James is a Partner at Public Digital, working across all sectors and acting as lead technology specialist across the organisation.

He has a background as a technologist and software developer and is also a specialist in strategy development and Public Financial Management (PFM) reform.

At Public Digital, James has worked with a wide roster of clients including governments around the world, UK Government departments, major non-profit organisations such as the Gates Foundation, and international institutions like the International Monetary Fund, World Bank and UN agencies.

James’ early work at Public Digital included engagements with Intercorp, a private sector conglomerate in Peru, where he helped develop a cohort of “internet-era CTOs” across the portfolio of 30 companies, equipping Intercorp to harness new technology.

Recognising the need to enhance funding models in order to make digital work effective and sustainable, finance has taken a growing role in James’ portfolio. Working with the Overseas Development Institute and Public Digital colleague Emily Middleton, James has co-authored papers on best practice in PFM, leading to engagements with the Gates Foundation on their strategy to support countries in the developing world.

James has also worked with the government of California to help them set up a central state website, building a team and upskilling them in agile working practices. When the pandemic hit, the team was able to pivot quickly and implement a coordinated source of information about Covid over the course of a few days. The product gained recognition across the world for being clearly expressed, fast to load and responsive to citizens’ needs.

Prior to Public Digital, James was Deputy Chief Technology Officer of the UK Government and was heavily involved in the formation of the UK’s National Cyber Security Centre. James also worked for the Government Digital Service where he built and led the technical team operating GOV.UK. He represented the UK Government at the W3C and on Github’s Customer Advisory Board.

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