Richard Johnson

HPI Associate, Health Systems and Governance

Richard Johnson has over 20 years’ experience in health sector development including health systems, institutional development and governance. He has contributed to both whole system development, and focused approaches in reproductive health and communicable diseases. He has provided leadership, management and consultancy in a range of public sector and the non-governmental sector.  Much of his work has been in fragile and conflict-affected states in Africa (South Sudan, Somalia, Sierra Leone) and Asia (Cambodia, Myanmar).

Richard has worked in Somaliland and Puntland, supporting the development of health sector leadership and management structures. Most recently he was Team Leader for a local government capacity development programme, preparing a capacity assessment and response plan for local government Social Affairs Departments, to equip them to manage core health education and environmental services.

His recent work in Nigeria includes capacity development for the DFID-funded Partnership for Reviving Routine Immunization in Northern Nigeria and Maternal, Newborn and Child Health Initiative (PRRINN-MNCH), and for the USAID-funded Nigeria Malaria Action Program for States (MAPS). He is currently adviser to the accountability component of Nigeria’s Maternal Newborn and Child Health 2 programme.

In Sierra Leone, he has worked with many health service actors over many years, supporting developments in services, accountability and sustainability. In 2007-8, he led the costing of the Reproductive and Child Health Strategic Plan for the Ministry of Health and Sanitation, and supported review of institutional capacity, and planning for implementation, ahead of the introduction of free maternal and child health services.

Richard has worked with WHO and bilateral partners in regional and global approaches to the control and elimination of communicable diseases.  In 2015 he was Organisational Review Consultant for the African Programme for Onchocerciasis control, a partnership of national and international organisations to control river blindness; this was part of a process of helping APOC to take a more integrative approach to disease control. Richard has also supported DFID and its partners in reviewing and developing programmes for lymphatic filariasis and schistosomiasis. As development partners’ become more ambitious in the scope and scale of their strategies with finite resources, Richard has been involved in evaluations and reviews to rise to these challenges. In 2016-17, Richard supported DFID in drawing lessons from its global malaria programmes for the management of complex portfolios of programmes and projects to achieve shared goals.

In addition to broad contributions to health systems, management and institutional strengthening, Richard has conducted qualitative and quantitative research exercises. Richard has led costing and value for money studies at the national and programme level. As well as health services, he has contributed to VfM studies in behaviour change communication, governance funds, advocacy and financial inclusion (M-Pesa telephone banking).

Richard has worked in Africa, Latin America, South Asia, and Europe. He holds an MBA from the London Business School, and a BA from the School of African and Asian Studies at the University of Sussex.