David Michael Todd print  
Dr. David Michael Todd, Senior Evaluation Officer, Global Environment Facility
Dr. David Todd obtained his MA (Honours) Degree in Social Anthropology from Cambridge University in the United Kingdom, before completing his Ph.D. at Kent University. He has 30 years’ experience of applied social science and development work with Government Departments, multilateral, bilateral, NGO, private sector and academic institutions in more than 20 countries.
In the GEF Evaluation Office, he managed a major study of the linkages between local and global environment benefits in GEF activities and he is now leading a series of Impact Evaluations. Prior to joining the GEF, Dr. Todd was Social Development Adviser in the Department for International Development of the UK; working first in the European Commission Delegation, covering Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean and then in the Evaluation Department. Earlier, he led the Netherlands' Government’s evaluation of its assistance to NGOs in Bangladesh and the World Bank's Participatory Poverty Assessment of Nigeria. He also conducted a major study on Gypsy Site Policy and Provision in the UK and managed one of the largest public consultation exercises ever held in the UK.
Dr. Todd has produced over 35 published journal articles and books and more than 100 consultancy documents, research and conference papers and is a former member of the Postgraduate Training Board of the Economic and Social Research Council of the United Kingdom.
The Global Environment
The Global Environment – Challenges in Reconciling Social, Scientific and Economic Needs in Developing Countries The Global Environment Facility supports activities in developing countries and emerging economies, which bring environmental benefits to the global community. Interventions are developed on the basis of scientific best-practice. However, in many instances the “best” solution to reduce or eliminate environmental threats may challenge the social and economic needs of local or national populations. In the case of the GEF biodiversity portfolio, there has been an assumption that “win-win” interventions are broadly possible, under which both biodiversity and communities can gain. The study found that such results were frequently unobtainable. Strategies developed to provide alternative livelihoods to those seen as environmentally detrimental were prone to failure, or were not accessible to the same people whose livelihoods were reduced. There were usually trade-offs to be made between environment and development and the intended conservation solution could not be fully achieved. Even if it could in the short term, local livelihood losses generated hostility, threatening the sustainability of gains made. Challenges to a scientifically-based conservation approach included: • Insufficient understanding of the use of natural resources by different groups at different times • Projects designed by “outsiders,” with little regard for indigenous knowledge and conservation practices • Tendency to introduce new project-based institutions, duplicating roles of existing local institutions and customary bodies. The GEF and its implementing agencies have placed great emphasis on the importance of a scientifically sound approach to protecting the global environment. They have had considerable success in this. The application of broader development skills has not been at the same level, resulting in many interventions, which have not achieved their full potential.