Cristiane Pires de Azevedo


Cristiane is a responsible and ambitious young Brazilian researcher who has been working with sustainability issues since her graduation from Pontifícia Universidade Católica de Minas Gerais in Belo Horizonte, Brazil with a degree in biological sciences. She has been coordinating the projects for the NGO ‘4 Cantos do Mundo’ as well as consulting for other NGOs, with a special interest in issues surrounding the use of biofuels in Latin America.

Cristiane’s main goal upon receipt of her JWH Initiative grant was to gain a thorough and applicable understanding of environmental issues closely linked to sustainable development and conservation, particularly regarding her NGO’s projects, with a specific emphasis on biofuel issues in Latin America. To achieve this goal, she completed an Environmental Diplomacy course through the United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP) and University of Geneva in Switzerland—an opportunity she describes as ‘a lifetime experience’. This course not only deepened her understanding of negotiation skills and international governance surrounding global environmental issues, but it also provided Cristiane with valuable international contacts she intends to utilize as a means of exchanging experiences and expertise regarding her interests in the environment and sustainable development.

With increased capacity after her JWH Initiative work, Cristiane sought additional opportunities studying Land Governance for Sustainable Development at Utrecht University in the Netherlands, and Energy for Sustainable Development at Lund University in Sweden. Furthermore, the thesis work she conducted on ethical issues surrounding biofuels production earned her an invitation to support the development of a network in Brazil called Redebio, whose main objective is to understand and prevent negative impacts of biofuel production in Brazil.

Cristiane’s hard work has paid off not only through newly gained partnerships for her NGO but also through her development as a driving force in the environmental sector in Brazil. She says, “The JWH Initiative allowed me to grow not only as a leader but as a person”.

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