Gary Bland

Fellow, Democratic Governance

Gary Bland


  • PhD, Latin American Studies Program, Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies
  • MA, Latin American Studies and International Economics, Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies
  • BA, Government and Economics, The College of William and Mary.

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Gary Bland, PhD, is an expert in democratic governance and a senior advisor and scholar of democratic institutional development. He specializes in decentralization and local governance, primarily in Latin America and Africa. His research and program work has also involved legislative process, elections, participatory governance, and democratic transition. Dr. Bland's academic, policy, and programmatic expertise has informed development in many countries through multiple research and technical assistance projects. He directed RTI's Center for Democratic Governance for nearly five years. Dr. Bland was a Democracy Fellow at USAID and has consulted with various international organizations. Earlier, he was a senior associate at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars and legislative assistant in the U.S. House of Representatives. Dr. Bland is active in professional associations and has presented at numerous conferences. He has been an adjunct graduate professor of public policy at Georgetown University, and his most recent publications address local democracy and the sustainability of participatory budgeting as implemented by RTI in El Salvador.