Lara Birkes is a Senior Fellow at the International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development (ICTSD) and, concurrently, serves as the Chief Sustainability Officer at HPE. She was formerly the Director of Global Policy & Strategic Partnerships at the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) in Geneva where she led engagement with international organisations, governments and multilateral institutions.
Previously Lara was the Head of Strategic Initiatives with the World Economic Forum where she managed the Organization’s G20 initiative. For over two years prior, she oversaw the Forum’s community of U.S. Government officials and led the Working Group on Trade and Climate Changeto assess the incorporation of environmental provisions into trade texts. In 2011 she completed the Global Leadership Fellow (GLF) programme.
Lara has a varied background in public and private sector economic policy development. Prior to joining the Forum in 2008, she was a fellow in the World Trade Organization (WTO) Development Division. From 2005-2006 she served as a Fulbright Scholar in Morocco assessing the economic impact of the U.S.-Morocco Free Trade Agreement (FTA.) Between 2001- 2005, Lara worked in Washington DC as an International Economic Specialist with the law firm of Miller & Chevalier, proceeding work on Capitol Hill from 2001-2005 with the U.S. Senate Committee on Finance (Senator Max Baucus) and the Office of the Democratic Leader (Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle.)
Lara holds a BS in International Business & Management from the University of Montana and an MA in International Trade Policy from the Monterey Institute of International Studies in California.