Course Leaders

Dr. Karen Sudmeier-Rieux

Dr. Sudmeier-Rieux leads the thematic group on disaster risk reduction for IUCNís Commission on Ecosystems Management. She is also a senior researcher at the University of Lausanne, Institute for Earth Science, where she manages projects on landslide risk reduction and bioengineering in Nepal. She is an education and training consultant with the United Nations Environment Programme, developing training and teaching modules on ecosystem-based disaster risk reduction. She holds a PhD in Environmental Science from the University of Lausanne and Mastersí degrees in international development and forest ecology. She has authored a number of publications and scientific articles, and is a co-editor of a recent book, entitled "The Role of Ecosystems in Disaster Risk Reduction".



Dr. Udo Nehren

Dr. Nehren is a senior researcher and lecturer in Physical Geography and Ecosystem Management and the Scientific Coordinator of the Center for Natural Resources and Development (CNRD) at Cologne University of Applied Sciences, Germany. He holds a PhD in Geography, a diploma in Physical Geography/Geosciences, and a Masterīs of Engineering in Resources Management. He has worked in the field of environmental and traffic planning. In his academic career, he works on ecosystem management in tropical and subtropical environments, with a particular focus on ecosystem-based disaster risk reduction, environmental change, and ecosystem services. He has published multiple scientific articles on these topics.



Dr Marwa Khalifa

Dr. Marwa Khalifa is Associate Professor in Faculty of Engineering, Ain Shams University (ASU) in Cairo, Egypt. She has obtained her B.Sc. & M.Sc., "Urban Planning" specialization from ASU, while her PhD was a joint supervision between ASU and the University of Sheffield, UK. Dr. Khalifa's expertise in terms of research, publications, teaching and consultancy services focuses on environmental assessment & risk reduction, strategic planning, upgrading of informal settlements and participatory planning approaches. Furthermore, since 2007 Dr. Khalifa has participated in/coordinated 3 international cooperation projects with universities in EU, Latin America, South Asia and MENA Region related to higher education reform in the field of participatory planning and natural resources management.



Ms. Simone Sandholz

Dipl.-Ing. Simone Sandholz, M.Eng., is a researcher and lecturer at the University of Innsbruck, Institute of Geography, Austria. After graduating from architecture and urban planning, she completed postgraduate degrees in conservation and resources management. She has expertise in urban and regional planning and sustainable management of natural resources, with a focus on good governance and livelihood approaches. She has published on cultural landscapes and the upgrading of development strategies and risk management in urban areas, and has managed an international research project on urban green spaces.