Strategic Advisory Group

The IDRC Davos 2016 Strategic Advisory Group provides strategic support to the IDRC Davos 2016  chairman to guide direction of the IDRC programme. The SAG is composed of representatives from IDRC partners. GRF Davos is grateful for the support of the Strategic Advisory Group (in alphabetical order):

Walter J. AMMANN

Chairman of the International Disaster and Risk Conference IDRC Davos; Founder and President of the Foundation Global Risk Forum GRF Davos

Dr. Walter J. Ammann obtained his MSc in Civil Engineering and his PhD in structural dynamics and earthquake engineering both at ETH Zurich. He started his professional career in various consulting companies for geotechnics and foundation engineering, earthquake engineering and bridge construction. From 1986 - 1992 he was responsible for the R&D-department of a globally acting company in construction technologies. From 1992 to 2007, he was director of the Swiss Federal Institute for Snow and Avalanche Research in Davos and Deputy Director of the Swiss Federal Research Institute WSL in Birmensdorf. He is an expert in integrative risk management and its applications to all kinds of natural hazards and technical risks, in particular by considering the entire risk cycle with prevention, preparedness, intervention and recovery, risk financing tools, but also emergency management and communication tools with a focus on early warning, crisis management, critical infrastructures, and resilience increase. Climate change related hazards and risks, their adaptation and mitigation and their harmonization with disaster and risk reduction is of particular concern for him. He is author and co-author of over 250 papers, books and scientific reports and is a member of various national and international professional associations and expert consulting groups like the UN-ISDR Science and Technology Council and is Visiting Professor at HIT in Harbin, China.


Counsellor, Public Governance and Territorial Development Directorate, OECD, Paris, France

Mr. Jacobzone co-ordinates the OECD activities on Public Governance and Risk at the OECD, including a leading role in coordinating the High Level Risk Forum (HLRF), which led the ground-breaking OECD Principles on the Governance of Critical Risks in 2014.  The High Level Risk Forum conducts a range of thematic and country based activities, through peer reviews, analytical work and indicators, in coordination with other international organisations. Mr. Jacobzone also co-ordinated the OECD 2015 Public Governance Ministerial Meeting held in Helsinki.  He previously worked on strategic agility in the public sector, regulatory policy and reviews, and the governance of sectoral regulators. Mr. Jacobzone has previous experience in health policy, welfare, public finance and social affairs matters and began his carrier at the French Treasury.

Yuichi ONO

Assistant Director and Professor, International and Regional Cooperation Office Disaster Information Management and Public Collaboration Division International Research Institute of Disaster Science (IRIDeS), Tohoku University, Sendai, Japan

Yuichi completed his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Utsunomiya University, Japan. He received a Ph.D. in Geography at Kent State University in 2001. He conducted research on tornado disaster risk reduction in the U.S.A., Japan, and Bangladesh. During 2002-03, he worked for the World Meteorological Organization and contributed to developing a disaster risk reduction programme and emergency response mechanism when hydrometeorological disasters occur in the WMO’s member countries. During 2003-09, he worked for the United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction. He contributed to organize the World Conference on Disaster Reduction in Kobe, Japan in 2005. He assisted developing the International Early Warning Programme and helped manage the ISDR Scientific and Technical Committee as well. Following the Sumatra Tsunami in 2004, he helped develop the Indian Ocean Tsunami Early Warning System. During 2009-12, he worked for the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and Pacific (ESCAP in Bangkok) as Chief of the Disaster Risk Reduction Section, providing a regional platform for cooperation and policy-making for disaster risk reduction, with particular attention to developing countries and vulnerable groups. ESCAP has an intergovernmental process in disaster risk reduction with its 62 member countries. He proposed to develop disaster statistics in the Asia and Pacific region based on official sources. In November, 2012, he became a professor of the International Research Institute of Disaster Science (IRIDeS), Tohoku University, located in Sendai, Japan. His main role is to promote scientific and technical research outcomes of the IRIDeS and bring them to international policy making processes. He currently acts as an Assistant Director of the IRIDeS, a chair of the Multi-Hazard Program of the Association of Pacific Rim Universities, and a Director of the Global Centre for Disaster Statistics, which is a joint programme with UNDP.


Head, Security Technology Assessment Unit,European Commission Joint Research Centre, Ispra

Georg Peter, born in 1959 in Frankfurt, Germany, holds a degree as Mechanical Engineer and a Ph.D. in nuclear safety. He joined the European Commission in 1989 as research engineer in the Joint Research Center in Ispra analysing accident scenarios in nuclear power plants and in hydrocarbon facilities by developing and applying complex computer simulation models. After having been responsible for the Safety & Security Unit of the JRC Ispra site, he was appointed as Head of the Security Technology Assessment Unit in the Institute of the Protection and Security of the Citizen, dealing with the protection of critical infrastructures in Europe, advanced radio signal processing, hazards in chemical industry and quantum technology.


Senior Advisor, UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR), Geneva, Switzerland

Chadia Wannous is a public health professional with more than twenty years of work experience in program management, research, and coordination, with particular focus on emergency preparedness and response.Chadia is a currently working as a Senior Advisor at the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) mobilizing the health partnerships for the implementation of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, and also serves at the UNISDR Science and Technology Secretariat.Prior to her current position, Chadia served as a Senior Policy Advisor to the UN Secretary General Special Envoy on Ebola and the UN System Influenza Coordination.Chadia worked since 2005 on emergency preparedness particularly on pandemics preparedness and response, strategic planning and strengthening of partnerships and alliances to optimize the UN System links to global initiatives and efforts.In 2008-2011 Chadia worked as a as a Senior Advisor for the UN Resident Coordinator in Egypt, and as a Regional Coordinator for the UN System Influenza Coordination (UNSIC) in the Middle East and North Africa region. During 2005-2007 Chadia worked as a Technical Officer at the World Health Organization (WHO) in Jamaica, the Regional Communicable Disease Surveillance and Response sub-unit in Thailand, and in the Maldives country office.


Professor, American Humane Endowed Chair, University of Denver, and Chief Science and Policy Advisor, GRF Davos, Denver, USA

Andreas Rechkemmer is chief science and policy advisor of the Global Risk Forum, Davos, Switzerland, and has recently been appointed American Humane Endowed Chair, at the University of Denver. Rechkemmer is a scholar and practitioner of international relations and political science. He has a background in United Nations diplomacy and science-to-practice management, particularly in the areas of global environmental change and climate change, sustainability, human development, and the human and societal dimensions of risk and security. His scholarship also focuses on One Health, a multidisciplinary effort to attain optimal health for people, animals and the environment. He is also a professor of human dimensions of natural resources (affiliate faculty) at Colorado State University, a guest professor at Beijing Normal University in China and an adjunct professor at the University of Cologne in Germany.


President, Tehran Disaster Mitigation and Management Organization (TDMMO), Tehran, I.R. Iran

Ahmad Sadeghi is the President of the Tehran Disaster Mitigation and Management Organization in Iran. Previously, he was involved with the Red Crescent Society (RCS) of I.R. Iran as a member of the Steering Council, the Director General, and the Public Participation Deputy. He has held several leadership positions in the fields of disaster management and disaster risk reduction, with particular attention to urban areas and their resiliency.  He received his PhD in Disaster Management and has contributed to publications on school safety, flooding, and emergency preparedness.