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Foundations for Global Water Security and Resilience:

Knowledge, Technology and Policy

High-level Panels Scheduled to Talk

Home > Programme > High-level Panels Scheduled to Talk

High-level Panels Session 1

Private sector adaptation to a world of climate change and water extremes

※ It is scheduled to talk at the XVII Congress and subject to change.

Ulrike Sapiro

Global Senior Director, Water Stewardship & Agriculture, The Coca-Cola Company

Ulrike Sapiro is Global Senior Director of Water Stewardship and Sustainable Agriculture for The Coca-Cola Company, where she leads the global long-term strategic planning and engagement for the company’s water stewardship programs and sustainable agriculture ingredients sourcing. In her role, she builds closer integration of our programs across the business and brands and engages with industry, partners and stakeholders for collective action. Prior to that, she spent 10 years in evolving sustainability responsibilities at The Company’s Western Europe Business Unit and across the Europe, Middle East & Africa region. Prior to joining The Coca-Cola Company, Ulrike held sustainability and external affairs roles at RWE Thames Water, an international water utility managing external engagement on water resources, public infrastructure and development policy.

Michael Spencer

Research Fellow, Monash University and Trustee, Alliance for Water Stewardship

Michael is a Trustee of the Edinburgh-based Alliance for Water Stewardship (AWS). He was the organisation’s founding Co-Chair and was the founding CEO of AWS in the Asia-Pacific. He had previously been the founding CEO of the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) in Australia and worked as Head of Marketing and Communication at the FSC International Centre in Germany. He has held senior positions with BHP Billiton, National Australia Bank and BlueScope Steel. He was a senior adviser to the Premier of Victoria and worked as a senior journalist at the Seven and Nine networks in Australia. He is a Research Fellow at Monash Business School, runs a 250ha property for conservation and production and is President of the Strathbogie Ranges Conservation Management Network. He is an Honorary Life Member of both FSC Australia and AWS Asia-Pacific.

Tom Williams

Director, Water, World Business Council for Sustainable Development - WBCSD

Tom leads WBCSD’s work on water, facilitating the engagement of large, multi-national member companies on a range of issues related to water. For the last 15 years, Tom has worked on global issues related to water security, with a range of private and public sector stakeholders.

High-level Panels Session 2

Multi-Stakeholder Science and Policy Dialogue to Support Implementation of SDGs

※ It is scheduled to talk at the XVII Congress and subject to change.

Karishma Asoodani (Moderator)

Youth Delegate at the World Water Council and financial journalist

Karishma Asoodani is an Independent Financial Journalist from India, and a youth delegate at World Water Council. She is an advocate for youth-centric development, and is also keenly involved in the preparation of World Water Forum 9, to be held in 2021. Over the years, Karishma has developed an interest in Water Financing and Sustainable Development Goals. In March 2018, she was selected as a Young Professional to represent Asia in World Water Forum 8, held in Brasil. Furthermore, Karishma is currently a Communication Associate with Water Youth Network, and a Youth Delegate (Asia) at World Water Council. She is an advocate for youth-centric development, and is also keenly involved in the preparation of World Water Forum 9, to be held in 2021. In 2013, Karishma was featured as the ‘Voice of the Nation’ on national news, where she spoke on the emergency requirement of resources for curbing water pollution in India.

Bassel Daher

Assistant Research Scientist, Texas A&M Energy Institute  Research Fellow, Institute for Science Technology and Public Policy, The Bush School of Government and Public Service

Bassel is passionate about building bridges between research disciplines and cross-sectoral stakeholders with the goal of arriving to a future that is more sustainable, equitable, and resource secure for all. Bassel's research focuses on developing tools to catalyze evidence-based multi-stakeholder dialogue around the trade-offs associated with technological, policy, and social interventions, toward achieving the interconnected water, energy, and food Sustainable Development Goals.

Sasha Koo-Oshima

Head of FAO Water and Deputy Director, Land and Water Division, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations

Sasha Koo-Oshima is currently the Deputy Director of Land and Water Division at the UN Food & Agriculture Organization (FAO), leading programs on integrated water resources management, agricultural water development and governance. She was formerly the lead of international water programs for the U.S. Environment Protection Agency and the Director of the U.S.-China Clean Water Action Plan under the U.S.-China bilateral Strategic & Economic Dialogue for Environment and Trade Cooperation. Her career spans over 28 years focusing on the issues of water, agri-environment and sustainable economic development, and includes experience in multi-level governance and water financing. She implemented numerous nutrient and environmental management programs on the prevention of land-based pollution, non-conventional water use, water-energy-food nexus, and water safety and food security. She served as the U.S. delegate and Bureau Member to the OECD on water, biodiversity and agri-environment programs and is presently serving as Board and Steering Committee Member of a number of World Water Council, World Water Quality Alliance, and international research networks of the EU, the US, as well as the CGIAR centers.

CEO of K-water


High-level Panels Session 3

Water Related Data, Technology and Capacity Building for Developing Countries

※ It is scheduled to talk at the XVII Congress and subject to change.

Dominique Berod

Chief of the Division of Basic Systems in Hydrology at the World Meteorological Organization (WMO)

Dominique Berod is the Chief of the Division of Basic Systems in Hydrology at the World Meteorological Organization (WMO). He is responsible for WMO program on water monitoring and information systems, supporting National Hydrological Services and other relevant organizations in further developing and operating hydrometric networks and information systems with innovative approaches. He also liaise with relevant other UN and non UN international organizations, river basin commissions and other regional bodies.
Before joining WMO in June 2016, Dominique Berod was in 2015 the senior expert for the Water, Cold Regions and Disasters activities at the intergovernmental Group on Earth Observations (GEO) Secretariat. From 2008 to 2014, he served as the Head of the Hydrology division of the Swiss federal office of the Environment, in charge of water monitoring, flow forecast and applied research. He was also the President of the Swiss commission of Hydrology and was the Regional Hydrological Advisor of the World Meteorological Organization for Europe, Middle East and the Caucasus. Until 2008, he was the Head of the flood protection unit in the canton of Wallis, Switzerland, where he had responsibility for flood mitigation and river restoration projects, including flood forecast and warning as well as hazard mapping.
Dominique Berod holds a Bachelor´s and Master’s degree in Environmental Engineering from the Swiss Institute of Technology at Lausanne (1989) and a PhD in Hydrology from the same university, in collaboration with the Louisiana State University at Baton Rouge, USA (1994).

Anthony Slatyer

Water Policy Group

Tony Slatyer is a consultant on water policy and governance and member of Water Policy Group. Until 2017, Tony served successive Australian Governments in national water policy and administration, as head of the Water Division in the Department of Agriculture, Water and Environment. He was directly involved in the making of Australia’s National Water Initiative, the Murray-Darling Basin reforms and ‘Millenium drought’ response. He has also held senior Australian Government roles in environment and transport policy and served in multilateral organisations, including as Deputy Secretary-General of the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat (PIFS). He has degrees in Law and in Arts from the Australian National University and is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. Tony's current roles include being Special Adviser on Water to the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. He is also a member of the International Technical Committee of the Alliance for Water Stewardship, the Steering Committee of the World Meteorological Organisation’s World Water Data Initiative, the ACT Branch Committee of the Australian Water Association and the Australian National Committee for the International Commission for Irrigation and Drainage. 

Eric Tardieu

Secretary General, International Network of Basin Organizations (INBO

After graduating from Ecole Polytechnique, prestigious post-graduate multidisciplinary engineering French school, Eric Tardieu got a PhD in urban wastewater treatment. He served as a water policy officer in France, applying and managing national and European regulations. He then held successive responsible positions in the public sector for national, regional and local authorities, implementing policy regulations, designing multi-stakeholders strategies and measure plans. He has been engaged not only in the field of water resources management and environmental protection, but also innovation and research, public private partnerships or European and international cooperation. He is since 2017 the general director of the International Office for Water, together with the position of Secretary General of the International Network of Basin Organizations (INBO).

Abhishek Modi

Partnership Development Manager, Google Asia

Abhishek has been with Google for 6 years and works and leads the Social Impact team for Google Asia. He currently contributes to projects such as Flood Forecasting, Crisis Response, Education and Civics. Before Google, Abhishek had two start-ups and worked in management consulting for three years.  He holds Bachelors and Master degrees in material science from Indian Institute of Technology. He has also sailed around the world on a ship for four months as part of a boot camp program. 

Leju (Koboji Charles) Yakata

Assistant Inspector for Hydrology, Ministry of Water Resources and Irrigation of South Sudan

Since 2019, Leju Yakata has have been working for Ministry of Water Resources and Irrigation-South Sudan where he supervised construction and rehabilitation of hydrometric stations. He also collects, analyses, presents and archives hydrologic data. He successfully supervised the implementation of IGAD-HYCOS project (2015-2016). Currently, he is assigned , as a Hydrological Expert, to oversee the implementation of the ongoing Nile Basin Hydromet Project in which we expect to construct/rehabilitate about fourteen (14) hydro(-geo, meteoro-) logical stations in the next twenty four months.
Mr. Yakata is an WMO Fellow (2016-2018) and a graduate of Master of Science in Water Science and Engineering-Specialisation in Hydrology and Water Resources from UNESCO-IHE Delft, The Netherlands (2018). He also holds a Bachelor Degree of Science in Civil Engineering from Makerere University, Uganda (2008). Additionally, he holds aPhD in Environmental Hydrology for Arid and Semi-arid regions (2010, Cairo-Egypt) and Groundwater Theory and Practices (2012, KIGAM-S.Korea).