Paul T. Yillia, Sierra Leone

Porträt Paul T. Yillia © OeAD/Elke Stinnig
  • Employment: Lead Policy Specialist, Sustainable Energy for All (SEforALL)
  • Scholarship: North-South-Dialogue Scholarship of the Austrian Development Agency (OeAD)
  • Duration: 04/2005 – 06/2008
  • Philosophy of life: We're limited largely by the limits of our capacity to break out of the limits we perceive.

Curriculum Vitae

Paul T. Yillia (Dr. techn.) works with the Policy Team at Sustainable Energy for All (SEforALL) on the overall operational process to support countries align their energy policy/plans with SDG7 and SDG 13 targets and facilitate the action needed to ensure that SEforALL’s country action work is supporting national energy priorities and actions towards the global energy and climate change goals. Until recently, he has been a thematic expert on cross-cutting issues, undertaking several key actions to incorporate the water-energy-food nexus perspective within the overall SEforALL global action agenda and partner programmes, especially the links between energy and other SDGs that are dependent and intertwined with the energy goal.

Paul Yillia is also visiting scholar and external examiner at the University of Malawi, and guest research scholar at the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA) and Vienna University of Technology, where he previously held full-time positions as a Research & Teaching Scholar and led joint research and transnational exchange of knowledge and skills on water science and technology, especially in developing countries and countries in transition. Prior to this, he undertook various assignments in the Netherlands with UN-IHE Institute for Water Education and UNDP Cap-Net, University of Sierra Leone and Egerton University (Kenya), where he held various capacity building responsibilities within the framework of international development co-operation. In addition, he has undertaken several consultancy assignments with various governments and international organizations, including UNOPS, UN-Water, UNEP, UNESCO, UNIDO and UN-Energy.


It is probably difficult to say which aspects of my personal and professional development can be directly attributed to my education and stay in Austria. I think our lives and careers are shaped by several events, especially certain opportunities and challenges that have taken us from one step to the next through life. It is the same with my outlook on life and how this has been influenced by my stay in Austria. Nonetheless, my key professional contacts and current undertakings are largely connected to the people and opportunities I have been encountering and experiencing in the last couple of years during and after my studies in Austria. The opportunity to travel to professional international events in my field of study has been particularly helpful and the professional networks and the relationships established have stayed all this time. In addition, it was good to meet so many decent people with good intensions from different parts of the world. A good number of scholars and professional acquaintances I met during my study have remained very good friends or colleagues since and I have no doubt this will continue.

Education for Sustainable Development – Article in the OeAD news, October 2015

The OeAD news, published by the OeAD, is a non-scientific quarterly print journal on (higher) education and internationalisation for the general public in Austria. On the occasion of the European Year for Development the edition in October 2015 focused on development and education. As a researcher in the UN global initiative – Sustainable Energy for All – Yillia was requested to comment on education for sustainable development.

Read the article here.