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Patrick Verkooijen


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.

President, Democratic Republic of the Congo
Minister for Finance and Economic Planning, Chair, Boards of Governors, African Development Bank
President, African Development Bank Group
Ministre du Plan et du Développement, Gouverneur de la Banque africaine de développement pour la Côte d’Ivoire
Minister of Economy, Finance and Investment Support, Government of Tunisia, African Development Governor for Tunisia
Minister for Finance, Economic Planning and Trade, African Development Bank Governor of the Seychelles
Assistant Secretary for Multilateral, Development and Trade Affairs, Ministry of the Economy, Finance and the Recovery, France , African Development Bank Alternate Governor for France
Minister of Finance, African Development Bank Governor for Algeria
Minister of Finance, Ethiopia, African Development Bank Governor for Ethiopia
State Secretary, International Development, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Governor of the African Development Bank for Norway
Minister of Economy, Planning and International Cooperation, Senegal, Governor of the African Development Bank for Senegal
Deputy Director-General International Bureau, Ministry of Finance, Temporary Governor of the African Development Bank for Japan
Undersecretary of International Financial Relations for Development, Secretariat of Strategic Affairs, Presidency of the Argentine Republic, Governor of the African Development Bank for Argentina
Permanent Secretary - Economic Management and Finance Ministry of Finance, African Development Bank Temporal Governor for Zambia
Governor of the Central Bank of Egypt, Governor of the African Development Bank for Egypt
Honourable Minister of Finance, Budget & National Planning / African Development Bank Governor for Nigeria
State Minister of Finance for Economic Cooperation, Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia
Minister of Water, Forest, the Sea and Environment Gabon
Director, Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention
Ambassador for Climate Change, Canada
Director General of the World Trade Organisation
President for COP 26
Deputy Secretary-General, Executive Office of the Secretary-General (EOSG)
President of the Assembly and the Chair of the Council, Global Green Growth Institute
Regional Director for Africa, World Health Organization
Vice Chairman and Partner at Global Infrastructure Partners.
Managing Director, International Monetary Fund
President, Korea Health Industry Development Institute (KHIDI)
Executive Director, Green Climate Fund
Founder & CEO, Mobihealth International, Nigeria
Founder and CEO, Kiri EV
Founder & CEO, Sinnot Technologies
CEO, IDB Invest
Director & Co-Founder, MSCAN Uganda
Journalist and Co-Founder, Moderate the Panel
Broadcaster and Entrepreneur, Moderate the Panel