Martin Lees graduated in Mechanical Engineering from Cambridge University in 1964 and has a Diploma in European Studies from the College of Europe in Bruges. After some years in industry, he joined OECD to manage programs on Cooperation in Science and Technology and on Innovation in the Procedures and Structures of Government. In 1972, he was responsible at OECD for the design and launching of the “InterFutures Project” on the Future of the Advanced Industrial Societies in Harmony with that of the Developing Countries. He then served at the United Nations as Executive Director of the Financing System for Science and Technology for Development and in 1982 was appointed Assistant Secretary General. During this period he was responsible for the establishment of the InterAction Council of former Heads of State and Government. Since 1983, he has managed several high level advisory programs for the leadership of China, including “China and the World in the Nineties” from 1988 to 1998 and the establishment in 1991 of the China Council for International Cooperation on Environment and Development (CCICED). From 1991-1996 he managed programs of cooperation with the Newly Independent States of the Former Soviet Union and from 1995 to 2008 he was Moderator of the International Advisory Board of the Toyota Motor Corporation. From 2001 to 2005 he was Rector of the University for Peace of the United Nations in Costa Rica, guiding its revitalization and launching Masters programs on issues of peace, security and sustainable development. From 2008 to 2010 he was Secretary General of the Club of Rome.
March 2010 to present: Gorbachev High Level task Force on Climate Change; Vice Chairman, Conference on Affordable World Security, Washington; Senior Adviser, Program on “A New Path for World Development,” Club of Rome, etc. Adviser to the African Union on the Pan African University; speaker on international issues etc.