Barbara Adams is Chair of the Board of Global Policy Forum. She was trained as an economist in the UK, worked as Executive Director of the Manitoba Council for International Affairs in Canada and has undertaken development programming in Uruguay. She served as Associate Director of the Quaker United Nations Office in New York before joining the United Nations. She served as Deputy Coordinator of the UN Non-Governmental Liaison Service (NGLS) and head of its UN headquarters office through the period of the UN global conferences. From 2003–2008 she worked for the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM).
Her experience has included being an adjunct professor on partnerships and development and serving as a member of the President of UN General Assembly CSO taskforce for MDG 2010 Summit and the Civil Society Reflection Group on Global Development Perspectives, which has released its report, No future without justice, in the Development Dialogue series.
Barbara Adams has authored and co-authored many articles, reports, commissioned studies and books on the UN and multilateral issues, including Accounting for Africa at the United Nations: A Guide for Non-Governmental Organizations; Putting Gender on the Agenda: A Guide to Participating in UN World Conferences; Climate Justice in a Changing World, co-authored with Gretchen Luchsinger, Reclaiming Multilateralism for People, Rights and Sustainable Development, Whose Development, Whose UN? and Fit for Whose Purpose?, co-authored with Jens Martens.