Richard Gilbert

Richard is Managing Director of specialist strategy and insights firm SocialSide. He has particular experience of designing and managing collective action initiatives that bring together diverse stakeholders to co-develop solutions to systemic challenges. He also advises companies on embedding social impact strategies and processes, policy engagement and advocacy, and he helps development organisations to engage and partner with business. Over fifteen years of working on the “social-side” of sustainable business, Richard has built expertise in a range of issue areas, including food and nutrition, expanding economic opportunity, women empowerment, water stewardship and human rights.  During this time, he has advised some of the world’s leading development organisations and businesses, including Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition (GAIN), SUN Business Network, IFC and DFID, WBCSD, Verizon, ABInBev, The Body Shop, Coca-Cola Company and Mars. As Director of Stakeholder Engagement for business network Business Fights Poverty for eight years, Richard has also led collective advocacy and engagement activities on behalf of a Lead Group of multinational companies, DFID and CDC. Richard has strong relationships across bilateral and multilateral donor and development organisations, civil society, business, foundations and academia. He has co-authored a wide range of policy and research reports on business partnerships for sustainable development with the Corporate Responsibility Initiative at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government and Ashridge Hult Business School. He holds a Masters in Responsible Business Practice from the School of Management at the University of Bath. Prior to entering the world of social sustainability, Richard held senior positions in a range of leading global communications firms.