The International Advisory Committee of UNU-FLORES convenes annually to provide guidance and advice to the Institute, and to receive reports of the Institute’s progress and operations. The Committee is comprised of a diverse group of renowned scientists as introduced below.
Prof Joseph Alcamo (USA)
Joseph Alcamo is a Professor of Environmental System Science as well as Director of Sussex Sustainability Research Programme (SSRP), both at the University of Sussex in the United Kingdom, the latter of which consists of more than 20 interdisciplinary research projects focusing on interlinkages between the SDGs in 14 low- and middle-income countries. Prior to assuming his position at Sussex, Prof. Alcamo served as Chief Scientist of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), where he worked to strengthen the interface between global science and policy. He also played a strategic role as Special Science Advisor to the Head of the UN Climate Secretariat during the final phase of negotiating the Paris Climate Agreement. Later, he was Executive Director of the Center for Environmental Systems Research and Professor of Environmental Systems Science and Engineering at the University of Kassel, Germany. In 1998, Alcamo was awarded the prestigious Max Planck Research Prize for physics and geoscience, in connection with his contributions to global environmental modelling, and the use of global models in international policy. He has published numerous articles and books on environmental research, many of them focusing on the modelling of environmental changes and the effects of global warming.
Prof Ester van der Voet (Netherlands)
Ester van der Voet is employed as an Associate Professor by Leiden University at the Department Industrial Ecology of the Institute of Environmental Sciences, CML. Within the field of Industrial Ecology, she specialises in methodology development: life-cycle assessment, material flow analysis, substance flow analysis, natural resource accounting, and indicator development. These methodologies she applies to in different topical areas, especially within the bio-based economy and in metals and the circular economy. She has initiated two MSc programs in Industrial Ecology: a program between Leiden University and TU Delft, and an international program of Leiden, Delft, Graz University and Chalmers University in Sweden. She has conducted many research projects for the EU and in other international consortia. She is a member of UNEP’s International Resource Panel.
Prof Ronald Tetzlaff (Germany)
Ronald Tetzlaff is the Chief Officer for Technology Transfer and Internationalisation and head of the chair of Fundamentals of Electrical Engineering at the Technische Universität Dresden, Germany. He was Distinguished Lecturer of the IEEE CAS Society (2001-2002) and later chaired the IEEE Technical Committee Cellular Neural Networks & Array Computing. He sits on the editorial boards of and works as a reviewer for several journals. He is a member of the scientific committee of and chaired several international conferences. Prof. Tetzlaff also works as a reviewer for the European Commission and is a member of the Informationstechnische Gesellschaft (ITG), the German Society of Electrical Engineers, and of the German URSI Committee. His scientific interests include problems in the theory of signals and systems, system modelling, and machine learning, among others.
Hasmik Barseghyan (Armenia)
Hasmik Barseghyan is an environmental management professional and is the current President of the European Youth Parliament for Water (EYPW). Under her leadership, the EYPW has empowered thousands of young people to take action to protect our future and continues to drive ambition for greater inclusion of youth in decision-making processes. Water and climate action advocate, Hasmik brings the youth voice to high-level European and international platforms, in favour of sustainable and democratic resource management. She was an official delegate to the 16th UN Climate Change Conference of Youth (COY16) in Glasgow, UK, the Pre-COP26 and Youth4Climate event in Milan, and many more besides. She was a delegate to COP27 in Sharm-el-Sheikh, Egypt and a Party delegate on behalf of the Republic of Armenia to COP26 in Glasgow, UK where she supported the government in the thematic areas of water and energy. Hasmik serves as a board member at the International Secretariat for Water, as well as that of Green Cross France and Territories, and is an Ambassador of the Universal Declaration of Humankind Rights (DDHU). She is one of the initiators of the Global Youth Movement for Water and carried the voice of young people to the UN2023 Water Conference in New York. Between 2020-2021, as a member of the EU Water Alliance, she contributed to the advocacy work with the cabinets of EU Commissioners with the aim of valuing water in the Commissioners’ portfolios. Hasmik is also involved in the World Energy Council in London and is among the 100 most promising Future Energy Leaders in the world. Hasmik holds an MBA from the Université de Nantes, France. She was a U.S. State Department exchange program fellow at the Oregon State Capitol. She was a postgraduate fellow in environmental management at CIPSEM, TU-Dresden, Germany.
Dr Zenda Ofir (South Africa)
Zenda Ofir is a South African scientist and evaluation specialist. With a PhD in (Ecological) Chemistry, she was a grants portfolio manager at a South African national science council and Director of Research at Pretoria University before turning to evaluation. Since 2000 she has worked across many countries and fields of work, from the local to global level, with a special focus on Africa and Asia. Her current interest is in how evaluative practices can help shape and accelerate urgently needed large-scale systems transformations, increase the chance of success of strategies and portfolios within a challenging and uncertain future, and support the development of scientific knowledge. She is a former president of the African Evaluation Association (AfrEA) and former vice-president of the global evaluation networks IOCE and IDEAS. She continues to advise international organisations on strategy and evaluation and is among others a member of the Blue Marble Evaluation Advisory Council, interim Chair of the International Evaluation Academy Council, and a Richard von Weizsäcker Fellow at the Robert Bosch Academy in Berlin. She has been a Visiting Professor at Hiroshima University, Honorary Professor at Stellenbosch University, and has led modules at the United Nations University in Tokyo and University of Geneva. She has served on the editorial boards of three evaluation journals and is a widely read blogger on evaluation. She is currently based near Geneva in Switzerland.
Prof Wim van Vierssen (Netherlands)
Wim van Vierssen is former CEO of KWR Watercycle Research Institute (2007-2018) and presently director of the water-engineering company Dareius, a subsidiary of AvecodeBondt, a VolkerWessels Company. He was Rathenau Professor at Delft University of Technology on Science System Assessment of Water-Related Research (2009-2018). He is vice-president of Water Europe and served on other high-level boards, nationally and internationally. He was also Director-General of NIOO, a research institute of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts & Sciences, Rector of IHE-Delft Institute for Water Education and Director General of the Environmental Sciences Group at Wageningen University & Resarch (WUR). He has published more than 150 papers in peer-reviewed journals, proceedings and the popular press. He is member of the Royal Holland Society of Sciences and Humanities (KHMW), the oldest learned society in the Netherlands (established 1752). In 2016 he became IWA Fellow and in 2018 he received the Royal distinction of Knight in the Order of the Lion of the Netherlands. Van Vierssen obtained his PhD from the Radboud University Nijmegen in 1982.
Prof Karl-Heinz Feger (Germany)
Karl-Heinz Feger serves as Dean of the Faculty of Environmental Sciences at TU Dresden. He is director of the Institute of Soil Science and Site Ecology of TU Dresden. He studied hydrology in Freiburg, Germany and Zurich, Switzerland. After his PhD and habilitation in forest soils and hydrology/biogeochemistry in Freiburg, he worked at Albert-Ludwig-University Freiburg, Ruhr University Bochum and Hohenheim University before becoming a full professor at TU Dresden in 2000. His research interests are soil-water-plant relations at various spatial scales.
Prof Bancy Mati (Kenya)
Bancy Mbura Mati is the Director of the Water Research and Resource Center (WARREC) at Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT) in Kenya. She holds a PhD in rural land use and GIS from Cranfield University, United Kingdom. She has previously worked as Principal Scientist with the International Crop Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT) as the Programme Manager of IMAWESA, a Programme that covered 23 countries in Africa (2005-2010). Prior to that, she worked part-time with the International Water Management Institute (IWMI). Bancy serves on the Board of the Engineers of Kenya and the Steering Committee of the Kenya Water for Industry Association (KWIA). She previously was on the Board of the Global Water Partnership (GWP) (2004-2007). She is an active researcher and has published widely on sustainable management of land and water.
Prof Rattan Lal (USA)
Rattan Lal is a Distinguished University Professor of Soil Science and Director of the Carbon Management & Sequestration Center at the Ohio State University. He held positions at the Rockefeller Foundation, New Delhi, India; the University of Sydney, Australia; the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture, Ibadan, Nigeria and the University of Iceland, Reykjavik. He is also a scientific advisor to Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies in Potsdam, Germany. He served on various international bodies such as the International Committee on Tropical Deforestation and Land Management, Nigeria (Chair), the World Association of Soil and Water Conservation (President), International Soil Tillage Research Organization (President), and the Soil Science Society of America (President). He was lead author of the UN Millennium Ecosystem Assessment and Lead Author in various reports of the International Panel on Climate Change.
Prof Adelaide Cassia Nardocci (Brazil)
Adelaide C. Nardocci is professor of environmental risk assessment and risk management in the Department of Environmental Health at the School of Public Health, University of São Paulo since 2001. Before joining the University, she worked at the Brazilian Institute of Environment and Renewable Natural Resources on the environmental licensing of the large enterprises. She is physicist and has a master’s degree in Nuclear Engineering and PhD in Public Health. She is the leader of the Center for Research on Risk Assessment and is a member of the Center for Research on Disasters (CEPED) of the University of São Paulo. She is also a member of the Society for Risk Analysis and Latin America Society for Risk Analysis.
Prof Ana Mondjana (Mozambique)
Ana Maria da Graça Mondjana is Vice-Rector for Academic Affairs since May 2011 and is Assistant Professor at the Faculty of Agronomy and Forestry Engineering (FAEF) at Eduardo Mondlane University (UEM). She holds a doctorate in plant pathology from the University of Wisconsin – Madison, USA. Mondjana has extensive experience in university administration, teaching at the graduate and post-graduate levels as well as in research and extension. Throughout her career she held various administrative positions, including Scientific Director of UEM (2006–2008), the Deputy Director for Research and Extension and President of the Scientific Committee of FAEF (2005–2006) and coordinator of MSc Programme in Rural Development in FAEF Plant Production (2004).