Simon Maxwell is a development economist whose career spans over forty years of research and policy advice in the field of international development.

He worked for ten years overseas, in Kenya and India for UNDP, and in Bolivia for the British aid programme. He was then at the Institute of Development Studies at the University of Sussex for some fifteen years, latterly as Programme Manager for Poverty, Food Security and the Environment. From 1997-2009, Simon was Director of the Overseas Development Institute, the UK’s leading independent think-tank on international development and humanitarian issues.

Since 2009, he has had a portfolio of activities. He is Executive Chair of the Climate and Development Knowledge Network (, Chair of the European Think-Tanks Group ( and Specialist Adviser to the International Development Committee of the UK House of Commons. Simon is a Past President of the Development Studies Association of the UK and Ireland. In 2007, he was awarded a CBE for services to international development.