Sasa Linic, Serbia
- Employment: United Nations – Food and Agriculture Organization, Beijing, PR China, FAO/GEF Partnership - Team Manager
- Scholarship: CEEPUS Program
- Duration: 03/2004-06/2004; 03/2005 – 07/2005
- Motto: "The way you think will determine how high you can go."
Sasa Linic received his Master of Science degree in Natural Resources Management and Ecological Engineering from the University of Natural and Applied Life Sciences, Vienna (BOKU), Austria and the Lincoln University, Canterbury, New Zealand in 2008.
Since 1998, his career path is blended by various advisory engagements in for-profit and non-profit entities. Before his graduation at the University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna (BOKU), he joined the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the UN in Rome, Italy as a project assistant in 2007, working on Clean Development Mechanisms and Climate Change and adaptation measures in Sub-Saharan countries. On May 2009 he continued to work for the FAO/IAEA Joint program in Vienna, Austria, examining the ability of agriculture to contribute to the reduction of CO2 emission and to reducing the impact of climate change in impacted regions (East Africa; West Africa; South-East Asia).
On July 2013, he joined the IAEA Laboratory in Monaco, developing fund mobilization and management program, on the subject of Ocean Acidification with emphasis on reducing vulnerability of societies and economies in coastal areas, as well as Small Island Developing States (SIDS). In 2015, he worked with the Office of the Prime Minister of Serbia and the UNDP in developing nation-wide strategic programs (synchronized with the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank) aiming at revitalizing the country’s economy, attracting foreign direct investments in process of privatization (with emphasis on agriculture and food production sector) and participated in drafting the agenda for joining the European Union.
From mid-2017, he is back to the UN FAO, using his overall experience to work on the developing FAO/GEF portfolio in the People's Republic of China. He is responsible for supervising day-to-day operational activities of the Global Environmental Facility (GEF) projects executed by government partners in the People's Republic of China. The ultimate objective of FAO/GEF partnership is supporting national partners in mitigating environmental risks caused by climate change and anthropogenic activities towards a sustainable development agenda, with emphasis on large-scale food production. One of the priorities is securing the sustainable use of globally important local varieties of crops originated in China through advancement of long-term incentive mechanisms. As environmental challenges are interconnected, the program is also addressing biodiversity, forestry, nature conservation, and wetland management, opening thus space for other activities in symbiosis with nature and generating jobs for local residents.
The OeAD through CEEPUS changed my life, forever, by opening the doors of the European Union and giving a new dimension of life and prosperity. While I was struggling in Belgrade to memorize entire books (old school method) and pass exams, I was chasing high-marks at the University of Natural and Applied Life Sciences, Vienna (BOKU). After life in isolation and sanctions, I couldn’t recognize myself and my hunger for knowledge. In the BOKU library, where I enjoyed spending time outside of lectures, (a place I always visit when I am in Vienna), I felt literally like a “kid in a candy shop”. The library was more than a source of information – it was hub for social activities. I was living with BOKU, day and night.
The University of Natural and Applied Life Sciences, Vienna (BOKU) paid particular importance to human aspect of studies. Unlike the Anglo-Saxon system, where studying is more like a machinery, emotionless, at the BOKU, stress doesn’t exist and a focus lies on applicable knowledge and experience. Everybody is helping each other and professors are equal members of a community where mutual respect is all-over visible. Being part of such a community means living with the world. We had a lot of colleagues from Africa, Asia, and of course, all parts of Europe. Social media were not so much developed and we focused on being social and visible in real life. Skype was the only medium for calling back home. I am still in contact with most of my colleagues from all around the world which is a great advantage in my work.