Esser at Bellagio Alumni reunion Oct13As a consultant, I have advised the World Bank, the OECD, USAID, the Federal Government of Germany, FLACSO, and CARE International on program planning. I have also led evaluations of multi-million donor portfolios, most recently on subnational governance in Afghanistan and on the impact of external actors in Pakistan, and I held lectures on aid effectiveness for incoming USAID Democracy and Governance field officers. In 2006-08, I worked as an International Civil Servant with UNESCAP in Bangkok and UNDP in New York after passing the United Nations National Competitive Recruitment Exam (NCRE, now the UN Young professionals programme).

KRWGAs a result of these professional experiences, I thoroughly appreciate how difficult it is to nurture change within and through bureaucratic organizations. Fortunately, I have also had the chance to work on development policy and programming with local stakeholders in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Sierra Leone, and these experiences continue to provide me with inspiration and serve as reminders that change is possible after all.