Sahba Sobhani

Acting Programme Manager, Business Call to Action. Programme Manager Growing Inclusive Markets Initiative

UNDP New York

United States
English, Farsi, French
Business call to action, Economic development, Innovation, Private sector

Sahba Sobhani serves as Acting Programme Manager of the Business Call to Action, and Team Leader in the Innovation and Development Alliances Division of UNDP’s Bureau of External Relations and Advocacy. He also serves as the manager of UNDP’s Growing Inclusive Markets Initiative (GIM), which is a research and advocacy initiative with a forthcoming 2013 Africa regional report on the role of enabling organizations in supporting inclusive businesses. He also sits on the programme management committee of the Better than Cash initiative.

He is the lead author of the first GIM report, Creating Value for All: Strategies for Doing Business with the Poor, which was launched in 50 countries since July 2008. The report was translated in seven languages. He also authored the 2010 report titled The MDGs: Everyone’s Business.  Mr. Sobhani was the first Interim Director of the UNDP Istanbul International Centre for Private Sector in Development, which in partnership with the Turkish Government, is the first global centre of its kind established with a major emerging country.

Previously, he managed two key UNDP private sector initiatives in the executive office of the former Administrator of UNDP, Mark Malloch Brown, including the Commission on the Private Sector and Development headed by Paul Martin, the former Prime Minister of Canada and Ernesto Zedillo, Mexico’s former President, and the African Financial Markets Initiative. He co-authored Unleashing Entrepreneurship: Making Business Work for the Poor, the seminal report of the Private Sector Commission produced at the request of former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan. Mr. Sobhani was the managing editor of the African Stock Markets Handbook. He has also worked in the private sector at Idealab in Palo Alto and Newscom Limited in Singapore.

He is a graduate of Yale University and the Fletcher School of Diplomacy (USA).