Core Team


Prof. Saleem H. Ali

Prof. Saleem H. Ali joined the University of Delaware as Blue and Gold Distinguished Professor of Energy and the Environment in September 2016. Prior to that he was Director of the Centre for Social Responsibility in Mining (CSRM) at the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia. He was a Professor of Environmental Studies at the University of Vermont's Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources and is a past director of the Institute for Environmental Diplomacy and Security. His most recent book is titled Treasures of the Earth: Need, Greed and a Sustainable Future. Dr. Ali is a member of the World Commission on Protected Areas and the IUCN Taskforce on Transboundary Conservation. The World Economic Forum chose him as a "Young Global Leader" in 2011. He has also been selected by the National Geographic Society as an "emerging explorer" and was profiled in "Forbes magazine" in September, 2009 as "The Alchemist." Professor Ali received his doctorate in Environmental Planning from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), an M.E.S. in environmental law and policy from Yale University, and his Bachelors in Chemistry from Tufts University.

Dr. Laurent E. Cartier FGA

Laurent is a lecturer and researcher on gemstones at the University of Lausanne (Switzerland) also works for the Swiss Gemmological Institute SSEF - a leading gemmological laboratory. Laurent holds a PhD from the University of Basel (Switzerland). His PhD research explored sustainability and traceability issues in pearl farming, and in this context co-founded the Sustainable Pearls project which also obtained funding from The Tiffany & Co. Foundation. He has been working for a number of years on issues of natural resource management and sustainable sourcing of gemstone materials. He continues to work on sustainability issues in coloured gemstones and diamonds and frequently visits mining areas, most recently in West Africa and Burma. He has authored articles in all major gemological journals. His work has been presented in National GeographicBBCFastCoExistInhorgenta and Tages Anzeiger. He holds a Master in Earth Sciences from Basel University and is a fellow of the Gemmological Association of Great Britain.

Lynda Lawson

Lynda is the knowledge transfer and training manager at the University of Queensland’s Centre for Social Responsibility in Mining.  She has designed and led training and train the trainer programs in the extractive industry in Africa, Asia, Australia and South America. She is especially interested in miner education and in practical field gemmology courses for women miners. She is currently designing a specialised online course Understanding Coloured Gemstones. Her special area of expertise is in women in gemstone mining in Madagascar and she is currently researching women’s work across the sapphire value chain:  miners, traders, cutters and jewellers. She is a senior researcher on the Tiffany and Co Foundation Coloured Gemstone Knowledge Hub GemHub. Lynda is currently under taking a Ph.D. entitled Pathways, opportunities and challenges for women working across the gemstone value chain in Madagascar. 


Mehmet Altingoz

Mehmet Altingoz obtained a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Engineering and was certified as a Health and Safety Engineer in Turkey. Then, he received his M.S. from the Water Resources Policy and Management program at Oregon State University. During his master’s, he minored in water resources engineering, became a certified mediator, and obtained a graduate certificate in ‘Water Conflict Management and Transformation’. He was also involved in a World Bank project regarding the sustainable transboundary management of the Kura/Araks basin. During his master’s education, Altingoz’s research mostly focused on the sustainable management of transboundary water resources. Altingoz has been a Ph.D. student at the Water Science and Policy program at the University of Delaware since September 2017 (advised by Professor Saleem Ali). Altingoz is also a researcher on the Tiffany & Co. Foundation funded Gemstone Knowledge Hub.