President of Costa Rica to deliver IDS Annual Lecture

Published on 28 October 2020

President of Costa Rica to call for environmental sustainability and inclusion in Covid-19 response at IDS Annual Lecture, with special guest Farhana Yamin.

The IDS Annual Lecture 2020 will be given by former IDS student, His Excellency the President of Costa Rica, Carlos Alvarado Quesada. The lecture available online is on ‘building back better from Covid-19 with environmental sustainability and inclusion: what must development practitioners and young leaders do?’

Carlos Alvarado Quesada graduated from IDS in 2009, obtaining a Master’s degree in Development Studies. In 2018 he was elected President and since then has led trailblazing policies for environmental sustainability prompting the UN to award Costa Rica the Champions of the Earth award in 2019. He was also named in the Times 100 Next list in 2019  as a rising star shaping the future of business, entertainment, sports, politics, science or health.

Following his lecture, His Excellency Carlos Alvarado Quesada will be in discussion with special guest Farhana Yamin, an environmental lawyer and a leading scholar-activist on climate change. In her distinguished career she has advised many countries, including Costa Rica in climate change negotiations and will discuss further with the President what the current challenges and priorities are in the lead up to the COP26 climate summit next year.

This year’s IDS Annual Lecture takes place on the 23 November at 3pm (GMT) via Zoom, where participants will be able to submit their questions for an audience Q&A.

The event will be chaired by Melissa Leach, Director, Institute of Development Studies, who says:

“We are honoured that IDS alum Carlos Alvarado Quesada will join us to discuss the most pressing interconnected global challenges – Covid-19, climate change and inequality.

“As we seek to build back better through the global pandemic, we need exceptional leadership and to share understanding from proven approaches. This is why it’s so important to hear from Costa Rica, a country leading the way on clean and green development through pioneering policies towards sustainability, growth and social inclusion.”

The 2020 IDS Annual Lecture is the fifth since it was established in 2016. It convenes the most exciting thinkers on international development with the aim of developing thinking around the most pressing global challenges of our time.

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