The University has announced the appointment of Achim Steiner as the next Director of the Oxford Martin School. He will take over from Professor Ian Goldin, who will step down later this year, after ten years as Founding Director. Ian Goldin will remain in Oxford as Professor of Globalisation and Development, and will continue to be associated with the Oxford Martin School.
Mr Steiner will join the School on 1 September 2016 from the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), where he has been Executive Director since 2006.
The announcement was made by a panel chaired by the University of Oxford’s Vice-Chancellor, Professor Louise Richardson, and which included the University’s Heads of Division and external advisors Julia Marton-Lefèvre, Lord Martin Rees and Lord Nick Stern.
“Achim Steiner’s success in bringing together inter-disciplinary teams of researchers and stakeholders on significant global issues deeply impressed the panel. It makes him a natural choice as the next Director of the Oxford Martin School.” Professor Richardson
In addition to being the Executive Director of UNEP, Achim Steiner is Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations. Before joining the UN, Mr Steiner was Director General of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), and he has also served as Secretary General of the World Commission on Dams and Chief Technical Advisor of the Mekong River Commission. He has worked both at grassroots level as well as at the highest levels of international policy-making, to address the interface between environmental sustainability, social equity and economic development. Mr Steiner serves on a number of advisory councils and boards including as the International Vice-Chair of the China Council for International Cooperation on Environment and Development (CCICED). His undergraduate degree was in PPE at the University of Oxford, he has an MA from University of London and he has studied at the German Development Institute in Berlin and Harvard Business School.
Accepting the appointment, Mr Steiner said: “I am deeply honoured to be offered the opportunity to lead the Oxford Martin School into its second decade of pioneering research and thought leadership. James Martin's vision of a unique platform for interdisciplinary research on the great challenges of the 21st century, and dialogue with global leaders across all sectors of society remains urgent and compelling. I very much look forward to advancing the work of the Oxford Martin School towards this exciting vision.”
Professor Roger Goodman, Chair of the Oxford Martin School’s Management Committee and Head of Social Sciences Division, said: “This is an important and exciting appointment for the University and we greatly look forward to working with Achim as he leads the Oxford Martin School into its second decade.”