Maryam Golnaraghi Director of Climate Change and Emerging Environmental Risks The Geneva Association

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Over the last 20 years, Maryam’s careers has spanned working in senior executive and advisory roles in the industry, government and the United Nations. She has led, drove, influenced, and managed transformative multi-stakeholder climate risk initiatives in the private and public sectors, with global impact to scale up transitioning to a resilient low-carbon economy. In 2020, Maryam was included in a list of those ‘Most Influential on Climate Change’ produced by InsuranceERM and was chosen among top 100 global influencers on ‘Resilience’, by The Leaders’ Magazine.

Currently, she is the Director of Climate Change and Emerging Environmental Risks at The Geneva Association (GA), an international strategy think tank. She is working with the C-Suite and leading experts of the largest global insurance companies, leading strategic industry-level initiatives to boost insurance industry’s contributions as risk managers and investors to transitioning to resilience net zero economy.  She leads the industry-led Task Force on Climate Risk Assessment to advance sector-specific decision-useful climate risk assessment methodologies, linked to TCFD; initiated and is leading projects on climate litigation risk; technologies for disrupting economic sectors’ low carbon business models and socio-economic implications of environmental risk with the lens of what solution re/insurers can offer on both sides of the balance sheet . She works at the forefront of innovative public-private solutions for strengthening and investing in resilient green infrastructure for essential sectors, and peril-specific risk management (e.g. floods) in mature economies.

From 2004 to 2014 Maryam was the Chief of International Disaster Risk Reduction Program at the UN’s World Meteorological Organization, where she headed up and built an international program and worked with 40+ governments to develop climate and disaster risk management national capacities. She also actively engaged in the climate change, disaster risk reduction framework negotiation and  developed the initial concept national climate data services to enable access to publicly-funded, climate data and modelling for decision-making in the private sector.

In 1997, Maryam founded and served as the CEO of the first climate risk analytics and research firm, Climate Risk Solutions Inc., headquartered in Boston, MA, where she delivered innovative climate-risk assessment and risk management solutions to companies in the energy, agriculture and financial sectors and the US government.

Maryam serves on a number of executive and advisory boards in the public and private sectors and multi-lateral organizations. She mentors high-tech start-ups with climate change and risk focus. She has authored numerous internationally referenced reports and a book “Partnerships in Multi-hazard Early Warning Systems” (Springer-Verlag 2012).

She holds a BS in Chemical Engineering from Cornell University, an MS in Applied Physics and a PhD in Physical Oceanography from Harvard University  and worked a senior research fellow at the Harvard Business School.   

Her latest articles can be accessed at: https://www.genevaassociation.org/research-topics/extremeevents-and-climate-risk