Dr. Mukesh Kapila is presently Under Secretary General for National Society and Knowledge Development at the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies in Geneva, having served in other senior roles there since 2006.
Previously, he was special adviser to the United Nations in Afghanistan and to the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights as well as having served as the UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative in Sudan, Director in Health Action in Crises at the World Health Organization, and Senior Policy Adviser to the World Bank Global Facility for Disaster Risk Reduction and Recovery. Earlier he was the Head of Conflict and Humanitarian Affairs at the UK Government Department for International Development, following a spell in the UK National Health Service.
Dr Kapila is a Senior Member of Hughes Hall College at Cambridge University, Associate Fellow of the Humanitarian and Conflict Response Institute at Manchester University and an associate at the Centre for Global Studies, University of Victoria, Canada. He is a Council member of Minority Rights Group International, was an early member of the U.N. Disaster Assessment and Coordination system; and served on the Boards of the U.N. Institute for Training and Research, and the International Peace Academy. He has advised several international organisations including the UN International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (ISDR) and UNAIDS.
Dr Kapila was born in India in 1955 and went to school in Chandigarh before getting a Commonwealth scholarship to high school (Wellington College) in the United Kingdom. He went on to qualify in medicine and public health from the Universities of Oxford and London. He was honored for international service with a CBE from Her Britannic Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and has also received the Dr Jean Mayer Global Citizenship Award of the Institute for Global Leadership at Tufts University.