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Transitions at the Geneva Peacebuilding Platform

Rainer Gude will become the new Executive Coordinator of the Geneva Peacebuilding Platform, following a gradual hand-over process from Achim Wennmann.

Tuesday 16 February 2021

Rainer Gude will become the new Executive Coordinator of the Geneva Peacebuilding Platform, following a gradual hand-over process from Achim Wennmann. In an interim period, Rainer will lead the implementation of the GPP's 2020-2021 programme and also prepare the next programme for 2022-2023.

After a period of 10 years leading GPP, Dr. Achim Wennmann will leave the Geneva Peacebuilding Platform at the end of February 2021 to take up new functions at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies.  Achim will work with the Director of the Graduate Institute, Professor Marie-Laure Salles, on strategic development and partnerships while also continuing research and teaching at the Graduate Institute. “I am replete with gratitude for the experience of leading GPP and will be ever thankful for the excellent collaboration with so many friends and colleagues”, Achim said.

GPP has initiated a transition process and hired Rainer Gude as the new Executive Coordinator to lead an interim period for 2021. He will complete the implementation of the 2020-2021 programme and will prepare the next programme for 2022-2023. Rainer has served on the GPP Advisory Board for the last two years representing Initiatives of Change - Switzerland, where he helped run the Caux Forum over the last 9 summers and most recently served as Co-Director General.  He has followed GPP's activities over the last 10 years, co-moderated the Peace Talks twice, and is an active member of Geneva's Peacebuilding community. "I am delighted for this opportunity to continue to serve, connect and of course learn from this vibrant community. The GPP, just like peacebuilding itself, has continued to evolve, especially in 2020, and there is a lot for this platform still to do.  Achim leaves big shoes to fill, but also a great example and a fantastic team to which I am happy to join.”

Words from the GPP Steering Committee

The GPP Steering Committee thanks Achim and welcomes Rainer. 

“Over the last ten years, Achim has made a profound contribution to strengthening the networks and understanding of peacebuilding in Geneva and beyond, through his great energy, his constant commitment and hard work, and his warm people skills. Achim is a hard act to follow but I feel sure that in Rainer, GPP has a person who can take the GPP forward further still”, underlined Jonathan Woolley, Director of the Quaker UN Office and a member of the GPP Steering Committee.

“Many thanks to Achim for his dedication over the years to the GPP and to peacebuilding initiative. I look forward to working with him in his new position,” said Keith Krause, CCDP Director and a GPP Steering Committee member.

“The GPP has grown and flourished thanks to Achim’s energy and leadership. Interpeace is deeply grateful for the way in which Achim has inclusively fostered many successes and has advanced our shared vision of a vibrant community of peacebuilding practitioners and experts”, said Simon Gimson, Interpeace Vice-President and a GPP Steering Committee member.  

“The GPP and its Geneva Peace Week have become central features of todays’ Geneva peacebuilding landscape. Achim, as its Executive Coordinator over the past ten years, has played a critical role in harnessing, nurturing, shaping and developing ideas and initiatives, projects and networks, in support of peacebuilding in Geneva and beyond. Thanks to his inclusive approach, forward looking attitude and purposeful direction, the work of the platform has gained broad recognition, generated a constructive dialogue and concrete, novel ideas for the sustaining peace agenda. We thank Achim for his leadership and wish him all the best for his future undertakings,” said Christina Orisich, the GCSP’s Deputy Director and GPP Steering Committee member.

For the past ten years, Achim was a pillar of strength for the Geneva peacebuilding community, bringing together a diverse group of stakeholders unified by the goal to strengthen our efforts for peace. His enthusiasm and professionalism have truly propelled GPP into its next phase of development” noted Thomas Guerber, Ambassador, Director DCAF and Member of the GPP Steering Committee.

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The Geneva Peacebuilding Platform is a knowledge hub that connects the critical mass of peacebuilding actors, resources, and expertise in Geneva and worldwide. Founded in 2008, the Platform has a mandate to facilitate interaction on peacebuilding between different institutions and sectors, and to advance new knowledge and understanding of issues and contexts related to building peace. 

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