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Carlos Lopes is currently UN Assistant Secretary General and leads two UN institutions, the UN Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR), based in Geneva, and the UN Staff College, based in Turin. Lopes was the founder and first director of his native Guinea Bissau National Research Institute (INEP) before joining the UN, where he has occupied several leading positions, such as UN Representative in Zimbabwe and Brazil, Deputy Director of Strategic Planning, Director of the Policy Bureau and Head of the Global Programme of the UN Development Programme. During the final years of Kofi Annan’s leadership he was the Political Director of the General-Secretariat. He has a PhD in History from the University of Paris 1, Panthéon-Sorbonne and an Honorary PhD from Cândido Mendes University in Rio de Janeiro. He belongs to the Boards of 12 academic institutions and has published over 20 books and 170 academic articles.

In 2011 he was speaker at the conference in the panel "The Architecture of Global Governance" (May,5th).