WASHINGTON (January 12, 2015)— The World Resources Institute has appointed Dr. Nirarta “Koni” Samadhi, former deputy minister of Indonesia’s Unit for Development Monitoring and Oversight (UKP4), as the new country director of WRI Indonesia. Dr. Koni and WRI have worked together over many years, and he joins WRI Indonesia at a time when its work in the forest, land use, and governance sectors is expanding.

“Pak Koni joins WRI Indonesia at a crucial time,” said Dr. Andrew Steer, President and CEO, WRI. “As Indonesia emerges as one of the most important global players on forests, commodities, climate change and economic growth, there is growing demand for credible, unbiased, and independent analysis. WRI is committed to playing an active role with Indonesia’s new administration and to supporting policies that drive inclusive and sustainable development.”

While at UKP4, Dr. Koni played a leading role in designing policies such as Indonesia’s groundbreaking forest moratorium, establishing Indonesia’s new REDD+ agency (BP REDD+), and driving the OneMap Initiative to harmonize Indonesia’s land use planning. Dr. Koni previously served as chair of the Working Group on Moratorium Monitoring, was part of the Indonesia REDD+ Task Force, and worked with the UNDP as a strategic planning advisor and head of Papua Accelerated Development (PADU) Advance Team.

“Pak Koni has been an important and highly-respected player in Indonesia’s forest monitoring and land use planning for many years,” said Dr. Nigel Sizer, Global Director of the Forests Program. “We are excited to have his leadership in Indonesia, where transparency and forest management are such critical issues.”

Dr. Koni has joined WRI to lead its newest international office, which opened in Jakarta in late 2014. WRI Indonesia programs currently focus on advancing sustainability in commodities, such as palm oil, preventing deforestation, reducing land fires, and using Global Forest Watch to improve monitoring and management of forests. WRI Indonesia assists the government, businesses, and communities with land use planning, and improving the transparency of land allocation. WRI Indonesia also works on forest and landscape restoration, and aims to expand into other areas such as food, water, cities, energy, transportation, and cities, consistent with WRI’s global mission and priorities.

“During my tenure at UKP4, I observed that WRI was consistent in contributing significant work to improve environmental management, and I would like to expand and tailor the organization’s contribution for the people of Indonesia,” said Koni. “WRI Indonesia will work with all stakeholders and promote innovations to help ensure that the new administration, as well as sub-national governments, will deliver sustainable development programs.”

For more information on WRI Indonesia, visit http://www.wri.org/geography/indonesia.