Despina F. Johansen

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Despina F. Johansen (born 1975) is a former Diplomat at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) of Greece. In her 20-year diplomatic career she has worked extensively in the Western Balkans region on security issues, migration and refugee issues and sustainable development. She has a thorough knowledge of the international development sector, democratization, the rule of law and the fight against corruption.

Johansen previously worked for four years at the International Secretariat of NATO in Brussels and has advised governments in the fields of democratic governance, civil emergency planning and defence. More recently, she worked at the European External Action Service (EEAS) in Brussels, where she was part of the task force on the migration and refugee crisis of 2015-2016. She has worked on border security issues, in close cooperation with FRONTEX, when serving at the Justice and Home Affairs Directorate of the Greek MFA. She has been posted as the Deputy Chief of Mission at the Greek Embassy in Sarajevo and previously spent four years at the UN in New York, promoting the UN sustainable development goals.

Johansen holds a Bachelor degree in Political Science and International Relations from Panteion University of Athens and an MSc by Research in Political Philosophy from the University of Edinburgh. She speaks English, French, Italian, Norwegian and Greek.

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