Ellen Olafsen is a Senior Private Sector Specialist in the Innovation & Entrepreneurship Unit of the World Bank Group's Trade & Competitiveness Global Practice. She has been working in the field of entrepreneurship for over a decade and has developed significant regional experience, including in Sub-Saharan Africa, Middle East, North Africa, Central and South Asia, as well as Central America. She oversees two programs on digital and agribusiness entrepreneurship, both of which started under her leadership. Currently, Ellen is initiating a World Bank flagship study on growth entrepreneurship intended to inform the design of Bank's projects in this area. Before joining the Trade & Competitiveness Global Practice, Ellen worked for the Grassroots Business Department in IFC (now Grassroots Business Fund), the Development Gateway at the World Bank, and Citizens Energy International in Angola. Ellen holds an MBA in International Finance and an MA in International Affairs focused on Sub-Saharan Africa.
Paola Agostini is the Global Lead for Forests, Landscapes and Ecosystem at the World Bank Environment and Natural Resources GP. In the last 20 years and in different positions at the World Bank she has been working on projects at the interface of Environment and Agriculture in both Africa and Latin America with a particular focus on Sustainable Land Management, Protected Areas, Forests, Payment of Ecosystem Services and Territorial Development. She was also based in FAO Rome for more than 8 years, where she was the World Bank focal point for the Rome UN based organizations. In addition she has been leading TerrAfrica Partnership on Sustainable Land Management. She holds a PhD in Economics from University of California-San Diego and a Master of Art in Economics and Social Sciences from Universita Bocconi, Milano.
Roy Parizat works as a Senior Private Sector Specialist in T&Cs Global T&C Agribusiness Team. His work is focused on expanding the ability of high-growth agribusiness SMEs to overcome constraints so as to create value, generate rural jobs and raise incomes. Prior to joining T&C, Roy worked in the Agriculture Global Practice of the WBG coordinating the activities of the AgriFin network, focused on expanding access to finance for agricultural smallholders and enterprises. Roy began his career with Barclays Bank, working both in the UK and in Africa, before moving into the sustainable trade arena where he worked with agribusinesses and cooperatives across Africa and Latin America. Roy has an MSc from the London School of Economics.
Diji Chandrasekharan Behr
Diji Chandrasekharan Behr is a Senior Natural Resource Economist in the Environment and Natural Resources Global Practice at the World Bank, and is based in Hanoi. She is, along with colleagues from the Global practice of Trade and Competitiveness and Finance and Markets, co-leading the programmatic analytical work on Enhancing Contribution of Small and Medium Enterprises in the Forest Sector to Poverty Reduction, Jobs and Growth. At the World Bank, Diji has been involved with operations and analytical work focused on using natural assets for sustainable, resilient, and inclusive growth. Her focus on SMEs started with her work on rethinking forest partnerships and benefit sharing. Diji has an MSc in Applied and Agricultural Economics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and a PhD in Natural Resource Management and Policy from Cornell University.
Jana Malinska is a Senior Private Sector Specialist in the Innovation & Entrepreneurship Unit of the World Bank Group's Trade & Competitiveness Global Practice. She has over 15 years of experience in managing SME business support, innovation and investment projects. She has helped governments and business leaders promote economic reforms in over 40 countries in Middle East, North and South Africa, Asia, and South East Europe. She currently leads SME linkage, agribusiness entrepreneurship and forestry SME initiatives and earlier, she initiated and led the Climate Business Innovation Network, Subnational Doing Business studies and business reform advisory. Before joining the World Bank Group, Jana worked with the OECD advisory unit to the Secretary General and investment division, PSA Peugeot Citroen strategic services and CzechInvest, national business development and investment promotion agency. Jana holds an MSc from London School of Economics, MBA from Universite Jean Moulin and Engineer Degree from University of Economics in Prague.