President, GLOBAL FORUM FOR SUSTAINABLE ENERGY and Chairperson, GLOBAL WOMEN’S NETWORK FOR THE ENERGY TRANSITION (GWNET) GOVERNING BOARD
Irene Giner-Reichl has been a member of the Austrian Diplomatic Service since 1982. Her main area of expertise is economic and social development, women’s rights’ issues, environment, energy, and development cooperation. She has held numerous international bureau functions and led negotiations for the 1995 Beijing International Conference on Women Platform for Action. From 1995 to 1998 she was the director of the international department of the Austrian Ministry for the Environment. From 1998 to 2001 she was Austria’s Permanent Representative to the UN, IAEA, UNIDO and CTBTO in Vienna. From 2001 to 2004 she headed the UNIDO Office in New York in the rank of an Assistant Director General. From 2005 to 2012 she was Director General for Austria’s development policy and cooperation. From 2012 to 2017 she was the Austrian Ambassador to the PR of China and Mongolia. Between July 2017and March 2021 she was the Austrian Ambassador in Brazil and Suriname.Upon reaching the mandatory retirement age, she retired on 1 April 2021 from public service. She has published various articles and several books on international relations and global issues. She is the president of the Global Forum on Sustainable Energy (www.gfse.at ), Vice-President of REN21 (www.ren21.net), founder and current vice-president of the Austrian National Committee for UN Women (www.unwomen.at ) and founding member of the Global Women’s Network for the Energy Transition (GWNET, www.globalwomennet.org ).She has lectured at the Diplomatic Academy in Vienna for several years on human security and development policy. Since 2016, she is Honorary Professor at the University for International Business and Economics (UIBE) in Beijing. Amb. Giner-Reichl has in-depth knowledge, with policy and operational experience, of developing country realities and their sustainability challenges. She is familiar with the multilateral system, including development banks. She has advocated for sustainable energy, notably SDG 7 and the establishment of Sustainable Energy for All, as well as for women’s rights for decades and can draw on a vast and international network of personal contacts.