CEO, Global Center on Adaptation
Patrick Verkooijen is the founder CEO of the Global Center on Adaptation (GCA), an international organization hosted by the Netherlands, to act as the solutions broker to accelerate, innovate and scale adaptation action for a climate-resilient world. In this role he works closely with Ban Ki-moon, architect of the Paris Agreement as 8th Secretary-General of the United Nations and Chairman of the Board of GCA.
Verkooijen’s personal insights and 30 years of diplomatic experience working in multilateral institutions ensure GCA’s programs focus on progress towards sustainable development to safeguard people, the planet and shared prosperity. He was the driving force behind the first ever Climate Adaptation Summit, hosted by the Netherlands. He also convened the inaugural Ministerial dialogue on climate adaptation in January 2020. With the participation of newly appointed U.S. Special Presidential Envoy for Climate, John Kerry and Managing Director of the IMF, Kristalina Georgieva, the dialogue focused on how to accelerate efforts to build forward better from the Covid-19 pandemic.
Verkooijen has worked directly with global leaders including Li Keqiang, Premier of China, Sheikh Hasina, Prime Minister of Bangladesh and Ali Bongo Ondimbo, President of Gabon and Chair of the African Adaptation Initiative and is also Managing Partner of the Climate Vulnerable Forum. He is Chair of the Ban Ki-moon Climate Adaptation Programme at the University of Groningen and Professor of Practice of Sustainable Development Diplomacy at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. He earned a PhD in Sustainable Development Diplomacy from Wageningen University, an MPA from Harvard University, and a Master’s Degree in Social and Political Philosophy from the University of Amsterdam. He has written academic papers focusing on sustainability and governance and is regularly published in global media outlets including The Guardian, New York Times, Washington Post, Reuters and CNN International as well as appearing on Sky News, BBC World and CNN International.