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Juan Carlos Alurralde Tejeda, Executive Director, Agua Sustentable, Bolivia
Juan Carlos Alurralde is a water resources engineer with an MSc in irrigation. He is currently the executive director of Agua Sustentable (Sustainable Water), an NGO active in participatory water legislation development in Bolivia. IDRC is supporting Alurralde's efforts to draft an Andean Water Vision, a version of which was presented at the Third World Water Forum in Kyoto in 2003. Alurralde has also worked as a water distribution design engineer for the Canadian International Development Agency and for the Research and Regional Development Centre project in Cochabamba, Bolivia, and as the highlands water irrigation project design leader under the United Nations and Inter-American Development Bank.
Vivian Cadima Paz, Agua Sustentable, Bolivia
Vivian Cadima Paz has experience in business administration and has been working in administration and logistics at Agua Sustentable since August 2004. Cadima Paz was an assistant in the Visión Social del Agua en los Andes (Social Vision of Water in the Andes) project, which has been supported by IDRC since March 2005.
Héctor Cisneros, Coordinator, Consortium for the Sustainable Development of the Andean Ecoregion (CONDESAN)
Héctor A. Cisneros' professional experience has focused on the technical and management aspects of rural development and environmental issues. During the last 15 years, he has worked as a research scientist, entrepreneur, consultant, and manager. For the past four years, Cisneros has coordinated the Consortium for the Sustainable Development of the Andean Ecoregion (CONDESAN), which integrates research and rural development. The Coordination Unit of CONDESAN leads and implements regional research and development projects and acts as convener, facilitator, and promoter of rural development throughout the highland region of the Andes, from Venezuela to the northwestern region of Argentina. Previously, Cisneros led the CARE-Peru Rural Development & Environment Division.
Maria Elena Cordero Paniagua, Agua Sustentable, Bolivia
Cordero Paniagua studied agronomy in the Faculty of Agriculture and Livestock Sciences at the Universidad Mayor de San Simón (UMSS) in Cochabamba. She received a Master's degree in Environment and Sustainable Development from the Centro de Estudios Superiores Universitarios (Centre for Advanced Academic Studies) at UMSS. Cordero Paniagua has worked in participatory diagnostics, developing eco-agriculture projects, evaluating rural financial organizations, and organic certification. At present, she is responsible for the Proyecto Jóvenes Bolivia, Alianza para la Ciencia del Agua y el Futuro (Bolivia Youth Project, Alliance for Water Science and the Future), which provides young leaders with training in water issues. She is part of the Agua Sustentable team of the Proyecto Derechos de Agua Fase II (Water Rights Project, Phase 2).
Two young researchers have joined the Agua Sustentable group: Dancy Quinteros Verduguéz and José Edwin Rodríguez Puma. Quinteros Verduguéz was born in Barrio Tiquipaya of La Paz in 1990 and is currently in his first year of high school. At the age of 14, he became involved with the Proyecto Jóvenes Bolivia, Alianza para la Ciencia del Agua y el Futuro. Rodríguez Puma was born in 1988 in the community of Totora, Quillacolllo Province, Cochabamba. He is in his second year at San Miguel High School. For the last two years, he has spent his vacations working with the Programa de Manjo Inegral de Cuencas (PROMIC) (Integrated Watershed Management Program) doing reforestation and building dams with gabions. Rodríguez Puma joined the Proyecto Jóvenes Bolivia, Alianza para la Ciencia del Agua y el Futuro in July 2004. Both these young researchers are fluent in Quechua and Spanish.
Freddy Omar Fernández, Senator, Government of Bolivia
Freddy Omar Fernández holds a Master's degree in Economics from the Universidad Mayor de San Simón, in Bolivia. In 1994, Fernández organized the Comité de Defensa Ambiental de Cochabamba (Cochabamba Committee for the Defence of the Environment). Between 1993 and 1998, he was involved in the fight against the irrational exploitation of the Central Valley's underground waters, which succeeded in stopping the use of deep wells. Freddy Omar Fernández also founded the Federación Departamental de Regantes de Cochabamba (Cochabamba Departmental Farmers Federation) and he took part in efforts to organize the community against water privatization in Cochabamba. This dispute, known as "The Water War", led to the cancellation of the Bechtel and Avengoa concession contracts. Recently, he founded the Asociación Nacional de Regantes y Sistemas Comunitarios de Agua Potable de Bolivia (National Association of Farmers and Community Water Systems of Bolivia) and was instrumental in the creation of the Ministry of Waters in his country. He is currently a Senator in the Bolivian Parliament.
Roberto L. Lenton, Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council (WSSCC)
As Chair of the scientific and technical advisory body of the Global Water Partnership, Roberto Lenton leads the partnership's efforts to create, accumulate and disseminate knowledge on integrated water resource management. He is one of the coordinators of the Millennium Project Task Force on Water and Sanitation, a three-year effort housed at the Earth Institute to identify the best strategies for meeting the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). The task force's goal is to mobilize a group of the world's leading water and sanitation scholars and practitioners to identify what it will take to achieve the MDG target to halve the proportion of people without sustainable access to safe drinking water by 2015. He is also senior advisor to the Director General and board of the International Research Institute for Climate and Society.
Howard Mann, consultant, international sustainable development law
Since establishing his legal practice in 1993, Howard Mann has specialized in international and Canadian sustainable development law. His practice focuses on international environmental, trade and investment law and policy. Mann brings to his work extensive legal, policy, and stratregic experience at the national and international levels. Mann has also worked as legal counsel with the Government of Canada for five years. During this time, he specialized in international and Canadian environmental law and Canadian constitutional law as it relates to environmental issues. Mann represented Canada in the negotiation of the 1992 United Nations Convention on Climate Change and the NAFTA-related North-American Agreement on Environmental Cooperation
Abel Mamani, Minister of Waters, Government of Bolivia
Abel Mamani Marca graduated from Colegio Pedro Kramer with a BA in Arts and Humanities in 1986. Even before he graduated, he had become involved in the union movement as a student leader, first at the Colegio Pedro Kramer, then representing students at the provincial level, and later university students at the Centro de Estudiantes de Odontología (Dentistry Students Centre). He has been a union leader in several of the places where he has worked. In the year 2000, he was the leader of a District Board in the city of El Alto. Currently, he holds the position of President of a Sub-District. During the October 2003 events known as "The Gas War", he was appointed member of the Mobilization Committee for the Defence of Hydrocarbons.
René Orellana Halkyer, Vice-Minister of Basic Sanitation Services, Water Ministry, Government of Bolivia
René Orellana Halkyer graduated in Sociology from the Universidad Mayor de San Simón. He holds a PhD in Legal Anthropology from the Faculty of Law, University of Amsterdam, Netherlands. He has also completed post-graduate courses on cultural identities and aboriginal rights (Instituto Internacional de Sociología Jurídica-Oñati, Spain), and trained in Conflict Resolution for Natural Resource Management (Universidad para la Paz, Costa Rica). Mr. Orellana Halkyer has extensive experience in the academic sector and in providing legal-technical support. He was involved in the negotiations and in the technical formulation of proposals by urban, rural, aboriginal and native social organizations. He is the author of several research papers and publications concerning legislation, policies and privatization of waters, biodiversity resources, Bolivian agricultural legislation and land distribution, social and environmental conflict management, community justice, free trade and aboriginal and rural workers' rights, oil operations in protected areas, constitutional reform, and aboriginal and rural workers' rights with respect to natural resources.
Susan Poats, Corporación Grupo Randi Randi, Ecuador
Susan Poats is an anthropologist with a commitment to conservation and sustainable development. After earning a PhD at the University of Florida in 1979, she began her career by applying anthropology to farming systems research. She currently channels her efforts toward natural resource management through participatory research and community conservation with a gender focus. Poats is the co-director of the MANRECUR project on collaborative management of natural resources in Andean watersheds in Northern Ecuador. Corporación Grupo Randi Randi (CGRR), an Ecuadorian NGO that she helped found three years ago, manages the project. She also leads another CGRR-IDRC project focused on gender and environment, Tejiendo Redes entre Genero y Biodiversidad. As part of this project, Poats is conducting training events within local university Master's programs on gender and environment, and leading research to review work on gender and environment in Ecuador.
Peter Riggs, Director, Forum on Democracy & Trade
Prior to establishing the Forum on Democracy & Trade in 2003, Peter Riggs worked for 10 years as program officer and Director of East Asia programs at the Rockefeller Brothers Fund. In this capacity, he worked with government officials and civil society groups on trade, development and environment issues in ASEAN countries, China, Japan, and Russia. Riggs has worked with the UN Development Program in Cambodia; was a visiting lecturer at Gadjah Mada University in Yogyakarta, Indonesia; and was a Watson Fellow to China and the Soviet Union. Riggs received his MSc in Coastal Management from the University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne, UK, in 1992 and studied Political Science and East Asian studies at Oberlin College. His writings have appeared in numerous publications including The Washington Post, Kyoto Journal, Coastal Management and the International Journal of Occupational and Environmental Health.
Miguel Solanes, Economic Commission for Latin America and the Carïbbean (ECLAC), Chile
Miguel Solanes is a lawyer from Argentina. He received his MA from Colorado State University, and worked as a researcher before undertaking a law degree at Ann Arbour, University of Michigan. He then attended the Kennedy School of Government, at Harvard University. Solanes has been working for 22 years with the United Nations as an advisor on water law and public utilities.
Pablo Solón, Fundación Solón, Bolivia
Pablo Solón is a researcher, communicator and analyst specializing in water and free-trade issues. He coordinates and supports a number of international networks and campaigns dealing with water issues. Solón is an independent producer of audiovisual materials with a list of more than 35 videos to his credit on subjects such as water, land, gender issues, the labour movement, free trade, etc. He is currently the Executive Director of the Fundación Solón (Solón Foundation), a nationally and internationally recognized organization that has been active for over 10 years..
Elena Villarroel, Agua Sustentable, Bolivia
Elena Villarroel is an agronomist who received her MSc in Environment and Sustainable Development. From 1996 to 2000, she worked as a consultant on water pollution as a member of a research team from Universidad Mayor de San Simón, Bolivia. Since 2000, she has been part of the research team of Agua Sustentable, an NGO, and part of the Commission for the Integrated Water Resource Management in Bolivia. During this period, Villarroel participed in the development of water legislation with social organizations and the government. The research team is now supporting the implementation of the new national irrigation law, which resulted from this process.
Nancy Yañez, Institute of Indigenous Studies, Universidad de la Frontera, Chile
Nancy Yañez Fuenzalida is a lawyer who has broad experience in the public sector and, in particular, in areas of public administration, design and implementation of public policies. She has conducted research studies involving aboriginal issues, public policy-making on aboriginal issues, recognition of the land rights of indigenous peoples, and approaches to community participation by organizations or communities of aboriginal people.
For more information on Agua Sustentable visit www.visionsocialagua.org.