Mette Løyche Wilkie took up her position as Director of the Ecosystems Division on 1 June 2014.
Mette brings more than 25 years of experience in providing technical and policy advice to developing countries, partner organizations and international conventions on sustainable forestry, environmental management and rural development issues as well as an extensive experience in managing large and complex programmes.
She commenced her career in Africa and Asia, where she worked for more than ten years on long- and short-term assignments for the UN, bilateral aid programmes, NGOs and private consultancy companies in Sierra Leone, Bangladesh, Viet Nam, the Philippines, Sudan and Malaysia.
In 1998 she took up a position within the Forestry Department of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) at their headquarter in Rome, leading the work on identifying and promoting the implementation of best practices in sustainable forest management within a larger landscape approach.
From 2004 to 2011 she led FAO’s Global Forest Resources Assessment Programme and successfully coordinated the 2005 and 2010 assessments of the status and trends in the extent of the world’s forest resources, their uses, socio-economic values and management status. She also helped set up the Global Forest Observations Initiative under the Group on Earth Observations.
Prior to joining UN Environment she held the position of Deputy Director of the Forest Assessment, Management and Conservation Division in FAO as well as Deputy Coordinator for one of FAO’s five organization-wide strategic objectives - leading staff and divisions through transformational change and towards the implementation of a matrix structure.
She has written extensively on forestry; Small Island Developing States; integrated coastal area management; mangroves; watershed management; land cover assessments; climate change; REDD+ and biodiversity issues.
Mette is a Danish national and holds a BSc and MSc in Forestry from the Royal Veterinary and Agricultural University in Copenhagen as well as an MSc in Environmental Management from the University of London.