Professor Metternicht has 24 years of research experience in environmental management and policy to address land degradation, and has worked at a range of prominent institutions around the world. Since 2012 Graciela is Professor of Environmental Geography at the School of Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences, UNSW Sydney.
Previously (5 years) she was Senior Officer of Early Warning and Assessment at UN Environment working on integrated environmental assessments and early warning, providing independent scientific and technical advice to Ministries of Environment of Latin America and the Caribbean.
Professor Metternicht has expertise and leadership in global environmental issues and sustainable development, and applications of geospatial technologies to these issues, supported by peer-reviewed publications relevant to the GEF; experience in scientific research, in the application of results to real world issues in developing countries; experience of working in developing countries; and in the design and implementation of programs involving multilateral environmental agreements.
An expert in land degradation, ecological sustainable development, land use planning and natural resource management; she has the capacity to initiate and manage multi-stakeholder applied research that provide science-based evidence to policy and decision-making; and has provided independent and expert advice on matters related to land degradation, environmental management, with emphasis on assessment, surveillance and monitoring.
Since 2014 she has served as Science Policy Interface Member of the UNCCD, was appointed to the Science Advisory Committee of a GEF project on Land Degradation Monitoring, and advised on the preparation of the methodological framework for the FAO-IUCN Participatory Rangeland and Grassland Assessment (GEF-funded in five countries).
Since January 2018 serves on the Scientific Steering Committee of the Future Earth Global Land Programme, an international network of experts in land system science, and chairs the Biodiversity Conservation Advisory Panel of the State of New South Wales.
Co-leads the IUCN Dryland Ecosystem Specialist Group; was a member the Assessment Methodology Group of the 6th Global Environment Outlook (GEO-6), and coordinated the LAC chapter of the GEO-5.
Born in Santa Fe, Argentina, she is a native Spanish speaker.