Founder and CEO
Rodrigo Tavares has dedicated his professional life to finding innovative solutions in the fields of human development and foreign affairs. In 2011-2014, he served as Head of the São Paulo State Government’s Office of Foreign Affairs. During his mandate, São Paulo state (the world’s 19th largest economy) was often regarded as one of the most prominent subnational players in international relations. In 2008-2010 he was invited by the UN Secretariat to write Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s annual reports on Africa’s development, presented to the General Assembly. The reports involved analysis and political negotiation in several African and European countries. He was one of the youngest UN report writers in the organization’s history. He has also been a consultant to other UN agencies (FAO, UNU) and to the Swedish Armed Forces.
Earlier, he worked for five years at the UN University (in Belgium and Ethiopia), the UN think-tank (ranked among the world’s top-ten government-affiliated think tanks). He has also lived in New Delhi where he worked for the Delegation of the European Union to India (Department of Political Affairs) (2004). In 2001 and 2002, he served in the Swedish NGO CIVIS on the planning and development of conflict resolution projects in South America.
Rodrigo Tavares is currently a member of the World Economic Forum’s Expert Network (Competitiveness), a professor at the International Relations MBA at Getúlio Vargas Foundation (FGV-SP), and an Associate Research Fellow at the United Nations University (UNU-CRIS).
Rodrigo’s policy career has been complemented by academic work. He has published four books: Paradiplomacy: Cities and States as Global Players (Oxford University Press, 2016), Security in South America (Boulder and London: Lynne Rienner, 2014), Regional Organizations in African Security (New York and London: Routledge, 2011, with Fredrik Söderbaum), and Regional Security (New York and London: Routledge, 2010). His publication record also includes some 30 book chapters and peer-reviewed articles in leading academic journals.
He holds a Ph.D. in Peace and Development Studies from the University of Gothenburg, Sweden (2006), and has held several research scholar positions: University of California, Berkeley (2003-2004); Columbia University, Institute of Latin American Studies, where he completed his postdoctoral education (2010) and Harvard University (2014-2015), Kennedy School of Government, where he worked as a Senior Research Fellow on the global competitiveness of cities and states and found inspiration to establish Granito & Partners. Back in 2006, he received executive training in negotiation at Harvard University.
He is a regular contributor to the World Economic Forum’s Agenda. From 2006 to 2016 he was a columnist in Visão, the largest Portuguese newsmagazine.
In 2017 he was nominated Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum. In 2011, he was one of seven people selected by the Government of Québec as Young Leader for his influence in foreign policy.