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Nina Volles Bird


Nina Volles has a Doctorate of Business Administration in Higher Education Management from the University of Bath, an EMSc in Communication Management and a degree in International Relations from the University of Strasbourg. Before joining the University, she worked in the corporate world. At USI, she has held several roles, while also working in international development and for the Global Alliance. Currently, she is leading the review of the University's continuing education activities.  


lifelong learning, university continuing education, communications, stakeholder management, capacity development, institutional partnerships, international development.


2004 – today

USI Università della Svizzera italiana, Lugano, Switzerland,

March 2019 –
Project Lead, University Continuing Education

March 2017 – February 2019
On leave

2013 – 2017
Managing Director, Stakeholder Management & Fundraising,

2004 – 2013
Managing Director, Executive MScom Programme

2017 – today
GIZ Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit
Support to the Pan African University Institute for Water, Energy and Climate Change (PAUWES), Tlemcen, Algeria,

March 2019 –
GIZ Senior Consultant,

March 2017
February 2019 Project Representative Algeria & Senior Higher Education Advisor,


2008 – 2013
Global Alliance for Public Relations and Communication Management,
Chief Administration Officer

1998 – 2004
GF Machining Solutions, Losone, Switzerland
Head of Group Communications,

1993 – 1998
Lonza Basel, Switzerland
Communications Manager

Sandoz (today Novartis and Clariant) in Brazil and

1993     Media Spokesperson, Sandoz, Basel, Switzerland

1992     Communication and Language Trainer, Indústrias Químicas, Resende, Brazil



Doctor of Business Administration in Higher Education Management
2012 – 2018 University of Bath, School of Management, UK
Doctoral thesis: The LLL University: How do Swiss HEIs experience and respond to the institutional pressure of engaging in lifelong learning as part of their “third mission”?


Master of Advanced Studies in Communication Management
2002 – 2003 USI Università della Svizzera italiana, Switzerland


Diplôme Universitaire (Master equivalent) in International Relations
1991 – 1992 Université de Strasbourg, France


Licence (Bachelor equivalent) in the English and French languages, literature & civilisation (focus: secondary education)
1987 – 1991 Université de Rouen, France



German (mother tongue)

English (full professional proficiency)

French (full professional proficiency)

Italian (full professional proficiency)

Portuguese (intermediate level)

Farsi (intermediate level)