The Chair of the Platform The Vice-Chair of the Platform
The Steering Group is directed by a Chair, supported by a Vice-Chair, each exercising their function during one and a half year. The Chair leads the Steering Group and is in charge of the overall organization of its proceedings. The Vice-Chair is scheduled to succeed the Chair after expiry of the incumbent Chair’s term, and makes a proposal to the Steering Group on which country could take its place as next Vice-Chair.
Upon the establishment of the Platform, Germany and Bangladesh held the Steering Group Chairmanship and Vice-Chairmanship, respectively, for 1.5 years (June 2016-December 2017), then Bangladesh and France (January 2018-30 June 2019), then France and Fiji (1 July 2019-31 December 2020).
In a Steering Group meeting in December 2020, the Steering Group welcomed Fiji as the Chair of the PDD from 1 January 2021 and France as interim Vice-Chair from 1 January 2021, followed by the European Union as Vice-Chair from 1 January 2022. On 1 July 2022, the European Union took over the Chairmanship and will remain Chair of PDD until 31 December 2023. Kenya will assume the Vice-Chairmanship of the PDD and support the EU in their priorities.
Prof. Walter Kaelin, Envoy of the Chair
The Envoy provides strategic advice to the Chair and the Steering Group and represents the Chair in high-level public events while promoting the work of the Platform and raising awareness of the findings of the Nansen Initiative Protection Agenda at the global and the regional level. He also serves as the Chair of the Advisory Committee of the Platform.
Walter Kaelin is professor emeritus for international and (Swiss) constitutional law, University of Bern/Switzerland. He served as Representative of the United Nations (UN) Secretary-General on the Human Rights of Internally Displaced Persons (2004-2010), as a member of the UN Human Rights Committee (2003-2008 / 2012-2014) and as Special Rapporteur of the UN Human Rights Commission on the situation of human rights in Iraqi occupied Kuwait (1991/92). From 2011-2015, he acted as director of the Swiss Centre of Excellence in Human Rights. He is also the former Envoy of the Chairmanship of the Nansen Initiative on disaster-induced cross-border displacement (2012-2015) and former legal advisor to the Chair of the PDD (until June 2017).