Consultancy Team

Responding to Conflict is made up of a team of dedicated and experienced professionals. The RTC team consists of core personnel based in Birmingham UK, a core team of Associates, and a network of trained professionals from all over the world. This network enables us to combine international expertise with local knowledge and languages to deliver our services in a sensitive, timely and professional manner, and ensures the quality of our services.

Joan McGregor   

Joan McGregorJoan McGregor is a specialist in Peace and Conflict issues with over 25 years experience in Africa, Asia and the Middle East. Joan holds a master's degree in Peace and Reconciliation. Joan has extensive expertise of designing and delivering tailor-made training and participatory learning programmes in conflict analysis, conflict sensitive approaches to development, conflict transformation and conflict management (mediation and negotiation), for practitioners of peacebuilding, development and humanitarian assistance, and for master's students.

Joan's consultancy history covers participatory approaches to conflict analysis, strategic planning for work in conflict, policy development, leadership and organisational development in conflict contexts, mediation and negotiation, conflict sensitivity tools and methodologies, monitoring and appraisal, lesson learning, training of trainers, and counselling. Joan has evaluated peacebuilding and development projects, and conducted peace and conflict impact assessments.

Joan has worked in South Africa, Kenya, Uganda, Ethiopia, Swaziland, Namibia, Lesotho, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Switzerland, Sweden, Sri Lanka, Jordan, Sudan, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Nepal, Israel, Palestine and the UK.


Simon Weatherbed

Simon WeatherbedSimon holds a degree in Development Studies and a master's degree in Post-war Recovery. For his PhD, he is focusing on the applicability and effectiveness of conflict sensitive approaches to aid in the current policy environment of integrated security, diplomacy, and development strategies for stabilisation and peacebuilding.'  Simon has over 10 years experience in the design and implementation of interventions in conflict affected, insecure and transitional environments. His project design experience includes the rehabilitation of former child soldiers, the participation of youth in peace and reconstruction, resettlement and community driven reconstruction, and capacity development for local governments. He has strong experience of proposal writing, programme development and management in partnership with local partners, institutional donor liaison and management for work in conflict, and conflict sensitive approaches to development.  

His consultancy experience includes: training and strategic planning in conflict transformation including conflict sensitivity and conflict analysis, project design, and result based management; integrating conflict sensitivity into development methodology, assessment and organisational practice; organisational capacity assessment; and conflict mapping.  

Simon has worked in Nepal, Sri Lanka, India, Pakistan, Malawi, Uganda, Kenya, Somalia, Sierra Leone, Norway and the UK.


Paul Clifford 

Paul Clifford Paul has 25 years experience as a consultant trainer, evaluator and mediator. Paul holds a degree in Russian Studies, a diploma in Counselling, and a master's degree in Public and Social Administration. Paul has facilitated peace dialogues and mediated in Sierra Leone, the Philippines, and in the UK. His evaluation experience covers the rehabilitation of former child soldiers, peace building by indigenous peace monitors, peace advocacy, organisational impact assessment, and a range of peacebuilding programmes. Paul has also undertaken peace and conflict impact assessments of development projects and facilitated strategic lesson learning for organisations working in conflict.

Paul is experienced in the design and delivery of training for organisations working in insecure environments and his expertise includes: mediation and negotiation, conflict analysis, confidence building, conflict sensitive approaches to development, training of trainers, strategic planning for the management of conflicts (including resource based conflicts), and civilian peacekeeping.

Paul has worked in Sierra Leone, Liberia, Cameroon, Sudan, Nigeria, Kenya, Burundi, Ireland, Northern Ireland, Croatia, Moldova, Kosovo, Serbia, Macedonia, Bulgaria, Russia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Georgia, Nagorno Karabakh, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Philippines, Myanmar, Israel, Palestine, Lebanon, Libya and the UK. 


Simon Fisher

Simon Fisher Simon is a conflict transformation specialist who has worked with governmental and non-governmental organisations in over 40 countries in Asia, Europe and Africa especially, in support of initiatives to address injustice and violent conflict and building sustainable peace. He has been an Honorary Research Fellow at the Department of Peace Studies, University of Bradford, and holds a PhD from Oxford Brookes University in the UK.

Simon co-founded RTC in 1991 and was director until 2003. Simon is a facilitator, educator and trainer with extensive experience of working in cross-cultural teams to address intractable situations of instability and violent conflict and to support organisations working to establish dialogue and strengthen relationships in these contexts. He also has a deep interest in policy formation, and in research related to influencing policy at government and international levels.

Simon has written a range of books and articles for practitioners and for a wider audience, on both education and peacebuilding, and continues to write in the conflict transformation field. He is an occasional lecturer at Oxford Brookes University, Pannasastra University in Cambodia and at Africa University in Zimbabwe. In addition, he acts as Advisor to the UK Parliamentary Group on Conflict Issues.

Nick Lewer  

Nick Lewer holds a doctorate in Peace Studies and is the former Director of the Centre for Conflict Resolution at the University of Bradford. He has more than 20 years experience in training, applied research, dialogue facilitation, mediation, and evaluation. Nick's evaluation experience covers conflict early warning mechanisms, local capacities for conflict management, integrated recovery programmes, strengthening local governance, peace audit, and conflict sensitivity of humanitarian and development organisations. He has facilitated peace dialogues and mediated conflicts in the Philippines, Sri Lanka, Croatia and Serbia, and Sierra Leone. In addition, Nick has researched and written extensively on adult peace education, non-lethal weapons and peacekeeping, and the role of public health professionals in peace building.

Nick has worked in Cyprus, Croatia, Serbia, Macedonia, Hungary, Ghana, Kenya, Sierra Leone, Uganda, Indonesia, Malaysia, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Philippines, Palestine, and the UK.

Diana Francis

Diana Francis is a freelance facilitator, trainer and consultant. She specialises in working with groups of people involved in or affected by political (especially inter-ethnic) conflict, facilitating training, dialogue and strategy workshops. She was President of the International Fellowship of Reconciliation for eight years, and is currently Chair of the Committee for Conflict Transformation Support. She has worked extensively in the post-communist world (especially the former Yugoslavia and the Caucasus region of the former Soviet Union), and also in the Middle East, Africa and Asia. 

Mary Lou Leavitt

Mary Lou Leavitt has been active in the field of peace campaigning and non-violence training since the late 1970’s.  She was employed by Quaker Peace & Service in the UK from 1980 to 1999, initially as a campaigner/ educator on peace and disarmament issues and later as Peace Secretary and Assistant General Secretary for British Quakers at the national level.  Mary Lou is a former Co-Director of RTC.  She retired as Co-Director in March 2006 and now works freelance as a trainer, facilitator and programme planner/ evaluator in the field of conflict transformation.  

Apondi Nyang'aya   

Apondi is a trained teacher who holds additional qualifications in International training, and NGO Management. Apondi has more than 15 years experience as a consultant in social development, strategic planning and conflict transformation. Apondi has extensive experience in designing and delivering training to state and non-state actors in insecure environments. This training experience covers advocacy, strategic planning, conflict sensitive skills and planning, conflict management, communication skills, gender mainstreaming, and training of trainers. Apondi also has experience in evaluating food security projects, surveys, facilitating peace dialogues, designing and conducting gender capacity assessment of governments, and has been a Peace Advisor to leading international NGO's working on resource conflicts.

Apondi has worked in Kenya, Sudan, Uganda, Tanzania, Somalia, Nigeria, Ethiopia, Djibouti, Eritrea, Dubai, Italy, and Thailand.

Bridget Walker

Bridget Walker is a former Co-director of RTC. She has an MEd in Adult Education & Community Development and has been working in the development sector for over 20 years. Her background is largely in international development and has extensive experience of working in humanitarian relief and conflict-affected areas. Bridget now works freelance and delivers training and facilitation in the following areas: strategic planning, evaluation, organisational development and gender training.

William Fayia Saa

As a specialist in trauma counselling, mediation, conflict transformation, reconciliation and peace building, William Fayia Saa is a valuable asset to the RTC Team. William has over 18 years’ experience in facilitation and training as well as experience coordinating and evaluating peace programmes and processes. William has received a number of awards for his work in peacebuilding; in 2000, he was awarded the coveted ‘Dr Martin Luther King Jr Citizenship Award,’ by the US Embassy in Liberia for outstanding contribution to promoting Peace, Reconciliation and Social Change, and in 1997 William was named ‘Reconciliator of the year’ by Lutheran World Federation in Liberia for his outstanding contribution to reconciliation processes.

William’s consultation history is varied and covers a range of issues from sustainable forest management to civil society. William has expansive knowledge of and experience working in West Africa where he has observed conflict and peace trends. In a variety of contexts, William has been responsible for developing and coordinating community reconciliation and peacebuilding programs, providing training support, capacity building and leadership to field staff. In addition, William has particular experience in assessing social impacts of land acquisition projects and environmental degradation.

William has worked in Liberia, Guinea, Ivory Coast, Sierra Leone, Ghana, the USA and the UK. 

Ulrike Ramlow

Ulrike holds a Masters of Arts in Political Science from the Free University of Berlin, Ulrike’s thesis was on the subject of ‘The influence of women’s organisations on the democratisation process in Algeria.’ Ulrike has over 20 years’ experience in the field of conflict transformation and specialises in designing and implementing participatory and tailor made learning events for practitioners in international development work and conflict transformation programs. Ulrike is a native German speaker but also speaks fluent French, English and intermediate Arabic.

Ulrike’s consultancy history covers analysing the role of gender empowerment in peacebuilding processes and providing strategic and organisational development training to a variety of organisations. She has also provided training for activists and stakeholders in civil society.

She has worked in South Africa, Philippines, Algeria, Tunisia, Cyprus, Lebanon, Brazil, France, Germany and Palestine.

Both trainers were extremely knowledgable and focused on our needs. The dynamic between them was positive and encouraged the group.