Experts' profiles - Monika MacDevette
Monika MacDevette
Monika MacDevette is the Chief of the Capacity Development Branch, and Deputy Director in the Division of Early Warning and Assessment at UNEP headquarters in Nairobi, which includes overall responsibility for UNEP’s engagement in the GEF Cross Cutting Capacity Development portfolio. She was formerly the Deputy Director of the UNEP World Conservation Monitoring Centre at Cambridge, UK. On behalf of UNEP, she has taken on the role of Coordinator for the Environment Under Review Sub-Programme (SP7).

Monika is an environmental physiologist having studied the adaptive responses of plants to harsh and stressful environments, particularly low temperature and freezing stress. She obtained her BSc and MSc (Plant Biotechnology) from the University of Manitoba, and PhD (Crop Physiology) from the University of Saskatchewan and conducted post-doctoral research at the University of British Columbia in genetic engineering. Her experience in research, and the application of physiology and developmental genetics to understanding how living things cope with environmental stresses, provides the basis for her interests into the impacts of environmental change on ecosystems and human well-being.

Over the past 24 years, she has worked in Canada, South Africa, India, Kuwait, the UK and Kenya where she has played a leading role in programmes including: the transfer of genes coding for Antarctic fish anti-freeze proteins into plants; screening for low temperature and drought stress tolerance in forestry production systems; managing the development of spatial information decision support systems in the fields of agriculture, biodiversity and coastal and marine development; assessing international research proposals on the human health impacts, and on groundwater contamination from the oil fires in Kuwait; coordinating multi-institutional environmental research partnerships; serving on an international expert team to review the performance of a European biodiversity information institute; co-authoring UNEP’s Environmental Food Crisis report; and leading a global team at UNEP providing capacity development and technology transfer expertise to governments in the field of environmental assessment. She established and operated a private technology management consulting company in Cape Town prior to working with UNEP since 2002.

Her professional interests include technology foresight, and fostering the integration of science with organizational dynamics to support informed environmental decision-making how to help people in institutions and government make good environmental decisions based on sound science.
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