Mohammad Ehsan Zia is USIP’s country director for Afghanistan. As the former minister of Afghanistan’s Ministry of Rural Rehabilitation and Development, Zia has worked on rural development in the country in a wide variety of facets, including finance and budgeting, civil-military coordination, and communal outreach.
In 1996, Zia co-founded and served as chairperson for the Cooperation for Peace and Unity, through which he supported peace and social justice in Afghanistan. He currently serves as the chair of the National Steering Committee of Climate Action Network South Asia in Afghanistan.
Zia spent years in Pakistan working on participatory development programs through international nongovernmental organizations. He was awarded a prize by the president of Colombia for “innovation in international development practice” for the design and implementation of the National Solidarity Program. He was also recognized by citizens’ councils and provincial shuras of several provinces in Afghanistan for high performance.
Zia received his master’s in post-war recovery studies from the University of York.