Dr. Florencia Montagnini is a Senior Research Scientist at Yale School of the Environment and The Forest School. She is also Director of the Program in Tropical Forestry and Agroforestry. She also works as a consultant advising projects related to her expertise in tropical forestry, agroforestry and rural development worldwide.
Dr. Montagnini has a B.S. in Agronomy from the National University of Rosario, Argentina; an M.S. in Ecology from the Venezuelan Institute for Scientific Research (IVIC); and a Ph.D. in Ecology from the University of Georgia, USA. She holds honorary professorships at several universities in Latin America. From 2001 to 2012 she was a Professor in the Practice of Tropical Forestry and Director of the Program in Tropical Forestry of the Global Institute of Sustainable Forestry, Yale University, School of Forestry and Environmental Studies (now named Yale School of the Environment), from 1997-2000 she was the Head of the Area of Forests and Biodiversity at the Tropical Agriculture Research and Higher Education Center (CATIE), from 1989-1997 she was first and Assistant Professor and then an Associate Professor in Tropical Ecology and Director of the Tropical Resources Institute at Yale F&ES; and from 1985-1989 she worked for the Organization for Tropical Studies (OTS) in Costa Rica as a consultant and as Academic Coordinator.
Florencia Montagnini’s research focuses on variables controlling the sustainability of managed ecosystems with emphasis in the tropics, including forest, tree plantations and agroforestry systems, with a special emphasis on Latin America; sustainable land use systems that integrate ecological principles with economic, social, and political factors; the principles and applications of forest landscape restoration; the reforestation of degraded lands with native species, including mixed-species plantations; identification and quantification of ecological services provided by forest ecosystems, including biodiversity, carbon sequestration and watershed protection; organic farming using indigenous resources; Payments for Environmental Services as tools to promote restoration, conservation, and rural development. Biodiversity conservation in human dominated landscapes; biodiversity islands.
Florencia Montagnini is currently conducting projects in regions encompassing major types of tropical and subtropical humid and dry forest in South and Central America. Projects include examining the role of native tree species in plantations and agroforestry systems in reclaiming degraded areas with species of economic value; the identification and quantification of ecological services provided by forests (biodiversity conservation, carbon sequestration, and water); and organic farming in agroforestry systems with native species. In her research, she collaborates with universities and other academic, private and government institutions in Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Mexico, and Panama.
Dr. Florencia Montagnini’s current research activities are complemented with her research-oriented consultant work. Currently she is a Member of the Steering Committee of the CGIAR Research Program on Forests, Trees and Agroforestry (FTA). Previously she was a Senior Evaluation Expert for conducting an Independent Evaluation of the FTA Program. She also advises individual private companies in their environmentally-oriented endeavours: Thrive Natural Care,San Francisco, CA. a company working on the sustainable extraction and use of non-timber forest products, organic/biodynamic farming, ecosystem restoration, and collaborating with local and/or indigenous communities, committed to improving the landscape(s) from which the company's raw materials are sourced. She is also advising Fundación Runa in the Ecuadorian Amazon, in their goal of providing tools and resources to indigenous communities and farmers' associations for sustainable development in the Ecuadorian Amazon.
Dr. Florencia Montagnini has written eleven books on agroforestry systems, ecological restoration, and tropical forest ecology and management, and about 200 scientific articles, of which 80% have been published in international refereed journals. Several of her publications are in Spanish to ensure dissemination and as a contribution to the host countries.
Florencia Montagnini teaching experience includes courses in tropical forest ecology and management, agroforestry, restoration ecology, and soil conservation and management, both as formal courses and as short courses at academic institutions in Latin America. She advises Yale YSE and Yale college students on research projects related to agroforestry, restoration and soil science. At Yale YSE she teaches tutorial courses on her field of expertise, agroforestry, restoration and soil science, with students registering the courses as Independent Projects or Master Research courses. She also collaborates with ELTI (Environmental Leadership Training Initiative) in their online courses as well as on their field courses especially those taught in Spanish, on restoration and agroforestry. She also collaborates in ELTI courses in English. She participates as a lead faculty instructor in ELTI's Online Certificate Program: Tropical Forest Landscapes: Conservation, Restoration & Sustainable Land Use, tropicalrestorationcertificate.yale.edu. This involves participating in live sessions, leading students projects, and evaluating student assignments as well as offering power point presentations on restoration, soils sustainability, sustainable food production, environmental services and agroforestry. See for example: https://yale.instructure.com/courses/57384/pages/strategies-agroforestry-systems-florencia-montagnini
From my experience in tropical forest ecology, restoration and agroforestry I have developed introductory courses and advanced seminars in tropical forest ecology and management, soil science, agroforestry, and restoration ecology. I hold honorary professorships at several universities in Latin America, and I teach Spanish language versions of these courses periodically.
As a Senior Research Scientist at Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies I am currently offering enrollment for credit (1-4 credits/semester) in either of two Project Courses:
- YSE 1330: Independent Study
- YSE 2330: Master's Project
Students can choose topics from these different areas and make their own schedule for their project courses. During the semester, in each weekly session I present them with the information via power point, and we discuss it along with relevant literature. Each semester, 2-5 students register for these courses under my guidance. Examples of subject of projects/courses:
- Agroforestry Systems: Productivity, Environmental Services, Rural Development
- Ecological Restoration, agricultural/forest landscapes
- Soil Conservation and Management
- Environmental services of forest and agroforestry systems: biodiversity conservation, carbon sequestration
- Value-added, market-oriented projects involving agroforestry/non-timber forest products
I also teach on-line courses and short field courses as part of ELTI (Environmental LeadershipTraining Initiative) programs in Tropical Forest Ecology and Management, Restoration, Sustainable Agriculture, and Agroforestry, both in English and in Spanish. I am a faculty Instructor in the Tropical Forest Landscapes: Conservation, Restoration & Sustainable Land Use, tropicalrestorationcertificate.yale.edu, Yale University Online Certificate Program offered by ELTI (Environmental Leadership and Training Initiative), Yale School of the Environment (YSE). This involves live online sessions, leading student projects, evaluating student assignments, and power point presentations on restoration, soils sustainability, sustainable food production, environmental services and agroforestry. See for example: https://yale.instructure.com/courses/57384/pages/strategies-agroforestry-systems-florencia-montagnini
B.S., National University of Rosario, Argentina; M.S., Venezuelan Institute for Scientific Research (IVIC); Ph.D., University of Georgia