Sophie McPhate

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Sophie brings experience in foreign affairs and project design to support clients with their public policy challenges.

She has previously designed and implemented high-profile, multimillion-dollar aid projects in her role as a diplomat at the Australian Embassy in the Philippines. In Manila she led engagement with the Philippine Government and multilateral partners on inclusive economic growth, health systems strengthening and evidence-based policy making, and delivered economic, foreign policy and strategic agendas.

Influential work

  • Led Australia’s $50 million COVID-19 vaccine access and distribution response in the Philippines, ensuring equitable access to vaccines through expanded cold-chain networks, data management systems and public health communications
  • Ensured COVID-19 emergency cash payments reached 18 million vulnerable Filipino families
  • Improved the efficiency and effectiveness of the Philippines’ flagship Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino (Conditional Cash Transfer) Program, keeping 8.3 million poor children healthy and in school and building sustainable livelihoods for 4.3 million adults
  • Influenced Philippine Government policy to include indigenous people, people with disabilities, homeless families and remote communities in poverty reduction programs
  • Established risk-informed and shock-responsive social protection systems in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, reducing poverty, underpinning stability and building resilience to natural disasters.

Outside of Nous

At the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Sophie worked across high-profile and strategic policy areas, leading whole-of-government consultations on national-security related consular policy changes, and private sector engagement on anti-people smuggling, human trafficking and modern slavery. She also pioneered Australia’s foreign policy approach to international cyber governance and cooperation, digital trade and human rights online as part of Australia’s inaugural International Cyber Engagement Strategy.

Prior to DFAT, Sophie coordinated advocacy, developed growth strategies and led consultation with private-sector investors and MPs to build an enabling environment for impact investing in Australia. At the Organisation of Economic Co-operation and Development, Sophie developed communication and implementation strategies to encourage sustainable economic and social policies in OECD countries.

In her spare time...

While travelling abroad, Sophie loves to explore off the beaten track. At home, Sophie enjoys bush walking, cycling and cooking Asian food.