Gail Hurley

UNDP | Development Initiatives | Global Ethical Finance Initiative
Advisor | Fellow | Associate

Gail Hurley is an advisor to the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and a Fellow at Development Initiatives. Prior to this, she was a Policy Specialist on Development Finance at the UNDP in New York for nearly a decade.

Gail advises on development finance and has written numerous research papers and articles, and regularly blogs on the subject. Her areas of expertise and interest include: sovereign debt (with a particular focus on small island developing states), aid policies and aid delivery, innovative sources of development finance, international public finance, domestic resource mobilization (including tax policies) and private financial flows.

At the country level, she has supported governments in the Caribbean and Africa to devise strategies for the expansion and diversification of domestic and external revenue bases, including through innovative financing approaches. Most recently, she has been exploring strategies to catalyse public and private investment in the ‘blue economy’ in small island states. She is also the Project Manager for the joint UNDP-OECD “Tax Inspectors Without Borders” initiative (a programme that aims to build developing countries’ capacities in tax audits). Gail led UNDP’s preparations for the July 2015 UN conference on financing for development in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia and helps to formulate UNDP’s corporate policies in development finance.

Prior to joining UNDP in 2010, Gail was a Policy and Advocacy Officer with EURODAD (European Network on Debt and Development), a research and advocacy NGO on development finance in Brussels, Belgium (from 2004-2010) and wrote extensively on sovereign debt. In 2007 and 2008, Gail was seconded to serve as an advisor to the Government of Ecuador at the Ministry of Economy and Finance. In 2006, she was seconded to Bolivia and Peru to advise the Latin American Network on Debt, Development and Rights (LATINDADD).

Gail was Director of the European Volunteer Centre (CEV), a Brussels-based European NGO between 2002 and 2004. The NGO worked to expand voluntary service schemes both within and outside the European Union, in particular for youth. She has also worked at the European Commission in the Directorate General for Development on the Overseas Countries and Territories – OCTs where she was responsible for communications and briefings. Gail has also worked as an English-language teacher in Australia and the UK, including to refugees and asylum seekers.

She holds an MSc. in Development Studies from the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) and a Postgraduate Diploma in Economics from the University of London. Her undergraduate studies were in French and Spanish at the University of Liverpool, UK.

Gail is a member of the Board of Directors of the Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR), an economic policy think-tank based in Washington, D.C., and also serves on the Advisory Board of the “Righting Finance” initiative, which aims to develop a human rights approach to international and national financial regulation.