for advocacy across organisations of varying sizes and foci, as well as an approach to MEL capacity development to integrate with existing processes and culture to support long-term adoption of new practices.

2017 - ongoing
Raising Data Capability - Learning Journey Facilitation
(DFID, UK) - Coordinator and Researcher
Supporting DFID to explore how to raise their data capability for better decision making.

Laura is designing and delivering a workshop to develop a shared understanding of the role of data, evidence, and research within DFID, and is researching best practice in understanding the role of data, evidence and knowledge to support to DFID conversations .

2017 - 2018
Global Health Research and Development Advocacy Evaluation
(Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation) - Evaluator
Portfolio evaluation of grantees working on global health research and development (GHRD) advocacy in the EU and German markets.

Laura undertook primary and secondary data collection through key informant interviews and focus group discussions with stakeholders in the GHRD space in both geographies, then completed data processing and analysis based on an adapted evaluation method of Contribution Analysis to understand grantee influence on GHRD outcomes vis-à-vis their advocacy partners and other factors. Laura also developed written inputs for evaluation final report.

2016
Ghana Oil and Gas for Inclusive Growth
(DFID Ghana) - Evaluator, Annual Review
Mid-term evaluation of this five-year, £15million DFID-funded project, including two-week in-country trip, conducting interviews with DFID responsible staff, project managers, Ghana government clients, and project team members to build a 360-degree picture of project delivery.

2016
Western Regional Coastal Fund
(DFID Ghana) - Evaluator, Annual Review
Mid-term evaluation of this five-year, £10million DFID-funded project to develop a vehicle for oil and gas corporate social responsibility spending in the western region of Ghana. Laura interviewed team members, fund recipients, oil and gas players, and donor counterparts to understand the project context and progress.

2015 - 2016
Geothermal Enabling Environment, East Africa
(DFID East Africa) - Results Monitoring Adviser
Results Monitoring Adviser for a £6million, three-year DFID project across five East African countries, designed to improve the regulatory environment for geothermal energy and increase investment in the sector.

Laura designed the Theory of Change, log frame indicators, baselines, and targets, and designed monitoring tools and process, including a client feedback survey, and developed a comprehensive Results Monitoring Handbook. Laura also designed and delivered training sessions for relevant team members on their role in the monitoring, evaluation and learning processes.

2015 - 2016
Extractive Industries Resource Hub
(DFID, Global) - Monitoring and Evaluation Adviser
Laura designed and wrote the winning proposal for this £4.5million, five-year DFID programme for the development of an extractive industry best-practice signposting website. She was subsequently hired on to the team as the Monitoring and Evaluation Adviser, where she designed and delivered the Monitoring and Evaluation, Framework, and Handbook, including Theory of Change and Log frame.

2014
Special Economic Zones
(World Bank, Afghanistan) - Monitoring and Evaluation Adviser
Laura edited and improved the first draft report on a World Bank research project into Special Economic Zones in Afghanistan.