|Plenary Session 1: A Strategic Blueprint for Climate-Resilient Cities
Her Excellency Jo Tyndall
New Zealand High Commissioner to Singapore
Her Excellency Jo Tyndall was most recently New Zealand’s Climate Change Ambassador. From 2016 to December 2018, she also co-chaired the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change’s (UNFCCC) Ad Hoc Working Group on the Paris Agreement. As Climate Change Ambassador, she was head of delegation to the United Nations climate negotiations with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade from July 2010 to March 2016.
From 2014 to 2015, Ms Tyndall held a Vice President position on the Bureau of the UNFCCC, representing the regional grouping of Western European and Other States.
Prior to her role as Climate Change Ambassador, Ms Tyndall was Director of the Broadcasting Unit in the Ministry for Culture and Heritage. From 1999 to 2006, she was Chief Executive of the broadcasting funding body, NZ On Air. She has also served as Chief Executive of two screen industry organisations – the Screen Production and Development Association and Project Blue Sky (1994 to 1999).
United Nations Environment Programme
(Asia and the Pacific)
Ms Dechen Tsering was appointed as the Regional Director of United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) in Asia and the Pacific in March 2017. As the regional arm of UNEP, the Asia-Pacific office works with governments, local authorities and the private sector to develop and put into place cleaner and safer policies and strategies that encourage the efficient use of natural resources and reduce risks for humans and the environment.
Ms Tsering has held management and leadership positions with the United Nations and has over 30 years of experience in national government and intergovernmental organisations. She has been actively involved in intergovernmental negotiations as a key negotiator for the least-developed countries and contributed to the establishment of the Least Developed Countries Fund and the Least Developed Countries Expert Group. She also has experience in the management of complex development projects.
Professor Seeram Ramakrishna
Circular Economy Taskforce Chair and Director
Centre for Nanotechnology and Sustainability, National University of Singapore
Professor Seeram Ramakrishna is recognised among the World’s Most Influential Minds, as well as World’s Highly Cited Researchers in cross-fields. His recent book ‘An Introduction to Circular Economy’ received 2021 Springer Nature China New Development Award.
He is a member of:
1. UNESCO’s Global Independent Expert Group on Universities and the 2030 Agenda
2. Extended Producer Responsibility Advisory Committee of National Environment Agency, Singapore
3. ESG committee of Singapore Institute of Directors
4. Enterprise Singapore and ISO Committees on ISO59020/TC323 Circular Economy, and TC for Circularity of Materials
Professor Seeram is also the chairman of:
1. Sustainable Manufacturing TC at the Institution of Engineers Singapore
2. Plastics Recycling Centre of Excellence, PRAS, Singapore
His senior academic leadership roles include National University of Singapore Vice-President (Research Strategy); Dean of Faculty of Engineering; Director of NUS Enterprise; and Founding Chairman of Solar Energy Institute of Singapore. He received PhD from the University of Cambridge, UK; and the GMP from Harvard University, USA.
World Resources Institute Indonesia
Mr Nirarta “Koni” Samadhi is the country director of World Resources Institute Indonesia (WRI Indonesia). As former Deputy Minister of Indonesia’s Unit for Development Monitoring and Oversight (UKP4), he and WRI have worked together over many years, and he joins WRI Indonesia at a time when its work in the forest, land use, and governance sectors is expanding. WRI Indonesia is currently serving as the National Plastic Action Partnership secretariat, bringing together government, business, civil society organisations, and researchers, to support the country's marine litter reduction target.
Mr Koni played a leading role in designing policies such as Indonesia’s ground-breaking forest moratorium, establishing Indonesia’s National Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation Agency (BP REDD+), and driving the OneMap Initiative to harmonise Indonesia’s land use planning. Mr Koni previously served as chair of the Working Group on Moratorium Monitoring, was part of the Indonesia REDD+ Task Force, and worked with the United Nations Development Programme as a strategic planning advisor and head of Papua Accelerated Development Advance Team.
Founder and Managing Director
Ms Jessica Cheam is the Founder and Managing Director of Eco-Business, Asia Pacific's leading independent media and business intelligence organisation dedicated to sustainable development. She has more than 15 years of experience in media, sustainable development and Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) issues globally.
She is a regular columnist for national newspapers and is on the Board of Directors for Singapore-listed ComfortDelGro, one of the world's largest land transport companies, as an independent director. She chairs the Board Sustainability Committee and is a member on the Investment and Digitalisation committees.
She serves as ESG General Partner to Asian private equity firm Tembusu Partners; Strategic Advisor to Blue Planet Environmental Solutions, a member of the International Women’s Forum Singapore, and is founding Director of EB Impact, a non-profit dedicated to positive sustainable development impact in Asia.
Ms Cheam is also a member of the Singapore Institute of Directors, and a member of its ESG and Communications committees.