Inger Andersen

Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations and Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Programme

Read her speeches


Inger Andersen is Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations and Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Programme, headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya.

Between 2015 and 2019, Ms. Andersen was the Director-General of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).

Ms. Andersen has more than 30 years of experience in international development economics, environmental sustainability, strategy and operations. She has led work on a range of issues including agriculture, environmental management, biodiversity conservation, climate change, infrastructure, energy, transport, and water resources management and hydro-diplomacy.

Between 1999 and 2014, Ms. Andersen held several leadership positions  at the World Bank including Vice President of the Middle East and North Africa; Vice President for Sustainable Development and Head of the CGIAR Fund Council.

Prior to her 15 years at the World Bank, Ms. Andersen worked 12 years at the United Nations, first on drought and desertification, beginning with the UN Sudano-Sahelian Office. In 1992, she was appointed UNDP’s Water and Environment Coordinator for the Arab Region.

Ms. Andersen holds a Bachelors from the London Metropolitan University North and a Masters in Development Economics from the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London.

Staff Position Level: USG
Region: Western European & Others

Inger Andersen

Connect with Inger Andersen

The Latest

A new light to guide action on chemicals, pollution and waste

Inger Andersen, UNEP Executive Director urges delegates to expedite finalizing a concise foundational document for the new environmental panel, drawing on established precedents from IPCC and IPBES. Highlighting key recommendations such as ensuring universal UN membership, simplifying financial arrangements, and deferring complex issues to future sessions. She says the goal is to approve the document tonight, positioning it for presentation at the upcoming UN General Assembly Summit of the Future. More

Making good on the right to a healthy environment

Inger Andersen explains why the right to a healthy environment needs to be implemented. More

Action on environmental crises more urgent than ever

Inger Andersen spoke at the 166th CPR meeting reiterating the need for urgent action on climate change, biodiversity loss, and pollution, underscoring resolutions from UNEA-6, and the crucial role of restoration in achieving global environmental goals. She also conveyed UNEP's mourning for the passing of former Executive Director Dr. Klaus Töpfer. More