Robert Watkinson

Partner, Portland

Robert joined Portland in 2006 and, over the last decade, has played a lead role in the agency’s expansion globally. Robert oversees Portland’s work in Africa, including its office in Nairobi and the operation of the Portland Africa Network, and he current co-leads the Philanthropy team.

Over the last 14 years, Robert has worked with some of the world’s biggest foundations and most prominent philanthropists, on issues ranging from climate change to global slavery. He leads Portland’s award-winning team for the Mo Ibrahim Foundation and led the first ever study on Twitter in Africa: How Africa Tweets. From 2009 to 2013, he served as Director of Communications for former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan in Kenya.

Robert’s interest in Africa was first shaped by 18 months working as a secondary school teacher in rural Tanzania. He is proud to serve as a Trustee of The Changarawe Project, which provides education and microfinance initiatives in Tanzania. Robert holds an MA in Physics and Philosophy from the University of Oxford.

About Portland

Portland is an international communications consultancy trusted by some of the highest profile organisations, governments and individuals in the world. We are pioneers in integrated communications campaigns engaging politicians, global opinion leaders, decision-makers, key stakeholders, consumers, and media. We help clients manage their reputation, improve their visibility, and secure media coverage—and deliver global communications campaigns across multiple platforms for clients in more than 85 countries.