The CEO of the Global Center on Adaptation (GCA), Professor Patrick Verkooijen, was appointed Chair of the Climate Adaptation Programme at the faculties Campus Fryslân and Spatial Sciences at the University of Groningen. Verkooijen will be involved in setting the curriculum for the upcoming Climate Adaptation Governance Masters programme as well as supervising doctorate students. He will also help connect students and researchers to a global network of climate adaptation institutions.
On making the appointment, Ban Ki-moon, 8th United Nations Secretary General and Chairman of the Board of the Global Center on Adaptation said: “Having worked closely with Professor Verkooijen for several years now, I can think of no better person to take on the role of chairing the Climate Adaptation Governance Programme at the University of Groningen in my name. This University is one of the only academic institutions in the world to offer students the opportunity to study how we can best adapt to the impacts of our climate emergency – an absolute necessity if the world is going to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals in the next decade.”
Jouke de Vries, President of the University of Groningen, is also very delighted with the appointment: “I met with Patrick Verkooijen for the first time just after he became CEO of the Global Center on Adaptation in September 2018. Together we celebrated the honorary doctorate for Ban Ki-moon. He has a great interest in everything happening at our university. His inspiring work and international network is very important for the development of the University of Groningen.”
Next generation leaders
On accepting the appointment, Professor Patrick Verkooijen said: “I am honoured to have been chosen to Chair this vital programme in recognition of the global leadership of Ban Ki-moon. Educating the next generation of adaptation leaders is essential if we are to make the world more climate resilient and give today’s young people a central role in driving the adaptation agenda.”
Andrej Zwitter, Dean of Campus Fryslân agrees: “It is a privilege to welcome Prof. Patrick Verkooijen to Campus Fryslân. Verkooijen is known for its many years of dedication and commitment to climate adaptation. Our students can now learn from one of the foremost experts and that is really great. ”
The GCA is a new international organization hosted by the Netherlands. It works as a solutions broker to accelerate action and support for adaptation solutions, from the international to the local, in partnership with the public and private sector, to ensure we learn from each other and work together for a climate resilient future. Verkooijen is recognized globally for mobilizing stakeholders and delivering scaled up actions that address climate change. Before his appointment to the Center, he served as Climate Adviser and Special Representative for Climate Change at the World Bank Group. He is Professor of Practice in Sustainable Development Diplomacy at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy and received a doctorate degree from Wageningen University and a master’s degree in Public Administration from Harvard University.
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