WSDS 2016 International Steering Committee

Andrew Steer Andrew SteerPresident and CEO, World Resources Institute
Suman Bery Suman BeryFormer Chief Economist, Strategy and Business Environment, Shell International Limited
Yvo de Boer Yvo de BoerDirector General, Global Green Growth Institute, Korea & Former Executive Secretary, UNFCCC
Ajay Narayan Jha Ajay Narayan JhaSecretary, Ministry of Environment, Forest & Climate Change
Rachel Kyte Rachel KyteCEO & Special Representative, Sustainable Energy for All (SE4All)
Ashok Lavasa Ashok LavasaSecretary (Expenditure), Ministry of Finance, Government of India
Carlos Lopes Carlos LopesExecutive Secretary, Economic Commission for Africa
Onno Ruhl Onno RuhlCountry Director, World Bank India
Ali T. Sheikh Ali T. SheikhDirector Asia - Climate & Development Knowledge Network (CDKN) & CEO, LEAD Pakistan
Terry Tammineny Terry Tamminen Founder and President, Seventh Generation Advisors & R20 Founding Chair’s Strategic Advisor
Upendra Tripathy Upendra TripathySecretary, Ministry of New and Renewable Energy
Arne Walther Arne WaltherFormer Ambassador of Norway to India
Yongping Zhai Yongping ZhaiDirector, Energy Division, South Asia Regional Department, Asian Development Bank

Yvo de Boer Director General, Global Green Growth Institute, Korea & Former Executive Secretary, UNFCCC

Yvo de Boer is the Director-General of the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI), a Seoul-based international organization. He was appointed as the Director-General by the GGGI Assembly, GGGI’s supreme governing body to serve a four-year term beginning on April 15, 2014.

Previously, Mr. de Boer served as KPMG’s Global Chairman of Climate Change & Sustainability Services (CC&S). In this role, he led KPMG’s international network of climate change and sustainability consulting businesses, which comprise several hundred sustainability professionals in over 60 countries.

As well as leading KPMG’s CC&S agenda Mr. de Boer advised corporate leaders on the impacts of rapid environmental, social and political change and how their businesses should respond in order to grasp opportunities and manage risks.

Before joining KPMG in 2010, Mr. de Boer led the international process to respond to climate change in the role of Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) from 2006 to 2010.

During his tenure he raised the issue of climate change to the highest levels of political and media attention. He brought over 100 world leaders to Copenhagen for the international climate negotiations in December 2009 and secured commitments from over 90 countries to reduce greenhouse emissions.

Throughout his career, he has focused on the economics of climate and sustainability to help policy makers and the business community understand the consequences of acting, or failing to act, in economic terms.

Prior to his UN role, he was extensively involved in European Union environmental policy as deputy Director General of the Dutch Environment Ministry. He also served as vice-chair of the U.N. Commission on Sustainable Development, and acted as an advisor to the Government of China and the World Bank. In 2011 he was appointed to chair the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on Climate Change.

Ajay Narayan JhaSecretary, Ministry of Environment, Forest & Climate Change

Rachel Kyte CEO & Special Representative, Sustainable Energy for All (SE4All)

Rachel Kyte is Chief Executive Officer of the Sustainable Energy for All (SE4All) initiative, and Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Sustainable Energy for All.

A leading advocate for sustainable development, Ms. Kyte is focused on affordable, reliable and sustainable energy as the key to combating both poverty and climate change. Ms. Kyte drives SE4All’s work to mobilize action towards its 2030 goals of ensuring universal access to modern energy services; doubling the global rate of improvement in energy efficiency; and doubling the share of renewable energy in the global energy mix. At the same time, as Special Representative for the Secretary General she will act as a point person in the UN for action towards the recently agreed global goal on sustainable energy.

Ms Kyte served until December 2015 as World Bank Group Vice President and Special Envoy for Climate Change, leading the Bank Group’s efforts to campaign for an ambitious agreement at the 21st Convention of the Parties of the UNFCCC (COP 21). She was previously World Bank Vice President for Sustainable Development and was the International Finance Corporation Vice President for Business Advisory Services.

Recipient of numerous award for women’s leadership, climate action and sustainable development, she is a Professor of practice in sustainable development at Tuft’s Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy. She holds a master’s degree in international relations from Fletcher, and a bachelor’s degree in history and politics from the University of London.

Andrew SteerPresident and CEO, World Resources Institute

Dr. Andrew Steer is the President and CEO of the World Resources Institute, a global research organization working in more than 50 countries to address urgent global challenges relating to food, forests, water, energy, climate change, and urbanization. Previously, Andrew served as the World Bank’s Special Envoy for Climate Change, and as Director General at the UK Department of International Development in London. Andrew serves on the Executive Board of the UN Secretary General’s Sustainable Energy for All Initiative; is a Trustee for the World Economic Forum Global Agenda for Environment and Natural Resources Security; and is a member of the China Council for International Cooperation on Environment and Development, the Energy Transitions Commission, and advising boards for IKEA and Bank of America. While at the World Bank, Andrew also served as Director of the Environment Department and the director of World Bank operations in Vietnam and Indonesia. He was the Director and Chief Author of the 1992 World Development Report on Environment and Development. Andrew was educated at St Andrews University, the University of Pennsylvania, and Cambridge University. He holds a PhD in economics.

Suman Bery Former Chief Economist, Strategy and Business Environment, Shell International Limited

Suman Bery was most recently Shell’s Chief Economist, based in The Hague, The Netherlands. He is currently a Nonresident Fellow of the Brussels think-tank Bruegel, as well as a Senior Fellow of the Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth. He is based in New Delhi.

Suman had earlier served as Director-General (Chief Executive) of the National Council of Applied Economic Research (NCAER), New Delhi. NCAER is one of India's leading independent non-profit policy research institutions. At various times Suman was a member of the Prime Minister’s Economic Advisory Council, of India’s Statistical Commision and of the Reserve Bank of India’s Technical Advisory Committee on Monetary Policy.

Prior to NCAER, Mr. Bery was with the World Bank in Washington DC with a particular focus on Latin America and the Caribbean. At the time of India’s economic reforms (1992-1994), on leave from the World Bank, Mr. Bery worked as Special Consultant to the Reserve Bank of India, Bombay. His professional writing includes contributions on the political economy of reform, financial sector and banking reform and energy trends and policy. He has been a monthly columnist for the Indian business newspaper Business Standard for more than a decade.

Ashok Lavasa Secretary (Expenditure), Ministry of Finance, Government of India

Carlos LopesExecutive Secretary, Economic Commission for Africa

Dr. Carlos Lopes is the Executive Secretary of the Economic Commission for Africa at the level of UN Under Secretary-General. He has more than 24 years of senior leadership experience at the United Nations that include serving as Executive Director of the United Nations Institute for Training and Research, Director of the UN System Staff College, Director for Political Affairs in the Executive Office of the Secretary-General, all at the level of Assistant Secretary-General; and UN Resident Coordinator in Zimbabwe and Brazil. Specialized in development and strategic planning, he has been an author or editor for over 22 books and has also taught at various academic institutions.

ONNO RUHL Country Director, World Bank India

Mr. Onno Ruhl, a Dutch national, is currently the World Bank Country Director for India. Prior to this assignment, he was the Director for Operations Services and Quality in the South Asia Region of the World Bank, and was responsible for the Quality Assurance, Development Effectiveness as well as core fiduciary functions for the South Asia portfolio of the World Bank. Before that, he was the Country Director for Nigeria at the World Bank. In this capacity he was responsible for managing the World Bank’s Nigeria portfolio valued at $3.4 billion, as well as for the dialogue with all layers of Government and civil society in Nigeria. Earlier, he was Manager for Results and Learning in the Africa Region of the World Bank. The unit has worked to help partner Governments improve their management for results focus, monitoring and evaluation, and statistical systems. The Unit has also put a strong focus on improving the results focus of projects financed by the World Bank in Africa.

Earlier, Mr. Rühl was Country Manager for the Democratic Republic of the Congo, as well as Lead Private and Financial Sector Development Specialist in the Africa and Europe and Central Asia regions. His most important achievement during this time was overseeing the World Bank's support to the creation and financing of the African Trade Insurance Agency (ATI).

Before joining the World Bank’s staff, he was Economic Secretary in the Royal Netherlands Embassy in Washington DC, Alternate Director on the Board of the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency and Desk Officer in the Multilateral Development Cooperation Department of the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He started his career teaching economics in Alkmaar, the Netherlands.

Ali T. Sheikh Director Asia - Climate & Development Knowledge Network (CDKN) & CEO, LEAD Pakistan

Ali Tauqeer Sheikh is the founding CEO and National Programme Director of LEAD Pakistan LEAD is a premier national institution and a think tank that is deeply engaged in generating public policy options through research, capacity-building and public policy debates and dialogues. He manages the largest network of professionals on sustainable development in the country that prides itself on several hundred people and institutions as members. He also heads the Climate Leaders Action Network (CLAN) which gives him access to over 2,000 experts in the field.

Mr Sheikh is also the Asia Director for the Climate and Development Knowledge Network (CDKN). Led by PricewaterhouseCoopers, CDKN ( is a global alliance of six organizations: ODI, Fundación Futuro Latinoamericano, SouthSouthNorth, and LEAD. In this capacity he leads efforts to assist developing country governments in the Asian region to mainstream climate compatible development in their policies and plans, strengthen their capacity to cope with climate induced disasters and extreme events, enhance their readiness to access international climate finance and to meaningfully engage in international climate negotiations for an equitable and ambitious global agreement.

Mr Sheikh has been a Fellow at the Institute of Soviet and East European Studies (ISEES), Miami; the International Institute of Strategic Studies (IISS) in London, and the Rockefeller Foundation in New York. He has delivered lectures at a number of universities and institutions including Oxford University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy (Tufts University), the Carnegie Endowment, the Kennan Institute of Advanced Russian Studies and the University of Michigan. Mr Sheikh is deeply involved in various facets of sustainable development, particularly in the poverty-environment nexus, climate vulnerabilities and equitable development. He has served as advisor/consultant to a number of national/international organizations such as Asian Development Bank, European Commission, IDRC, IFAD, JICA, Packard Foundation, Rockefeller Foundation, The Asia Foundation, UNDP, UNESCO and USAID.

Terry Tamminen Founder and President, Seventh Generation Advisors & R20 Founding Chair’s Strategic Advisor

From his youth in Australia to career experiences in Europe, Africa, China and across the United States, Terry has developed expertise in business, farming, education, non-profit, the environment, the arts, and government. Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger appointed him Secretary of the California Environmental Protection Agency and later Cabinet Secretary, the Chief Policy Advisor to the Governor, where Terry was the architect of many groundbreaking sustainability policies, including California's landmark Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006, the Hydrogen Highway Network, and the Million Solar Roofs initiative.
In 2010 Terry co-founded the R20 Regions of Climate Action, a new public-private partnership, bringing together sub-national governments; businesses; financial markets; NGOs; and academia to implement measurable, large-scale, low-carbon and climate resilient economic development projects that can simultaneously solve the climate crisis and build a sustainable global economy. Since 2007 he has provided advice to Pegasus Capital Advisors and numerous global businesses on sustainability and “green” investing. In 2016, Terry joined the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation as CEO. An accomplished author, Terry's books include “Cracking the Carbon Code: The Keys to Sustainable Profits in the New Economy” (Palgrave Macmillan). In 2011, Terry was one of six finalists for the Zayed Future Energy Prize and The Guardian ranked Terry No. 1 in its “Top 50 People Who Can Save the Planet.”

Upendra Tripathy Secretary, Ministry of New and Renewable Energy

Arne Walther Former Ambassador of Norway to India

Ambassador Arne Walther, a former Norwegian career diplomat, is currently an independent adviser to companies and institutions on government relations and international energy affairs.

He is among other things a part-time Professor at the TERI University, Department for Policy Studies, in New Delhi, an Associate Fellow for Geopolitics, Global Energy and the Arctic at the Fridtjof Nansen Institute in Norway and serves on several international advisory boards.

A former Norwegian Ambassador to India (1995-1999), he served as Ambassador to Japan (2009-2014), Ambassador to Austria and the UN Organisations in Vienna (2002-2003) as well as Ambassador to the International Energy Agency in Paris, while concurrently Director General for Trade, Resources and Environment in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (1999-2002). He was International Affairs Adviser to Prime Minister Dr. Gro Harlem Brundtland (1987-1989) and Political Adviser to the Minister of Petroleum and Energy (1980-81).

Ambassador Walther’s international positions include serving as the first Secretary General of the International Energy Forum in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia (2003-2007) and as Chairman of the Governing Board of the International Energy Agency (IEA) in Paris, France (2000-2002).

Yongping Zhai Director, Energy Division, South Asia Regional Department, Asian Development Bank

Dr. Yongping Zhai has been working on energy development in Asia and Africa for about 25 years. He is currently Technical Advisor, Energy Sector Group, Asian Development Bank (ADB), in charge of overall energy policy coordination and technical support to ADB Energy Divisions of East Asia, South Asia, Southeast Asia, Central and West Asia as well as the Pacific Region.

Prior to his current position, Dr. Yongping Zhai was Director, South Asia Energy Division (2010-2015), ADB, covering energy sector operations in Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal and Sri Lanka. In this capacity, he led ADB’s support to renewable energy, energy efficiency and power trade in South Asia. He also served as ADB’s Lead Energy Specialist (2008-2010), in charge of energy sector in Southeast Asia including Indonesia, Philippines, and the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS). In particular, he was instrumental in leading ADB’s support to the power sector’s successful restructuring process in the Philippines. Moreover, Dr. Zhai has played a key role in promoting power trade and cooperation in GMS.

From 1993 to 2000, Dr. Zhai was a Principal Program Coordinator/Public Utilities Economist at the African Development Bank (AfDB) in charge of energy projects in Southern African Development Community (SADC). Between 1990 and 1993, he served as an Assistant Professor at the Energy Technology Division (Energy Policy and Planning), Asian Institute of Technology (AIT) in Bangkok, Thailand.

Dr. Yongping Zhai graduated from the Thermal Energy Engineering Department, Tsinghua University, Beijing, China (1983) and received a Ph.D in Energy Economics from Institute of Energy Economics and Policy, affiliated with the University of Pierre-Mendès France in Grenoble, France (1989).

Dr Zhai can be reached by email at, by phone at (632) 632 5976in Manila, Philippines.