Building a Sustainable Future for Madagascar
After completing ELTI’s Tropical Forest Landscapes online certificate program in 2020, Herintsitohaina Razakamanarivo was quickly solicited by the Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development in Madagascar. There, she helped lead the design of a 10-year strategic plan for the ministry for the implementation of a new national environmental program and headed a new department on environmental policy.
After completing ELTI’s Tropical Forest Landscapes online certificate program in 2020, it didn’t take long for Herintsitohaina Razakamanarivo’s newly acquired skills to be put to the test. She was quickly solicited to manage staff for the Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development in Madagascar, a nation of unique biodiversity and natural features that is struggling to adapt to a changing climate.
“In my new position, I used knowledge and skills — particularly strategy development, networking, and fundraising — to lead the design of a 10-year strategic plan for the ministry, develop and implement new national environmental program, and help establish new environmental policy,” Razakamanarivo says.
She has since returned to her role as a professor at the University of Antananarivo, where she first began teaching in 2011. Razakamanarivo is a researcher and lecturer specializing in forestry and soil sciences, with a particular focus on climate change, land degradation, and food security. She also mentors master’s and doctoral students and helps oversee Le Laboratoire des RadioIsotopes (LRI), an agronomy and medical laboratory.
“I had been looking for years for a program like this,” Razakamanarivo says of the TFL program, “to progress professionally and broaden my skills and knowledge. It gave me new insight into my duties as a professor and allowed me to be part of the decision-making process for the future of the ministry.
“But ultimately, the biggest benefit of this program will be to Madagascar, where building our capacity to handle environmental challenges is a national priority and must be strengthened.”