Our Mission: Leadership in thought that leads to action
Primary Position & Institution:
Chef de Cabinet of the Director-General of the United Nations Office at Geneva
David Chikvaidze has worked for over thirty-six years in the foreign service, in government and in the international civil service.
A keen observer of superpower relationships, particularly international political, security and nuclear arms control issues in the context of Eurasian and current regional security dynamics and challenges, he provides political advice and support to his fifth Director-General of the United Nations Office at Geneva (UNOG) as Chef de Cabinet and, before, as acting Senior Political Adviser. As Director of the UN Library and Head of the UNOG Cultural Diplomacy programme, Chikvaidze implemented a new strategic direction, created synergies with world libraries, raised the Library’s profile and its effectiveness for clients and developed new forms of cultural, intellectual, educational and academic outreach. He was Senior Adviser to the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, in charge of Communications and NGO relations and spokesman for the Commission on Human Rights and other Human Rights Bodies.
At UN Headquarters and on field missions in 1993-2003, D. Chikvaidze performed a variety of politically sensitive duties: negotiating humanitarian aid in Pyongyang with the DPRK government; assisting Sergio Vieira de Mello in negotiating with Yugoslav authorities humanitarian needs and access in FRY, including Kosovo; assisting James A. Baker III on his confidential missions to Algeria, Morocco and Mauritania on the Western Sahara issue; post-earthquake disaster assessment and coordination in Tajikistan and Afghanistan; three visits to the Chernobyl nuclear power plant and to contaminated areas in efforts to assist victims; organizing the UN50 commemorative events in New York and San Francisco; etc.
Prior to joining the United Nations, Chikvaidze served as scheduler for President Gorbachev and as protocol officer for President Yeltsin. A diplomat by training, he was special assistant to the Soviet Ambassador and chief of protocol of the USSR Embassy in Washington, D.C. (1985-1990).
D. Chikvaidze holds a Ph.D. in political science, is author of occasional articles on international relations and has taught geopolitics and served as thesis advisor. He is vice president of the Swiss Forum for International Affairs and of the Geneva Diplomatic Club; Fellow of the World Academy of Art and Science, a founding member of the Georgian Association of Switzerland and of the Sergio Vieira de Mello Foundation.
Born in Tbilisi, Chikvaidze is a citizen of Georgia. He is married and has one son and three grandsons.
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