Participants

Last Update June 18

Once we have selected all candidates, we will publish short bio sketches of all participants in alphabetical order. This shall give speakers and fellow participants an idea about the professional backgrounds of the attendees of the Potsdam Summer School 2024.


ADJETEY, Fame Enyonam
An upcoming Molecular biologist, dedicated to unraveling the mysteries of life on a molecular level and understanding life processes. She is particularly interested in studying genetic regulation and the interplay between genes and environmental factors as well as molecular enzymology of fungi especially tyrosinases, Inulinases, laccases. Mainly interested in two areas of research: first, a focus on understanding how these molecular interactions contribute to the development of genetical diseases and disorders and potential therapeutic interventions. Second, extensive study and exploration of fungal enzymes for their biotechnological potential in, food processing, biofuel production, bioremediation, and pharmaceuticals. Her commitment to scientific excellence and her drive to improve human health makes her a promising young scientist in the field of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.
AVALOS, Grover
A PhD researcher with international background and experience, interested in the dynamics of knowledge creation in collaborative networks from different perspectives to respond to big problems such as climate change and biodiversity loss. I currently work for my research with Ecosystems of Innovation in interdisciplinary networks of Collaboration for Technology development for climate change mitigation towards the Bioeconomy, for which I use quantitative and qualitative methods for data analysis. Understanding social, natural sciences and bio-based technologies has brought me a passion to research more about problems and solutions to Climate change and Biodiversity loss and how we could generate a transformative change in the future.
AZIZ, Tariq
An Environmental Scientist/Economist with over 12 years of experience, primarily focused on Canada. My passion lies in sustainable resource management, where I use skills in environmental modeling, economic valuation, and policy analysis to drive impactful initiatives. I have worked in academic, public and private sectors, contributing to projects such as the Watershed Security Strategy, Nature Agreement, Water Sustainability Act, and Canada1Water.

During my academic career, I was involved in renowned projects like Global Water Futures, the largest water science collaboration worldwide among Canadian universities. My Ph.D. and postdoctoral work at the University of Waterloo (Canada) focused on integrating water and other natural resources into economic accounts. I earned my master’s degree in water resources management from five European universities (Germany, France, the UK, Spain, and Hungary), funded by the European Commission. I completed my master’s thesis at IGB Berlin, and I am very excited to return to Berlin for the Potsdam Summer School after 13 years.
BRUNSCHWEIGER, Barbara
A German PhD candidate at the Technical University of Munich, specializes in forest and agroforestry systems. Her research investigates how forest structure impacts microclimate, soil microbiome, and tree growth during drought conditions. With a Master's in molecular biotechnology, she possesses a profound understanding of plant-environment interactions at the cellular level. Barbara's international experience includes a semester abroad in biochemistry at the University of Reykjavik and research internships in Canada and Germany, focusing on agriculture and forestry. Additionally, her practical experience includes a 4-month internship at Gut&Bösel in Brandenburg, where she gained hands-on experience in planning and managing agroforest systems.
CARRUEL, Guillaume
Has over five years expertise navigating the intersection of environmental policy and socio-economic development. For the past two years, he has been Executive Secretary for the Baltic Sea Advisory Council, an EU-funded stakeholder led organisation working with fisheries and environmental NGOs.
After an MSc in Fisheries, Coastal and Continental Ecosystems Management in France, Guillaume graduated from the London School of Economics with an MSc in Environmental Policy and Regulation. This background in both natural and social sciences was complemented by international experiences through internships in Europe and elsewhere.
He previously worked for the European Association of Fish Producers Organisations, where he cooperated with stakeholders across the EU to monitor political developments and advocate for strategic positions. Subsequently, as a Policy Officer for the French National body representing fisheries, he led initiatives on marine protected areas, climate change, and biodiversity conservation, fostering collaborations with scientists, private companies, and government bodies.
CHAPMAN, Gareth
A second year Accounting and Finance PhD candidate at Cardiff University. My areas of research relate to the development of deep seabed mining technologies and the associated discourse related to both the potential social and environmental impacts of this activity. In particular, I am eager to consider the role that accounting can have in shaping the development of this industry through setting the reporting priorities and materiality decisions of the organisations active within this industry whilst also identifying new stakeholders and perspectives that are present in this discourse. These concerns are addressed through the lens of extinction accounting which is a framework that has developed to account for the challenges facing humanity within the context of the anthropocene and sixth era of mass extinction which are aspects of my research that I am hoping to develop through attending the Potsdam Summer School.
CHINCHKAR, Hrishikesh
A researcher working on energy transition at the Kelso Institute Europe. My professional background includes market research in the energy and power sector, where I developed a keen understanding of climate change driven by human activity. This interest led me to pursue a master’s degree in Germany.

In December 2023, I completed my master’s degree in Renewable Energy Management at TH Köln. My thesis titled “Hydrogen Niche Emergence in Steel and Chemical Industries: Germany and France,” involved a comprehensive policy and techno-economic analysis. During my master’s program, I collaborated on a hydrogen research project at Capgemini Engineering, enhancing my skills in life cycle target costing and life cycle analysis. Additionally, I participated in several conferences, including IRENA Innovation Week and the Clean Energy Forum for EU Islands, to deepen my understanding of energy policy.
Although the Potsdam Summer School does not primarily focus on energy topics, I am eager to learn about nature-based solutions to enhance ecosystem resilience against the growing threat of climate change. I am particularly interested in studying landscape change, the vulnerabilities of ecosystems, and the global divide between the North and South in combating climate change. I look forward to connecting with like-minded researchers and gaining new insights at the summer school.
DANKWAH, Esther
Born in NKoranza, Ghana in 1997. She is a young, passionate girl whose primary aim is to promote environmental sustainability.
Miss Dankwah finished a Bachelor’s degree major in Botany from University of Ghana and obtained Second Class Honours (Upper division). She served as a teaching and research assistant for one year in the Department of Plant and Environmental Biology, University of Ghana. During her undergraduate studies, she worked on Effect of Ethyl Methane Sulfonate on cowpea generation.
Currently, she is the principal science tutor at Saint Bernadette Sourbirous School, Accra, Ghana where she provides science education to basic school learners through recycling, among many others.
Outside of her teaching profession, she is into UX design. She is also an outdoor fanatic who loves fishing, trekking and playing tennis.
Technological and software Skills.
1. Data Science
2. UX design
3. SAS software
4. Microsoft offices.
ESSIEN, David Kwabena
An International Development Professional with 8 years of experience, holds an MSc in Economics (specializing in Energy and Natural Resources Economics), and a BSc in Environmental Science from Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology. With expertise in environment, climate change, and socio-economic development, he has demonstrated success in designing and implementing robust strategies for mitigating environmental impact and integrating climate considerations into economic policies. David is the Managing Partner and Principal Consultant at MIREYA LTD. in Ghana. His commitment to sustainable development and his diverse skill set make him a valuable addition to the Potsdam Summer School program. He looks forward to engaging with fellow participants and contributing his expertise to collaborative efforts aimed at addressing pressing global challenges.
FALTERMEIER, Kathrin
Political scientist and transformation researcher. Specialising in sustainability governance and environmental policies, her current focus is on ‘Analysing the measures for the achievement of SDG 15 at EU-level’ as part of a research project of the German Environment Agency. Previously, she has been working on sustainable urban development: as a researcher for the Franco-German Forum for the Future at the Research Institute for Sustainability in Potsdam, and as an advisor for municipal development with the German international cooperation in Tunisia, where she concentrated on citizen participation at the local level. Kathrin studied Applied Political Science (M. A.) at the Albert Ludwig University of Freiburg in Germany and at Sciences Po Aix in France. At present, she is preparing her doctoral thesis on European sustainability processes at the University of Applied Sciences in Merseburg.
FELTGES, Otto
Studied industrial engineering at the University of Duisburg-Essen, where I wrote my thesis on reducing emissions in the transport sector. Now, I'm a Project Engineer and Data Scientist at the Gas and Heat Institute in Essen. My work focuses on adaptive energy systems, modeling hydrogen transport networks and analyzing the economics of hydrogen network expansions. I use tools like QGIS and Python to dive deep into data and find insights. Outside of work, I’m passionate about sports, especially volleyball. I also enjoy spending time in nature and have a keen interest in ornithology.
FILIPPINI, Sara
A first year PhD student at the Polytechnic University of Turin, Italy. I hold a Master's degree in Climate Physics from the University of Utrecht, Netherlands, and a Bachelor's degree in Physical Engineering from Polytechnic University of Turin.
At present, my PhD research focuses on pattern formation processes in dryland vegetation, combining complex system science with physics of ecosystems. More broadly, I am interested in all forms of nature self-organization, as well as in possible methods to enhance ecosystem resilience.
Although my background is mainly in Physics, I am keen on a wide array of disciplines, and I am strong believer in collaboration between fields in order to achieve a sustainable future. My own Master's thesis was strongly interdisciplinary, as it involved the influence of natural climate change over the society of the late Roman Empire.
In my personal time, I love to hike, climb, garden and other nature related activities. I also love to learn new languages and explore new cultures!
GAO, Nuofan
born in Shanghai, the most internationalized city in China, I had the fortune to have many intercultural exchange opportunities and gain access to high quality education. Since my father is a middle school art teacher, I participated frequently in drawing competitions especially in science fiction themes with his help. While browsing science divulgation magazines for getting inspired, I became more and more interested in life sciences. Being curious about the foreign world and life sciences, I enrolled in an international High School in China - one of the few international High Schools in China that offer foreign language education such as German, Italian, and Hebrew. I was casually assigned to the Italian class at the beginning of high school. Besides Italian, I specialized also in Biology by participating in preparation courses for China Biology Olympiad (CBO).

I made up my mind to come to Italy for university as I observed significant self-improvement during this period of exposure to drastically different cultural values. Therefore, after obtained the B2 certification in Italian and won the bronze medal in 2019’s CBO, I stepped out of my comfort zone in Shanghai and embarked on a journey to Italy in 2019. Subsequently, I enrolled at the Sant’Anna School of Advanced Studies (SSSUP) as one of the first foreign students who passed SSSUP’s entrance exam despite not being a native Italian speaker. Thanks to the strong interdisciplinary atmosphere of SSSUP, besides Plant Molecular Biotechnology, I specialized also in High-tech Entrepreneurship. I am interested in applying cutting-edge technologies such as gene editing to promote modern crop breeding (reverse genetics), as well as leveraging bioinformatic methods to analyze plant genomes (forward genetics). Currently, I am a first-year master's student in Molecular Biotechnology, and I am planning my master's thesis focusing on correlating landscape genome data of African rice with environmental data to identify new genetic varieties for enhancing crop resilience to climate change.
HESSLING, Jonas
Born in the industrial area of West Germany, the love for water brought him to the Baltic Sea where beach volleyball, diving and neuroscience were his interests. After Graduating in the field of brain stimulation he went back and forth between clinical work as a psychologist and a meditation teacher and research at the FU Berlin.
Eventually, climate change and more and more clients with climate anxiety lead him to ask what we can actually do against this crisis of human beings. Back to University he is now studying a Master in Global Challenges of Sustainability in Utrecht, Montpellier and Budapest specialising on water management and nature based CO2 capturing. At the NGO GermanZero he looks deeper into it and together with his clients, he tries to figure out how to deal with the emotional part of it.
HEUCKMANN, Helena
German national, holding a Master of Arts degree in Global Studies from University of Vienna and Leipzig (Erasmus Mundus Double Degree). The major focus of my work are international climate politics. Currently I am working as a Climate Policy Advisor for the German Development Cooperation (GIZ) at the Climate Policy Support Programme, where I am advising the German Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) especially on Climate Partnerships and mainstreaming of climate policies into the portfolios. Until 2023 I worked for the past 5 years in Tunisia in a project advising the Tunisian Ministry of Environment in implementing its Nationally Determined Contribution, by among others, launching several studies and creating a group on young negotiators participating for Tunisia at the UNFCCC negotiations. I currently live in Berlin, and I am happy to get more insights into academic research on climate and the environment and how a just and equitable transition towards sustainable living conditions for all can possibly be achieved.
HÜLSEN, Sarah
A first year PhD student in Weather and Climate Risk at ETH Zürich. My research focuses on modelling the impact of extreme weather events on ecosystems, potential ecological shifts under climate change, and how these are impacting ecosystem service provision.
With a BSc in Liberal Arts and Science from Amsterdam University College and a MSc in Environmental Systems and Policy from ETH Zürich, I have a great appreciation for the contribution of a variety of disciplines to solving the environmental challenges of our time. Outside of academia I have worked as land and water management consultant in East Africa and did a 6-month internship with a major reinsurance company.
During the Potsdam Summer School I am looking forwards to connecting with my peers on such diverse topics as biodiversity and resilience of ecosystem functions, landscape ecology, and the role of nature in the Anthropocene.
JEWARO, Awol Kedir
Is a PhD student at the Graduate School of Natural and Applied Sciences, specializing in Water Management at Suleyman Demirel University, Isparta Turkey. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Natural Resources Management from Adama Science and Technology University (ASTU), Ethiopia and a second bachelor's degree in International Relations from Anadolu University, Turkey.
He has been awarded the Türkiye Scholarships for both his Master's and Doctoral Studies. In March-April 2024, he trained as a visiting research student (trainee) in Wasserbau und Wasserwirtschaft (Hydraulic Engineering and Water Resources Management) at University of Kassel, Germany.
His research interests encompasses a range of topics, including the Water Framework Directive, the development and research of water and environmental policy, transboundary water management and governance, inland water pollution and water quality management, sustainability, and climate change. Beyond his academic endeavors, he has a practical experience in the industrial sector as a project assistant and field coordinator. His interdisciplinary experience includes engineering, natural and social sciences, and exposure to various regions and cultures, including those in Africa, Europe, and beyond. Originally born and raised in Ethiopia, he is residing in Turkey since 2016.
KLOETER, Lukas
Currently in my secondary studies in Geography at Ruhr-University Bochum. Besides studying, I am working as research assistant at Fraunhofer UMSICHT and as working student at a sustainability consultancy.
Before returning to student life, I graduated in Business Administration and worked for several years at a multinational company. Sustainable development and the urgently needed transformation in our society and economy are very important to me, and at one point, I felt that I wanted to integrate these aspects more into my work. I therefore pursued an MBA in Sustainability Management at Leuphana University Lüneburg and subsequently began my Geography studies. With these, I want to gain more knowledge in natural sciences and develop a broad perspective on sustainability challenges.
I am particularly interested in inter- and transdisciplinary approaches to fostering sustainable development. Within this broad thematic field I want to specialize in topics at the intersection of geography and economics such as circular bioeconomy and the hurdles to overcome to achieve a broader diffusion.
MIROSHNYK, Nataliia
Has been working at the Institute for evolutionary ecology NAS Ukraine, Kyiv since 2015, where she is engaged in research on forest and park ecosystems, urbanization, air pollution in cities. Currently, Nataliia is the head of the project at the Institute for evolutionary ecology NAS Ukraine: "Bioindicative assessment of the state of park ecosystems in the conditions of urbanization" (state number 0122U000570) and is an Fellow of The Research Institute for Sustainability (RIFS), Potsdam, Germany since September 2022. Nataliia received her PhD in Ecology from the Institute of Agroecology and Nature Management of the National Academy of Sciences, Kyiv, Ukraine, in 2011. During her PhD and post-doctoral work at the Institute of Agroecology and Nature Management Nataliia established a strong scientific background in the field of methods for assessing forest, park ecosystems and data analysis, focusing on assessment of resources and the state of forest ecosystems, management of agricultural landscapes. In the last 5 years of working at the Institute for evolutionary ecology, NAS Ukraine paid special attention to assessing the role of megacities in air pollution and climate change as factors influencing the state of green infrastructure for sustainable management.

The field of research - Biodiversity, Ecology and Evolution Ecosystem, Invasive Species, Plant Ecology, Landscape Ecology, Environmental Conservation, Sustanability, management, urban green infrastrucnure, urban forests, sustainable development, Forest Protection, air pollution and climate change interactions.
MULIISA, Emmanuel
Is a Youth Climate Negotiator for Uganda under the Climate Change Department of the Ministry of Water and Environment following mainly Mitigation. He has followed negotiations at COP 27, SB 58 and COP 28 as part of the Uganda Team of negotiators. The knowledge acquired through being a part of negotiation meetings is applied in engaging youth to participate in the achievement of Uganda’s Nationally Determined Contributions. He also has knowledge on the Enhanced Transparency Framework which is a mechanism through which countries report their GHG emission contributions to the UNFCCC.
Emmanuel Muliisa is also a Project Manager by profession who works and serves under the National Youth Council of Uganda secretariat which is under the Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development. Through this organization, he has been able to create change in the lives of many young people across the country through the various programs under different thematic areas. Through this work, He also mobilizes and coordinates the district youth council leaders to understand and engage in government programs for youth and as well participate in programs organized by the Council secretariat and partners from civil society and NGOs.
He is also a volunteer with Debate Society Uganda where they train young people at Universities and in secondary schools to learn dialogue and advocacy through public speech skills and debate skills. He is also a member of the Chamber of Young Entrepreneurs of Uganda.
NOOR, Tania
A dedicated professional from Bangladesh, with a rich background in environmental and sustainable development. As the co-founder and Director at my climate tech and sustainable solutions startup EnvoLead Ltd I am focusing to harness the impactful contribution of green technology to improve the landscape of sustainability and to ensure availability of ecofriendly products or services in Bangladesh. I strongly believe that an effective green entrepreneurs eco system could create significant improvement to combat the climate crisis in the most climate vulnerable countries across the globe. With experience at prestigious organizations such as FAO, and UNDP, I have honed my skills in innovation, sustainability, and communication. Notably, I have spearheaded initiatives like the "Greening the Blue Campaign" at UNDP, promoting sustainable practices within organizational operations. Being a journalist at BBC World Service (Bengali) has allowed me to share local impactful stories on pressing environmental issues with a global audience. My educational background includes a bachelor's degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from University of Dhaka, and a postgraduate degree in Development Studies from BRAC University.
Transitioning into the role of a green entrepreneur has provided me with a unique perspective on the intersection of business, sustainability, and entrepreneurship ecosystem dynamics. Bangladesh is the one of the most vulnerable countries to climate action in the globe where emission rate is lesser in comparison to the developed countries. Through my entrepreneurial endeavors, I have strived to develop solutions that not only minimize environmental impact but also contribute positively to ecosystem resilience and regeneration in the community level. However, I recognize the need for a deeper understanding of the intricate interplay between ecosystems and human activities to enrich and enhance my work further. Beyond my environmental activism or professional background, I am a poet, creative writer, classical singer and documentary film maker.
ODETSI, Patrick
Is an environmental lawyer who lives and works in Accra, Ghana. Through his work he advises on issues of energy transition, climate change and regulation relating to renewable energy sources, land use and how communities and businesses can make decisions around sustainable energy and environmental protection.
Patrick is also the co-founder of the Africa Earth Alliance[www.africaearthalliance.org], a not-for-profit which deploys the power of scientific knowledge and regulation to encourage the adoption of sustainable environmental practices in Ghana.
His recent work with the alliance involves facilitating capacity building projects which make use of scientific information and local laws to build the capacity of indigenes, business leaders and state actors to drive attitudinal change towards sustainable land use, climate change, energy transition and environmental sustainability in natural resource extraction communities in Ghana.
PINIGINA, Elizaveta
Is a project manager at a consulting company dedicated to applying resilience-building methodologies to various global and national systems. Before this, she contracted as a research scientist on a risk science team where she worked on climate and technology governance policy analysis. She has had extensive experience working on health policy through assisting a COVID-19 response data analytics team responsible for the northeast and several nations. Her interests primarily are in melding multidisciplinary methodologies to provide holistic and comprehensive solutions to issues on a global scale. Elizaveta holds an MSc in Health and International Development from the London School of Economics and Political Science as well as an undergraduate degree in International Relations. In her masters thesis she researched power exertion through health diplomacy during the COVID-19 pandemic.
POUDEL, Dikshya
Currently pursuing an Erasmus Mundus Joint Master's Degree in Soil Science in Turkey. I completed my bachelor's degree in agriculture science from Agriculture and Forestry University in Nepal. My passion lies in exploring different aspects of the community, which strives me to research every subject and object around me. Through this master's degree, I aim to follow my passion for inspiring communities and promoting sustainable agricultural production. I aspire to be an academician and a researcher as a soil scientist and conduct research works related to nutrient management and soil conservation practices for better crop production. Besides academics, I love exploring places, cultures, and lifestyles. In my free time, I enjoy reciting poems, reading novels, playing football, and dancing. By participating in this summer school, I am eager to learn more about sustainable land use practices for mitigating climate change and managing soil health.
PURCELL, Maureen J.
Has a doctorate in social ecology and works as a postdoctoral researcher at the University of California Irvine. She applies her research expertise in message framing, political psychology, and decision making to better understand how to earn support for evidence-based, effective solutions to climate change and other issues of critical importance. Her current research interests include critical success factors in sub-national campaigns for net zero transitions.
RAPHELA, Tlou
is a Socio-Ecological Scientist and holds a PhD in Conservation Ecology. On the social part, she looks at how disasters particularly floods can cause or exacerbate the Mental Health of communities and crisis workers especially in Africa, and on the Ecology part, she focuses on Conservation, biodiversity, and Ecosystem-Based Disaster Risk Reduction. Her research area focuses on presenting an element of response to climate change as impacts of climate change are and will manifest either directly or indirectly on human health via a range of pathways. Direct impacts are usually a consequence of extreme climate events such as floods and other disasters that impact lives and livelihoods. She is interested in how social issues interface with the environment holistically and has developed an interest in human-wildlife conflict because she believes humans and animals can live together in harmony. Since joining the University of the Free State in 2020, teaching Disaster Mental and Public Health modules she developed a strong interest in Public health focusing on the Psychosocial impacts of disasters and is now focusing her research and creating a niche around the mental health impacts of Disasters as a consequence of the extreme climate-induced disaster such as floods, that impact lives and livelihoods and how the ecosystem can be used to reduce those disaster Risks.
SAAVEDRA MANCERA, Angie
Is a professional in Environmental Engineering with a Master's degree in Civil Engineering Research, specializing in Water Resources and Soils from the Pontifical Bolivarian University, complemented by a diploma in Integrated Management Systems.
She has 2 years of experience working on a research project focused on the development of nanoparticles through green extract synthesis and their implementation in asphalt and soils to evaluate their properties. As a result of this process, two scientific articles were published, along with several presentations at national conferences.
With 3 years of experience working at the Water Fund of the Colombian Northeast Alliance BioCuenca, she currently serves as the Director of Natural Capital. In this role, she oversees the implementation of projects involving Nature-Based Solutions aimed at strengthening communities and conserving strategic ecosystems such as páramos and high Andean forests, along with their ecosystem services.
SALTER, Jodie
Recently finished a PhD in Religious Studies in the Centre for Religion and Public Life at the University of Leeds in the UK. My research was sociological and addressed the role of faith-based organisations (FBOs) in climate action and advocacy at the United Nations. I undertook fieldwork with FBOs online and at COP26 in Glasgow to understand how they engage with climate action processes, how they frame climate change, and how their approach to climate action and sustainability is influenced by religious, social and cultural factors and compares to the work of other NGOs in the field.
For the last two years, I have also worked as a freelance research advisor on projects related to faith actors, climate change and sustainable development. These have included a working paper piloting a tool to track the emissions of religious institutions, mapping faith-based environmental projects, reviewing research on religion, gender and rainforests, and supporting a webinar on climate-responsible finance.
In my research, I enjoy drawing on multiple disciplines, including human geography, political theory, sociology, anthropology and religious studies, and am always keen to highlight the social and cultural dimensions of environmental sustainability. I am particularly interested in and look forward to exploring inter- and transdisciplinary approaches to sustainability and sustainable development at the summer school.
SEPULVEDA, Laura Carolina
Is an analyst at Climate Focus. Her current work spans diverse sectors, including land use, water and sanitation, waste management, and renewable energy. She provides technical support in greenhouse gas (GHG) accounting and emissions reduction modeling, developing data collection tools, GIS and data analysis in climate change adaptation and mitigation. Laura leverages diverse data sources, such as field research and geospatial analysis, to inform decision-making.

Prior to joining Climate Focus, Laura held a role as a corporate sustainability expert, based on Dow Jones, GRI, and SASB standards in conTREEbute. In addition, she held an assistant teacher post with the laboratory of waste treatment at the Universidad de los Andes in Bogotá, Colombia. As part of her role, Laura was responsible for introducing and subsequently incorporating the topic of wastewater modeling as part of the syllabus.

Laura holds both a Master's (Cum Laude) and a Bachelor’s degree in environmental engineering and a Minor in Public Policy from the Universidad de los Andes in Colombia. During her Master’s thesis research, she identified the factors that affect the microbiological quality of harvested orchard irrigation rainwater.
SINGH, Shipra
Completed her Bachelor’s degree in Zoology at Banaras Hindu University, India, where she also obtained her Master’s degree in Environmental Sciences. After her Master’s, Shipra got enrolled in integrated M.Phil./Ph.D. program in School of Environmental Sciences, Jawaharlal Nehru University, India and studied the role of topography in governing plant functional traits and associated soil properties in Western Himalayan forests. Shipra is currently affiliated as IIASA postdoctoral fellow in International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis, Laxenburg, Austria, where she is trying to assess the response of Forest Ecosystem Services along environmental gradients in the Himalayas: Decomposing the management-based scenarios and identifying the priority conservation. She is trying to link plant functional traits and ecosystem properties with people’s quality of life via ecosystem services assessment in the Himalayan region using a coupled bio-socioeconomic ecosystem dynamic model. Her main fields of interest include trait-based ecology, plant-soil interaction, and ecosystem functions and services.
SOHOO, Ihsanullah
A Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Sustainable Built Environment Research with specialization in Climate impact of forest products in the Department of Built Environment and Energy Technology, Linnaeus University, Sweden.
He holds a PhD in Environmental Engineering from Hamburg University of Technology, Germany. During his PhD research, Dr.-Ing. Sohoo worked on environmental sustainability enhancement of waste disposal sites focusing on greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reduction potential associated with solid waste disposal and investigated different GHG mitigation approaches with focus on anaerobic and bioreactor landfills with and without aeration. In parallel to his PhD research, Dr.-Ing. Sohoo assisted the research work in the framework of the international cooperation project “Biological in situ stabilization of the Teuftal landfill” Bern, Switzerland.
Currently, Dr.-Ing. Sohoo is involved in research in the field of sustainable forestry resource management and greenhouse gas emission accounting from forest products. Conducting empirical studies (e.g. surveys and interviews) to collect primary data on lifespan of specific products in use in Swedish market. The data collection includes the users’ perception and behaviour towards the five stages of waste management hierarchy (reduce, reuse, recycle, recover, and dispose) and conducting lifecycle analysis (LCA) of the specific products considering the complete chain from forest to end of life of the product.
His research expertise and interest lies in areas such as waste treatment, environmental sustainability, Greenhouse gas emission accounting, Climate change and LCA.
STEINMANN, René
Is a trained geophysicist who recently began working on animal and conservation biology through the lens of seismology, supported by his GFZ Discovery Fellowship and the animal vibration lab at Oxford University. He completed his undergraduate and master's degrees at the University of Hamburg, Germany, in 2019, focusing on seismic monitoring strategies for the first meters of soil. In 2022, he earned his PhD from Université Grenoble Alpes, France, researching unsupervised learning strategies for seismic time series data. In 2023, he was awarded the GFZ Discovery Fellowship for his project “SeismicLife: Non-invasive Seismic Wildlife Monitoring and the Human Impact on Seismic Wavefields.” This project aims to create an inventory of seismic signals related to the movement and low-frequency vocalizations of large mammals, which can be used for animal behavior studies and conservation strategies.
UMUGWANEZA, Adeline
Is currently a PhD candidate at the Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography (XIEG), Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), pursuing a major in Cartography and Geographic Information Systems (CaGIS). Her research focuses on improving existing methods for disaster monitoring and assessing the impacts of climate change.
Born and raised in Rwanda, Adeline earned her Bachelor's degree in Information Technology (IT) from the Adventist University of Central Africa (AUCA) in 2018. Due to her academic performance, she was admitted to XIEG, CAS, where she successfully completed her Master's degree in CaGIS in June 2022. During her Master's studies, her research concentrated on assessing the impact of climate change on identifying suitable sites for rainwater harvesting structures in Rwanda as a solution to address the disaster issues of floods and soil erosion. In her spare time, she enjoys listening to music, swimming, and spending time with friends.
VIERA ROMERO, Michelle
Holds a PhD in Environmental Sciences from the State University of New York (SUNY ESF), a program she completed with support from a Fulbright scholarship. Since 2015, she works as a tenured professor at Universidad de Guayaquil (Ecuador). Her research interests hold an interdisciplinary focus that reflects her academic training (BSc in international business, MSc in public management, PhD in environmental science). Her current projects include: 1) Fostering a circular bioeconomy in the cocoa value chain in Ecuador and Switzerland (research funded by the Swiss Government) and 2) a new publication that examines technical and policy limitations to decarbonizing the shrimp farming industry in Ecuador. Overall, her interest is to examine agri-food business decisions towards more sustainable modes of production and consumption in terms of sufficiency and renewability of production systems while maintaining an environmental justice approach that ensures a fair and healthy land use.