International Women's Day

Blog / March 8, 2022

Introducing Nhilce Esquivel, Julie Vuignier and Mary Namukose on International Women's Day as part of our #FacesOfGEO campaign.

Nhilce Esquivel is a Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) specialist working on developing projects related to Flood Risk Management, GIS, Data Analysis, Nature Based Solutions and Co-creation. She is a youth advocate collaborating with different Non Governmental Organisations and coordinating the DRR thematic group within Water Youth Network. Nhilce holds a bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering and an MSc in Water Science and Engineering with a major in Flood Risk Management. Her interests lie in water resources preservation, inclusive DRR, climate change, sustainable cities, blue and green infrastructure, citizen science, co-creation and innovation. Currently, Nhilce works as a research associate at SEI (Stockholm Environment Institute) collaborating on international projects.

What is your role in relation to EO and the support you provide for my organisations?

In 2017, I had the opportunity to attend the event called “Strengthening Disaster Risk Reduction across the Americas: A Regional Summit on the Contribution of Earth Observation” organised by NASA in Argentina. By that time, I was starting my career as a young professional in DRR and I was volunteering in the Water Youth Network and the United Nations Major Group for Children and Youth. This event was my first approach to understanding the potential of Earth observation data to achieve the UN 2030 Agenda and the Sendai Framework for DRR. It also connected me with other young and experienced professionals that were paving the way to enhance the applications of EO in different sectors. Since then, the team at Water Youth Network has collaborated closely with GEO and other agencies to facilitate workshops to incentivize and train other professionals on the use of EO and to develop strategies for youth involvement at all stages of the DRR cycle.

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Julie Vuignier is currently doing an internship at the GEO Secretariat. After graduating with a degree in international relations, she went on to complete a master's degree in public management and policy. She then worked as an intern at the Swiss Embassy in Chile, where she worked on a wide range of topics and activities related to bilateral and multilateral relations of both countries. Her interest in environmental issues has continued to grow and she intends to work in the field of environmental and sustainable development issues.

What is your role in relation to EO and the support you provide for my organisations?

This internship is my first professional experience related to Earth observations and more generally to environment and sustainable development issues. In my role, I support the GEO Secretariat with the coordination of activities, especially the GEO Work Programme. My tasks are diverse: document preparation, notetaking during meetings, and I am responsible for the collection, organization and follow up of implementation plans and other information submitted by the GEO Work Programme activities. This in support of the Secretariat and the GEO Programme Board and Review Teams. This internship is an opportunity for me to learn about environmental issues and the world of Earth observations and to meet inspiring people with expertise in these areas. I am now highly motivated to continue my journey in this direction and to learn more about these topics.

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Mary Namukose has a background in environmental sciences and aquatic ecology. She has been working in international development corporation for 7 years now, managing and implementing water resources management and development projects. She is passionate about sustainable use and management of natural resources and geospatial technologies.

What is your role in relation to EO and the support you provide for my organisations?

Women in GIS (WiGIS) Uganda is a non-profit initiative providing a safe space for women in the geospatial industry in Uganda to connect, learn and impact. As a strategy and partnership task force lead at WiGIS Uganda, I support the identification of strategic partners in the geospatial industry at local, regional and international levels to support WiGIS members to improve their knowledge and skills in the use of geospatial technology (including Earth observation), showcase their work, identify mentorship and career opportunities to break the barriers limiting their career advancement in such a male dominated field.

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  • Twitter : @namukose_mary
  • WiGIS Uganda: @WiGIS_UG
  • LinkedIn: Profile


More people can be found here: Faces of GEO.



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