Technical Panel 2024

Multi-disciplinary experts from around the globe form the Technical Panel for the 2024 edition of the AIPH World Green City Awards.

The Technical Panel is comprised of leaders in the global green city space whose expertise spans across the seven award categories. The role of the Technical Panel is to assess and score all eligible entries and select a shortlist of entries for each award category to be delivered to the 2024 Jury. The Jury will select a winner from each category and the Grand Winner.

Click on a panel member to learn more about them.

Albert Haasnoot Amanda O'Rourke Belinda Bean Daniella Rizzi Dominic Regester
Albert Haasnoot Amanada O’Rourke Belinda Bean Daniela Rizzi Dominic Regester
Elysia Glover Erik Andersson Gary Grant Grant Pearsell Harriet Bulkeley
Elysia Glover Erik Andersson Gary Grant Grant Pearsell Dr Harriet Bulkeley
Holly Peng Ian Shears JD Brown Jennifer Dunn John-Rob Pool
Dr Holly Peng Ian Shears JD Brown Jennifer Dunn John-Rob Pool
Laura Parry Loredana Scuto Lauriane Suyin Chalmin-Pui Luis Romahn Michael Casey
Laura Parry Loredana Scuto Lauriane Suyin Chalmin-Pui Luis Romahn Michael Casey
Pablo Arturo López Guijosa Peter Massini Simone Borelli Stefania Romano Swetha Stotra Bhashyam
Pablo Arturo López Guijosa Peter Massini Simone Borelli Stefania Romano Swetha Stotra Bhashyam
Ton Vergeldt Ursula Wellmann
Tadashi Touchi Ton Vergeldt Ursula Wellmann

Meet the panel


Albert Haasnoot

Sustainability Manager, Royal Flora Holland, the Netherlands

Albert HaasnootAlbert Haasnoot (1968) grew up in a flower export company and started his career, after finishing university, at Royal FloraHolland in 1994. In previous positions he was responsible for the direct sales department in Rijnsburg and the auction department of flowers and plants in Rijnsburg and Aalsmeer. In recent years he has worked on sector programs at the intersection of sustainability and innovation and has been allowed to represent the floricultural sector in a number of boards. For example, he is a board member of the Dutch Green City Foundation, Dutch Foundation for Innovation in Greenhouse Horticulture and vice-chairman of Greenhouse Horticulture ‘Club of 100’ of Wageningen University and Research. Albert is also the lead commissioner of the PEFCR Cut Flowers and Potted Plants. With this project, we aim to achieve harmonised rules for calculating the environmental footprint of potted plants and cut flowers in the framework of the European Commission’s Product Environmental Footprint. Privately, Albert also works in the family’s arable farm.

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Amanda O’Rourke

Executive Director, 8 80 Cities, Canada

Amanda O'RourkeAmanda O’Rourke has over 20 years of experience leading strategic planning, partnership development, and managing high impact teams. She has led diverse equitable mobility and public space projects in cities and towns in North America, Europe, and Australia. Amanda is a sought-after thought leader, writer, speaker, and experienced facilitator. Amanda holds a Master of Science in Urban Planning from the University of Toronto and a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Biology from Queen’s University. She is Co-Chair for the Children Play and Nature Committee for World Urban Parks, Advisory Board Member to Healthy Places By Design, and a Salzburg Global Fellow.

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Belinda Bean

Senior Managing Consultant, South Pole, & Senior Strategist, Greener Spaces Better Places, Australia

Belinda Bean keeps her finger on the pulse of environmental and societal trends. She has a Masters in Sustainable Development. She is a Senior Managing Consultant for South Pole (the climate company) and senior strategist for Greener Spaces Better Places – a collective impact program for getting more and better green space in our urban areas.

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Daniela Rizzi

Senior Expert for Nature-Based Solutions and Biodiversity, ICLEI Europe, Germany

Daniela RizziDaniela Rizzi holds a PhD in landscape planning by the Technical University of Munich. Daniela has been leading the conceptualisation, dissemination and implementation of UrbanByNature – a facilitated capacity-building and expertise-sharing programme on nature-based solutions to empower local governments all over the world to plan, implement and harness the multifold potential of NBS for sustainable and nature-positive development. Author of one of the most downloaded NBS publications of the European Commission: “The vital role of nature-based solutions in a nature-positive economy”.

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Dominic Regester

Director of the Center for Education Transformation, Salzburg Global Seminar, Austria

Dominic RegesterDominic Regester is Director of the Center for Education Transformation at Salzburg Global Seminar, where he is responsible for designing, developing and implementing programs on the futures of education. He works on a broad range of projects across education policy, practice, and international development, including as a Director at the Amal Alliance, as a Senior Editor for Diplomatic Courier and as the Executive Director of Karanga: the Global Alliance for Social Emotional Learning and Life Skills.

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Elysia Glover

Independent Consultant, Switzerland

Elyisa GloverElysia Glover is an independent consultant specialising in the convergence of urban governance, economic and community development and the environment. With a breadth of professional experience in politics, economic development and NGOs, Elysia supports teams with implementing climate and nature-positive strategies with cross-sectoral awareness and practicality. In previous roles she has created strategic toolkits for urban forestry practitioners, developed circular economy loan funds and supported the formation and launch of a blue tech innovation cluster. Elysia holds a BA in Urban Studies from Vassar College, a post-graduate certificate in Community Economic Development from Simon Fraser University and is currently completing her MA in International Affairs at King’s College London.

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Erik Andersson

Professor, Stockholm Resilience Centre and Ecosystems and Environment Research Program, Stockholm University & Helsinki University, Finland

Erik AnderssonProfessor Erik Andersson has forefronted a more systemic approach to using green infrastructure as a strategic asset in urban and regional planning. He has contributed to a more nuanced understanding of ecosystem services and their benefits as emergent outcomes of human-nature relations. He has also been awarded for his writing on resilience and transformation, as well as his academic leadership. Within the field of environmental sustainability science, Prof Andersson is investigating how people make sense and use of different landscapes, and the outcomes this has for human livelihood and wellbeing, ecosystem dynamics and biodiversity.

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Gary Grant

Chartered Environmentalist and Director, Green Infrastructure Consultancy, UK

Gary GrantGary Grant is a Chartered Environmentalist and Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management, working on policy, strategy and design of urban green infrastructure and restoration ecology.

He is author of Green Roofs and Facades (BRE Press 2006), Ecosystem Services Come to Town – Greening cities by working with nature (Wiley 2012) and The Water Sensitive City (Wiley 2016). Projects include the Swansea City Centre Green Infrastructure Strategy, Grosvenor Square renewal, London Olympic Park Masterplan and Biodiversity Action Plan, Whitehill-Bordon Eco Town, the Natural History Museum Wildlife Garden, Education City, Qatar and Saadiyat Island Masterplan, Abu Dhabi. He has been involved in the planning, design, installation and maintenance of hundreds of urban greening projects, including green roofs, green walls, rain gardens and other interventions.

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Grant Pearsell

Urban Ecological Planner, Canada

Grant PearsellGrant Pearsell is an urban planner with expertise in strategic planning for urban nature and biodiversity. His 40 year career in the environmental sector is founded in his education and experience in land use planning, conservation biology, urban ecology, and civil engineering. He is based in Edmonton, Canada where he worked from 2002-2020 in the City of Edmonton planning department holding a variety of senior leadership roles including Director of Parks and Biodiversity. Grant led teams that created the City of Edmonton’s ecological planning system which has been recognized with many national and provincial honours for their work.

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Dr Harriet Bulkeley

Professor in the Department of Geography and at the Copernicus Institute of Sustainable Development, Durham University & Utrecht University, UK

Harriet BulkeleyHarriet Bulkeley FAcSS FBA is Professor in the Department of Geography, Durham University, and at the Copernicus Institute of Sustainable Development, Utrecht University. Her research focuses on environmental governance and the politics of climate change, energy, nature and sustainable cities. She has published 8 books, several edited collections and over 70 papers, including An Urban Politics of Climate Change (Routledge 2015) and Accomplishing Climate Governance (CUP 2016). She has undertaken commissioned research for the UK Government, European Commission, NGOs, UN-Habitat, the OECD and the World Bank and in 2023 was appointed to the Scientific Council of the European Research Council.

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Dr Holly Peng

Senior specialist of the research institute of ornamental plants and landscapes, ICBR, China

Holly PengEducated both in China and Canada, Holly holds a PhD in horticultural science and has over 30 years experience working in horticultural and landscaping sector. As a senior specialist who has been leading a group of experts strive to achieve a sustainable solution for horticultural expos, as well as the urban greening in China, she has conducted research on the sustainable development projects including 2019 Beijing Expo and 2024 Chengdu Horticultural Expo. Her expertise in strategic planning of sustainable development empowers the expo organizers and the local government to implement a comprehensive strategy in developing an environmental-friendly coexistence for urban planning.

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Ian Shears

Principal, Ian Shears Green Infrastructure + Urban Forestry, Australia

Ian ShearsIan Shears is acknowledged as one of Australia’s experts in urban landscapes and as an experienced practitioner in public open space design, implementation and management. He has specialised in urban greening for 30 years and worked for 19 years with the City of Melbourne. Ian and his teams have been credited with the development of some of Australia’s most progressive environmental policies, programs and projects and have won many state, national and international awards for their work. Ian currently undertakes consulting in urban forestry and green infrastructure both nationally and internationally, has several board positions and advisory roles, and is an honorary fellow at the School of Ecosystem and Forest Sciences at Melbourne University.

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JD Brown

Program Director, Biophilic Cities, & Senior Associate in Policy & Planning, Second Nature Ecology + Design, USA

JD BrownJD collaborates with cities around the world to shape innovative mechanisms to advance the planning and design of biophilic cities. With a law degree from the Georgetown University Law Center and a Masters in Urban and Environmental Planning from the University of Virginia, JD helps cities develop policy frameworks to promote abundant and equitably accessible nature. He has authored a range of guiding documents to assist cities, including Planning for Biophilic Cities published by the American Planning Association. JD serves as the Program Director for Biophilic Cities and Senior Associate in Policy & Planning for Second Nature Ecology + Design.

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Jennifer Dunn

Network Development Specialist, Salzburg Global Seminar, Scotland

Jennifer Dunn is the network development specialist at Salzburg Global Seminar. She is also pursuing an M.Sc. in spatial planning and sustainable urban design at the University of Dundee, UK. She specialises in creating and strengthening connections between people and organisations across sectors, geographies, and generations. She aims to support positive environments for the wellbeing of people and planet.

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John-Rob Pool

Manager of Knowledge and Partnerships, UrbanShift, World Resources Institute, USA

John-Rob is the Manager of Knowledge and Partnerships for UrbanShift at the World Resources Institute. UrbanShift supports cities around the world to adopt integrated approaches to urban development, in an effort to build an equitable, zero-carbon future where both people and the planet can thrive. Prior to UrbanShift, John-Rob was the Implementation Manager for Cities4Forests, an initiative that aims to cultivate awareness and catalyze action on the part of urban residents and city governments to conserve, manage, and restore trees, forests and other nature-based solutions (NBS) inside and outside city boundaries, and to harness the previously untapped voices of mayors in support of global forest conservation. John-Rob is a recognized and published expert on urban nature-based solutions, urban green infrastructure and urban biodiversity. He holds a Master of Science in Environmental Policy from the University of Oxford, and a Bachelor of Science (Honors) in Biodiversity and Conservation and a Bachelor of Science in Zoology and Environmental Science, both from Rhodes University in Grahamstown, South Africa.

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Laura Parry

Senior Manager of Partnerships and Fundraising, Cities States and Regions, CDP, UK

Laura ParryLaura is Senior Manager of Partnerships and Fundraising in CDP’s Cities States and Regions team. CDP is a not-for-profit charity that runs the global disclosure system for investors, companies, cities, states and regions to manage their environmental impacts. Before joining CDP in 2020, Laura worked within several UK local authorities on areas including sustainable transport, air quality and business engagement.

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Lauriane Suyin Chalmin-Pui

Postdoctoral Wellbeing Fellow, Royal Horticultural Society & University of Sheffield Department of Landscape Architecture, UK

Lauriane Suyin Chalmin-PuiLauriane is a postdoctoral Wellbeing Fellow at the Royal Horticultural Society and the University of Sheffield Department of Landscape Architecture. Her current research focus is on the influence of gardens and gardening on human health and wellbeing. Lauriane holds a BA in Geography from the University of Cambridge, an MSc in Environmental Policy and Regulation from the London School of Economics and Political Science, and a PhD in Landscape Architecture from the University of Sheffield. During her doctorate, she was also a visiting scholar to the Center for Design and Health at the University of Virginia School of Architecture.

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Loredana Scuto

Programme Officer – Urban, IUCN, Germany

Loredana ScutoLoredana Scuto serves as Programme Officer – Urban at the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). As part of the Urban Initiative, she supports the development of IUCN knowledge products, such as the IUCN Urban Nature Indexes, as well as the implementation of projects for the protection of urban biodiversity and the sustainable development of urban ecosystems. A UNESCO World Heritage specialist by training, prior to joining IUCN she worked in the fields of (World) heritage management, human rights and sustainable development both at local and international levels.

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Luis Romahn

Executive Director, World Urban Parks, Mexico

Luis is the Executive Director of World Urban Parks Organization. President and founder of Parks of Mexico and Founder of the National Association of Parks and Recreation Mexico (ANPR) and co-founder of Park Art. Has worked for the last 12 years in public space projects through participatory design, community building and financial sustainability. For the past 5 years, he has led the ANPR, offering its members professional development, updated information, networking and employment opportunities; benefiting the sector through research, standards, data and advocacy, promoting the values and role of the field. He is part of the Emerging Urban Leader First Cohort. A programme of the World Urban Parks and the Salzburg Seminar. Speaker in Colombia, Peru, Argentina, Chile, Ecuador, México, Spain and the U.S. about public spaces and parks. Author of the book “Building My Park – From Citizen Participation to the Administration of Public Space”. Has a professional degree in Marketing and a Master’s Degree in Education and Communication, both by Monterrey Tec.

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Michael Casey

Director, Evergreen Infrastructure, Australia

Michael CaseyMichael Casey, a renowned figure in the field of green infrastructure and horticulture, has built a distinguished career marked by his unwavering commitment to fostering sustainable connections between urban environments and the natural world. A Registered Horticulturist and advocate for nature-based solutions, his work transcends conventional landscape design, encompassing innovative projects like green walls, green roofs, and urban farming initiatives. Serving as the Director of Evergreen Infrastructure, a leading firm specialising in sustainable green space design, Michael has left an indelible mark on various sectors, including education, health, commercial, and residential. Michael actively engages in industry associations, serving as the National President of the Australian Institute of Horticulture (AIH) and contributing to the founding of the Australasian Green Infrastructure Network (AGIN) and Therapeutic Horticulture Australia (THA).

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Pablo Arturo López Guijosa

Head of Communications and Project Manager, Urban Biodiversity Hub, and Communications Officer and Global Focal Point for Congress Resolutions, IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas, Costa Rica

Pablo Arturo López GuijosaPablo Arturo López Guijosa holds a Master of Environmental Management degree from the University of Queensland, Australia, a Biologist degree from the National Autonomous University of Mexico and exchange studies in biodiversity conservation from the University of Helsinki, Finland. His expertise is in international relations, specializing in communications, protected areas and biodiversity conservation. He has worked with national and subnational governments, academia, the private sector and NGOs as well as international organizations, including the Ramsar Convention and the United Nations Environment Programme. He is currently working for the International Union for Conservation of Nature in Costa Rica.

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Peter Massini

Director, Future Nature Consulting, UK

Peter is an experienced green infrastructure strategist, policy-maker and practitioner. Following career working for environmental NGOs, government agencies and London government, he established his own practice – Future Nature Consulting – in 2021. He advises both public and private sector clients on the policy and practice of green infrastructure, nature-based solutions, urban greening and biodiversity conservation in the urban environment. From 2008 and 2020, Peter was the green infrastructure policy lead at the Greater London Authority where he successfully embedded green infrastructure and natural environment policies in the London Plan and the London Environment Strategy.

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Simone Borelli

Urban Forestry Officer, Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), Italy

Simone Borelli holds a degree in Forest Science, an M.Sc in Watershed Management and a Postgraduate Diploma in Public Management. He has worked for the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO) for over 25 years and is currently responsible for the urban forestry programme of the Forestry Division providing technical support to member countries. He is one of the creators of the World Forum on Urban Forests and the Tree Cities of the World programme. Prior to joining FAO, he worked for WWF, IPGRI and as a consultant for public institutions and the private sector.

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Stefania Romano

Coordinator of Transformative Urban Nature Action, UNECE/FAO Forestry and Timber Section, Switzerland

Stefania has extended experience in environmental international affairs, spanning from Central Eastern Europe, Türkiye, the Middle East, the Gulf Countries, Brazil, and South Africa. She has worked for the Italian Ministry of the Environment, seconded to international organisations, such as the Regional Environmental Center, as Director of the Italian Trust Fund, developing programs and projects across countries, channelling resources, and establishing partnerships. After two years working for ICLEI as Global Coordinator of the international, partnership initiatives CitiesWithNature and RegionsWithNature, she is now the Coordinator of Transformative Urban Nature Action on behalf of UNECE.

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Swetha Stotra Bhashyam

Global South Focal Point and Steering Committee Member, Global Youth Biodiversity Network, USA

Swetha Stotra Bhashyam, a wildlife biologist by training, has dedicated the past 12 years to empowering and mobilizing youth to take action for biodiversity. Serving as the Global South Focal Point for the Global Youth Biodiversity Network (GYBN) from 2018 to 2023, she has played a pivotal role in representing and amplifying the voices of youth in the Global South. In 2022, Swetha was appointed as the Chair of the IUCN CEESP Inter-generational Partnerships and young professional groups.

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Tadashi Touchi

Managing Director, Teijyuen Co. and Board Director, International Society of Arboriculture, Japan

Tadashi Touchi is a Japanese tree doctor, landscape architect and researcher.  He manages a Japanese landscape and tree care company, Teijyuen Co.,Ltd. established in 1877.  He graduated from the BLA of Chiba University in Japan and the MLA of Louisiana State University in the US.  Touchi has also worked with various landscape and tree care associations to further their objectives.  He is a delegate from Japan Landscape Contractors Association (AIPH member) and currently serves as a Board of Director of International Society of Arboriculture.

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Ton Vergeldt

Senior Project Manager, Arcadis, the Netherlands

Ton Vergeldt is a senior project manager at Arcadis Nederland BV and works in integral sustainable projects in which all professional disciplines (environment, water, infrastructure and buildings) are inclusively represented to create a better urban environment for future generations. After completing his HBO studies at Larenstein International University of Applied Sciences, he studied for a year at Wageningen Agricultural University before joining a landscape architecture firm. Employed by Arcadis from 1-1-1999, he realised, among other things, the Floriade 2012 and 2022 for the Venlo and Almere regions from the initiation phase to realisation, exploitation and dismantling. In the period 2007-2010, he developed sustainable area development (C2C) together with several leading municipalities in the Netherlands and the Ministry of Economic Affairs in order to translate sustainability into the design and implementation phase of urban area development. This formed the foundation for the further development of sustainable area development, in which all aspects of sustainability are addressed at the various scale levels. He like sto help others on their way to sustainable future cities.

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Ursula Wellmann

Manager: Biodiversity and Nature, ICLEI Africa, South Africa

Ursula Wellmann has a background in Politics and Economics with a degree in Social Science, a Skills Development Facilitation certificate and a passion for the green economy. Supporting sustainable growth in both the renewable energy sector and Greentech manufacturing was a focus of her recent years’ work. Together with this, her passion for nature and biodiversity resulted in numerous projects implemented supporting decent employment opportunities within the Western Cape’s growing green economy. Since joining ICLEI Ursula has managed the African biodiversity portfolio, including project management of INTERACT-Bio, one of its flagship projects.

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