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Past and Current Fellows-in-Residence

Professor Danilo López-Hernández

Department of Applied Ecology, Institute of Zoology and Tropical Ecology of the Central University (UCV) in Venezuela


Professor Danilo López-Hernández is a tenured professor in the Department of Applied Ecology, Institute of Zoology and Tropical Ecology at the Central University (UCV) in Venezuela, where he created the Laboratory of Environmental Studies (LEA). Professor López-Hernández holds a Licenciatura in Biology (UCV) and a PhD in Soil Science from the University of London. He also was a postdoctoral scholar at the École Normal Supérieure in Paris, France.

Professor López-Hernández has been a visiting and associate researcher at the following institutions: Centre d'Etudes Nucleaires at Cadarache (CEN, France); at the Institut de Quimica Agraria, Universita Degli Studi Tuscia, in Viterbo, Italia; the Natural Resource Ecology Laboratory at Colorado State University in Fort Collins, USA; at the Centre de Pedologie Biologique in Nancy, France; at the Department of Ecology of the University of Notre Dame, USA; and at the Instituto de Recursos Naturales y Agrobiología Salamanca in Spain. From 2004-2007 he received a research grant from Institut de Recherche pour le Développement (IRD) in Montpellier, France where he was appointed as part of the Unité de Valorisation Pedologique. He has been a Visiting Professor at many other universities and Research Centers in Latin America, Europe, Africa and the US.

His research is in soil and agroecological studies; he has expertise in soil chemistry and in nutrient cycling in both natural and agricultural systems. Specific contributions have been made in assessing P- chemistry in tropical and temperate soils. In the last twenty years however, he has been devoted to the evaluation of nutrient budgets in savannas and the evaluation of sustainability in agricultural systems in Venezuelan Amazonia.

Professor López-Hernández has extensive experience as an educator. He has supervised more than fifty-five graduate and undergraduate theses and has more than 160 publications.

He served as President of the Venezuelan Ecological Society from 1996-2002. He also served for over three years at the Ministry of Science and Technology, Venezuela (2000-2002), where he was the President of CONICIT (National Council for Science and Research of Venezuela) and participated also as the Founder and President of FONACIT (National Fund for Science and Technology). He is a member of the Latin America Academy of Science.

While in residence at the University of Virginia in fall 2011, Professor López-Hernández will be writing a book about the Productivity and Biogeochemistry of the savannas of the Orinoco Basin and preparing a proposal of joint collaboration with (took out his) colleagues from the Department of Environmental Sciences.

Previous Fellows

Dr. Fakhruddin Ahmed

Former Chief Adviser of the Caretaker Government of the People's Republic of Bangladesh

Dr. Fakhruddin Ahmed is the former Prime Minister of the Caretaker Government of the People's Republic of Bangladesh. He led an administration whose principle and overriding objective was to hand over power to a democratically-elected government through the holding of free, fair, and credible elections. Among the many factors which made this challenge daunting was the fact that over 12 million fake or duplicate names existed on the country's electoral rolls in January 2007. Dr. Ahmed announced in April 2007 that elections would be held by the end of 2008, and though many doubted this outcome, on 29th December 2008, Dr. Ahmed's government fulfilled its pledge to the citizens of Bangladesh by presiding over an election that all neutral observers, both domestic and international, hailed as the most successful in the nation's history. The European Union observer team noted that "professionalism, transparency and credibility were the hallmarks of this election," and Bangladeshis celebrate the renaissance of their representative democracy with a record turnout of over 87% of eligible voters.

Previously, Dr. Ahmed served for over twenty years at the World Bank, where his work focused on macroeconomic issues as well as on other sectoral and policy issues related to development. He worked across a number of countries in South Asia, East Asia, and Africa, including a stint in the World Bank's resident mission in Kenya. Prior to joining the World Bank, he served for over fifteen years in the erstwhile Civil Service of Pakistan and after independence in the Government of Bangladesh, lastly as Joint Secretary for the economic Relations Division in the Ministry of Finance.

Dr. Ahmed began his professional career as Lecturer in Economics at Dhaka University. He obtained the first position in his class (first class first) in both BA (Hons.) and MA in Economics from Dhaka University. He subsequently received another MA in Development Economics from Williams College, Massachusetts, and a PhD in Economics from Princeton University, while on leave from his civil service appointment. Son of a physician, Dr. Ahmed was born in Dhaka on 1st May 1940. A widely travelled man, Dr. Ahmed is married and has one son.

Dr. María Pilar García-Guadilla

Universidad Simón Bolivar, Caracas, Venezuela

Professor García-Guadilla is a tenured professor in the Urban Planning, Political Sciences, and Environment and Development Departments of the University Simón Bolìvar (USB) in Venezuela; she also created and is currently Director of the Interdisciplinary Research Laboratory in Environmental, Urban and Sociopolitical Conflicts Resolution (GAUS-USB). María Pilar, as she likes to be called, holds an M.A in Social Sciences and a PhD in Human Ecology and Urban Sociology from the University of Chicago. She also was a postdoctoral scholar at the University of London.

She has been Visiting Professor at the Université de Paris III ( La Sorbonne) and the Universidad Complutense de Madrid, British Council distinguished Research Scholar at the University of London (ILAS), Research Scholar at the Kellogg Institute of the University of Notre Dame, Fullbright Professor at the College of Charleston, Andrés Bello Chair at the Universidad de Salamanca in Spain, and Visiting Professor and Research Scholar at many other universities in Latin America, Europe and the US.

The coordinator of a ten-year long major research project on Post-Constitutional Social Movements, Participatory Democracy, and Conflict Resolution in polarized Venezuela, she is also a founder of the women's movement and a consultant-activist in the environmental, citizen's and human rights social movements in Venezuela. She has published more than 100 articles in academic journals and has been chief-editor of several journals and books about discourses, praxis and social policies on democratization, citizenship and social movements in Latin America.

While in residence at the University of Virginia in fall 2010, María Pilar will be writing a book about the possibilities and limitations of the so-called Participatory Democracies in Latin America, focusing on the case of Venezuela as a showcase for other Latin American countries.

Rashida Manjoo

UN Special Rapporteur on Violence Against Women

The United Nations special reporter on violence against women, Rashida Manjoo, was in residence at the University of Virginia January 25 through February 16, 2010.

Manjoo was a Distinguished International Fellow and Visiting Professor, hosted by the School of Law. She cames to U.Va. with support from the Office of the Vice Provost for International Programs.

Manjoo was appointed special reporter in July 2009 and is serving a three-year term. She is a research associate in the law faculty of the University of Cape Town and is an Advocate of the High Court of South Africa.

Marcella Ascione

Central Administration of Naples, Italy

G. Marcella Ascione graduated in Economics from the Federico II University of Naples. In 2001 she won a scholarship for admission to Formez Training and Study Centre, where she completed a Masters in "Agents of innovation in public administrations." She began working with Formez, an institute within the Italian Prime Minister's Department of Administration, in 2002, organizing events and coordinating the laboratory "Innovative finance and financing projects in Italy." She has worked in connection with Formez's "Good Examples" database, the most important database for benchmarking between Italian public administrations.

Ms. Ascione has been involved in Research and Development at Formez since 2003, helping to coordinate a range of research projects focused on administrative innovation and reform in an international context. Her current duties also include public relations activity for C.A.I.MED (Center for Administrative Innovation in the Euro-Mediterranean Region).

Valentina Riegel

Italian Department of Administration

Valentina Riegel was a visiting scholar at the University of Virginia in Fall 2009, she graduated in Economics with full marks; then she attended a one year master course on Local Development and a one year advanced course on Administrative cooperation in the Euro-Mediterranean area. She also participated to international summer schools: L'Institute - Ferrara School on industrial development (University of Ferrara, Italy) and Oslo Summer School 2005 about welfare state reforms in comparative perspectives (Oslo University, Norway).

She has been working for five years as researcher with special tasks on regional models. She worked with Ervet (Bologna), Development Agency on behalf of Emilia Romagna Region; with Nomisma, Research Centre on economics; with Formez (Napoli), Training and Research Centre on behalf of Italian Department of Public Function; and with C.A.I.Med - Centre for the Administrative Innovation in the Euro-Mediterranean Area, a special agreement between Formez and the United Nations.