26 May 2024

Meet people at WISE: Cecilia Colliander, program controller

– The most rewarding aspect of working for WISE is the feeling that I am contributing to improving our environmental situation, while the most challenging part is the rapid pace of everything, says Cecilia.

Cecilia Colliander studied International Economy at Uppsala University. Using her knowledge of the Russian language, she worked several years in Moscow at the Swedish embassy and at the Swedish company Electrolux before joining WISE.

Where did you work before joining WISE?

 Prior to joining WISE, I held positions at the Swedish embassy and Electrolux in Moscow in the ’90s. At the embassy, I worked in the trade department during a pivotal time when big changes began to happen in the country. Our job involved assisting Swedish companies seeking to enter the market, navigating the complexities of this emerging opportunity.

Later, I worked in Skolverket. Our work there aimed at helping to improve educational standards in schools belonging to municipalities facing diverse challenges, such as cultural integration. We collaborated closely with universities and the local authorities to devise strategies to raise the performance of these schools to level up with the rest of the country.

 -What is your role in WISE and why did you decide to join the program?

As the program controller at WISE, my main responsibility is to ensure that the economy of the program runs efficiently. Drawing on my prior experience in educational programs, I was drawn to WISE by the social component of its unique mission and potential to address pressing challenges of our climate crisis.

I was very curious to see how WISE was going to work around these issues and I wanted to contribute!

-What is the toughest and most rewarding part of the job at WISE?

The most rewarding aspect is definitely the feeling that I am contributing to improving our environmental situation. However, the most challenging part is the rapid pace of everything in the program, which sometimes makes it feel like there isn’t enough time. It often feels like we are running a train while simultaneously building the railway, which is both exciting and challenging!