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Referentinnen und Referenten / Panelists

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Introduction to the moderator, the guest of honor, panelists and session moderators of the International Symposium



Opening of the Symposium

Guest of Honor: H.E. Patricia Espinosa Cantellano

H.E. Patricia Espinosa Cantellano

H.E. Patricia Espinosa Cantellano is the ambassador of Mexico to the Federal Republic of Germany.  A career diplomat, she served as the foreign minister of Mexico from 2006 to 2012. As Foreign Minister, she was the president of the United Nations Climate Change Conference held in Cancun in 2010 and also hosted the G20 Summit in Mexico in 2012. 

H.E. Patricia Espinosa Cantellano was an appointed member of the High-level Panel of eminent person to advise the Secretary-General of the United Nations on a global development framework beyond 2015.  

Patricia Espinosa Cantellano is very engaged in fields of environment. For her commitment she received amongst others the “Ehrenpreis des Deutschen Nachhaltigkeitspreises” (German Sustainability Price) in 2012. 

Dr. Dagmar Lohan

Dr. Dagmar Lohan

Dr. Dagmar Lohan is desk officer for the post-2015 agenda for sustainable development at the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ). 

Prior to her current placement, she was desk officer for German bilateral cooperation with Yemen. Before joining BMZ, Dr. Lohan worked for the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH on environmental law, implementation of the Biodiversity Convention, and on human rights with placements in Tunisia, headquarters and at the World Bank.

Dr. Lohan holds a B.Sc.in Ecology and Conservation from Sussex University, an LL.M. in Environmental Law from Nottingham University, and a D.Phil. in International Environmental Law from Oxford University.

Moderation: Conny Czymoch

Conny Czymoch

Conny Czymoch is an independent international moderator and journalist. She has been engaged in conference moderation for the European Union, German ministries, blue chip German corporations and non-profit organisations covering a host of global topics. For fourteen years until 2011, she worked as anchorwoman for the German political television channel Phoenix. Issues such as human rights, anti-human trafficking, economic cooperation and social responsibility are her core competence. 

The European Development Days have been a fix date for Conny´s work in the last 5 years. Initially working on side events or hig level panels prepared by NGOs like EUNIDA or governmental organisatons like GIZ or SNV, in 2011 and 2012, Conny moderated the opening and closing ceremonies together with Commissioner Piebalgs.

On the post-2015 process, she moderated a 2day conference in Bonn, organised by the Development and Peace Foundation, as well as numerous other events, including a GIZ meeting with Helen Clark,  UNDP Adminstrator.

Conny has been a media coach for corporate top management and NGOs in the last 2 decades. In addition, she produces short documentaries and portrays of development projects, processes, actors and benefactors. 

Session 1: Ecological Dimension

Introduction of the panelists and the moderator for this session. 

Saran Kaba Jones

Saran Kaba Jones

Saran Kaba Jones is the Founder and CEO of FACE Africa, a US/Liberia based nonprofit organization that funds and supports sustainable clean water, sanitation and hygiene projects in Liberia. Saran was born in Liberia but left in 1989 at the young age of eight, shortly before the country's civil war began. The daughter of a career diplomat, she returned to Liberia almost 20 years after she left to find a country in desperate need and made it her mission to help, specifically focused on access to safe drinking water and sanitation. Saran is a 2013 World Economic Forum Young Global Leader and was listed by the Guardian UK as one of Africa's 25 Top Women Achievers alongside former President Joyce Banda of Malawi and Nobel Laureate Leymah Gbowee. In 2012, she received the Longines/ Town&Country “Women Who Make A Difference’ Award for her work with FACE Africa. Saran was also a Huffington Post “Greatest Person of the Day”, and listed as one of Forbes Magazine’s 20 Youngest Power Women In Africa.

Marie-Luise Abshagen

Marie-Luise Abshagen

Marie-Luise Abshagen works with the German NGO Forum on Environment and Development as a policy officer for the Post-2015 Agenda. She holds a Master of Arts in East Asian Studies and Political Science. The German NGO Forum was founded after the UN Conference on Environment and Development in 1992. It coordinates the activities of German NGOs in international policy processes on sustainable development.

Ute Koczy

Ute Koczy served as Member of Parliament (Alliance 90/ the Greens) and spokeswoman for development politics from 2005 to 2013). 

From 1995 to 2005 she served as a Member of the Parliament of Northrhine-Westfalia and as the spokeswoman for european and one-world-politics as well as spokeswoman for children, youth and family. 

Ute Koczy also worked as a Consultant for development politics at the „Welthaus“ e.V., Bielefeld and as a member of the managing committee from 1992 to 1995. 

She holds a degree as cultural scientist (M.A.) from the University of Tuebingen in empirical science of culture, ethnology and geograpy.

Moderation: Dr. Ursula Schäfer-Preuss

Dr. Ursula Schäfer-Preuss

Dr. Schaefer-Preuss is an economist who has been engaged in the field of development policy for more than 35 years. 

She is the Vice-President of UN Women National Committee Germany e.V. and the Chair of the Global Water Partnership. 

Dr. Schaefer-Preuss’ latest assignment was as Vice President of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) in Manila for Knowledge Management and Sustainable Development. She was responsible for ADB’s Regional and Sustainable Development Department and Economics and Research Department (Office of the Chief Economist).

Prior to joining ADB, Dr. Schaefer-Preuss was Director General of Germany’s Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ). She was responsible for policies and principles of German development cooperation and German development policies for Asia and Latin America. 

Dr. Schaefer-Preuss previously held posts as Alternate Executive Director of the Inter-American Development Bank, in the Permanent Mission of the Federal Republic of Germany to the United Nations in New York, and the German Embassy in Khartoum, Sudan.

Dr. Schaefer-Preuss took her post-graduate studies in political science, economics and sociology, and earned her Doctorate and Master’s degree in Economics at the Albert-Ludwig-University in Freiburg, Germany.

Session 2: Social Dimension

Introduction to the panelists and the moderator of the session. 

Dr. Barbara Boswell

Dr. Barbara Boswell

Dr Barbara Boswell is a Project Officer for the Young Women's Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR) Leadership Project at the African Gender Institute (AGI) at the University of Cape Town, where she also Lectures in Gender Studies. She also coordinates an action research group on sexual and reproductive health rights with young women and supports, on behalf of the African Gender Institute, action research projects on sexual and reproductive health rights five partner universities in the SADC region. Dr. Barbara Boswell has a PhD in Women's Studies from the University of Maryland, a Master's degree in Gender and Women's Studies from the University of the Western Cape, and an undergraduate journalism degree from the Cape Peninsula University of Technology.  She has worked as a Lecturer in Gender and Women's Studies at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, and held an American Council of Learned Societies Postdoctoral Fellowship at the University of Virginia in the USA, where she taught South African literature and black sexuality studies. Her research interests include youth sexualities, feminist and women's movements, and feminist approaches to black South African literature. Plenty of her work has been published.

Mark-Pieter van den Heuvel

Mark Pieter van de Heuvel

Mark-Pieter van den Heuvel works for RutgersWPF as an advocacy officer for the MenCare+ programme, a 4 country initiative, to promote men's involvement as equal, responsive, nurturing and non-violent fathers and caregivers. Within his work he also advocates for increased access, uptake and quality of sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) services for young people, especially underserved groups.

He is a proud father of two young daughters and by that he is experiencing the relevance (and joy!) of being an involved, caring and loving dad, right from the start.

Mark-Pieter van den Heuvel studied Development Economics and International Development at the University of Nijmegen.

Chris Barkley

Chris Barkley

Chris Barkley has over seven years of experience working in youth development and HIV prevention in Africa.  In 2010, he was behind the development of SKILLZ Street, a program for adolescent girls that promotes gender equality, reproductive health, and HIV prevention through organized soccer. SKILLZ Street is now implemented in five countries in southern and western Africa. Chris also has experience working in the private sector and holds a Master's degree in Business Administration (MBA). Chris currently provides leadership in the areas of program design, mobile technology, and fundraising.

Heide Serra

Heide Serra

Heide Serra graduated in literature and political science and is PR consultant. Since 2009, she is desk officer for public relations and fundraising at AMICA e.V. The organization works in Southeastern Europe, the Middle East and North Africa. Core responsibilities include psychosocial work, empowerment and organizational development. In 2010, AMICA was awarded the German UNIFEM Prize 2010.

Moderation: Katrin Erlingsen

Katrin Erlingsen

Katrin Erlingsen has been working as a policy advisor for DSW since 2012. Her main focus areas are sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR), the post-2015 process, gender issues, and population dynamics.

Before joining DSW, she worked for a Berlin-based consultancy specialized on development cooperation. Prior to this, she served as policy advisor of the chairperson of the development committee of the German Bundestag, covering a broad portfolio of issues related to development policy. 

Katrin Erlingsen holds a master degree in political science. She studied in Bremen, Madrid, and Berlin, focusing on International Relations and Latin America.


Session 3: Economic Dimension

Introduction to the panelists and the moderator of this session. 

Gaelle Demolis

Gaelle Demolis

Gaelle Demolis, a French National, worked as Monitoring and Reporting Specialist for the Fund for Gender Equality for over a year providing technical support to 35 projects on Women’s Economic and Political Empowerment throughout Africa, Asia and the Pacific. Prior to this experience, she worked for two years for the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) Central Africa Regional Office  based in Cameroon, as Associate Expert on Women’s Human Rights and Gender, where she sensitized government officials,  NGOs, National Commissions on Human Rights  and UN colleagues on Women’s Human Rights issues in Central Africa. Prior to her appointment with OHCHR she also worked with UNIFEM for almost 4 years as Gender-Responsive Budgeting Programme Associate for the North Africa Regional Office based in Rabat, Morocco. Gaelle holds a Master’s Degree in Political Science from the Institute of Political Studies in Grenoble, France.

Caroline Khamati Mugalla

Caroline Khamati Mugalla

Caroline Khamati Mugalla is currently working in Tanzania Arusha for the East African Trade Union Confederation as the organization’s Executive Secretary. Previously she was EATUC’s Lobby, Advocacy and Public Relations officer. She is currently a member of the Commonwealth Civil Society Advisory Committee representing Eastern Africa; she is also a member of the Global Council of Post Busan CSOs and the Trade Union Development Co-operation Network. Prior to this she worked in different capacities at the Central Organization of Trade Unions, Kenya 

Caroline Khamati Mugalla was born in Kenya; she speaks and writes English, Swahili and Luhya fluently. She has been trained in International Trade and Development, Labour Markets, Social Protection and Social Security, Gender Mainstreaming, and Rural Youth Employment Policies. She has contributed to the development of various policy papers. In 2006 she also worked on the drafting of the Kenyan Counter Trafficking in Persons Bill. 

Caroline Khamati Mugalla has a BSc in Biology and Chemistry from the University of Eastern Africa, a diploma in Human Resources Management, and is currently pursuing an MBA at the Kenya Methodist University.

Gudrun Lachenmann, Prof. Dr.

Gudrun Lachenmann

Gudrun Lachenmann, Prof. Dr., professor em. Sociology of Development and Research Centre at Bielefeld University since 1990. Formerly research fellow at the German Development Institute, Berlin, Africa Division, doing policy research, advice, and training.

She studied Sociology, Political Science, and Economics at the University Konstanz, Germany, received her doctorate in 1982 from the University of Konstanz and her habilitation in 1989 from the Free University, Berlin. 

Her research interests include global and local networking for engendering development policy, civil society, transformation processes, women's and peasant movements in Africa, engendering the embeddedness of economy, and the methodology of multi-level and translocal field research. She has done extensive empirical research mainly in francophone West Africa including Senegal, Mali, and Cameroon. 

She is a member of the section Sociology of Development and Social Anthropology of the German Association of Sociology (DGS), the International Sociological Association, and the Society for International Development (SID), Berlin as well as of the European Association of Development Research Training Institutes (EADI). 

Moderation: Helene Wolf

Helene Wolf

Helene Wolf is the Deputy Executive Director of the International Civil Society Centre, based in Berlin. The Centre helps the world’s leading international civil society organisations like Amnesty International, WWF or Transparency International maximise their impact for a sustainable and more equitable world. Over the past 3 years, the Centre has coordinated several policy initiatives of civil society organisations around the development of the Post-2015 agenda and convened a global conference to gather an overview of civil society perspectives and demands towards an inclusive and effective new framework that addresses the needs of both people and the environment.

Before joining the Centre, Helene Wolf worked for the International Crisis Group in Brussels and a strategic communications consultancy in Berlin. She studied Cultural Sciences at the European University in Frankfurt (Oder) and Wroclaw and holds an MSc in European Politics and Government from the London School of Economics.