Alisa Clarke

Founder, Global Vision Institute

Joe Washington

President, Global Vision Institute


In this Current Issues Podcast, Alisa Clarke and Joe Washington of the Global Vision Institute join ACUNS Executive Director Alistair Edgar in discussing the UN organizational culture and structural changes. Clarke developed Global Vision Institute (GVI) from 2000 to 2003 and has served as a UN staff member in multiple initiatives including UNDP, UNITAR, UNRISD, UNCTAD, and OHCHR. GVI was originally created to bridge the gap between the values and functions of the UN and its staff members. The organization promotes several values including peace, diversity, accountability, transparency, and environmental sustainability. In the discussion, Clarke describes the process and four steps of the Theory of Change workshops designed for UN teams and diplomats. These stages include: values assessment, comparing values and cultures, coaching for greater alignment, and evaluation and wrap up. Drawing on his experience with the UN mission in Sudan and South Sudan, Washington explains examples of the process at work that have been noted in the GVI manual. For example, GVI team member Leonard Joy’s work funded by the World Bank promoted collaboration between eight government departments in India. The results of the program reported deep impacts in members’ personal and family lives. In sum, creating cultures of accountability and collaboration is relevant in bringing about future structural changes and positive values assessments and realignment.


Ms. Alisa Clarke holds an M.Phil in International Relations and and began her career at the University of the West Indies in Trinidad. She has served as a UN staff member, working with UNITAR, UNRISD, UNCTAD, UNDP and OHCHR, with global experience including as Human Rights Officer in Switzerland, as OIC of the OHCHR Regional Office for Southern Africa in South Africa and as Acting Coordinator of the Action 2 Global Programme on human rights mainstreaming in the UN system in New York, as well as consultant in Swaziland and Sierre Leone. Ms. Clarke has developed the organization Global Vision Institute (GVI) and its predecessor initiatives since 2003. These have supported the fulfillment of UN universal values through individual and organizational awareness and change in and around the UN system. She is an author on human rights, development, international relations and the UN, as well as a certified trainer, life coach and yoga teacher

Mr. Joe Louis Washington is a human rights advocate, social critic, poet and peacebuilder. Joe’s professional background spans the areas of university related teaching and training (including in various capacities as an international lecturer or trainer in human rights and conflict resolution to a wide array of public sector, NGO, humanitarian relief workers/civilian peacekeepers, and international civil servants); public policy development, analysis and implementation; philanthropy; and peacekeeping. Most recently, Joe served as the Acting Chief Training Officer, with the United Nations Mission in South Sudan (UNMISS). Joe has presented papers and/or published articles on topics related to conflict prevention, the right to self-determination, human security, Gandhian approach to non-violence, the rights of indigenous peoples, and barriers to the effective implementation of human rights, specifically economic, social and cultural rights. Joe’s formal education spans the areas of non-traditional education, public policy, conflict analysis and resolution, and law/international law/human rights. Joe holds a master’s degree in Conflict Analysis and Resolution from the Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution/George Mason University, and initiated doctoral dissertation research and writing on the efficacy of negotiation, mediation, facilitation and other ‘pacific settlement of disputes’ techniques in combating gross violations of human rights such as torture.