Francoise Clottes

Ms. Clottes has been appointed as Director of Strategy and Operations as of February 16, 2017. Her top priorities will be leading the development of the GEF’s policy framework to enhance its impact on the protection of the global commons; enhancing internal systems to improve operational efficiency and result focus, and evolving partnerships to adapt to new opportunities and challenges.

Gustavo Alberto Fonseca

Dr. Fonseca is the Director of Programs at the Global Environment Facility. Responsibilities include overseeing the portfolio of investments in biodiversity, climate change mitigation and adaptation, forests and REDD+, transboundary marine and freshwater conservation, chemicals and sustainable land management. A tenured Professor at the Federal University of Minas Gerais (UFMG) in Brazil, he was the first Executive Director of Center for Applied Biodiversity before becaming the Chief Conservation and Science Officer of Conservation International. He holds a Master's degree in Latin American Studies and a Ph.D. in Forest Management and Conservation from the University of Florida. He published close to 170 publications articles and books. He received the Oliver Austin Award of the University of Florida’s State Museum for outstanding research in the natural sciences, the Environmental Protection Award of Government of the state of Minas Gerais, Brazil, the Distinguished Service Recognition award from the Brazil Biodiversity Fund (Funbio), and the Golden Ark Award, an official order of the Dutch government, the highest environment award of the Netherlands.

The 52nd GEF Council Meeting opened today in Washington, DC and will run May 23-25, 2017. Reminding delegates of both the current threats to the environment, as well as emerging opportunities to transform key economic systems, Naoko Ishii, GEF CEO & Chairperson said “We have an unprecedented opportunity to make a difference.”


From combatting illegal wildlife trade to the promotion of ecotourism and inspiring nature protection through poetry, the GEF is working with a wide range of partners to highlight the importance of biodiversity today.

The International Day for Biological Diversity (IDB) 2017, celebrated each year on May 22, is an opportunity for the international community to reflect on the importance of conserving biodiversity for our planet’s health and for future generations, and think of the challenges ahead.