Lecture Presented at Salisbury University:
Crossing the Divide: Dialogue Among Civilizations" - delivered Dec. 11, 2001
Under Secretary General of the United Nations
CEO of GDP Associates & President of Peace Strategies Project
Giandomenico Picco, an Under Secretary General of the United Nations, is the Personal Representative of the Secretary General for the United Nations Year of Dialogue among Civilizations. He is also the CEO of GDP Associates, Inc. in New York City, and President of the non-governmental Peace Strategies Project in Geneva, Switzerland.
He graduated from the University of Padua with a degree in political science. He holds a Master of Arts degree in International Relations and Comparative Politics from the University of California, Santa Barbara, and a diploma in European Integration Studies from the University of Amsterdam.
During his career at the United Nations, Mr. Picco was Assistant Secretary General for Political Affairs from 1973 to 1992. Notable achievements during this time included the United Nations efforts leading to the release of the Western hostages in Lebanon and the negotiations which led to the cease fire between Iran and Iraq. He represented the Secretary General in the negotiations of the Geneva Accords (1998) on Afghanistan and in the Rainbow Warrior arbitration.
Mr. Picco has received numerous awards and honorary degrees, including the President's Special Award for Exceptional Service from the US, the Grand Cross of the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany, the Order of the Cedre du Liban from the President of Lebanon, and others. His personal account of the Lebanon hostage case was published as a book entitled Man without a Gun.