Christine Gordon has twenty years experience of working in the field on the diamond pipeline, from mines to trading and cutting centres, in a total of twenty countries. She has been involved in the Kimberley Process since 2001, when she was working for the United Nations as the diamond expert on the UN Monitoring Mechanism during the Angolan Civil War.
Christine has undertaken Kimberley Process missions on behalf of Civil Society, looking principally at internal controls and diamond production. This involves examing the entire chain of custody inside a Kimberley Process member country, from mine to point of export, though documentation and field trips. She is an experienced researcher of issues related to the diamond industry, from the multinational operations of companies to issues such as the registration of artisanal miners in Angola.
Emma Irwin is a mining sector governance and social responsibility expert, with over 15 years experience in countries including Mali, Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia in West Africa. She has most recently been working with the World Bank on Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) implementation in Myanmar (Burma) and in Guinea. Prior to that she worked as a minerals governance adviser in Afghanistan’s Ministry of Mines, providing support on various governance and policy issues including reviewing and updating the ASM formalisation strategy.
She has extensive experience working ‘on-the-ground’ with mining companies and local communities in Africa and in Asia. In Guinea and Mali she worked as a social consultant for a major gold mining operation that was experiencing significant local community unrest as well as huge numbers of orpailleurs/ASM gold miners in, on and around its concession areas. Here, she carried out numerous stakeholder interviews, including with different groups within the local ASM communities (women, youth, etc), to assess the extent to which the large scale gold mining company could reach a ‘peaceful coexistence’ with the ASM community digging in its concession area. This led to the production of a site-specific strategic sustainability management framework including a social impact and community relations scoping study, a stakeholder engagement action plan and an integrated community development action plan for the company. Irwin’s work with EITI as both a technical adviser supporting countries with EITI implementation (Myanmar, Afghanistan, Guinea and Mongolia), and as a validator of countries’ compliance to the process (Mozambique and Cameroon), has also contributed to her in-depth understanding of local and regional extractive industry related challenges and opportunities, including those related to ASM.
She has extensive experience working with a wide range of stakeholders, from senior government officials to company representatives to local community based organisations. Emma has also advised a luxury jewellery company on the responsible sourcing of metals and gemstones and developed their ethical sourcing policy.
She continues to focus on and be very interested in responsible metals and minerals value chains, from mine to market, and has just been working on a baseline assessment of the gemstone sector in Myanmar for Myanmar EITI and the World Bank.
Claudio Franco is a leading analyst, writer and field researcher with 15 years experience operating in challenging environments worldwide. Franco has designed, coordinated and implemented field research frameworks, focusing primarily on studying the human terrain of several global hotspots, ranging from southern Thailand, to Pak-Afghanistan and the Greater Middle East. Most recently, Franco has served as senior advisor for the US Department of Justice and has led field research programs for the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and DARPA (DOD), GIZ, Integrity Watch and King’s College London.
For a variety of clients, Franco has designed and coordinated field research aimed at understanding, analysing (and interacting with) tribal entities inhabiting the PakAfghan border area, which is known to be among the most hostile for foreign researchers and outsiders in general. Franco has designed and conducted both quantitative and qualitative research frameworks, surveys and sociological ‘deep dives’ aimed to acquire in-depth, granular knowledge of a given area.
While engaged in such programmes, Franco has developed an ability to identify and interact effectively with local powerbrokers in cultural contexts that don’t respond to a Western logic. Also, Claudio has a proven ability to establish and maintain a network of trusted local collaborators and contacts; the ability to manage such assets is of critical importance to by-pass geographical limitations dictated by safety concerns, for example. Between 2011 and 2013, Franco has conducted surveys and qualitative ‘deep dives’ in Helmand, Kandahar and Zabol (Afghanistan) for DARPA (US DOD), interviewing local elders, military commanders, and insurgents. Franco’s duties included both designing the questionnaires, training local interviewers and conducting interviews himself. Such experience has been of critical importance to refine Franco’s ability to operate in adverse and obscure areas while still being able to achieve results, on schedule and within budget.
For the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Franco has designed and co-managed a 36 months-long effort to map the areas of activity of Afghan insurgents, interviewing both civilians and combatants in the field. Franco and his team have successfully mapped all active Taliban fronts exiting in the country, exclusively through field research. In-depth qualitative interviews and surveys were both deployed to gain the best possible understanding of the ground situation in the north-western provinces of Afghanistan. The effort resulted in a new understanding of the Taliban’s hierarchy and of their command and control mechanisms. Mali – ASGM Census – Martello Risk Ltd – SELECTION #1201581 7 Mali – ASGM Census Proposal| Martello Risk Ltd In 2008-09, hired by Washington’s Hudson Institute and JSAT (Jane’s advisory unit), Franco has conducted a set of 120 interviews to madrassa students in Western and tribal Pakistan. Such study was aimed at mapping the activities of extremist Quranic schools in rural and tribal Pakistan and entailed a prolonged effort to establish a presence, interact and acquire a nuanced understanding of the role played by madaris (madrassas) in the current regional conflicts.
Two years later, again for the Hudson Institute, Franco has designed and conducted a set of sensitive interviews with Pakistani Army officers. Franco’s experience in the field can be of critical importance, both in order to train local collaborators and to establish a productive relationship with local powerbrokers, institutional and otherwise.
Lansana Gberie has over 20 years of experience working on issues relating to the management of natural resources and peace-building in Africa. He was involved with the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme from the beginning, and was in 2002 awarded the ‘Outstanding Research Award’ by the Canadian government for his work with Partnership Africa Canada on the Human Security and International Diamond Trade project.
An internationally recognized expert and researcher, Lans was Coordinator and Finance Expert of the United Nations Security Council Panel of Experts on Liberia for three years. He is the author of A Dirty War in West Africa: The RUF and the Destruction of Sierra Leone (London: Hurst 2005), and (2015) War, Politics and Justice in West Africa. He has worked for the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre in Ghana, the UK’s Department of International Development, and the Institute for Security Studies. Lans holds a PhD in African history
William is an accomplished business and political risk analyst with a diverse range of international business and cultural experience. He has provided political risk analysis for governments, blue chip companies and large NGOs.
His analysis has also been published in TIME, The Economist, The Guardian, Foreign Policy Magazine as well as other international journals.
Based out of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, William specializes in challenging political environments including Mexico, Colombia, West Africa, the Horn of Africa and Myanmar.
He is an accomplished linguist and holds a 1st Class honours degree in Burmese Language and Economics from the School of Oriental and African Studies.
Andreas is a former Military officer with the Swedish Commandos Amphibious Corps. With years of successful supervision and leadership experience he possesses the strong ability to meet tight deadlines even under significant pressure. He has held a variety of senior military positions which demanded the highest levels of security and organizational ability from weapons program procurement to systems management to acting as the security liaison officer for the Swedish Royal family.
The mixture of his successful military career and his technical skills are the solid platform to perform in depth analysis in the area of due diligence, compliance and other security related issue. He is fluent in English, Swedish, has a working knowledge of French, Portuguese, Norwegian and has Swedish, Portuguese and Angolan citizenship.