UNDP Global Policy Centre for Governance

Our Team

Arvinn E. Gadgil,


Arvinn has been engaged in governance and development policy for almost 20 years. Before joining UNDP he was Policy Director for International Development Policy in the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.  Recently he has focused on issues such as domestic resource mobilization, addressing illicit financial flows, anti-corruption, fiscal stability, and global economic governance. He has also led a system-wide development policy analysis network to improve Norwegian development policy engagements.

Arvinn has been Senior Director of the Norwegian Refugee Council and has held a number of board positions in academic institutions, civil society organizations and inter-governmental institutions. He held the roles of State Secretary, Deputy Minister and Junior Minister for international development, climate and environment over a period of six years in Norway. Trained as a career diplomat, he has also worked in Afghanistan and Sri Lanka.  

Arvinn holds degrees in development studies, economics and international studies from the UK and Norway.  He is a Norwegian citizen, and an overseas citizen of India.

Arvinn Gadgil
Julia Kercher

Julia Kercher, 

Senior Expert - SDG 16 Research and Policy Engagement


Julia’s work for the Centre focuses on how governance can leverage social, economic and environmental progress (‘SDG 16 interlinkages’), on identifying governance frontier issues and on inclusive stakeholder engagement. Throughout her career, Julia has been working at the intersection of different disciplines, e.g. between human rights and economics or between governance and sustainable fishing. When the SDGs were conceived, she co-designed the UN’s consultation guidelines used in over 80 countries and led the successful engagement of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights in the negotiation process. She is a fully trained lawyer and holds an MSc in Development Practice from Oxford Brookes University.


Niamh Hanafin,
Senior Advisor, Information Integrity

Niamh joined UNDP in 2020 in response to growing calls from country offices for support and guidance on COVID19 disinformation. Niamh now leads OGC's work on information integrity more broadly. She is the author of UNDP's strategic guidance in this area: Information Integrity: Forging a Pathway to Truth, Resilience and Trust. Niamh represents UNDP in global conversations and forums, leads UNDP's information integrity research agenda and provides support to UNDP regional hubs and country offices on programmatic responses. Prior to UNDP, Niamh spent 8 years with Search for Common Ground, leading multi-million-dollar peacebuilding portfolios in Africa and Asia. She has over 20 years' experience in communication for social change, designing and managing innovative communications programming promoting children, youth, and women's rights.

Niamh holds a B.A. in Communication Studies from Dublin City University and a Masters in Communication for Development from Malmo University. She has lived in Cambodia, Laos, Mozambique, Angola and Madagascar and worked in Afghanistan, Zimbabwe, DRC, Rwanda, Burundi, Tanzania, and Central African Republic

Niamh Hanafin
Mariana Neves

Mariana Neves, 

Governance Statistics Specialist


Mariana has previously worked for the National Statistics Office of Cabo Verde, where she coordinated Governance, Peace, and Security Statistics at the national, regional, and global levels. In this capacity, she was the Group Praia on Governance Statistics coordinator. She represented her country in the negotiations and design of the Global indicator framework for the Sustainable Development Goals and targets of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. From 2016 to 2019, Mariana worked with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime as a consultant on crime and criminal justice statistics in Eastern Africa. Since 2020, Mariana has been working as Governance Statistics Specialist for the UNDP Oslo Governance Centre on several measurement-related activities, including the SDG 16 Survey Initiative. Mariana holds a Post-Graduate Degree in Data Analysis for Social Sciences. 


Emilie Andresen, 

UNDP Communication Officer


Emilie Andresen is a dedicated Communication Officer at the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Global Policy Centre for Governance in Oslo, Norway, contributing to UNDP's mission since September 2021. With an academic background in political science and international law, Emilie has played a significant role in advancing the work of the UNDP Global Policy Centre on Governance issues. With an appetite for democracy, human rights and sustainable development; she actively seeks opportunities to drive positive change and make a meaningful impact in her work. Prior to joining UNDP, she actively contributed to projects addressing female rights and poverty during her time in India, as well as working with the Syrian Refugee Crisis in Lesvos. Emilie has worked with multiple NGOs working with projects on contemporary forms of slavery, human trafficking, child marriage and the legal identity of minorities. She holds a B.A. in Political Science and Legal Studies from John Cabot University and has a background in International Relations and Criminology from the University of New South Wales. 

Emilie Andersen
  Søren Vester Haldrup

Søren Vester Haldrup, 

Financial Integrity and Transnational Corruption Specialist


Søren Vester Haldrup works with transnational corruption, financial integrity, and innovation in the Centre. He leads a new experimental initiative to tackle transnational corruption, deploying innovation and systems thinking to understand and address the issue across its global 'value chain' from where funds are stolen to where they end up. Søren also manages the Centre’s new initiative on Finance, Integrity and Governance (FIG) which aims to advance progress on frontier issues that are critical for the success of the Financing for Development process. Before joining the Centre, Søren worked in UNDP’s Strategic Innovation Unit supporting UNDP country offices, global teams, and local partners to apply new approaches to better understand and tackle complex systems challenges. In this role Søren built the ‘M&E Sandbox’ - UNDP’s flagship initiative focused on rethinking monitoring, evaluation and impact measurement for 21st century challenges. Søren has been a board member with Global Integrity, he has worked as a Senior Consultant with Oxford Policy Management as well as with UNDP Tanzania/ Government of Tanzania, International Rescue Committee Ethiopia, and the Danish Institute for International Studies. Søren has an MSc in Political Science from the University of Copenhagen and an MSc in Theory and History of International Relations from the London School of Economics and Political Science.


Priya Sood, 

SDG 16 Knowledge Management and Advocacy Officer


Priya is an accomplished development practitioner with 20 plus years of experience driving projects focused on governance for international NGOs and the UN in South Asia, the Middle East and North America. She has engaged with a wide cross section of stakeholders globally in the areas of SDG 16, anti-corruption, public private partnerships and gender equality. Priya has managed several programs for various national and international organizations in the development sphere.  The range and scope of responsibility has been varied, extending from implementing an anti-money laundering program for the Global Organization of Parliamentarians Against Corruption to launching the UN Global Compact program in Jordan. Priya has also worked with UNDP Yemen to building capacities of young professionals in human based approaches to development and delivered a peacebuilding program in Sri Lanka on behalf of the Forum of Federations. Since 2021 Priya has been working at the UNDP GPCG on knowledge management and advocacy focused on SDG 16.  She is currently engaged in building awareness on peace, justice and inclusion in the lead up to the High-Level Political Forum (July 2024) where SDG 16 is being reviewed. Priya holds a Master of Arts in International Development Studies from Dalhousie University and a Bachelor of Commerce from McGill University.


Marie Laberge, 

Expert Consultant on SDG 16 and Governance Statistics


Marie is a governance measurement expert with 15 years of experience with UNDP in supporting national efforts to measure and monitor governance, peace and security across the world. When based at the UNDP Regional Service Centre for Africa, she supported the African community of statisticians in a pioneering effort to start producing harmonized official statistics on governance, peace and security. At the global level, she supported the development of internationally recognised methodologies for SDG 16 indicators under UNDP’s custodianship. Marie has also been supporting the Praia Group on Governance Statistics since its creation, in 2015, to advance the development of international standards for the compilation of statistics on different dimensions of governance. Marie holds a Master’s Degree in Human Security Policies from the University of British Columbia, Canada.

Marie Laberge
Torni Iren Johansen

Torni Iren Johansen, Administrative Assistant


Torni Iren Johansen is as Administrative Assistant at the Oslo Governance Centre. Torni has more than 30 years of experience in administrative work. She has previously worked for the Norwegian Defence and has served abroad in a military capacity on several occasions. Torni also worked for 4 years at NATO HQ as an executive assistant before working for the UN Department of Peacekeeping Operations in 2001. While with DPKO she was posted to Kosovo, Lebanon and Haiti, working mostly with the Board of Inquiry. Torni moved to UNDP and the Oslo Governance Centre in 2008.


Anga R. Timilsina, 

Global Programme Advisor


is currently the UNDP’s Global Programme Advisor on Anti-corruption and provides overall supervision and guidance to the UNDP’s Global Anti-corruption project titled “Anti-corruption for Peaceful and Inclusive Societies (ACPIS)”, which is UNDP’s flagship initiative for policy and programme support to UNDP programme countries. Anga has provided governance and anti-corruption technical support to more than 40 countries, including support for strengthening the capacity of government institutions, business sector, CSOs, media, youth and women’s networks to prevent and combat corruption. Anga also coordinates UNDP’s anti-corruption efforts at the global level including global advocacy and awareness, research and analysis, donor and partner coordination.

Anga was previously with RAND Cooperation, a U.S.-based nonprofit institution, where he worked on issues ranging from post-conflict reconstruction to health and education reforms in many developing countries.  Anga has A Ph.D. in Policy Analysis from the Pardee RAND Graduate School and a master’s degree in international development from the International University of Japan. He also brings his experiences working for various non-governmental agencies in Nepal. 

Anga R. Timilsina
Aida Arutyunova

Aida Arutyunova, 

Programme Manager


Ms. Aida Arutyunova has been with UNDP’s Global Anti-Corruption Initiative since 2010. Currently she manages UNDP’s Global Anti-Corruption for Peaceful and Inclusive Societies (ACPIS) project based in UNDP Oslo Governance Center. She manages activities of the programme that relate to work on transparency, accountability and anti-corruption specifically focusing on innovation, technology, work in sectors (education, health and water), gender and local governance, integration of anti-corruption into country programmes and strategies, etc. Ms. Arutyunova works with approximately 40 UNDP Country Offices on a yearly basis and liaises with different partners such as UNODC, OECD, U4, Transparency International, etc. in regard to joint activities.  

Ms. Arutyunova brings 21 years of experience in working on development and humanitarian issues. Prior to working in UNDP Headquarters, Ms. Arutyunova managed an Anti-Corruption Programme in UNDP Armenia Country Office as well as worked for European Union (EUAG) as a national advisor to the Government of Armenia on the issues of anti-corruption, transparency, accountability and e-governance. Ms. Arutyunova also brings 6 years of experience with Catholic Relief Services where she managed projects focusing on community development, conflict prevention, anti-corruption etc. She also worked for UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization in Rome and managed the Central Asian portfolio of programmes. Ms. Arutyunova holds a Master's Degree in Political Science and International Relations from the American University of Armenia.