Ms Merlyn Van Voore has been appointed Head of the Secretariat of the International Resource Panel. She took up duty on 17 February 2020.

The International Resource Panel was launched by the United Nations Environment Programme in 2007 to build and share the knowledge needed to improve our use of resources worldwide. The Panel consists of eminent scientists, highly skilled in resource management issues. Their reports distill the latest scientific, technical and socio-economic findings around global resource use. They provide advice and connections between policymakers, industry and the community on ways to achieve resource efficiency and decoupling.

In her role as the Head of the International Resource Panel Secretariat, Ms Van Voore will supervise and manage the overall direction and operation of the Panel’s assessments and outreach. She will oversee the Secretariat technical assistance activities in supporting the Panel and Steering Committee to fulfill their roles efficiently, particularly in a time seeing increased science-based policy demand in the area of natural resource management. She will also provide strategic guidance to advance the implementation and global impact of the Panel’s work and ensure that the efficient use of natural resources is high on the political agenda.

Ms Van Voore has more than 25 years' professional experience in the field of science-based policymaking. She joins us from the Executive Office of the UN Secretary-General in New York where she worked as Senior Programme Manager, responsible for providing guidance and policy advice to senior management on emerging climate and sustainable development issues.

Ms Van Voore started her career in the United Nations in 2009, first at UNEP's Headquarters in Nairobi, as the Africa Coordinator for climate change. She then worked in UNEP’s Paris office as Climate Change Coordinator & Special Advisor to the Executive Director. Her previous work experience includes working for the South African Government, an international development agency, the Nelson Mandela Foundation, a management consultancy firm, and a university. In these positions, she has been responsible for research, policy formulation and development, policy advice and programme delivery, resource mobilization, partnerships, representation, and advocacy.

A South African national, Ms Van Voore holds a Master’s Degree in Public Administration (Public and Economic Policy), from the London School of Economics, and a Master’s Degree of Science in Education from Oxford University. She completed her Bachelor’s Degree in Science at the University of Cape Town, South Africa.