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Ethiopia

Oana Baloi

UN-Habitat

I am a Romanian landscape architect with BSC in landscape architecture from Romania, and MSC in landscape architecture from the Netherlands, the latter graduated with a thesis on protecting and creating urban wetlands in the context of a fast-growing city with observed climate change impact (Kigali, Rwanda). Since 2014 I am based in East Africa supporting projects both in the region and globally, for UN HQ, UN country office and field office, but also for NGOs and private sector.

In the past years I acquired technical and managerial skills by supporting cities` to manage the spatial impact of sudden events that amplify their exposure to vulnerabilities. I supported strategic and spatial planning, revision of cities master plans, landscape designs applying nature-based solutions, but I also led spatial assessments, revision of policies, and delivered trainings for technical and government officers. The most recent projects I am contributing to are a urban water resilience project; and implementing area-based, urban durable solutions for the integration of returning migrants, refugees, and internally displaced people in cities.

My work is often based on participatory approaches, engaging local communities at different stages of the projects in an interactive manner. In the past years I have worked with women and men of different ages representing communities exposed to climate risk, indigenous communities, and displaced people. The experiences I am looking for are related to the spatial aspect of urban crisis, particularly in response to drought, flood, landslides, and relocation of large number of people. Further, I am very interested o continue promoting the value that landscape architects bring in crises prevention and response, particularly bringing closer together the sectors dealing with humanitarian sector and climate change response (and finance).