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Personal profile


With a diverse career in research and consulting that has spanned the US, the UK, Singapore and Australia, Abby has conducted research, program evaluation and communications work across a range of projects and clients. She has a strong working practice of quantitative and qualitative methods and extensive experience with surveys, interviewing and facilitating focus groups. 

Abby has an undergraduate degree in neuroscience and history from Harvard (USA). She obtained an M.Phil. in Criminological Research at Cambridge University (UK). Abby returned to Cambridge on a Gates Scholarship for her PhD, which she is currently completing.


Her doctoral research is a study of three residential therapeutic programs in US prisons which analyses the key elements for fostering positive social environments in prisons. The study points to the importance of implementation in understanding ‘what works’ in reducing reoffending, arguing that how programs are implemented is as important as how they are designed. Abby has also collaborated in an interdisciplinary study of the impact of ‘green’ design, architecture and programming in prisons.


Prior to working with BWA, Abby has served in a number of research, teaching and consulting roles. This includes designing and teaching courses in the fields of psychology and criminology at Cambridge University, conducting behavioural research with cotton-top tamarins at Harvard’s Cognitive Evolution Lab, conducting doctoral research as a part of Cambridge’s Prison Research Centre and serving on the board of a venture capital firm. In her previous role as a consultant at First Person Consulting, Abby worked on a range of projects including evaluating programs aimed at social connectedness for the Movember Foundation and evaluating school-based obesity prevention programs for ACT Health.

Research interests

* Social inclusion, social connectedness and social disadvantage; 

* Prison sociology, narrative criminology and religious life in prisons; 

* Feminist theory;

* Biophilic design and justice architecture;

* Understanding the elements of 'enabling environments', that promote well-being and social connection

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 5 - Gender Equality
  • SDG 8 - Decent Work and Economic Growth
  • SDG 12 - Responsible Consumption and Production
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions

Education/Academic qualification

Criminology, M.Phil, University of Cambridge


Award Date: 20 May 2019

History and Science (Mind, Brain and Behavior), Bachelor of Arts, Harvard University


External positions

Board, Australian African Foundation for Retention of Opportunity

Jan 20192020

Director of Grants, Hospice and Palliative Care of Wood River Valley

Jun 2017Mar 2023

Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

Recent external collaboration on country/territory level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots or