Stephen Backman has 20 years of experience working on projects and conducting research on language and education issues in developing countries. He has worked in Africa for more than 14 years in various capacities, including senior management for seven large-scale U.S. Agency for International Development education projects.
Dr. Backman currently serves as Chief of Party for the USAID Tusome Pamoja (“Let’s Read Together”) project and the USAID Arithmetic and Inclusive Education Activity in Tanzania. Previously, for RTI, he served as Chief of Party for the Uganda School Health and Reading Program (SHRP), the Reading for Ethiopia’s Achievement Developed—Technical Assistance (READ TA) project, and the Malawi Early Grade Reading Activity.
Dr. Backman specializes in early grade literacy, language policy, teacher education, curriculum development, and capacity building and has great experience working directly with governments, development agencies, and research institutions to improve the quality of education in development contexts. He has presented and published in numerous professional forums on language, literacy, and education policy in Africa.