The WRI program works in more than 50 countries to find ways citizens can work with their governments to improve transparency and help decision-makers be more responsive to the needs of people and their surrounding environment.
“Environmental accountability is vital to the well-being of nations all around the world,” said Jonathan Lash, president of WRI. “Jake has the expertise WRI needs to continue as a trusted advisor for helping decision-makers increase transparency and access to their government information.”
Among the program’s current efforts are: The Access Initiative, the largest network in the world dedicated to ensuring that citizens can influence their governments on decisions regarding natural resources; and The Partnership for Principle 10, an international forum for governments, civil society organizations, and others working together to enhance public access to information and participation in national decision-making.
“WRI’s program was one of the first research centers to focus explicitly on improving environmental governance,” said Werksman. “I think the key to that will be finding ways to develop tools that citizens can use to improve accountability and give people the influence they need to manage, and benefit from, their own environmental resources.”
Prior to joining WRI this month, Werksman was a senior advisor to the Global Inclusion Program of the Rockefeller Foundation, where he supported grant making decisions in international intellectual property rights policy and international trade policy. Previously, he served as the environmental institutions and governance adviser to the United Nations Development Programme, where he provided policy advice to UNDP’s headquarters and country offices. His UNDP experience was preceded by nearly 10 years at the Foundation for International Environmental Law and Development (FIELD), where he served as a lawyer, program director, and managing director.
Werksman is also currently an adjunct professor of law at New York University, and an active member of the State Bar of California. He holds degrees from Columbia University (A.B. 1986, English Literature); the University of Michigan (Juris Doctor, cum laude, 1990); and the University of London (LLM, 1993, Public International Law).
The World Resources Institute is an environmental think tank that goes beyond research to create practical ways to protect the earth and improve people's lives.
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