Phil Vernon Director of Programmes at International Alert

Phil Vernon is Director of Programmes at International Alert, a peacebuilding organization based in London.

Phil joined Alert in September 2004, prior to which he had worked in development, humanitarian and peacebuilding in Africa since 1985, working specifically in Sudan, Rwanda, Lesotho, Mali, Ghana, Benin, Togo and Uganda. Initially a forester by training, his interest in conflict and peacebuilding was stimulated by the experience of living in Rwanda from 1992-94. From 2000-4 he was country director of CARE Uganda, and played an active role in research and advocacy on the Northern Uganda conflict, helping to establish and lead the Civil Society Organisations for Peace in Northern Uganda coalition. He is also a member of the Forum on Corporate Responsibility of mining company BHP Billiton, and a trustee of UK-based development NGO BuildAfrica.

At present, he provides leadership and oversight of Alert’s programmes in Africa, Asia and the Caucasus, and of the Peacebuilding Issues Programme, which deals with cross-cutting issues of importance to peacebuilding, such as the economy, gender, and security, as well as Alert’s core learning and training functions. He also leads Alert’s advocacy on aid effectiveness, and in 2010 was the principal author of Working with the grain to change the grain: Moving beyond the MDGs, which called for a radical overhaul of the international aid system.
Phil blogs on Africa, Peacebuilding and Development issues at