John deBoer is Managing Director and Principal at SecDev Group, a data-centric risk consultancy that leverages open data and open source intelligence to quantify risk and identify promising opportunities for clients in fast changing digital and urban environments. John is an expert on development, humanitarian and security challenges in situations of conflict and violence and led a joint UNU-World Bank research project on ‘Resilience and the Fragile City.'
Prior to SecDev Group, John served as Senior Policy Adviser with the United Nations University's Centre for Policy Research (CPR). At CPR, he led research that identifies and responds to the multiple dimensions of vulnerability in urban contexts, including research that tackles specific challenges related to urban violence, urban disaster, and organized crime. Past positions include Program Leader for Governance, Security and Justice with IDRC and with the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA), where he served on the Afghanistan and Pakistan Task Force and with the Agency’s Office for Democratic Governance.
John's work has been published by the World Economic Forum, the Thomas Reuters Foundation, the Guardian, Routledge, several academic journals, and has contributed to publications of the OECD, International Federation of the Red Cross, UN-Habitat and World Bank. He is a Research Associate with the Asia-Pacific Journal: Japan Focus, and a Fellow in Diplomatic Affairs at the University of San Francisco’s Center for the Pacific Rim, and an affiliated expert fellow with the Harvard Humanitarian Initiative . He has been a Postdoctoral Fellow at Stanford University and has taught at the University of California, Berkeley. John holds a doctorate in Area Studies from the University of Tokyo.