Olivier Ray

Regional director for the Middle-East at AFD

2 published articles
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Agence Française de Développement
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Olivier Ray is AFD Regional director for the Middle-East at AFD since January of 2019, and Director of the Beirut agency in charge of Lebanon and Syria at AFD since 2017.
From 2014 to 2017, he headed the French Development Agency’s (AFD) crisis prevention and post-conflict recovery unit, where he contributed to the establishment of France’s “Peace and Resilience Fund”.
He was previously Diplomatic advisor to France’s Minister of Health and Social Affairs, Marisol Touraine. In 2011-2012, he was responsible for International development at the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ Policy Planning Department.

Before joining the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Olivier Ray was Senior economist at the French Development Agency (AFD)’s Middle East and North Africa Department.
Prior to this, he worked during four years as special assistant to AFD’s CEO Jean-Michel Severino (research and publications). Jean-Michel Severino and Olivier Ray co-authored Africa’s Moment (2011, Polity Press, initially published in French in 2010), and Le Grand Basculement: la question sociale à l’échelle mondiale (Odile Jacob editions, 2011), as well as many articles on international development (“The End of ODA: Death and Rebirth of a Global Public Policy”, Center for Global Development Working Papers).
Before joining AFD, he worked for the United Nations’ Department of Peacekeeping Operations and Security Council Report, on questions of development, conflict prevention and post-conflict recovery.

Olivier Ray holds an MA in International Affairs from Columbia University, an MA in Public affairs from Sciences-Po, and a BSc in International Relations from the London School of Economics and Political Science.

ID4D Articles


Going beyond the limits of international interventions to tackle Boko Haram

The surge in the “Boko Haram” radical group poses a challenge to the international community. It calls into question the approaches to this phenomenon of hyperviolence for researchers, the military and developers alike. It tests the response capacities of development assistance organizations faced with the new scale of needs and the unlimited use of brutality.


Crisis and post-crisis situations: Development agencies are also concerned!

2.6 billion people have been affected by natural disasters over the past ten years. Over 1.5 billion human beings are today living in countries affected by a violent armed conflict. There are 60 million refugees around the world. “Crises” are no longer an exception. From the tragedy in the Central African Republic to the Ebola epidemic or the recurrent security tensions in the Sahel region, the areas exposed to crisis are expanding. Helping the victims of these tragedies poses a constant challenge to the humanitarian community. This is also a cause for concern for development agencies, whose intervention methods need to adapt in order to address shocks related to the long-lasting human, economic, social and political consequences of crises.


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