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Katherine Despot Belmonte

Senior Programme Officer | Ecosystem Assessment and Policy Support

Katherine is responsible for the Centre’s gender and biodiversity work, which includes leading projects to ensure the integration of a gender perspective in the implementation of the Convention on Biological Diversity. Katherine also provides advice on mainstreaming gender in project implementation. As part of this role, she has developed the Gender Action Plan for the GEF CONNECT project.

Katherine has extensive experience in biodiversity indicators and gender-specific indicators. She leads indicator related projects and is a core member of the Secretariat of the Biodiversity Indicators Partnership (BIP), which is hosted at UNEP-WCMC.

Previous experience & expertise

Katherine has a background in international relations and sustainable development. She holds an MSc in Environment, Science, and Society, a Master’s in International Relations and Human Rights, and a Business and Management (Hons) degree. Her academic research and fieldwork focused on indigenous people’s rights, traditional knowledge, and women-led sustainable enterprises.

Recent work by Katherine Despot Belmonte

Towards a gender-responsive post-2020 global biodiversity framework |

Katherine leads the Centre’s work for further integrating a gender perspective in the post-2020 global biodiversity framework.  Through a collaboration with UN Women, a number of gender-responsive indicators have been identified that could potentially be included in the post-2020 framework for monitoring progress towards gender equality priorities (equal access to biological resources, fair and equitable sharing of benefits, and equal engagement in all levels of decision-making processes).

Katherine also supported the CBD Secretariat with the review of the CBD Gender Plan of Action (2015-2020). This work aims to inform the potential development of a new CBD Gender Plan of Action, post-2020.

Indicators for the post-2020 global biodiversity framework |

Katherine led the development of the Information Document – Indicators for the post-2020 global biodiversity framework (CBD/SBSTTA/24/INF/16). The work involved an extensive analysis of existing biodiversity and biodiversity-related indicators. The document includes a robust assessment of the availability and suitability of indicators that can be used to measure the progress towards goals and targets. This document will serve to inform discussions at the 24th meeting of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice (SBSTTA-24).  

Impacts of trade liberalisation on biodiversity |

Katherine leads UNEP-WCMC’s contributions towards an EC funded project that aims to develop a methodology to assess the impact of trade liberalisation on biodiversity and ecosystem services. In this role, she is leading the identification of a core set of indicators and metrics to be used in EU sustainability impact assessments for trade agreements with non-EU countries.