Elizabeth D. Gibbons, MA

Senior Fellow and Director, Child Protection Certificate Program

Elizabeth D. Gibbons is  a senior fellow and visiting scientist at Harvard FXB Center and a distinguished visiting fellow at the Kozmetsky Center of Excellence in Global Finance at St. Edwards University. Prior to these appointments Gibbons enjoyed a lengthy career in the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), where she served most recently as deputy director of policy and practice and associate director of gender, rights and civic engagement in UNICEF’s New York headquarters. There she was responsible for providing guidance to the organization’s normative and operational work on gender and human rights, adolescent development/participation, and communication for development. As chief of global policy from 2002 to 2007, she led establishment of economic and social policy analysis as a central focus of UNICEF’s action for advancing rights and well-being of children in the twenty-first century, shifting evidence-based advocacy from the margins to the core of the organization’s work. She had a major role in shaping UNICEF’s global human rights advocacy, increasing the visibility of children in poverty-reduction policy dialogue and human rights bodies while leading the development of analytical tools and advocacy strategies for placing children at the center of social, economic, and juridical policies at national level. Gibbons’ career in social development and humanitarian affairs has spanned more than three decades, during which she lived and worked in Togo, Kenya, and Zimbabwe, and served as head of UNICEF’s offices in Haiti and in Guatemala. She also served as strategic regional advisor to UNICEF’s Haiti operations, following the devastating earthquake of 2010. A graduate of Smith College and Columbia University, Gibbons is the author of Sanctions in Haiti: Human Rights and Democracy under Assault, and a contributing author to several other books.