Our Authors

Erich Mies

Erich Mies is project manager in the Natural Resources and Biodiversity department at Inwent. He holds a degree in science of forestry.

After his doctoral studies at Freiburg University he worked as CIM-expert at the school of forestry in Cochabamba/ Bolivia and helped building up a research forest in the tropical lowlands.

Since 1994 he worked for the Centre for Food, Rural Development and the Environment at the German Foundation for International Development (DSE).


Carmen Riecherzhagen

Carmen Richerzhagen holds a diploma in Agricultural Economics from University of Bonn. After her doctoral studies in Bonn she worked as a Research assistant and lecturer in the Department of Resource and Environmental Economic at the Institute for Agricultural Policy, Market Research and Economic Sociology at Bonn University.

In 2004 and 2005 she was Ph.D. Fellow at the United Nations University's Institute of Advanced Studies (UNU-IAS), Yokohama (Japan). Since 2006 she works as researcher at the German Development Institute (DIE) in Bonn.


Ute Lange

Ute Lange is Head of Corporate Communications at ENGAGEMENT GLOBAL – Service for Development Initiatives in Bonn. She previously worked for InWEnt- Capacity Building International and the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ).

Ute studied Scandinavian and English Studies in Bonn, Munich and Berlin, after which she worked as the Assistant to the “Washington Post’s” Germany Correspondent in Berlin from 1991 to 1994. She then interned at the “Tagesspiegel” in Berlin, working as an editor for foreign and security policy with a focus on German military policy. She was also an editor for security policy at "Intr@net aktuell", the German Bundeswehr’s central internal online media, and headed up the Distance Learning Congress project at Helmut Schmidt University / the University of the Bundeswehr Hamburg.

Additional roles over the course of her career: Press Relations Officer IHK Flensburg, Press Relations Officer FH Westküste, reporter for “The Californian” in Salina, California, Assistant to the Board of the “Expert Commission on University Structure in Schleswig-Holstein”.

Ute volunteers her time at "Women in International Security Germany - WIIS.de", a foundation that promotes women in foreign and security policy.


Mohammad Rayan

Mohammad Rayan works as Information, Communication, Visibility and Knowledge Management Specialist in the GTZ Merang REDD Project.

He previously worked at IFC PEP Aceh-World Bank as a business analyst, as UNFPA Aceh Programme Manager and for the Swiss Borneo Tropical Rainforest Foundation. He holds a Master of Economics from Sydney University.


Ronnie de Camino Velozo

Ronnie de Camino Velozo is Deputy Director General at Centro Agronómico Tropical de Investigación y Enseñanza (CATIE) at Costa Rica. He holds a degree in Forest Engeneering from University of Chile. After his doctoral studies at Freiburg University he did his postdoctoral studies at University of Goettingen.

Has worked practically and academically in forest management and plantation forestry, with Universities, local communities , Governments and the private sector and has been consultant of multilateral and bilateral organizations as well as member of the Founding Board of Trustees of CIFOR and member of the Board of the Tropenbos Foundation.

He is President of the Latin American Chair of Forest Landscape Management, President of the Iberoamerican Model Forest Network, Member of the Steering Committee of the National Forest Program Facility and of the Reference Committee of the Growing Forest Partnership Initiative


Benno Haupt

Benno Haupt holds a diploma in Geography. The content of his thesis was protected area management and the dealing with conflicts with a regional focus on a protected area in Bolivia.

Currently he is employed as an intern at the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Technische Zusammenarbeit (GTZ) in the Programme Implementing the Biodiversity Convention and assists in the preparations for the next Conference of the Parties 2010 in Nagoya, Japan.


Barbara Lassen

Barbara Lassen holds a degree in Landscape Ecology and a MA in International Environmental Policy.

She works for the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Technische Zusammenarbeit (GTZ) in the Programme Implementing the Biodiversity Convention, and is a member of the IUCN Commission on Environmental, Economic and Social Policy (CEESP).

Currently her work focuses on biodiversity governance by indigenous peoples and local communities, and on access to genetic resources, traditional knowledge and benefit sharing.


Thora Amend

Thora Amend has been a member of IUCN´s commission for Protected Areas for more than 20 years.

She also forms part of its Task Forces on Protected Land- and Seascpaes, and on Governance. In the context of development cooperation, Thora has been involved in biodiversity conservation, the management and monitoring of protected areas, environmental communication, training and community involvement.

At present, Thora lives and works in Peru.


Silvana Baldovino

Silvana Baldovino holds a degree in law from University of Lima/Peru. After her studies she worked in a special project on land grant and registry (PETT) in the public sector. She also worked for the National Commission on Andean, Amazon and Afro Peruvian Communities (CONAPA) as well as law firms.

Today she works for the Peruvian Society for Environmental Law and is involved in several initiatives committed to the preservation of biological diversity in Peru.


Jorge Cabrera Medaglia

Jorge Cabrera Medaglia is Professor for Environmental Law at the University of Costa Rica. He works as a legal adviser at Costa Rica's National Biodiversity Institute and is Lead Counsel at the Biodiversity Law Centre for International Sustainable Development Law.

Amongst others he acted as a Consultant for UNCTAD, ECLAC, IICA and IUCN.


Suman Sahai

Suman Sahai is the founder and convenor of Gene Campaign, an Indian non-governmental organisation. Before returning to India to establish Gene Campaign, she did research on genetics at Heidelberg University.

She was honored with the 2004 Borlaug Award for her outstanding contribution to agriculture and the environment.


Laura Cwiertnia

Laura Cwiertnia works as a freelance journalist mainly for the German weekly DIE ZEIT and ZEIT Campus. She is Head of the Economics, Society and Politics Department at Matices – Zeitschrift zu Lateinamerika, Spanien und Portugal (Magazine on Latin America, Spain and Portugal). Laura holds a degree in Regional Studies on Latin America from the University of Köln.


Alice Kohn

Alice is a freelance journalist and translator. She is an editor of Matices – Zeitschrift zu Lateinamerika, Spanien und Portugal (Magazine on Latin America, Spain and Portugal) and worked for the Israeli newspaper Haaretz as well as the newsportal on Latin America, amerika21.

Alice studies Economics at the University of Cologne.


Dirk Prüfer

Dirk Prüfer is Professor of Plant Biotchnology at Münster University and Head of Department "Functional and Applied Genomics" at the Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology (IME).

After his Postdoc Studies in Cologne and Strasbourg he inter alia worked at the Fraunhofer Institute for Environmental Chemistry and Ecotoxicology and did his postdoctoral studies at the University of Giessen.


Christian Schulze Gronover

Christian Schulze Gronover is group leader at the Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology, Department for Functional and Applied Genomics in Aachen.

After his doctoral studies at University of Münster he worked as a researcher at the Scottish Crop Institute in Dundee, Scotland and as a Post-Graduate at University of Münster.


Kristina Jahn

Kristina Jahn is manager at PricewaterhouseCoopers' (PwC) Sustainability Services team and responsible for Biodiversity Management aspects.

She has 9 years of professional experience in strategy consulting, including the development and communication of global CR-Strategies and the design of top-level stakeholder dialogues on occasions like the World Economic Forum in Davos or the COP meetings of the CBD and the UNFCCC.


Marco Rieckmann

Marco Rieckmann has a degree in Environmental Science and works at the Institute for Environmental Communication at Leuphana University in Lüneburg.

Fields of activity: education for sustainable development, sustainability in a university context and in North-South dialogue, informal learning, development theories and policies.


Jana-M. Timm

Jana-M. Timm has MSc in Environmental Science, Policy and Management and is a doctoral candidate at the Institute for Environmental Communication at Leuphana University in Lüneburg.

Fields of activity: (higher) education for sustainable development and global learning.