Andrea Poelling is Head of Operations at the Basel Institute responsible for managing the Institute’s day-to-day business operations. She joined the Institute in 2006 with the launch of the International Centre for Asset Recovery (ICAR) where she played an instrumental role in the set up of this non-for-profit competence centre for asset recovery.
Before returning home to Basel in 2006, she spent 15 years abroad in the USA, Central-/South America and Africa. She commenced her professional career with the Washington Times (Washington DC) as international project coordinator, writing and producing special reports on countries in Latin America, the Caribbean and East Africa. Later, in 2001, she joined the United Nations Department for Peacekeeping Operations, initially at headquarters in New York as Special Assistant to the Director/External Relations Officer of the Mine Action Service, and thereafter as Programme Officer at the Mine Action Coordination Centre in Eritrea and Ethiopia. In these positions, she was primarily involved in programme management and coordination, donor and public relations, as well as resource mobilisation. Previously - during her studies – she also conducted work for the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Washington DC, the UN Development Programme (UNDP) in New York and the UN Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo.
Andrea holds a Bachelor of Science in Foreign Service from Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service (Washington DC) and a Master of International Affairs from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs (New York) with a specialisation in human rights and humanitarian affairs (international public law).