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board / board / organisation / about us / home - Transparency International
Valeria Merino-Dirani, Board Member
...Valeria Merino-Dirani is a lawyer who has worked to further democracy and transparency initiatives in Latin America for more than 15 years.Since 1999, she has been the executive director of CorporaciÃ³n Latinoamericana para el Desarrollo (CLD), Transparency International's national chapter in Ecuador.She
is now Senior Civil Society Advisor, Pan-American Development Foundation
has helped to establish a network of TI chapters in Latin America.In 1995, she was appointed a member of the Council of the United Nations University and served as the university's vice-president.She has been a pro-bono adviser to several committees of Congress and public entities in Ecuador, and has participated in numerous programmes aimed at reforming aspects of the public sector, including public procurement. Through the CLD, she was a strong advocate for Ecuador's recently passed freedom of information law.Ms. Merino-Dirani has been on the Board of TI since the 2004 Annual Membership Meeting, held in Nairobi, Kenya.
Senior Leadership | Ashoka - Innovators for the Public
is a social entrepreneur who for two decades has been involved in systemic change and implementation of public policies to strengthen democracy, rule of law, transparency, civil society participation and overall human and economic development.
is currently leading the Rural Innovation and Farming Program at Ashoka
Ashoka's theory of change is that large-scale solutions to improve the lives of rural inhabitants and farmers in Sub-Saharan Africa and India require a focus on innovation and entrepreneurship.
Through identifying and investing in the boldest and most innovative actors of our time, Ashoka
seeks to empower social entrepreneurs addressing poverty issues in the above mentioned areas.
She also launched AshokaHub, an online curated platform for Ashoka's community of innovators and entrepreneurs working across the globe to resolve the most intractable social problems and currently is the lead evangelist for the site.
Previously, she headed Ashoka's Venture and Fellowship program from 2007 to 2011; she was responsible for overseeing the selection process of Leading Social Entrepreneurs to the Ashoka Fellowship and engaging them in its global community of innovators.
Before coming to Ashoka she worked for the Pan American Development Foundation as Senior Civil Society Adviser.
She was a member of Transparency International for almost 20 years and served on its international Board; she also founded and was the Executive Director of CLD, then Ecuador's TI chapter, for fifteen years.
She is also a founding member of Participacion Ciudadana Ecuador and Transparencia Ecuador.
was appointed, by the Secretary General of the United Nations
and the Secretary of UNESCO
, as a Council member of the United Nations University
based in Tokyo, for which she
served from 1995 until 2001.
New Transparency International board members elected from Cameroon, Ecuador and South Korea
The new board members are Geo-Sung Kim (South Korea), Valeria Merino-Dirani (Ecuador) and Akere T. Muna (Cameroon).
...Dr Valeria Merino-Dirani is an experienced Ecuadorian lawyer and democracy activist.Since 1999, she has been the executive director of Corporación Latinoamericana para el Desarrollo (CLD), TI's national chapter in Ecuador.In 1995, she was Vice-President of the Council of the United Nations University.
...Dr Valeria Merino-DiraniValeria Merino-Dirani is a lawyer who has worked to further democracy and transparency initiatives in Latin America for more than 15 years.Since 1999, she has been the executive director of Corporación Latinoamericana para el Desarrollo (CLD), Transparency International's national chapter in Ecuador.Merino-Dirani
has helped to establish a network of TI chapters in Latin America.In 1995, she was appointed a member of the Council of the United Nations University and served as the university's vice-president.She has been a pro-bono adviser to several committees of Congress and public entities in Ecuador, and has participated in numerous programmes aimed at reforming aspects of the public sector, including public procurement.Through the CLD, she was a strong advocate for Ecuador's recently passed freedom of information law.
Kinship Faculty : Kinship Conservation Fellows
is a social entrepreneur who for more than two decades has been involved in the development and implementation of public policies related to strengthening of democracy, rule of law, transparency, civil society participation, and social entrepreneurship.
Valeria is currently the CEO of Sangay Group an international team of entrepreneurs and experts that provides advice and support to progressive corporations, social enterprises, and citizen sector organizations that care about social change, innovation, and issues that matter to the world.
She worked for Ashoka from 2007 until July 2012.
She was a leadership group member and VP for a number of areas and programs.
She led the creation and launching of AshokaHub, was director of the Rural Innovation and Farming Program, and also headed Ashoka's Venture, Fellowship, and Integration Program.
This last program is responsible for selecting Leading Social Entrepreneurs to the Ashoka
Fellowship and engaging them in a global community of innovators.
She also worked for the Pan American Development Foundation as senior civil society adviser.
She was a member of the global general assembly of Transparency International and served on its board in two occasions.
In Ecuador, she founded and was CEO of the Latin American Center for Development (CLD) and also a founding member of Participacion Ciudadana.
She was vice chair of the Council of the United Nations University based in Tokyo.
Challenges in Ecuador
On April 14, the Dialogue hosted a discussion with Valeria Merino, executive director of the Latin American Center for Development, on the political and institutional challenges in Ecuador.Merino acknowledged that the current crisis in Ecuador cannot be blamed entirely on President Gutierrez or his government, but is due to a progressive weakening of Ecuador's democratic system over the past several years.The reaction of Ecuadorean civil society to recent developments, however, has been encouraging.Since Gutierrez's decision to replace 27 Supreme Court justices in December 2004, civil society has protested strongly, declaring the act unconstitutional and demanding that the decision be reversed. Merino
believes two matters need to be addressed in order to resolve the crisis.First, Gutierrez needs to recognize his
move to replace justices as unconstitutional and send the de facto court home.Second, civil society protests have been met with violence by the police, which can no longer be tolerated by the government.Merino
said that Ecuador can solve the crisis internally and strengthen the country's democratic credentials.She
is relieved that the United States has not tried to get involved, and suggested that the limited U.S. response is related to Ecuador's role in Plan Colombia and a U.S. military installation in Manta, Ecuador.If the problem cannot be solved internally, Merino
said, the international community may carry some influence.
, the most troubling aspect of the crisis is that things went wrong so quickly in a democratic country.Perhaps, she
suggests, this is an opportunity for democratic consolidation in Ecuador.However, the situation is now at a deadlock, as Gutierrez has not responded to the opposition's petitions and has made no move to negotiate or even acknowledge the problem.Merino
remains optimistic, but admitted that there is no easy solution.