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WMO-Private Sector Forum

World Meteorological Day, Geneva, 23 March 2012



Dr Sharon Hays - Mr Xavier Maitrerobert - Mr Benjamin Harper - Dr Thierry Berthoud


Sharon Hays

Dr Sharon Hays

Dr. Sharon L. Hays is Vice President, Office of Science and Engineering, at the Computer Sciences Corporation (CSC). Dr. Hays leads a team focused on the creation of business opportunities in the emerging climate change, energy and sustainability market.

Before joining CSC, Dr. Hays served in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) where, after confirmation by the U.S. Senate, she served as a deputy to the President’s Science Advisor. In this role, she led the strategic direction for all OSTP activities related to a range of science initiatives and advised senior White House officials on environmental and security policies.

In 2007, Dr. Hays led the U.S. delegation to the Nobel Prize-winning Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Earlier in her career, she worked on Capitol Hill, serving in several senior staff positions in the House of Representatives.

Dr. Hays received her PhD in Biochemistry from Stanford University, where she studied in the laboratory of Nobel Laureate Paul Berg. She also holds a BA in Molecular Biology from the University of California, Berkeley.


Mr Xavier Maitrerobert

Mr Xavier Maitrerobert is an economist and engineer and has been the Senior Water Adviser within the team of water professionals of AquaFed , the International Federation of Private Water Operators, since the launch of this international organisation in 2005 (see : http://www.aquafed.org/ ).

After his initial work in the consulting industry (Arthur Andersen), Mr Xavier Maitrerobert worked for more than 20 years in the water industry as an operator/provider of water and sewerage services within the French framework of Private Sector Participation in water services provision (through delegated management contracts) , as well as in the Anglo-Saxon framework based on economic regulation of water and sewerage services under the model of full divestiture.

Mr Xavier Maitrerobert graduated from the Ecole Nationale des Ponts et Chaussées (ENPC ) and Ecole National de la Statistique et de l’Administration Economique (ENSAE ) in France.


Mr Benjamin Harper, Zurich Financial Services

Benjamin Harper is the Climate Product Officer for Zurich's global Climate Office. Mr. Harper is based in Atlanta, Georgia. He is primarily responsible for developing new risk transfer products to address climate change risk. Mr. Harper and his team have developed products to address concerns ranging from renewable energy sources and carbon emissions to geologic sequestration. Prior to his current role, Mr. Harper headed Zurich North America's environmental engineering unit where he managed a group of engineers and geologists responsible for all aspects of environmental risk management in support of Zurich’s environmental business.

Before joining Zurich, Mr. Harper worked in engineering consulting with a focus on large-scale environmental remediation projects, impairment assessments, remedial design, regulatory compliance and civil/environmental construction.

Mr. Harper holds a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering and is a Certified Cost Engineer (CCE). Mr. Harper holds appointments on multiple federal and private committees for climate and environmental advancement.

Thierry Berthoud

Dr Thierry Berthoud

Dr Thierry Berthoud is currently Managing Director Energy & Climate at the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), in Geneva.

From 1974 and 1988, Dr Berthoud worked for the French Atomic Energy Commission in different positions of responsibility in research laboratories in the field of materials science. From 1989 to 1990, he was in charge of the French Department (Premier Ministre administration) in charge of the implementation in France of the Euratom Treaty provisions.

From 1990 to 2003 Dr Berthoud worked in Pechiney, the aluminium industry company and was involved in involvement in projects in Europe, North America, Latin America, Africa, China, India, Russia.

After the acquisition of Pechiney by Alcan in 2003, Dr Berthoud became Vice-President International Relations and Government Affairs for Alcan Inc. based in Montreal (Canada). His teams and himself personally were particularly active on the Climate change policy front in their respective jurisdictions.

Dr Berthoud joined Alstom in the fall of 2008 as Senior Vice President “CO2 solutions” for Alstom Power, based in Baden, Switzerland.

Dr Berthoud graduated in Electrical Engineering in Paris (France) and has a PhD degree in Physics (Materials Science) from the University of Paris. Thierry Berthoud holds both French and Swiss citizenship.












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