Wednesday, 10 June, 2020

Roberta-Ryan headshot web

Professor Ryan specialises in working with and for local government and other spheres of government providing policy advice, social research, stakeholder and community engagement.

Roberta is a leading public policy researcher, practitioner, and educator with over 30 years’ experience advising elected officials, senior executives and staff from all levels of government across Australia and internationally. Most recently, Roberta was Director of the Institute for Public Policy and Governance, Centre for Local Government, and Australian Centre of Excellence for Local Government at the University of Technology Sydney. Prior to that, she was National Director and Partner of Public Policy at Urbis, Australia’s largest public policy, property economics, and urban planning consultancy practice.

Roberta is passionate about and works at the interface of local government, the built and natural environments, service and infrastructure delivery, and community engagement. Her capacity to mediate and facilitate outcomes that deliver shared strategic objectives of government and stakeholders is widely recognised. Roberta understands the challenges and opportunities of balancing competing interests through organisational and strategic planning processes and is renowned for her ability to engage, bring together diverse views, and facilitate high performing teams in politically sensitive environments.

Roberta has completed over 500 social research and evaluation projects, and specialises in innovative approaches to applying research and evaluation to develop practical solutions. Roberta is known for providing robust, evidence-based insights that have informed major decisions by cabinets and ministers, parliaments and regulators, independent inquiries, courts of law, state-owned corporations, state and national agencies, regional bodies, and local councils. She has an established reputation for consultative and expert facilitation of policy processes that assist governments and stakeholders arrive at strategic policy and program outcomes.

Roberta has degrees from the University of Sydney in social science, arts and philosophy. Most recently her research is in areas of evaluating areas of policy complexity, deliberative engagement and models of regional economic development.


  • Planning Institute of Australia - Allied Professional
  • Australasian Evaluation Society - Member
  • International Association for Public Participation - Member
  • International Institute of Administrative Sciences - Member