Razan Khalifa Al Mubarak

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Razan Khalifa Al Mubarak
Razan Khalifa Al Mubarak Paris Peace Forum.jpg
Abu Dhabi, UAE
OccupationManaging Director
EmployerEnvironment Agency Abu Dhabi
Known for
Board member of
Spouse(s)Badr Jafar
RelativesKhaldoon Khalifa Al Mubarak (brother)

Razan Khalifa Al Mubarak (Arabic: رزان خليفة المبارك ) is the Managing Director of the Environment Agency Abu Dhabi (EAD).[1] In 2018, the World Economic Forum selected her as one of the top 100 Young Global Leaders for her contribution to building a more sustainable future for humankind.[2][3] Razan Al Mubarak is also the Managing Director of the Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund – a philanthropy providing grants for the protection of endangered species worldwide, and the Managing Director of Emirates Nature–WWF—a UAE-based affiliate of the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF). As head of the EAD, she has overseen the successful breeding of captive Scimitar-horned oryx in Abu Dhabi and reintroducing them back into the wilderness, thus seeing a species that was listed as Extinct in the Wild now increase its numbers in their natural habitat.[4]

Razan currently serves several executive roles in various environmental organisations in the UAE and is a public spokesperson for environmental and conservation issues in the UAE.[5][6]

Early life and background[edit]

Razan Khalifa Al Mubarak was born in 1979 in Abu Dhabi.[7] She is the daughter of Khalifa Ahmed Abdulaziz Al-Mubarak,[8] a former UAE ambassador to France who was assassinated in 1984 in Paris by the Abu Nidal Organization terrorist group[9] and Sameera Al Khamis. Razan's grandfather was the Ahmed Abdulaziz Hamad Al-Mubarak, former judge and chairperson of the Shari'a Judicial Department in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi.[10] Razan has three siblings: Rasha; Khaldoon Khalifa Al Mubarak, Managing Director of Mubadala Investment Company; and Mohamed Khalifa Al-Mubarak, Chairman of Abu Dhabi Tourism & Culture Authority.

Razan holds an MSc in Public Understanding of Environmental Change from the University College London, UK and a BA (Hons) in Environmental Studies and International Relations from Tufts University, Massachusetts, in the United States.[11][12]

Razan is married to Badr Jafar, a prominent Emirati business executive and social entrepreneur.[13]

Environmental work[edit]

The EAD has played a key role in reintroducing the Scimitar horned oryx into the wild in Chad. Pictured here is one of the first calves born in the wild after almost two decades.

In 2001, Razan helped establish Emirates Nature–WWF (EN–WWF)—a UAE affiliate of the WWF.[14] She is currently its Managing Director.[14]

In 2008, she became the founding Managing Director of the Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund (MBZ Fund) – a UAE–based philanthropy supporting direct species conservation worldwide.[7] Since its inception in 2008 to November 2019, the MBZ Fund has supported more than 2,041 projects in 150 different countries benefiting 1,341 different species and subspecies and made a significant impact on species conservation globally.[7]

Razan Al Mubarak is currently the Managing Director of the Environment Agency - Abu Dhabi (EAD).[1][15] Employing over 1,000 people, the EAD is a government agency responsible for environmental regulation, conservation and promotion of sustainable development in the emirate of Abu Dhabi.[16] Appointed in 2011,[14] she was the first woman[17] to serve as Secretary General and was promoted to its Board of Directors in 2018 by the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan.[18]

Under Razan, the EAD played a key role to reintroduce the Scimitar-horned oryx into the wild in Chad.[5] In 2000, the Scimitar-horned Oryx was officially declared Extinct in the Wild by the IUCN Red List.[19] Beginning in 2016, efforts by the EAD together with the Sahara Conservation Fund, Zoological Society of London, Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute, and the Government of Chad have successfully released 200 oryx that were bred in Abu Dhabi into the wild in Chad.[20] In 2017, the reintroduction effort reported a number of successes including the first calves born in the wild in decades.[21]

Along with the Scimitar-horned oryx, the EAD has also undertaken a successful captive breeding programme and reintroduction efforts to reintroduce the Arabian oryx back into the wild.[22] The Arabian oryx has moved from "Endangered" to the less-serious category of "Vulnerable" in the latest Red List of Threatened Species by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). In an interview with UK's The Guardian newspaper Razan has mentioned:[22]

To have brought the Arabian oryx back from the brink of extinction is a major feat and a true conservation success story, one which we hope will be repeated many times over for other threatened species.

It is a classic example of how data from the IUCN Red List can feed into on-the-ground conservation action to deliver tangible and successful results.

Razan Khalifa Al Mubarak serves on the board of environmental organizations in the UAE, including the Federal Authority for Nuclear Regulation and as Chair of the Board of Directors of the International Center for Biosaline Agriculture.[23][24] In addition, she serves as an Advisory Board member of the Rockefeller Foundation Economic Council on Planetary Health,[25] the Cambridge Conservation Initiative,[26] the Emirates Diplomatic Academy,[27] a board member of Panthera,[28][11] a charity devoted to conserving 40 species of wild cats and their habitats, and the Women in Sustainability, Environment and Renewable Energy Initiative (WiSER). Razan also serves as Board Member to the Abu Dhabi Music & Arts Foundation (ADMAF) that organises the Abu Dhabi Festival - an annual arts festival.[29]


In 2013, the Abu Dhabi American Chamber of Commerce awarded Razan the "Women in Business" award for "demonstrating exemplary leadership and accomplishment by pushing barriers, overcoming challenges and setting an example of perseverance and professionalism."[30][31]

In recognition of her global role in the field of environment and conservation, in 2018 the World Economic Forum selected her as one of the top 100 young sector leaders who contribute to building a more sustainable future for humankind, appointing her as Young Global Leader of the Forum.[2][3]


Razan and her husband, Badr Jafar, are signatories to Bill and Melinda Gates' and Warren Buffett's "The Giving Pledge".[13] They have publicly committed more than half of their wealth to philanthropy.[13][32]


Razan together with the advisory board of the MBZ Fund published an article in the journal Current Biology about the importance and benefits of species which argued that species cannot be evaluated based on their economic value alone and should be understood for their cultural and inherent value as living organisms.[33]

  • Gascon, Claude; Brooks, Thomas M.; Contreras-MacBeath, Topiltzin; Heard, Nicolas; Konstant, William; Lamoreux, John; Launay, Frederic; Maunder, Michael; Mittermeier, Russell A.; Molur, Sanjay; Al Mubarak, Razan Khalifa (2015-05-18). "The Importance and Benefits of Species". Current Biology. 25 (10): R431–R438. doi:10.1016/j.cub.2015.03.041. ISSN 0960-9822. PMID 25989087.


  1. ^ a b "Abu Dhabi ecological body highlights key milestones". Gulf Today. 27 June 2019. Retrieved 10 November 2019.
  2. ^ a b "Gulf nationals join World Economic Forum Young Global Leaders class of 2018". Gulf News. Retrieved 10 November 2019.
  3. ^ a b "The Forum of Young Global Leaders". Young Global Leaders. Retrieved 10 November 2019.
  4. ^ Bai, Chen (2019-06-21). "Documentary records largest reintroduction for endangered mammal". China Daily. Retrieved 10 November 2019.
  5. ^ a b "HE Razan Al Mubarak". The Sustainablist. February 2019. Retrieved 28 October 2019.
  6. ^ Kader, Binsal Abdul (15 Jan 2019). "Ban Ki-moon asks youth to challenge leaders for sustainability". Gulf News. Retrieved 13 November 2019.
  7. ^ a b c "Managing Director". Mohamed Bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund. Retrieved 10 November 2019.
  8. ^ Al Qassemi, Sultan Sooud. "Mixed marriages bring strength upon strength to the UAE". The National. Retrieved 10 November 2019.
  9. ^ "Envoy for United Arab Emirates Is Slain in Paris". The New York Times. 1984-02-09. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2019-10-28.
  10. ^ "Abu Dhabi Award 2011 bestowed on 10 individuals". Khaleej Times. Retrieved 10 November 2019.
  11. ^ a b "H.E. Razan Al Mubarak Biography and Career Highlights". Crown Prince Court. Retrieved 10 November 2019.
  12. ^ Kader, Binsal Abdul (28 July 2013). "Razan Khalifa Al Mubarak is a multi-faceted personality". Gulf News. Retrieved 10 November 2019.
  13. ^ a b c Çam, Deniz. "Fourteen More Philanthropists Join The Gates-Buffett Giving Pledge". Forbes. Retrieved 10 November 2019.
  14. ^ a b c "Razan Al Mubarak". Middle East Institute. Retrieved 10 November 2019.
  15. ^ "Our Governing Board". Environmental Agency Abu Dhabi. Retrieved 10 November 2019.
  16. ^ "Environmental Agency - Abu Dhabi". Retrieved 10 November 2019.
  17. ^ Kader, Abdul Kader (3 Jan 2012). "On a mission to conserve the environment". Gulf News. Retrieved 10 November 2019.
  18. ^ "EAD's Board of Directors reshuffled". GulfNews. Retrieved 10 November 2019.
  19. ^ "Group of 'extinct' antelope released into wild in southern Sahara". The Guardian. Retrieved 10 November 2019.
  20. ^ Gaworecki, Mike. "Scimitar-horned oryx return to the Sahara nearly two decades after going extinct in the wild". Mongabay. Mongabay. Retrieved 10 November 2019.
  21. ^ Stabach, Jared. "Scimitar-horned Oryx Calves Born in the Wild". Smithsonian’s National Zoo & Conservation Biology Institute. Retrieved 10 November 2019.
  22. ^ a b "Arabian 'unicorn' no longer extinct". The Guardian. 16 Jun 2011. Retrieved 10 November 2019.
  23. ^ "Board of Management". www.fanr.gov.ae. Retrieved 2019-11-04.
  24. ^ "Board of Directors". International Center for Biosaline Agriculture. Retrieved 2019-11-04.
  25. ^ "Council Members". Rockefeller Foundation Economic Council on Planetary Health. Retrieved 2019-11-04.
  26. ^ "Advisory Board, Cambridge Conservation Initiative". www.cambridgeconservation.org. Retrieved 2019-11-04.
  27. ^ EDA. "Advisory Council - Emirates Diplomatic Academy". Emirate Diplomatic Academy. Retrieved 2019-11-04.
  28. ^ "Board of Directors, Panthera". www.panthera.org. Retrieved 2019-11-04.
  29. ^ "The Foundation – Abu Dhabi Music & Arts Foundation – ADMAF". Retrieved 2019-11-04.
  30. ^ "AmCham Abu Dhabi honors leading US, UAE companies". Saudi Gazette. Retrieved 10 November 2019.
  31. ^ "Razan Al Mubarak receives "Women in Business" Award". Arab Press Release. Retrieved 10 November 2019.
  32. ^ "Badr Jafar and Razan Al Mubarak". Giving Pledge. Retrieved 10 November 2019.
  33. ^ "The Importance and Benefits of Species". Science Direct. Retrieved 10 November 2019.

External links[edit]