Dr. Veerle Vandeweerd

Dr Veerle Vandeweerd has more than 25 years of experience in developing and implementing global, national and local environmental policies and programs, including 20 years in the United Nations system. Her work spans diverse fields -- from integrated sustainability assessments, green economic transformations and global environmental norm setting to financial, regulatory and institutional capacity building in over 160 countries. She currently is leading an entrepreneurial initiative she co-founded that involves new financial mechanisms to redirect major private flows to sustainable investments worldwide. She also is the policy director of the Global Science Technology and Innovation Conference Series (www.gstic.org), geared to support with the best technological innovations, national and international policy development in the field of sustainable development.

During her career at the United Nations, Dr Vandeweerd held various positions, beginning with the UN Environment Programme where she launched and directed the Global Environment Outlook and culminating in the UN Development Program as director of the Environment and Energy Division with an annual turnover of 1 billion dollars and 300 staff members. During these years, Dr Vandeweerd produced more than 300 publications, chaired over 100 international meetings and contributed to major environmental conferences of the past two decades. She was the Special Advisor to the UN Global Compact, the leadership platform for responsible corporate policies and practices, and currently serves as a board and/or advisory member of several international and national organisations, including CCICED (China). Previous to the UN, she taught at the University of Zambia, conducted research on African Sleeping sickness, and headed the environmental reporting department in the Flemish Government, Belgium.

A Belgian national, Dr Vandeweerd speaks Flemish, English, and French. When not traveling for her work, she lives in New York and Belgium. She received her doctorate in Biochemistry from the University of Antwerp, Belgium, and a master in Chemistry from the University of Gent, Belgium.