Margaret Catley-Carlson supports improved water resource management as well as the issues of agricultural productivity and rural development in many organizations. She is chair of the World Economic Forum Global Agenda Council on Water and the Foresight Advisory Committee for Group Suez Environment. Ms. Catley Carlson is a member of the UN Secretary General’s Advisory Board on Water, the Rosenberg Forum, the Canadian Water Network, and patron and past chair of the Global Water Partnership. She chairs the board of the Crop Diversity Trust, and serves on the Council of Advisors of the World Food Prize, and the boards of the Syngenta Foundation, and the IFDC (Fertilizer Management).
Ms. Catley-Carlson has chaired ICARDA (International Center for Agricultural Development in Dry Areas), CABI (Center for Agriculture and Biosciences), and sat as vice chair of the IDRC (International Development Research Council), IWMI (International Water Management Institute), and board member of IIED (International Institute of Environment and Development), the Library of Alexandria.
She was president of the Canadian International Development Agency from 1983 to 1989, deputy executive director of UNICEF in New York from 1981 to 1983, president of the Population Council in New York from 1993 to 98, and deputy minister of the Department of Health and Welfare of Canada from 1989 to 92. In addition, Ms. Catley-Carlson is an officer of the Order of Canada.