Friends of Europe is a proud co-founder of the Africa-Europe Foundation. The Africa-Europe Foundation was founded by Friends of Europe and the Mo Ibrahim Foundation, in partnership with the African Climate Foundation and the ONE Campaign, and with a multitude of stakeholders from civil society, business, policymaking and the youth sector across Africa and Europe.

Click here to access the AEF website.

Continue to the Strategy Groups

Strategy Groups

Sébastien Treyer
Sébastien Treyer

Executive Director at the Institute of Sustainable Development and International Relations (IDDRI)

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Sébastien Treyer has an exceptional track record in sustainable development. As head of foresight studies at the French Ministry of the Environment, he played an active role in leading the interface between science and policy and scientific programming at the European Commission, the French National Research Agency, and territorial actors such as the Seine Normandy Water Agency. He is also Chairman of the Scientific and Technical Committee of the French Global Environment Facility (FFEM) and member of the Lead Faculty of the Earth System Governance Network.

Dymphna van der Lans
Dymphna van der Lans

CEO of the Clean Cooking Alliance

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Dymphna brings more than 25 years of experience managing and leading global development, energy, and climate initiatives in the nonprofit and private sectors. Most recently, she led international corporate engagement with the World Wildlife Fund’s Climate & Energy team. Previously, she worked with the Clinton Foundation as CEO of the Clinton Climate Initiative and has served as the senior director for public policy programs at the German Marshall Fund of the United States. Dymphna has also served as the director of global renewables, infrastructure, and energy efficiency at a specialist investment banking firm in London, and for seven years at BP, where her last appointment was as BP Alternative Energy’s director of distributed energy markets.

Roberto Vigotti
Roberto Vigotti

Secretary-General of RES4Africa

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Roberto Vigotti was an early believer in the value of renewable energy deployment in Africa. Carrying experience in the energy sector from positions in the public and private sphere throughout his 30 year-long career, Vigotti joined RES4Africa in 2012. He also coordinates renewAfrica, an industry-backed initiative that advocates for the creation of a European comprehensive programme for renewable energy investments in Africa.

Kandeh Yumkella
Kandeh Yumkella

Co-Chair of the Africa-Europe Foundation Strategy Group on Energy, Member of Parliament in Sierra Leone, and former CEO of Sustainable Energy for All (SEforAll) and Director-General of UNIDO

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Kandeh Yumkella mobilises global action and plays a leading role for the planning and implementation of ground-breaking initiatives towards a sustainable energy future. Kandeh Yumkella is a distinguished development economist and an expert in agricultural economics with over 25 years of international experience. He is actively engaging relevant stakeholders in government, businesses, academia and civil society at the highest level to advocate for and promote sustainable energy for all. As former chair of UN-Energy, he brought a renewed and vital focus to global energy issues and led the coordination of the United Nations response to energy issues. Previously, Dr. Yumkella served as Director-General of United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) for two four-year terms. He is currently a member of the National Parliament in Sierra Leone.

Ahmed Zahran
Ahmed Zahran

Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of KarmSolar

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Ahmed Zahran is the co-founder and CEO of KarmSolar, an Egyptian company established in 2011, that aims to move communities away from centralised power to sustainable, localized and independent alternatives. KarmSolar has won several technology competitions and become Egypt’s largest private off-grid solar integrator and one of the leading companies in solar energy applications in the country. Ahmed worked for Shell as a finance adviser to the European Emissions Trading System. He then worked at the Egypt Kuwait Holding Company as the business development manager for renewable energy and clean development mechanisms, establishing the company’s carbon trading and renewable energy business. Ahmed is also co-founder and a former board director of Nahdet El Mahrousa, one of the largest youth-run NGOs in Egypt, which works as an incubator.

In 2020, The Africa Report named him to the annual Top 50 Disruptors list.

Continue to Partners

Founded by

  • Friends of Europe

    The think tank for a more inclusive, sustainable and forward-thinking Europe. Friends of Europe is Brussels' most innovative think-tank, and for two decades has been showcasing new ideas on Europe's future while challenging outdated ones.

  • Mo Ibrahim Foundation

    The Mo Ibrahim Foundation (MIF) is an African foundation, established in 2006 with one focus: the critical importance of governance and leadership in Africa. It is our conviction that governance and leadership lie at the heart of any tangible and shared improvement in the quality of life of African citizens.

In partnership with

  • The ONE Campaign

    The ONE Campaign, a global movement and international not-for-profit organisation that fights extreme poverty and preventable disease.

  • The African Climate Foundation

    The African Climate Foundation is the first African-led strategic climate change grant-making foundation


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