Geert Laporte is Deputy Director at the European Centre for Development Policy Management (ECDPM). He has worked for ECDPM since 1990 in different roles and functions. Currently he is responsible for ECDPM's relations with the EU institutions, EU Presidencies, EU member states, and with the African Union in Addis Ababa, the ACP institutions in Brussels and with a large network of partners of the Centre in different parts of the world.His thematic areas of specialisation include EU external action and development policy in the context of the EU Lisbon Treaty, the Cotonou Partnership Agreement and the Joint Africa-EU Strategy with a particular focus on governance, political cooperation and regional integration. He has been involved in extensive policy research, institutional audits, evaluations and publications on various aspects of EU-ACP and EU-Africa relations. He has also built a longstanding experience in policy dialogue facilitation and institutional and capacity development. Prior to joining ECDPM he has worked in the 1980s for several years as a research fellow and later as an assistant at the Centre for Third World Studies at the University of Ghent in Belgium, where he mainly worked on the management of development aid in Latin America. Geert Laporte holds a Master in Contemporary History and a Master in Development Cooperation with specialisation in Public Administration from the University of Ghent.