United Nations
Environment Programme

Our Team

Abdelkader Bensada

Abdelkader is programme management officer for terrestrial ecosystem management including integrated landscape approach. He is responsible for UNEP works on sustainable pastoralism and rangeland conservation. He is UNEP focal point for CPF and ILC. He has a background in forestry with extensive experience in biodiversity conservation and protected areas management.

Abdelkader is a true blend of of diverse culture and experiences couples with a perfect polyglot (Arabic, French, English, Italian).

Alberto Pacheco Capella

Alberto Pacheco Capella is the MEA Focal Point (Biodiversity and Ecosystems) for Latin America and the Caribbean. He helps member states in the region to implement their commitments under the global biodiversity conventions, including reviews of National Biodiversity Strategies and Action Plans (NBSAPs) and execution of GEF and EC projects. 

Alex Forbes

Alex is a programme officer with the joint UNDP-UNEP Poverty Environment Initiative (PEI) Africa Regional Team based in the UNEP Regional Office for Africa (ROA). PEI Africa supports country-led efforts to integrate pro-poor environmental sustainability into national, sector and sub-national planning, budgeting and monitoring processes. His responsibilities and interests include strengthening the integration of ecosystem-based management into local level development planning and budgeting processes through the use of integrated assessment and planning tools and approaches.

Balakrishna Pispati

Balakrishna Pisupati is currently the Head of Biodiversity, Land and Governance Programme with DIvision of Environmental Law and Conventions based in Nairobi. He provides technical and policy support on issues related to biodiversity related Multilateral Environmental Agreement (MEAs) and works closely on issues of implementation of MEAs. Additionally he also provides inputs into issues related to linking biodiversity and climate change, sustainable development and governance issues.

Birguy Lamizana-Diallo

Ms Birguy Lamizana-Diallo is a broad based development professional with more than 20 years working experience, including extensive knowledge in ecosystem and water resource management, Environmental Impact Assessment, community involment and a capacity building skills as a Training of Trainers (ToT) for decision makers on Integrated Water Resource Management (IWRM). She possesses a strong record of accomplishments in developing actions plans in IWRM for West and Eastern Africa's countries and coordinating partnerships.

David Smith

David Smith is an economist in the Division of Environmental Policy Implementation in UNEP. He is the manager of the UNDP-UNEP Poverty and Environment Initiative Africa programme.

Diane Klaimi

Diane Klaimi is currently the Biodiversity and Ecosystems Programme Officer at the United Nations Environment Programme, Regional Office for West Asia based in Manama Bahrain, out posted from UNEP-DEPI. Klaimi provides technical support and policy and management advice to government agencies and stakeholders on issues pertaining to biodiversity conservation and ecosystem management based on sound science.

Douglas Cress

Doug Cress is the programme coordinator for the Great Apes Survival Partnership (GRASP), a United Nations initiative that aims to protect apes and their habitat in Africa and Asia. Cress oversees all aspects of GRASP, including partnership relations, fund-raising, project design, implementation and evaluation, communications, and public outreach.

Edoardo Zandri

Ed is Task Manager, Biodiversity of Natural Resources at the UNEP Division of GEF (Global Environment Facility) Coordination. He is in charge of managing and developing a portfolio of projects in flyway and migratory species conservation and ecosystem services, in collaboration with other UNEP divisions and external partners. He joined UNEP/DGEF in 2009 after his assignment as Chief Technical Advisor of the innovative UNEP/GEF "African-Eurasian Flyways" regional project.

Ivo Mulder

Ivo Mulder is the REDD+ Green Economy Advisor for UNEP on behalf of the UN-REDD Programme (an inter-agency initiative managed by UNEP, UNDP and FAO that works with +50 partner countries). He leads the work on the economics of REDD+ and supports the work on private sector engagement. 

James Lomax

James Lomax has been the Sustainable Food Systems and Agriculture Programme Officer in UNEP?s Division of Technology, Industry and Economics based in Paris, France since 2009. James leads work on mainstreaming sustainable consumption and production practices from 'farm to flush' in the agriculture and food sector. He has pioneered the idea of systems thinking in the food and agriculture sector where nutrition, waste, environmental externalities and livelihoods must be considered if a shift to more sustainable food systems is to be realized.

James Vause

As Lead Economist at UNEP-WCMC, James is working to develop economic capacity and experience and to encourage economic analysis across all programmes in projects where it can help raise the impact and influence of UNEP-WCMC's work. This involves understanding and building on the rapidly developing field of economics and biodiversity and integrating this with UNEP-WCMC's scientific, statistical and geographical work to produce policy-relevant economic analysis that is embedded in scientific knowledge.

Joakim Harlin

Dr Joakim Harlin is a water resources and international development professional. A 54 year old citizen of Sweden, raised in Zimbabwe, and throughout his professional career involved with water resources management and international development.

Johan Robinson

Johan Robinson is currently the Chief of the Biodiversity Unit for the Division of Environment Policy Implementation, United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). Johan has over 20 years of development-related experience with Governments, the private sector and non-governmental organisations, largely in the ecosystems and biodiversity field.

Before joining UNEP in 2015, he has been assisting countries in the Asia and Pacific region as Regional Technical Advisor (UNDP) in accessing Global Environment Facility funds for Ecosystems and Biodiversity project implementation.

Johannes Refisch

Johannes Refisch holds a Diploma degree in animal ecology. He has held several scientific positions at the University of Bayreuth, Germany, the Natural Museum in Munich, Germany, the University of Basel, Switzerland, and the University of Alaska, USA.

Lis Mullin Bernhardt

Lis is an international development and water professional who joined UNEP's freshwater ecosystem unit in August 2016. A native from the Great Lakes region of the United States, Lis has been working at the nexus of development and environment since 2002. She holds degrees in International Relations from Northwestern University in her native Chicago area, the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies at the University of Geneva in Switzerland, and an MBA in organizational culture and resource management from the University of Reading's Henley Business School in England.

Makiko Yashiro

Makiko Yashiro works as a Programme Officer/Regional Coordinator for Ecosystem Management Sub-programme at UNEP's Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific (ROAP). Working closely with regional and national partners, she coordinates UNEP's work in the field of ecosystem management implemented in the region, and provides support to Governments in implementing biodiversity-related Conventions..

Niklas Hagelberg

Niklas Hagelberg is a Senior Programme Officer at United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) where he is the Coordinator of UNEP's subprogramme on Ecosystem Management. The subprogramme fosters the integrated management of ecosystems as the ecological foundation for the delivery of all SDGs. Niklas work includes setting the strategic direction of the subprogramme, programme oversight and progress review and fundraising.

Ole Vestergard

Ole Vestergaard works as Programme Officer in the Marine, Coastal & Freshwater Ecosystems Branch of Division for Environmental Policy Implementation at UNEP, based in Nairobi, Kenya. Since joining UNEP in April 2008, Ole has been involved in the development and implementation of UNEP initiatives on marine and coastal ecosystem-based management and adaptation - from tools and technical guidance to training, demonstration and policy advice.

Pablo Fuentenebro

Pablo Fuentenebro is an Associate Programme Officer in the Environmental Education and Training Unit (EETU), Division of Environmental Policy Implementation, UNEP.

His work focuses in the development of programs to promote sustainable development in higher education. Among others, Pablo has been EETU's focal point for partnerships and outreach activities under the overall framework of the UN Decade on Education for Sustainable Development (2005-2014), the Eye on Environmental Education Special Initiative and, more recently, the Higher Education Sustainability Initiative (HESI).

Pushpam Kumar

Dr. Pushpam Kumar is Chief, Ecosystem Services Economics Unit, Division of Environment Programme Implementation (UNEP) where he works on mainstreaming of natural capital including ecosystem services into development policy. Currently, provides leadership to a number of initiatives.

Rui Zhang

Rui Zhang acted as programme officer on South-South Cooperation within the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (SCBD) until July 2011. Her responsibilities were to promote South-South and triangular cooperation as a cross-cutting approach and a key mechanism for the implementation of the Convention through enhanced information exchange, knowledge sharing and technology transfer. She has been the biodiversity focal point for the UNEP-China Virtual Team, covering the issues on China's biodiversity related activities and international cooperation.

Salman Hussain

Dr. Salman Hussain is coordinator for The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity (TEEB). He was a contributing author to the TEEB reports launched in 2010 and has also coordinated the quantitative assessment for TEEB, a global scale study integrating environmental valuation with Geographic Information System mapping.

Siham Drissi

Siham is Programme Management Officer in the Terrestrial Ecosystems Unit in the Ecosystems Division at headquarters. She has been working in the field of international cooperation and sustainable development, with particular focus on agriculture, food security and environmental issues for the past 10 years.

Steven Stone

Steven Stone is the Chief of UNEP's Geneva-based Economy and Trade Branch (ETB). He holds a PhD in Resource Economics from Cornell University and has more than 20 years of professional experience in environmental and natural resource management. 

Takehiro Nakamura

Takehiro Nakamura, Coordinator, Marine and Coastal Ecosystems Unit, Division of Environmental Policy Implementation has since 2010 been engaged in the development and oversight of activities to support development of tools and methodologies for sustainable management and use of coastal and marine resources and ecosystem services, such as ecosystem approaches, Integrated Coastal Zone Management, blue carbon and other ecosystem specific management approaches (mangroves and coral reefs, particularly).

Thierry de Oliviera

Thierry de Oliveira joined UNEP in 2000 as an economist in the office of the Director, Division of Policy Development and Law (DPDL) until 2006 when he teamed up with the GEO section in DEWA.

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