Phil is Minerva SRM’s Chief Operating Officer. He brings to the team more than 20 years of experience in strategic planning, operational management and grassroots implementation of community engagement and development programmes for the private sector, government and international aid organisations.
Phil’s early career included substantial periods in the Middle East working on commercial construction projects; and in Africa and Asia, specialising in needs assessments and local capacity building for Oxfam, the Red Cross and Medecins Sans Frontiers.
In 2008, Phil was chosen as the first Chief of Operations for the British Government’s Provincial Reconstruction Team in Helmand, Afghanistan, where he co-ordinated the planning, funding and delivery of a multi-dimensional, civil-military programme to stabilise a conflict-ridden province.
Later, as District Stabilisation Team leader, his innovative and tireless community engagement initiatives created the conditions in which local tribes threw off subjugation by the Taliban and rebuilt relations with the government.
Phil’s subsequent work for the UN in rural South Sudan identified and explained increasing local political tensions, facilitating timely interventions to mitigate the risks and consequences of inter-tribal conflict.
Most recently, Phil directed the UK’s governance programme for Syria, assembling a detailed knowledge of political and tribal dynamics and building relations with parties to the conflict there, the outcome of which remains to be seen.
Phil is a Chartered Civil Engineer and holds Masters degrees in Environmental Engineering and International Relations.