Maria van der Hoeven is the former Executive Director of the International Energy Agency (IEA). As Executive Director of the IEA, Ms. Van der Hoeven steered the agency during a period of exceptional change in the global energy economy.
One of her overarching priorities was implementing a new Global Engagement Strategy to institutionally bring in the major emerging energy players of the 21st century. Another was expanding modern energy services to the 1.3 billion people worldwide who currently lack them. In recognition of the IEA’s efforts to address the crisis of energy poverty, Ms. Van der Hoeven served on the Advisory Board to the UN Sustainable Energy for All initiative.
Previously, Ms. Van der Hoeven served as Minister of Economic Affairs of the Netherlands from February 2007 to October 2010, during which time she demonstrated leadership on energy policy at the national, regional and global levels. Prior to becoming Minister of Economic Affairs, Ms. Van der Hoeven was Minister of Education, Culture and Science from 2002 to 2007.
She was an elected member of the Netherlands House of Representatives of the States-General from 1991 to 2002. Until 1987 she was head of the Adult Commercial Vocational Training Centre in Maastricht, after which she served as head of the Limburg Technology Centre until 1991.