Earthmind’s Senior Associates are sustainability professionals with a broad range of qualifications and experiences as described below. We work on a contractual or volunteer basis, as appropriate, in support of Earthmind’s vision. We can take on work on an individual basis, as an NGO through our Swiss non-profit association or as business through our French small enterprise.
Also see: linkedin.com/in/vorhies
Frank is the founder and Executive Director of Earthmind. He has over 20 years of international experience in sustainable development and business. Professional strengths include strategic thinking, programme development, project management, technical analysis, policy dialogue, applied research, and executive training. Previous experience includes:
- Oxford: as the CEO of Earthwatch Institute (Europe) managed a unique partnership programme with a group of 40 large multinational corporations
- Geneva: as the Senior Economist for the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) set up its Economics and Business Units, including undertaking a feasibility study with the IFC on biodiversity finance in Africa
- Nairobi: worked for the African Wildlife Foundation under a UNDP/GEF grant to build biodiversity economics capacity in East Africa
- Johannesburg: set up Eco Plus, an innovative consultancy focused on business and the environment, and advised on the economics of dune mining and the reintroduction of lions
Frank has a PhD and MA in Economics from the University of Colorado at Boulder and a Diploma in Integrated Environmental Management from the University of Cape Town. He is a member of the IUCN Commissions on ecosystem management (CEM), protected areas (WCPA), species (SSC), and economic and social policy (CEESP).
Sam is a geologist whose primary focus is in resource economics. An expert on the various “peak oil” arguments and methodologies, his interest extends to the strategic outlook for alternative energy sources for the economy. In addition to fossil fuels, his geological approach encompasses all natural resources, especially water.
Over the years Sam has worked for major international oil companies, industry consulting groups and then founded his own consulting company. Because his work requires significant data analysis, he is particularly competent in computer data management. Clients have included banks, environmental NGOs and international organizations.
Sam’s geology degrees are from Yale and Harvard.
Sarah is a Board Director of Earthmind. She has over 20 years of international experience in both the environment and development fields with an emphasis on biodiversity, business and conservation. Sarah specialises in project cycle management, research and evaluation. She has proven experience across trade, education, ecotourism, forestry and agricultural sectors. She is the Director of Operations for A Rocha International which engages in scientific research, environmental education and community-based conservation projects.
Previously experience includes:
- in Geneva, consultancy partnering with public, private and not-for-profit organisations worldwide
- in Geneva, advisor for ICTSD on oversight and evaluation
- at Chester University, lecturing in geography and international development studies and founding/ co-directing the ‘Global Perspective’-a grass roots initiative in development awareness, environmental education, and advocacy.
- in Cajamarca in the rural Andes, Peru, working for PROESA- an Integrated development project in natural resources management
- in Oruro, Bolivia, working as a coordinator of field placements in community- based experiential placements
Sarah has an MSc in Environment and Development Education from South Bank University of London, PGCE in Environmental Science from Garnett College, Greenwich University, and a BSc Hons Geography and Natural Science from Kent University.
Aurélien is an environmental and development economist with various work experience with NGOs, a development bank and the public sector. He has lived and worked in the USA, Jamaica, Guadeloupe and France – providing policy analysis and programme evaluation and conducting environmental and economic assessments.
In Jamaica, he conducted a cost-benefit analysis of the Portland Bight Protected Area management plan based on an economic valuation of its ecosystem goods and services within a local non-profit organization. He worked as an economist for the French Development Agency in Guadeloupe on the production of publications on the macroeconomic and international trade dynamics, sectoral challenges and sustainable development issues facing each region of the French Antilles. More recently, he coordinated the initial economic and social assessment of the use of marine waters and of the costs of ecosystem degradation for the implementation of the European Marine Strategy Framework Directive in France.
Aurélien holds a MSc in International Development and Environmental Policy Analysis (High Hons) from the CERDI at the University of Clermond-Ferrand in France and studied during his first year of masters at the University of Virginia, USA. He also has a BA in Economics and Business Administration from the University of Lyon II.
Stephanie specialises in the economic, legal and political aspects of conservation, with an emphasis on effective incentives for protected area management performance. She is the Director of LiNC (Linking Nature and Culture), dedicated to improving conservation performance outcomes for managed natural assets, cultural assets, or both, particularly through the use of innovative financial mechanisms. Previously, she worked for the Global Heritage Fund as Project Leader for the “Saving Our Vanishing Heritage” initiative and for the Secretariat to the Convention on Biological Diversity.
Her published works on “An Institutional Approach to Protected Area Management Performance” have served as the basis for the CBD’s Incentive Measures for Conservation and Sustainable Use; IUCN’s Research Program on Biodiversity Conservation Incentive Measures; the OECD’s Expert Group on Economic Aspects of Biodiversity Conservation; and the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands work on incentives. Her institutional approach also provides the analytical foundation for “The Politics and Economics of Park Management” and has informed numerous related publications.
Stephanie has a PhD in Land Economy from the University of Cambridge, a MSc in Environment and Development from the London School of Economics, and a BA in Political Science from the University of California, Berkeley.
Julian is a senior diplomat with extensive experience of working with international organisations, NGOs and the business community. He has worked in Malawi, Egypt, Latin America, the Balkans, and as Minister and Deputy Permanent Representative at the UK Mission to the United Nations in Geneva. With Earthmind, he has a played a central role in the GDM 2010 Initiative and the subsequent Green Development Initiative. His experience includes:
- Leading the UK Delegation to the World Trade Organisation Doha trade negotiations for 4 years (2005 -09). Elected Chairman of the WTO Committee on Regional Trade Agreements
- Leading the UK Delegation to the UNCTAD XII Ministerial Conference, Accra, 2008
- Deputy Head of Mission, British Embassy, Zagreb, 1995 – 97
- Policy experience in the Former Yugoslavia (1993 – 2000), South Africa (1991 – 93), the Middle East (1987 -91) and Latin America (1983 -87)
- Strategic management of a global asset portfolio, including considerable interface with the private sector
- Development planning in Africa as a Fellow of the Overseas Development Institute (1981 -82)
Julian specialises in international negotiation, conflict resolution and stakeholder management. He is a Development Economist by training, having a Masters degree in Economics from Sussex University and a BSc in Politics and Economics from Bristol University.
Barbara’s work bridges conservation and finance. She is trained in corporate finance and was an investment banker with Goldman Sachs in Frankfurt, Germany. Over the past few years Barbara has worked as a freelance consultant spezialising in conservation finance and private sector biodiversity engagement. Some of her recent assignments include:
- Financial and business planning advisory for the leading initiative to develop pre-compliance conservation banking in the U.S.
- Research on conflicts and their solutions arising in the process of protected area planning and regional (business) development
- Assessment of funding options for the protected area network in Carinthia, Austria
- Analysis of private sector engagement/sponsorships in Alpine protected areas
- Co-founded SOS Parks, an international volunteer network dedicated to the rescue of protected areas in danger: http://www.sosparks.org/
Barbara has a Master’s Degree in Social and Economic Sciences from the University of Vienna, Austria, and a Master’s Degree in Protected Area Management from the University of Klagenfurt, Austria, where she now trains protected area managers on conservation finance and business-oriented financial planning. Barbara is a member of the IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas and the Conservation Finance Alliance Innovative Finance Mechanisms Working Group. Currently Barbara is an advisor with the Green Development Initiative (GDI) developing a market analysis of possible private-sector GDI financing.
Erwin is a senior fellow at the Institute for Governance and Sustainable Development, and a liaison to the US Trade Representative’s Trade and Environment Policy Advisory Committee.
Erwin has extensive experience in sustainable development policy, including as a community organizer in the Bronx, NY, chief of staff to a New York State senator, and economic affairs officer at the UN Conference on Trade and Development in Geneva. He served as the trade promotion coordinator for the US Department of Commerce at the American Institute in Taiwan and the local government advisor for the US Agency for International Development in Paraguay.
He was a foreign affairs officer at the US Department of State, Bureau of Oceans, Environment and Science from 2001-2006 and 2008-2009. He received the State Department’s Superior Honor Award for his achievement as Acting Division Chief for Trade and Environment. He was the lead US negotiator of the US-Central America-Dominican Republic and the US-Peru Environmental Cooperation Agreements and participated in trade negotiations. As the bureau’s North American Affairs Officer, he monitored implementation of the North American Agreement on Environmental Cooperation and the US-Canada Air Quality Agreement. As a regional policy advisor for East Asia, he served on the secretariat of the cabinet-level US-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue.
Erwin co-edited Linking Trade, Climate Change and Energy for the International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development in 2006. He was a senior fellow at the University of California, Santa Barbara, Program on Governance for Sustainable Development from 2007-2008. He holds a MA in Education from Columbia University, a BA in English and History from the University of Pennsylvania, and has completed courses in international relations at the US Foreign Service Institute.
Till is CEO of Green Destinations and previously worked as an economist for Credit Suisse and several international organizations including the UN Food & Agriculture Organization (FAO), the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) and the International Finance Corporation (IFC) of the World Bank. In 2006, he founded Green Destinations, a property development company that specializes in master planning resource-efficient property and designing ecologically-sound urban areas and cities. Green Destinations is an Official Osec Expert (OOE) in the areas of sustainable construction and clean technology, and has served various clients including United Holdings, Kempinski Hotel, Nakheel-The World, Emirates Heights Egypt, Spacetoon Properties & Theme Parks, Five Continents Hospitality Management, Deutsche Schule Dubai, Nuzul Holdings Bahrain, and the municipalities of Abuja (Nigeria), Polokwane (South Africa), Ras Al Khaimah (UAE) and Tehran (Iran).
Till studied economics at Oxford University and Cambridge University, and was a fellow at Harvard University. He is the Chairman of the Environmental Committee of the Swiss Business Council and founder of the Swiss Environment Initiative.
Michael is a sustainability economist, with unique experience and understanding of the role of markets for biodiversity conservation. He has been actively involved in various private conservation initiatives for 25 years, starting as a financial manager of a private game reserve in South Africa. Michael conducted pioneering research into the role of private markets for wildlife conservation in Southern Africa, and worked with Francis Vorhies in setting up Eco Plus, an innovative consultancy on business, economics and the environment.
His consulting experience includes work on issues as varied as energy policy, environmental impact assessments, trans-frontier conservation areas, wildlife trade policy and institutional reform in protected area management. Past clients include the World Energy Council, USAID, WWF, TRAFFIC International, Africa Resources Trust and Save the Rhino International.
He has also written extensively on various conservation issues, especially relating to trade in endangered species, and has been involved with teaching and supervision of students. He has also worked and published with several think tanks, including the Free Market Foundation, Institute of Economic Affairs Environment Unit, Property and Environment Research Center and the International Policy Network.
Michael completed his BCom (Hons) at the University of the Witwatersrand and his MSc in Environmental Resource Economics at University College London under Professor David Pearce. He also has a diploma in integrated environmental management from the University of Cape Town.