Barbara Ewals is the current Executive Director of the Initiative for Global Resilience (i4gr) – a global movement that advances partnership initiatives on resilience in all forms. i4gr assist all stakeholders to scale for impact – enhancing north-south and south-south cooperation through improved partnership mechanisms.
Partnerships & Stakeholder Engagement has been the forefront of her career. She was one of the key experts that was tapped by UN-ESCAP & UN University to validate the guidelines they were developing to assist members states, public & private organizations as well as civil societies in managing their partnerships to implement the UN’s 2030 Agenda. This guidelines was then published and unveiled during UN-ESCAP’s Asia Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development 2018 – which is also the regional high level forum for UN-ESCAP’s member states.
She has extensive global experience spanning 15 years as a Partnerships & Advocacy expert in leading nonprofit and profit-oriented organizations. Prior to i4gr, she was also the Director for Partnerships at the International Society of Geriatric Oncology (SIOG) as well as the Council on Health Research for Development (COHRED) – both organizations based in Geneva. She was also the Stakeholder Engagement Director for Global Initiatives (a sustainability consultancy based in Singapore). She has held various positions in organizations based in Thailand, Singapore, Geneva and the Philippines.
Sreeni has extensive experience in the development sector spanning over two decades. A Chemical Engineer by training with an MBA from the Asian Institute of Management, he has led & been involved in development projects in over 20 countries across Asia.
His brainchild, the AsianNGO, is a one-stop set of interlined databases of funding and grant opportunities, partnership prospects, and learning resources for NGOs, nonprofits, and development organizations in Asia. It has become Asia’s leading platform supporting development organizations to address issues that they face.
Within the AsianNGO ecosystem is a quarterly publication called iMPACT Magazine, the first and only publication for Asia’s social sector. With online and print versions, iMPACT has become a great source of learning for development professionals. The magazine features insights, interviews and practical advice that cut across borders and themes, from some of the most innovative and influential minds in their industries.
Both AsianNGO and IMPACT are social ventures of the Asia Society for Social Improvement and Sustainable Transformation (ASSIST), an NGO also founded and managed by Sreeni. It is an international, self-sustaining, Pan-Asian non-profit organization that promotes capacity building to achieve progress and profit in the region.
With 20+ years of experience, mostly in senior management positions in trade show business and manage-ment consulting, Heiko is a known expert for the development of new business areas, strategic growth as well as restructuring and turnaround management. He has an excellent track record of intercultural leadership, operations excellence and corporate management in Asia and Europe.
In February 2019 international event organizer Jaarbeurs/VNU Exhibitions announced his appointment as its new Managing Director for Southeast Asia. Based in Bangkok/Thailand, Heiko oversees the entire SEA region and is responsible for setting the strategic direction as well as defining the growth strategy of VNU in that region. Effective April 1, 2019 Heiko additionally took full leadership as Managing Director of the VIV worldwide event portfolio as well as the VNU Exhibitions Europe operations as fully owned legal entity of Jaarbeurs B.V.
Most recently Heiko served as Deputy General Manager of Messe Düsseldorf Shanghai as well as Deputy Managing Director of Messe Düsseldorf China based in Shanghai overseeing 3 offices and +70 employees in China, covering a show portfolio of 16 exhibitions and +30 shows of the MD Group in overseas markets.
Heiko holds a master’s degree in Business Administration from EBS University, was active as Guest Professor at the Shanghai University of International Business and Economics (SUIBE) and is currently PhD Student and enrolled at the Leipzig Graduate School of Management Doctoral Program in Leipzig, Germany.
As Mekong Institute’s (MI) Executive Director beginning on September 1, 2020, Mr. Suriyan Vichitlekarn steers the strategic planning and implementation of the intergovernmental organization’s human resource development, capacity strengthening, and research efforts to spur the acceleration of sustainable socioeconomic development and poverty alleviation in the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS).
Recognized as a respected development leader and regional integration advocate, Mr. Suriyan holds over 15 years of experience in delivering innovative approaches and sustainable practices across his specialized areas of agriculture and rural development, public- private partnership, and trade facilitation in the GMS and Southeast Asia.
Before taking the helm at MI, Mr. Suriyan was the Deputy Cluster Coordinator for Food and Agriculture of the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH in Thailand and Spokesperson of the Agriculture Working Group under the GIZ Sector Network for Natural Resources and Rural Development in Asia and the Pacific.
As Deputy Cluster Coordinator, Mr. Suriyan spearheaded project steering and management, as well as partnership development in the food and agriculture sectors across the GMS. He, as the Regional Project Director of the Better Rice Initiative Asia from 2014 to 2017, also ushered several rice-related initiatives, which continue to be adapted and implemented by major rice-producing countries across Southeast Asia today.
In addition, Mr. Suriyan carries an extensive international development network, having assumed key positions at the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific, Asian Development Bank (ADB), the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Secretariat in Indonesia, and the Southeast Asian Fisheries Development Center. He remains one of the most sought-after and prolific speakers for his macro- and micro-level perspectives on agricultural development in high-level knowledge exchange and dialogue-sharing platforms organized by international and regional organizations such as ADB, the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation, ASEAN, FAO, the Greater Mekong Subregional Economic Cooperation, and the Sustainable Rice Platform. Mr. Suriyan has also contributed to numerous research and policy studies, including being the lead author of the ASEAN Integrated Food Security Framework.
Mr. Suriyan is a Thai national and graduate of Faculty of Fisheries at Kasetsart University, Thailand. He completed his master’s degree program on Management of Agricultural Knowledge Systems (MAKS) at the Wageningen Agricultural University, the Netherlands.
Mr. Timothy Wilcox is currently the manager of UNDRR activities in South-East Asia and was the former Head of Office for UNDRR’s Sub-Regional Office for the Pacific based in Suva, Fiji for five years. Prior to this, he served in the Australian Aid Program for many years managing Australian disaster mitigation, response, and recovery efforts in the Pacific. He also managed humanitarian policy, disaster risk reduction, regional pandemic and health programs. Familiar with the diverse challenges of natural hazards and disasters, he also served for seven years in the emergency services in Australia and holds qualifications in both Emergency Management and Human Services.