Owen Shumba

Team Leader, Livelihoods and Economic Recovery Group

Bureau for Crisis Prevention and Recovery, UNDP New York


United States
English, German, Ndebele, Shona

Owen Shumba is the team Leader for Livelihoods and Economic Recovery Group for UNDP’s Bureau for Crisis Prevention and Recovery in New York. Mr. Shumba has 16 years of experience working with rural and urban communities, refugees, natural resources management, food security, local and national governments on community livelihoods, economic recovery and disaster risk reduction.

Mr. Shumba provides overall management and strategic planning of the Bureau’s work on livelihoods and economic recovery in disaster and conflict environments, in addition to providing technical and programmatic support to UNDP Country Offices in Asia, Africa, the Arab States and Latin America. He is an authority on issues of emergency employment creation e.g. through public works, cash for work, livelihoods start-up grants, packages for income generation and employment creation, microfinance, small and medium enterprise recovery.

To ensure the linkage between short and long term economic recovery interventions, Mr. Shumba cultivates UNDP partnership and collaboration with other UN agencies, the World Bank, International Financial Institutions and the donor community. Together with the ILO and other UNDP staff, Mr. Shumba leads the UN Task Force responsible for the rollout of the UN Post-Conflict Policy on Employment creation, Income generation and Reintegration.

Mr. Shumba joined UNDP’s Bureau for Crisis Prevention and Recovery in South Africa in 2004, after nine years of community disaster resilience, refugee recovery and development work with regional NGOs in Southern and Central Africa, and UNHCR’s Refugee and Environment Programme.

Mr. Shumba, a Zimbabwe national, has an MSc in tropical and sub-tropical agriculture with a specialization in natural (Environment friendly) crop protection from the University of Leipzig, Germany.

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Expert’s Publications

The Malawi food crisis: an assessment of causes and short to long term response mechanisms

An Assessment of NGO Disaster Mitigation and Preparedness Activities in Zimbabwe: Country Survey Report

Permaculture in Refugee Situations: A Handbook for Sustainable Land Management