About Us

Our Director

Anne Marie Sloth Carlsen took up her post as Director of the UNDP Seoul Policy Centre in January 2014. 

For the previous five years she served as Senior Policy Advisor  in UNDP's Bureau for Development Policy in the Environment and Energy Group in New York,  initially (2008-2012) on loan from the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs/DANIDA. Anne Marie’s work centred on UNDP and UN inter-agency policy and coherence issues relating to environmental and social sustainability, inclusive green economies, sustainable consumption and production, mainstreaming of climate change and environmental sustainability in the UN Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF) as well as global sustainable development governance and Rio+20, including follow-up in the Sustainable Development Goals and Post-2015 contexts. 

Prior to joining UNDP, Anne Marie served as a diplomat of her native country, Denmark, for more than 20 years, holding different positions dealing with a number of substantive issues: Deputy Head of the Department of Environment (2001-2008); Minister Counsellor and Deputy Permanent Representative of Denmark to the UN in Geneva (1997-2001); Head of the World Bank Section (1996-1997); Deputy Head of the Secretariat of the Minister for Nordic Affairs (1993-1996); First Secretary of the Embassy of Denmark in Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania (1990-1993); Desk Officer, Organization and Budgeting (1988-1990); and Desk Officer, East Africa (1986-1988).

Anne Marie holds a Candidata Administrationis Politicae (Political Science and Public Administration) degree from the University of Copenhagen and has also studied at the Institut d’Etudes Politiques in Paris, France, and at Washington State University in Pullman, USA.

Our Policy Specialist 

Artemy Izmestiev works on research, policy dialogue and sharing Korea’s development experience with developing countries to help their own efforts to eradicate poverty and ensure sustainable human development through UNDP's networks.

Artemy has worked for UNDP for over eight years, supporting the coordination and management of development assistance in a number of countries in Africa, Eastern Europe and CIS and the Arab States. His previous posting was with UNDP in Tajikistan, where he served as aid coordination specialist. He has also worked with the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning in Ghana on preparations for the Third High Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness in Accra in 2008. His work has focused on the development of aid policies, joint development assistance programmes and in promoting knowledge exchange for development results between developing countries.

Artemy has MA in Economics from Moscow State University and MA in European Studies from the Institute of European Studies “Alcide de Gasperi” in Rome, Italy.

Our Policy Specialist

Ahjung Lee works on various aspects of the Centre’s knowledge sharing work, including on the development and solidification of knowledge partnerships with key stakeholders in Korea and abroad. With her expertise on governance issues, she has worked for UNDP in different capacities for almost seven years, including for UNDP Indonesia Country Office and the UNDP Bangkok Regional Hub before joining USPC.  

Outside of UNDP, Ahjung worked on research and policy analysis for effective development cooperation in Korean Government institutions; managed a training programme on the rights-based approach to development at a Korean NGO; and worked as a research consultant at the University of Oxford. She has edited and (co-)authored a number of publications and institutional reports. 

Ahjung holds a Master's Degree from the University of Oxford in the UK, and an Honours Bachelor of Arts from the University of Toronto in Canada. She has lived and/or worked in Korea, Canada, Hong Kong, UK, Indonesia, and Thailand.

Our Policy Specialist

Sarwat Chowdhury works as Green Economy, Natural Capital and Productive Capacities Policy Specialist. Her portfolio covers a mix of global topics for the BPPS Sustainable Development Cluster, including the Partnership for Green Economy (PAGE) initiative, and USPC specific issues. She has worked on climate change and sustainable development for 15 years. Her previous portfolios at Vietnam and Bangladesh country offices included Green Economy, NAMA, INDCs, gender-environment, disaster management, climate adaptation and mitigation. As UN Rio+20 and SE4All focal point, she co-led joint Post 2015 Task force with Bangladesh government.

At UNDP NY, she focused on regional programming and was energy & environment focal point for Asia Pacific region. Also in NY, she worked with UNDP-GEF and Sustainable Energy Programme on various publications including 2010 Handbook for Technology Needs Assessment for Climate Change.

As former World Bank staff, she led 2000 Grey Cover report Bangladesh: Climate Change and Sustainable Development; authored WB studies on adaptation, NRM, ground water management. Previously, she managed Climate Change Dossier at SciDev, UK; conducted research at DfID, Grameen Bank, Greenpeace.

Sarwat has a PhD from University of Maryland, MA from Baylor University, BA in Economics from Berea College, USA. She has worked in Bangladesh, UK, USA, Vietnam and Zambia.

Our Communications Analyst

Hye-Jin Park is responsible for executing UNDP and the Seoul Policy Centre’s internal and external communications through a variety of knowledge dissemination and awareness-raising methods.

She comes with over ten years of global work experience, producing communication materials for multilateral institutions, foundations and research institutes. She has written for an array of channels including books, articles, policy reports, newsletters and press releases, and was directly involved in field projects in Indonesia, Brazil, Senegal, Tanzania and Nepal, among others. Previously, as programme officer at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris, Hye-Jin co-authored, produced and disseminated a number of policy publications; organized global policy outreach events engaging partners from governments, international organizations, civil society and research groups; and oversaw web content management and the production of outreach tools, all focusing on the field of international education development. Prior to her UN experiences, she also worked for the Korea Democracy Foundation, the Council on Security Cooperation in the Asia-Pacific and the Asia-Europe Meeting.

Hye-Jin holds Master’s degrees from Duke University (USA) and Yonsei University (Korea) in international development and international relations, and has also studied at the Institut d’Etudes Politiques (France) and the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor (USA).

Our Operations Associate

Heejung Kim, our operations associate, is responsible for leading and managing the overall administrative work in terms of finance, budget, contract and HR for the UNDP Seoul Policy Centre. She holds a B.A. in French and worked for the U.S. Embassy Seoul and multi-national companies as an Administrative Officer for 14 years with expertise in finance and contract management.

Our Logistics and Protocol Assistant

Joong Chul has worked for UNDP for over 22 years, both for the former UNDP Country Office and for the Seoul Policy Centre since its establishment in January 2011. He has also worked for the Malaysian and Brazilian embassies. In 1996 Joong Chul was awarded a plaque from the Minister of Science and Technology in recognition of his support for UNDP and the Government of the Republic of Korea.