The following persons will be a part of the Annual Conference of Swiss Development Cooperation 2017 through round tables or keynote speeches.
Manuel Sager, SDC Director General
Manuel Sager, born in 1955, obtained a doctorate in law from the University of Zurich and subsequently a Master of Laws and Letters (LL.M.) from Duke University Law School. He joined the diplomatic service in 1988 and held various positions at the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs. In 2005 he became an executive director of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development in London and was subsequently Swiss ambassador to the United States from 2010 to 2014. Manuel Sager has been director-general of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) since November 2014.
Johann N. Schneider-Ammann, Federal Councillor
Johann Schneider-Ammann, born in 1952, holds a degree in electrical engineering from the Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich and an MBA from INSEAD in Fontainebleau (Paris). In 1999 he was elected to the National Council for the FDP.Die Liberalen party. On 22 September 2010 he was elected to the Federal Council by the United Federal Assembly. Mr Schneider-Ammann has been head of the Federal Department of Economic Affairs, Education and Research since 1 November 2010.
Basic and vocational education and training as a doorway to employment
Issa Compaoré, secretary for employment and vocational education at the Conseil National du Patronat Burkinabè, Burkina Faso
Issa Compaore, born in 1970 in Burkina Faso, is an industrial engineer with degrees in applied physics and management. In his 20 years as a company manager, he has supported several thousand workers in vocational education and training. As a teacher, he has developed training curricula for workers in industry, mining, business and public administration. He has also participated actively in drafting private sector development policies as a means of creating employment.
Ambroise Tapsoba, Programme Officer, Burkina Faso, SDC
Ambroise Tapsoba, born in 1973 in Burkina Faso, studied educational science and holds a master's degree in educational consulting and engineering. His research focuses on the quality of education and on alternative education options for excluded groups. He is currently working on the development of education strategies and the introduction of vocational education and training programmes adapted to the needs of the private sector. Ambroise Tapsoba has 20 years' experience in development cooperation.
Sylvain Simporé was born in Bisraga, Burkina Faso,
and is 22 years old. After his compulsory schooling, in 2012 he successfully completed the ‘Lycée Régional d’Enseignement Professionnelle Agricole’, a vocational education and training college in Bingo. He then worked as a construction labourer for almost two years on various building sites. From 2015 to 2016, he studied for and passed the exam to obtain the national certificate for masons. He then completed an internship to further develop his skills. Since January 2017, he has been working as an independent mason in Burkina Faso. During his free time he enjoys playing football, listening to music and travelling to new places.
Vocational qualifications to meet different needs
Barbara Weyermann, Programme Officer, Nepal, SDC
Barbara Weyermann is Programme Manager at SDC Nepal, responsible for skills development, migration and development and for gender-based violence. Before joining SDC, Barbara Weyermann has worked for UNICEF, Terre des hommes, Christlicher Friedensdienst and as a consultant in Asia and Africa. She is specialized on migration and on addressing gender-based violence and psychosocial issues in fragile contexts.
Khem Lakai, founder of GATE (Global Academy of Tourism and Hospitality Education), Nepal
Khem Lakai is the founder of GATE – Global Academy of Tourism & Hospitality Education, established in 2007. GATE has trained over 3’000 students in various occupations of the hospitality sector. GATE is associated with Hotellerie Suisse and TAFE Australia. Khem Lakai holds a Commerce degree and a Hotel Management degree from SSTH (Swiss School of Tourism and Hospitality) and is an advisor to the Nepal Sector Skills Committee for Hospitality. He is also in the advisory committee of one of SDC’s skills projects in Nepal.
Markus Reisle, Head of Global Programme Migration and Development, SDC
Born 1961 in Biel, Switzerland. Markus Reisle has a Master’s Degree in Anthropology and History of Art at the University of Freiburg im Uechtland, Switzerland. For 14 years he worked for the Swiss Red Cross, occupying different management functions in the field of migration. 2003 he started working for the SDC. Until 2007 he was senior advisor on migration at headquarters in Bern, and was deputy country director in Kigali, Rwanda, from 2007 to 2011 as a migration and development expert. Since 2013 he is head of the Global Program Migration and Development at headquarters in Bern. He is married and has two adult children.
Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, former Nigerian Finance Minister and Foreign Minister, managing director of the World Bank 2007–2011
Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala is Chair of the Board of Gavi, the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisation. Since its creation in 2000, Gavi has immunised 580 million children globally and saved eight million lives. She is also Senior Adviser at Lazard, one the world’s premier financial advisory and asset management firms. Previously, Dr Okonjo-Iweala served twice as Nigeria’s Finance Minister, from 2003-2006, 2011-2015, and briefly Foreign Minister in 2006, the first woman to hold both positions. She spent a 25-year career at the World Bank as a development economist, rising to the No. 2 position of Managing Director, responsible for an $81 billion operational portfolio including Europe and Central Asia, South Asia, and Africa (2007-2011). Dr Okonjo-Iweala is currently also Chair of the Board of the African Union's African Risk Capacity (ARC), an innovative weather-based insurance mechanism for African countries; and co-Chair of the Commission on the New Climate Economy with Lord Nicolas Stern and Paul Polman.
An ecosystem for entrepreneurship
Javier Salinas, Director ‘Emprende UP’, Centre for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, Universidad del Pacifico, Peru
Javier Salinas is the director of the Center of Entrepreneurship and Innovation of the University of the Pacific, entrepreneur and investor, promoter of the fintech sector in Peru and Latin American region. An economist with extensive experience in international banking, project finance and structured financing; Javier Salinas is a manager in the formation of investment funds in Peru, debt, mezzanine facilities and private equity. He has worked as an investment banker and is active in the development of new businesses and support to entrepreneurship and innovation. He is interested in articulating the entrepreneurial ecosystem in Peru and Latin America, is a promoter of crowdfunding in the region and financing mechanisms for early stages such as the Business Angel Networks and Micro Venture Capital. He has been a member of the Worldwide Crowdfunding Council Leaders since 2014.
Charlotte Ducrot, Swisscontact, Program Manager for Peru, Swiss Entrepreneurship Programme
Charlotte Ducrot is the Peru Manager of the Swiss Entrepreneurship Program (Swiss EP), a global program funded by SECO and implemented by Swisscontact in 6 countries. Previously, Charlotte worked in Colombia for Endeavor. She also worked in Switzerland for the Forum of Young Global Leaders (YGLs) at the World Economic Forum (WEF). Charlotte holds a Master’s in International Affairs from the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies (Switzerland), a Master’s in International Law from La Sorbonne University (France), and a Bachelor in Law from Nanterre University (France).
Liliana de Sá Kirchknopf, Head Private Sector Development Division, SECO
Liliana de Sá Kirchknopf is Head of the Private Sector Development Division in the Economic Development Cooperation Directorate at SECO, promoting a better business environment and access to finance for enterprises as well as strengthened skills. She has been working for SECO since 1996 in different positions, including as Senior Advisor at the Swiss Executive Directors Office at the World Bank Group in Washington D.C., as private sector development specialist for the International Finance Corporation IFC and as Head of the Swiss Contribution Office in Budapest, responsible for the set-up and implementation of a 130 Mio. CHF cohesion programme in Hungary. She holds a master in economics from the University of Berne and a minor in political science and speaks five languages.
Swiss development cooperation: vocational education and training creates prospects
Isabelle Chevalley, member of the National Council, Vaud
Isabelle Chevalley was born in 1972 in Aubonne in the canton of Vaud. She studied chemistry at the University of Lausanne and completed her doctorate in 2000. After an academic career and various teaching positions, Ms Chevalley entered the private sector where she gained a lot of experience in the field of renewable energies. She started her political career in 2001 as a deputy in the canton of Vaud’s constitutional committee. In 2011 she was elected as the canton's representative from the Swiss Green Liberal Party for the National Council. Ms Chevalley is also a member of the Advisory Committee on International Cooperation.
Carlo Sommaruga, member of the National Council, Geneva
Carlo Sommaruga was born in 1959 in Zurich. He studied law at the University of Geneva and was admitted to the bar in 1989. He works as a lawyer for the Geneva Tenants' Association. His political career began in 1991 when he became a member of Thônex Communal Council. He held this position until 2001 when he was elected to Geneva's Cantonal Parliament. Since 2003 Mr Sommaruga has represented the canton of Geneva in the National Council as a member of the Swiss Social Democratic Party.
Thomas Greminger, SDC Deputy Director General
Since August 2015 Thomas Greminger has been head of the South Cooperation Department and deputy director of the SDC. He has held numerous positions throughout his long diplomatic career, most recently as the permanent representative of Switzerland to the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, the United Nations Office and the international organisations in Vienna. Prior to this, he worked in the areas of development policy and cooperation, conflict resolution, human security and migration at the FDFA. Mr Greminger lives in Bern and has four daughters. He holds the rank of lieutenant colonel in the Swiss Armed Forces and serves in the Armed Forces Joint Staff. In his free time he enjoys mountain biking, modern and classical music and photography.
Raymund Furrer, Head of SECO Economic Cooperation and Development
Ambassador Raymund Furrer, lic. phil. l, born in 1960, was appointed head of SECO's Economic Cooperation and Development Division and Delegate of the Swiss Government for Trade Agreements on 1 October 2015. Prior to this, he was head of the Swiss Business Hub in the Gulf states and also, from 1 April 2014, consul general in Dubai. From 2008 to 2012 he was head of the Multilateral Financial Institutions unit. His previous positions include senior adviser to the Swiss executive director at the World Bank in Washington DC, head of bilateral economic relations with Asia, and first embassy secretary of the Swiss delegation to the OECD in Paris. He has also worked at the Asian Development Bank and in the private sector.