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Our core team

Dr Sandy Williams – Co-Director and Chief Executive

Sandy Williams co-founded Scriptoria 13 years ago because she believed that development and environmental communications lacked the mix of flair and expertise needed to really drive home important messages.

Now recognised as a leading expert in the communication of these difficult issues, she regularly helps governments, businesses and research organisations around the world communicate messages relating to climate change, water, agriculture, forestry, health, green thinking and corporate social responsibility.

Sandy has a lot of environmental experience both in the UK (she was Technical Controller for one of the UK’s largest water companies) and overseas, where she spent nearly five years conducting research in tropical rainforest and related ecosystems. She has a PhD in Tropical Agroforestry and a First Class Honours degree in Ecology.

Dr Jim Weale – Co-Director and Senior Strategist

Jim Weale co-founded Scriptoria based on a passion for communications and a commitment to development and the environment worldwide. Since then, he’s worked hard to build a company that combines unusually high levels of expertise in development issues with a passion for producing communications that have a definite and sustained impact. He’s now recognised as one of the leaders in this field.

In his day-to-day work for Scriptoria, Jim has designed communications strategies for multi-million dollar poverty reduction programmes targeting Asia and Africa, trained corporate and government communications teams, and advised the UK government on building the profile of its aid efforts. The writing and communications courses he has designed for Scriptoria have also been very well received around the world.

Jim’s PhD is in English and Linguistics.

Cathy Jacob – Head of Publications

Cathy has managed the Publications department at Scriptoria for almost 5 years. She comes from a strong background in scientific journal and magazine publishing, combining skills in writing, editing and project management with a rigorous eye for detail – ensuring the highest editorial quality in the final product.

Before joining Scriptoria, Cathy spent six years as Assistant Editor of two veterinary publications, most recently as part of BMJ Group. She has a BSc (Hons) in Biochemistry with Neuroscience.

Kate Niblett – Deputy Head of Publications

Kate has over 15 years’ experience of producing print and online publications, from planning through to publication, in multiple formats. She is an experienced copyeditor, proofreader and project manager with a keen eye for detail and an excellent understanding of the publishing process.

Kate manages the production of a number of Scriptoria projects. She liaises with clients, designers, editors and writers to ensure that each project is produced to the highest quality standards, on time and to budget. Kate also takes a hands-on role on many projects, putting her editing and proofreading expertise to use. She has a BA (Hons) in French and Linguistics.


Dr Sandra Child – Senior Writer and Strategist

Sandra’s career in communications spans over 40 years, and her experience speaks for itself. Before working with Scriptoria, she headed and managed the communications programmes of the WorldFish Center, the International Center for Biosaline Agriculture and the Australian Institute of Marine Science, as well as the Australian Bureau of Rural Resources. She has also worked as a communications consultant for Care International.

Sandra is a talented writer, and has produced innumerable annual reports, newsletters, scientific and technical reports, policy briefs and brochures. She has a PhD in Geology.

Peter Thorpe – Writer

Peter Thorpe’s long and distinguished career in communications covers nearly thirty years. During this time he’s managed and headed communications departments for major organisations like NATO, the World Health Organization, the Royal Tropical Institute (the Netherlands), the Centre for Health and Population Research (Bangladesh), and the EU Regional Agricultural Programme in Fiji.

Peter’s commitment to development and his wealth of experience makes him an important part of our team. He has a BSc in Botany and Zoology and Postgraduate qualifications in Library and Information Systems.

Jonathan Martin – Knowledge Management, Database and IT Systems Specialist

Jon Martin is a communications and knowledge-management systems IT specialist, with an impressive number of formal qualifications. He is also a registered Microsoft Partner.

Examples of Jon’s experience range from developing intranets and enterprise class management information systems for multi-million pound development projects, to the production of online relational databases and management information systems on a range of platforms. Jon has over 15 years of experience working on information and knowledge-management systems, and before joining Scriptoria was a consultant for a specialist software engineering firm working for several major banks.

Paul Farah Cox – Writer and Editor

Paul joined Scriptoria in 2016 after ten years of freelance writing, researching and editing for agricultural organisations: CGIAR centres, the Crop Trust and Future Agricultures Consortium, among others.

An anthropologist by training and temperament, Paul holds an MSc in the Anthropology and Ecology of Development, for which he carried out fieldwork on post-conflict farming in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo. He has also co-authored a book on disasters, and written articles in a very diverse range of academic and popular publications.


Becky Hayward – Science Writer and Editor

Becky joined Scriptoria in 2008. Since then, her fresh and lively writing style has helped our clients’ messages jump off the page, with her work featuring in newsletters, scientific journals and more. Before Scriptoria, Becky worked for a long list of environmental organisations: Gaia, Friends of the Earth, and, most recently, the DFID Forestry Research Programme.

Becky has an MSc in Science Communication and a First Class degree in Earth Studies.

Rodney Lynn – Senior Technical Editor

Rodney is one of Scriptoria’s senior technical and journal-article editors. Before joining Scriptoria, Rodney worked for various development organisations around the world, including CIDA, UNDP, AusAID and the Aga Khan Foundation.

Rodney has a background in technical education, and education policy and planning in Canada, Africa, South and Central Asia. He has a double-first Bachelor’s degree in Mathematics and Physics, and Master’s degrees in Business and Quality Assurance.

Elizabeth Willmott-Harrop – Communications Consultant

With over 20 years’ communications experience, Elizabeth has extensive knowledge of international development, human rights advocacy and international human rights law.

Elizabeth has designed communications strategies for non-governmental and intergovernmental organisations including Amnesty International UK, the European Union in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and the UNICEF Office of Research in Italy. She has advised the Office of the Children’s Commissioner in New Zealand, and has spoken at the UK Parliament’s House of Commons on the depiction of women and girls in advertising.

A skilled writer, Elizabeth has written on complex subjects including business and human rights, maternal and child health, women’s rights, sustainable food production and human trafficking. Elizabeth facilitates media and PR training and possesses excellent project management, research and evaluation skills. Combining a high level of creativity with a logical and analytical mind, Elizabeth has a Master’s Degree in Human Rights and Social Change.

Claudia Siemons, FMAAT – Head of Finance

Claudia is Scriptoria’s Head of Finance. Before joining Scriptoria in September 2009, Claudia racked up 17 years of experience working for a range of non-profits and international companies. Examples include ACET, an AIDS charity; Kloeckner, a German steel company; and AIG, one of the world’s largest insurance and investment companies.

Claudia gained her AAT qualifications in 1999, and also holds qualifications in administration.

Caroline Beattie – Publications Manager

Caroline has many years’ experience as a publications manager working in print, online and multimedia. She has managed complex projects integrating text, images and video, and is therefore skilled at delivering projects on time, within budget and to the highest standards. Her project management experience is complemented by working as a writer and editor, which has given her an understanding of the publication process from all angles. Caroline commissions writers, editors and proofreaders as well as supervising design projects for several Scriptoria clients. She also coordinates a programme mentoring scientists to help them to publish their papers in high-impact journals.

Caroline has a BSc in Environmental Studies and a BA in French with Italian.

Clara Gallagher – Publications Assistant

Clara is currently studying for an MSc in Economics with Environment and Development at SOAS, having completed a BA in History and Politics (with proficiency in German) at the University of Exeter. She is primarily interested in the effects of climate change on cities in South Asia, and is also learning German and Urdu. At Scriptoria, she had developed and run a number of successful social media campaigns, as well as supporting the Publications team on a range of other projects.