Carolina Gottardo


Carolina is a well-regarded global migration expert with powerful strategic vision, and comes to IDC with a breadth of experience in multi-level advocacy. She has held senior and executive management positions for the last 15 years, including Executive Director roles at Jesuit Refugee Services (JRS) Australia, and Latin American Women’s Rights Service in the United Kingdom. Most recently at JRS Australia, Carolina led the organisation through an extraordinarily challenging time for refugees, people seeking asylum, and migrants in vulnerable situations. She founded new and innovative programs for migrant women experiencing gender-based violence, employment assistance for asylum seekers, community organising initiatives, and well-developed advocacy strategies operating at national, regional and global levels. 

Carolina is a grounded, feminist, migrant leader with a strong commitment to the inclusion and representation of directly impacted communities in advocacy. Additionally, as Global Compact for Migration (GCM) focal point of Asia Pacific Refugee Rights Network (APPRN) Carolina co-leads Working Group 3 of the UN Network on Migration, and she is a member of the UN Women’s Expert Working Group for Addressing Women’s Human Rights in the GCM. Carolina is also well known to IDC as a former member of the International Advisory Committee and Board, where she supported IDC’s strategic direction from 2018 until earlier this year. 

This is a critical appointment for IDC. Over the last 10 years our work has grown exponentially in scale and complexity, and our strategies and structures are adapting and changing in response. To meet the importance of this moment for IDC, the Selection Committee developed a rigorous and competitive recruitment process with independent expert support. IDC is now thrilled to have the opportunity to enlist Carolina as our new Executive Director. Carolina’s principled and empathetic leadership will bring us closer to IDC’s vision of a world where immigration detention no longer exists and people who migrate live with rights and dignity.

Carolina will join us on Tuesday, 17 November 2020, and aim to establish an IDC Europe headquarters in 2021. Until then, Lucy Bowring and Vivienne Chew will continue as Acting Co-Directors. Please join IDC in congratulating and welcoming Carolina to this new and important role!