Sam Mendelson

DSC_4966-2-2 SAM

Sam Mendelson is Arc’s Knowledge Specialist, working with project partners to gather impact data. Sam was also the 2012-13 DFID/Citi Development Fellow, a position which seeks to engage the private financial services sector in best practice in financial inclusion.


Since 2009, Sam has been the co-author of Microfinance Banana Skins, an annual report that ranks the risk perceptions of more than 350 practitioners and close observers of the microfinance scene in 79 countries. He is also the co-founder of SPA - a small Social Performance consultancy offering bespoke SPM audit, analysis and advisory services to Tier 2 and 3 MFIs. Prior to this, Sam was a Senior Consultant in the Emerging Markets practice at ESL & Network (UK) for four years, before which he was Programme Director at the Centre for the Study of Financial Education, a London-based economics think-tank.

Sam has been widely published, including dozens of articles in Financial World magazine, as well as Prospect, Ambassador, the Guardian, Africa Investor, In-Debate and many times in the Gulf broadsheet press. He is the Consulting Editor to Microfinance Focus, and was nominated in 2011 for a Foreign Press Association award in the Feature of the Year category, for a Prospect feature on Qatar. He has a forthcoming chapter on hurdles and issues in a book on microfinance and has written briefing papers for institutions such as Chatham House and CINI-UK.

Sam has undergraduate degrees in Psychology and Law from University of Western Australia, and a Master of Laws (in Public International Law) from University College London.