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Head of Research & Innovation - Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate & Energy
Jorn Verbeeck is Head of Research & Innovation at the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate & Energy. With a background in language & literature, Jorn first worked as a journalist. He then worked several years in the public sector as a political advisor on local, federal and European level, in the last years as an expert in sustainable development, waste and materials. He moved to the Flemish Government in 2010, during the Belgian EU Presidency, with a focus on the EU’s resource efficiency and circular economy strategy. He represented Belgium in the United Nations Environment Panel. He was transition manager of the Flanders’ Materials Programme (today known as Vlaanderen Circulair), which translates the EU’s long term strategy into a regional vision and multi-stakeholder and cross-sector joint programme that strives for a systemic shift towards the circular economy. The programme won the 2016 WEF Circulars Award. In 2016 he moved to the City of Ghent as director of the Environment & Climate Agency, implementing a 2050 climate neutral city vision by 2050 and managing a large team and public-private partnerships. Thereafter he has worked as private sector expert ESG & circular economy at Belgian technology federation Agoria developing roadmaps and tools, and working on change management. He is also board member of the EU Chapter of the Club of Rome.