Experts' profiles - Jessica Smith
Jessica Smith
Jessica Smith is currently Senior Programme Officer in the Ecosystem Assessment Programme at the UNEP World Conservation Monitoring Centre (UNEP-WCMC) in Cambridge UK.

She was technical coordinator for the Environment Management Group (EMG) report, Global Drylands" A UN System Wide Response, launched at the 10th Conference of the Parties to the UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD). The report was the result of a 2-year priority-setting process with 20 UN agencies to identify strategies for a UN system wide response to drylands challenges and opportunities. It represents a positive and proactive development approach from the UN system for this critical ecosystem, representing 40% of the world"s terrestrial surface and home to 1 in 3 people - 90% of whom are in developing countries.

Since 2009 Jessica has been developing, resourcing and managing a new thematic portfolio of work for UNEP-WCMC, "Land and Livelihoods". She sits on the Convention on Biological Diversity"s (CBD) Expert Group on Biodiversity for Poverty Eradication and Development and is actively trying to strengthen UNEP-WCMC"s scientific and technical contributions the land and development agendas. Prior to joining UNEP-WCMC Jessica previously worked for IUCN in Botswana, UNDP-GEF Small Grants in Namibia, the Canadian government and in private sector consultancy primarily in southern Africa, having gained degrees in environment, business and development in her native Canada.

Her areas of interest are drylands development, mainstreaming biodiversity and development, biodiversity-based trade and enterprises, and pro-poor implementation of CBD and UNCCD. She invites questions on these linked topics particularly the UN"s "Delivery as One" on drylands.
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