Catherine, RSN's founding Chief Executive, has fourteen years’ professional experience working with refugee and asylum-seeking young people, and has worked in a variety of education and child-protection related programmatic, policy and research roles with community based organisations, INGOS and UN agencies. 

Alongside her work at RSN, she is a consultant for Jigsaw Consult, where she specialises in refugee education, education in emergencies and youth participation. She has led large-scale multi-national research programmes and worked for clients including UNICEF, UNHCR, Save the Children, War Child, UNRWA and various other agencies. She has worked in 16 different countries, including Afghanistan, Sudan, South Sudan, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Haiti and Jordan, and speaks several European languages fluently. 

Catherine is passionate about the linkages between the education in emergencies sector and the European responses to the refugee youth education crisis, and seeks to share lessons between these sectors through her work at RSN and Jigsaw Consult. She has published multiple research and policy papers and is a regular speaker at conferences, on panels and in the media. She has a degree from Oxford University, a masters in Education in Emergencies from the Institute of Education, and is an honorary fellow at Winchester University. 

Publications include

Gladwell, C., J. Thomas, G. Chetwynd, S. Majeed, C. Burke, V. Stubbs and S. Zahid (2018). The Impact Of Educational Achievement On The Integration And Wellbeing Of Afghan Refugee Youth In The UK. WIDER Working Paper 2018/57. Helsinki: UNU-WIDER.

Gladwell, C., Hollow, D., Robinson, A., Norman, B., Bowerman, E., Mitchell, J., Floremont, F., Hutchinson, P. (2016). Higher education for refugees in low-resource environments: research study. Jigsaw Consult, United Kingdom.

Gladwell, C., Hollow, D., Robinson, A., Norman, B., Bowerman, E., Mitchell, J., Floremont, F., Hutchinson, P. (2016). Higher education for refugees in low-resource environments: landscape review. Jigsaw Consult, United Kingdom.

Directorate-General for European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO). (2016). Evaluation of DG ECHO’s actions in the field of protections and education of children in emergency and crisis situations (2008 - 2015). European Commission. Brussels.

Gladwell, C; Bowerman, E; Norman B; Ghafoor, A; Dickson, S. (2016) After Return: Documenting the experiences of young people forcibly removed to Afghanistan. Refugee Support Network. London.

Gladwell, C. (2013). ‘No longer a child: From the UK to Afghanistan’ in Detention, Alternatives to Detention and Deportation, Forced Migration Review Vol 44. Oxford University Refugee Studies Centre.

Gladwell, C and Elwyn, H. (2013).Broken Futures. New Issues in Refugee Research. UNHCR, Geneva.

Gladwell, C and Tanner, L. 2013. Hear it From the Children: why education in emergencies is critical. Save the Children UK/Norwegian Refugee Council.

Refugee Support Network. 2011. I just want to study: access to higher education for refugee and asylum-seeking young people.


Catherine has been cited in various news reports about the issue of forced removal to Afghanistan and spoken to the national media about refugee youth and education, including:

Refugee Support Network is a charity registered in England & Wales under charity number 1132509 and company number 06879651 at 1st Floor, The Salvation Army Building, London NW10 4JJ. We use cookies to improve your experience using this website. To learn more, read our privacy policy.
Log in | Powered by White Fuse