Dr. Sonali Senaratna Sellamuttu has joined GGGI on August 23, 2021 as Country Representative of Sri Lanka and Team Lead of GCF NAP Program.
Sonali has 25 years of experience in natural resources management, with an emphasis on building livelihoods resilience, especially in the context of agricultural and aquatic systems (including wetlands). Sonali was Co-Chair of the Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) Asia-Pacific Regional Assessment (2015-2018) and was the IWMI Representative on the Ramsar Convention’s Scientific and Technical Review Panel (STRP) for 2013-2015 and led the Working Group on Wetlands and Poverty Eradication. She is also a Contributing Author to the Water Chapter of the Sixth Assessment Report of IPCC (2019-2021).
Sonali is joining GGGI from the International Water Management Institute (IWMI), a Research Center of CGIAR, where she was part of the IWMI leadership team, serving as the IWMI Country Representative Myanmar and the Regional Representative for Southeast Asia, being based in Laos and Myanmar over the last 11 years. She has also engaged in the One CGIAR reform and transition process over the last year, serving in various capacities and co-leading a One CGIAR initiative. Prior to IWMI, Sonali worked for IUCN – the International Union for Conservation of Nature, in both Sri Lanka and USA. In Sri Lanka, she was the Head of their National Marine & Coastal Program which she helped set up. At IUCN USA’s Sustainable Use Initiative, she served as a Policy Fellow (supported by the Ford Foundation).
Sonali has a multidisciplinary background with a BSc (Honors) in Biology, an MSc in ‘Ecosystems Analysis and Governance’ – both from the University of Warwick (UK) and a PhD from Imperial College London (UK). She is a recipient of a British Chevening Scholarship. Sonali enjoys swimming, reading, and staying connected with friends.