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Who works with OpenForests?

Each task requires particular expertise

Our network of selected experts complements our core team efficiently.

We share a vision of sustainable and professional managed forestry and agro-forestry in which economic, ecological, and social values and criteria equally exist.

Stay updated on what´s happing at OpenForests.

Profil Image Alexander

Alexander Watson, Founder & CEO

B.Sc. in Forestry, Postgraduate Certificate for Social Banking and Social Finance

As a forestry investment expert and project manager for sustainable reforestation projects from Latin America and South East Asia, Alexander Watson has a broad experience in implementing and promoting international forestry projects.

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Stefan Haas, Founder & CEO

Dipl. Geoecologist

Stefan Haas explored tropical forest ecosystems in Suriname, Peru, Costa Rica, Panama, Vietnam and Cameroon. He combines his passion for forests with his preferred technical tools like geodatabases and the web.

 

With my work I want to enable forestry managers to work efficient and sustainable with smart tools.

Dr. Patrick Ribeiro, Founder & CEO

Project management, Drone based remote sensing

Patrick Ribeiro is expert for drone imagery and image processing for forestry and landscape related projects. His work experiences in different countries and his ability to speak five languages fluently complements his outstanding technical skills.

 

Seeing forestry from above helps to understand the intrinsic value of sustainable managed forests. Understanding and documenting ecosystem dynamics supports a demand oriented forestry. Working with nature will help to save management costs and at the same time increase the stability of forestry ecosystems.

Aynur Mammadova

M.Sc. in Environmental Sciences, Policy and Management

Aynur has expertise on socio-economic aspects of forest management, forest legality, supply-chain management and traceability of forest products with the application of modern tracking technologies. She gained field experience in Costa Rican forests and currently is dealing with standards and indicators of sustainable forest management.

 

Legal and sustainable forest management is key to restore a carbon balance, bring benefits to local communities, fight corruption and undermine illegal markets. Both retailers and customers carry a huge responsibility to demand legality and sustainability of wood products along the supply chain. With my work I aim to contribute to global efforts in raising awareness and bringing about concrete measures around this issue.

Consultants

Prof. Dr. Andreas Ch. Braun, Geoecologist

Biodiversity, remote sensing, landscape ecology, sociology

Andreas has profound knowledge in the field of biodiversity research in theoretical and applied as well as methodological aspects. Furthermore, he is an expert of optical remote sensing especially in the field of classification and information extraction. An important field of geoecology is patterns and processes of natural and human-mediated landscape transformation. His current research focus unifies these three aspects in a project which analyses land use transformation by deforestation and plantation establishment in southern Chile using remote sensing and assessing the impacts on biodiversity, habitats, soils and hydrological runoff. In the modern world, many transformation processes of landscapes are strongly dominated by human activities. In this process, human society introduces three of its main properties into nature: utilitarian orientation, transintentionality and contingency. To understand these complex links, Andreas is currently a master student in sociology. Ecology and sociology combine well to produce an integrated image on the way nature is influenced by society.

 

Currently, management of ecosystems is mainly understood as a projectable process of one-sided intervention of man into nature dominated by economic interests. In order to achieve sustainability, ecological, social and economic perspectives must be combined to an integrated overall picture which acknowledges the complex dynamics of nature and society and which is free of ideology. Only then, environmental protection will be effective while allowing human societies worldwide to develop.

Michael-Victor-Galante-Network

Dr. Michael Victor Galante

Tropical forest management, climate forestry, forest certification, legality compliance, climate policy

Michael is a professional forester with over 16 years of experience in tropical forest management in Southeast Asia. He is the founder of Climate Forestry, a specialist forest management organisation with programmes of work to support operational forest management, forest certification and legality compliance, and international climate policy and project activities to mitigate anthropogenic climate change.

 

Improving operational forest management is the key to achieve long-term sustainable use of our forest resources. Such activities can reduce disturbance to the forest, which encourages post-harvest regeneration and avoids carbon from entering the atmosphere, to function as an adaptation approach to climate change.

 

Dr. Klara Dolos, Geoecologist

Forest growth modeling, statistics

Klara has profound knowledge in statistics as well as process based forest growth simulation modeling. She analyzes ecosystem processes and translate them into models. These models facilitate predictions of the development of particular forests under consideration of local site conditions, like climate and soil properties. Yet, uncertainty of predictions has always to be considered in the transfer of model outcomes into management decisions. Klara focuses on forest dynamics and its main drivers climate and biotic interactions. She has worked for three years as scientist at the University of Bayreuth on several projects in the field of ecological modeling. Among these Klara analysed tree growth based on National Forest Inventories of Germany and Spain, and enhanced and applied a forest landscape simulation model.

 

The complexity of ecosystems with their numerous interacting processes is a challenge to understand. An increased understanding of drivers of forest dynamics does not only satisfy my curiosity as a scientist but also contributes to a reasonable management of forests regarding a reconciliation of sustained profits and low impacts on nature.

Juan Pablo Dominguéz, Dipl. Biologist

Environmental specialist, natural protected areas, biodiversity and ecotourism

Juan Pablo, a Salvadoran Environmental Specialist, has seventeen years of experience working with natural protected areas, sustainable tourism and development in Mesoamerica and the Caribbean. He has advised companies, NGO’s and government agencies on environmental policies and strategies, developed management, business and public use plans for protected areas of international relevance. He has personally managed the four most important protected areas in El Salvador for a cumulative time of six years, and was president of the Mesoamerican Ecotourism Alliance (MEA) for five years, with projects in Mexico, Belize, Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua and the USA. For the last seven years Domínguez has worked as an independent consultant in topics related to the establishment and management of natural protected areas, biological corridors and ecotourism, and has earlier worked as a consultant on biodiversity issues of sustainable agriculture and payment for environmental services. During the past years he worked for organizations like: US Forest Service, USAID, IDB, Development Alternatives Inc., Emerald Planet, The Nature Conservancy, Mesoamerican Ecotourism Alliance, SalvaNATURA.

 

Beyond all technical discussions on the viability of populations and ecological processes, the most basic notion of natural resources conservation lies within their social and financial sustainability. This is particularly true in developing countries, where needs are so many and pressing, that a long-term vision is obnubilated by the need to satisfy urgent necessities. Ecotourism, Forestry, Landscapes Restoration, Natural Protected Areas, Biological Corridors, Watersheds Management; all represent tools to improve people’s well-being and achieve sustainable development.

Giuseppe Dal Bosco, B.Sc. in Forestry

Tropical forest management operations for plantations and natural forests

A professional forester with fourteen years of tropical forestry experience developed in Central and South America. Working experience with private forestry companies, international and local organizations, and governmental institutions. His professional skills include: planning and implementation of forestry operations (reforestation, management and harvest operations). This implementation required the development of monitoring protocols for forestry operations considering timber production, biodiversity and carbon stocks. In addition, he has developed financial & environmental assessments for forestry operations in accordance to international certification standards (FSC). Finally, Giuseppe has extensive experience with community-based forest management and a strong background in formal and informal training.

 

The beauty of sustainable forestry is not only  to manage forests to ensure their continuity but also because is a sound business.

Scott Forsythe, M.Sc. in Environmental Management

Biochar production and use, cacao cultivation, indigenous agroforestry systems, large-scale composting, beekeeping
Having spent the last decades traveling, working and researching throughout the Yucatan Peninsula, Scott has become knowledgeable about Mayan subsistence strategies, past and present. Research there has included works on seasalt making, beekeeping with africanized honeybees and native stingless bee species and agroforestry systems. His present work with practical biochar production and application in conjunction with cacao cultivation in Guatemala developed out of an interest in ancient Amazonian agricultural terra preta soil systems and a concern for impacts of present-day slash and burn soil management. In Guatemala, Mexico and Belize, he has worked independently as beekeeper and tugboat captain. These activities and interests developed during trips to inland Belize in the 1980’s aboard sailing cargo schooners hauling tropical hardwoods to the USA. For the last ten years, he has called an agroforestry farm on the Rio Dulce in eastern Guatemala his home and center of investigations.

Sebastian Gräfe, Dipl. Forester

Management of tropical forest plantations, forest monitoring, growth modelling, forest certification, timber trading
  • Sustainable Forest Management in the Tropics
  • Growth monitoring and yield prediction
  • Timber trade
  • Forest certification