Yara Shawky is a program associate in the Cairo office. She has worked in program management, political analysis and policy reporting for more than 17 years.
Before joining the Ford Foundation in 2020, Yara worked with the European Union delegation in Cairo as policy and political analyst with a focus on political and socio-economic developments in Egypt and the MENA region. She has worked with both the Danish Egyptian Dialogue Institute and British Embassy as a program officer leading work on political and media reforms in Egypt.
In earlier roles, Yara was a program manager at Save the Children in the regional program Naseej, focusing on youth development through community engagement. She started her career with UNHCR’s regional office in Cairo, working in several roles from refugee status determination, family unity and community integration for the urban refugee community in greater Cairo.
Yara has published a paper on civic space in Tunisia, and two other papers on internal governance of civil society organizations in Egypt and the Mediterranean region. She has a bachelor’s degree in political science from Cairo University, a master’s in International Human Rights Law from University of Malta, a master’s in Public Policy with focus on nonprofit management from the American University in Cairo, and finished a pre-doctoral year from the United Nations-University-Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute.