Ms. Christel Alvergne is Regional Coordinator for West and Central Africa with UNCDF - United Nations Capital Development Fund. A former academic, she holds a PhD in economics and has worked for 20 years on local development and decentralization. She has been a researcher and professor in various universities and academic institutions in France, Canada, Senegal and Egypt. For 3 years, she was an advisor to the French Delegation for Territorial Development and Regional Action (DATAR) on spatial planning and prospective policies in France. She has been involved in the municipal movement in developing countries and has supported decentralization processes since the early 1990s. At UNCDF, she is in charge of local development finance programmes in African countries and works in the areas of climate change, food security, local economic development and women's economic empowerment.