The most visited

Project Team

 

We are an interdisciplinary group of researchers and development promoters that work together on research and technical assistance projects. We work to support natural resource planning and management, taking into account dynamics of changes in land use, climate variability and climate change, and their effects on biodiversity, natural and productive ecosystems, and the ecosystem goods and services they provide. To accomplish this support, we generate and disseminate knowledge, keeping in mind the demands of multiple audiences. We conduct activities jointly with partners committed to the implementation of development activities.

 

COORDINATOR LMA
PABLO IMBACH

Pablo Imbach, PhD, Unit Coordinator - ecosystems, climate and ecosystem services. Pablo earned a doctorate in environmental sciences from the Soil, Climate and Environment Laboratory (LSCE) of the Pierre and Marie Curie University in Paris. He has worked in Latin America for more than 15 years, starting with non-governmental organizations as a specialist in Geographic Information Systems (GIS) for conservation. In the last seven years his work has been focused on scientific research of the biophysical aspects of climate change, biodiversity, conservation and ecosystem services.

 

Pablo has used modeling tools for different geographic scales, changes in land use, hydrology, ecosystem dynamics, atmospheric monitoring, species distribution and climate change evaluations. He has participated in and coordinated several interdisciplinary research groups (i.e. the TroFFCA Project, www.cifor.org/trofcca) and training activities (i.e. the international course on climate change and adaptation at CATIE), including technical assistance to institutions and organizations at local, national and regional levels. Since early 2005 he has worked for the Climate Change and Watersheds Program (PCCC), where he has developed and currently directs the Environmental Modeling Laboratory (LMA). Through the use of modeling tools and the efforts of an interdisciplinary group of professionals, the LMA is focused on research and technical assistance for ecosystems and global changes.

Tel: (+506) 2558-2334
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REMOTE SENSING AND CARBON
FREDDY ARGOTTY

 

Freddy has worked with government agencies and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) on support, implementation, training and technical assistance on topics integrating biodiversity, ecosystem conservation and community work. He has actively participated in research related to the quantification and mapping of the carbon stocks in tropical forests using multispectral images as well as the design of methodologies for quantifying the effect of payments for environmental services (PES) on forest degradation.

He has expertise and fieldwork experience on aerial biomass measurements, biodiversity, forest inventories, plantation establishment, agroforestry systems and soil conservation practices. Currently he is working on evaluating spatial scale effects on PES priorities (including services for biodiversity, carbon and water resources) and spatially modeling changes in land use and emissions due to forest dynamics.

Tel: (+506) 2558-2336
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PLANNING FOR ADAPTATION AND ECOSYSTEMS
CLAUDIA BOURONCLE



 

Claudia has worked for more than ten years on integrated conservation and development projects in the Andes and Amazonia. Since 2000 she has worked through CATIE in several Mesoamerican countries and Brazil. She also serves as a consultant for international NGOs on topics related to sustainable use and conservation of natural resources and their impact on livelihoods in rural communities.

Claudia has also been coordinator of CATIE’s Masters Program in Development Practices and currently works as a researcher in the PCCC for CATIE, responsible for research on the analysis of vulnerability and adaptation to climate change.


Tel. +(506) 2558-2565
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LAND USE CHANGE AND REMOTE SENSING
CHRISTIAN BRENES

 

Christian Brenes, Land use change and remote sensing. A Costa Rican national, Christian is a geography graduate of the University of Costa Rica and holds a master’s degree in Management and Conservation of Tropical Forests and Biodiversity from CATIE. From 2001 to 2010 he worked in the Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Laboratory, and from 2010 to date as a research for the LMA. Throughout this period he has worked in the field of GIS and Remote Sensing applied to natural resource management, more specifically on topics related to changes in land use, landscape ecology, watershed management, hydrology and mapping of land use or ground cover. In addition, he teaches in the Graduate School and the Continuous Development Program at CATIE.

Tel. +(506) 2558-2348
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CONSERVATION BIOLOGY AND CLIMATE CHANGE
EMILY FUNG

 

Emily Fung – Conservation biology and climate change. Emily is a biologist trained at the National University of Costa Rica (UNA). Throughout her professional career she has participated in the design, supervision and field implementation of different research projects in several countries. These projects have been related to forest management and conservation, landscape ecology, environmental education, monitoring and the ecology of diverse faunal groups (primarily birds and bats).

In 2010, she undertook graduate studies at CATIE, where she focused on evaluating the impact of natural disasters on tropical species seed dispersal in the North Atlantic Autonomous Region (RAAN) of Nicaragua. She been part of the LMA group in the PCCC since 2012, conducting research on the evaluation of the impacts of climate change on biodiversity. She has specialized in modeling the distribution of niche potential of flora and fauna species. Currently she is coordinating the study, “Updating and redesign of two conservation measures for the adaptation of the biodiversity sector to climate change in Costa Rica.”

Tel. +(506) 2558-2339
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CONSULTANT, DATA ENTRY
ALLAN GUERRERO

Allan Guerrero – Consultant, data entry. Allan is a Costa Rican with a technical bachelors in secondary education with an emphasis on agroecology from the Colegio Técnico Profesional in La Suiza, Turrialba. He has collaborated with the laboratory since 2013, entering agricultural census data from Amazonia (Brazil, Peru, Colombia, Ecuador, Bolivia) and meteorological data from Costa Rica. He currently supports the implementation of different studies, among them: adjustments to the spatial location of water connections for human consumption, irrigation and agriculture; the effects of climate change on pollination services: implications for coffee production in Latin America; identification, counting and random selection of roofs in Honduras and Guatemala.


Tel. +(506) 2558-2394
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ECOSYSTEMS, CLIMATE AND ECOSYSTEMS SERVICES
SELENA GEORGIOU

Selena Georgiou – ecosystems, climate and ecosystem services. A Scottish national, she joined the LMA group in April 2014. She holds a master’s degree in remote sensing and image processing from the University of Edinburgh. Her work focuses on climate analysis and climatic conditions related to the leaf rust outbreak in 2012, a situation that greatly affected the Central American region, particularly Guatemala. Before joining this group, Selena worked as a researcher on projects related to improving rainfall estimates using climate radar information at the meteorological office in Great Britain, UK Met Office.

She is currently working on building impact models of climate change on ecosystems in Central America using models for vegetation dynamics and meteorological information.


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CHANGES IN LAND USE AND CARBON
JUAN CARLOS ZAMORA

 

Juan Carlos Zamora – Changes in land use and carbon

A geography graduate from the University of Costa Rica (UCR) with a master’s degree in management and conservation of tropical forests and biodiversity from CATIE, Juan Carlos has seven years of experience working in Latin America, providing technical assistance to governmental institutions and NGOs as well as training and research on natural resource management. He began as a GIS specialist with the UCR, collaborating on several projects for the Geographic Research Program (PROIGE) and the GIS Department. He later focused on conservation biology, specifically on the design of ecological networks for improving the development and implementation of biological corridors in Costa Rica, Guatemala, Honduras and the Dominican Republic. He began work with the PCCC while studying for his master’s degree.

He has participated in several interdisciplinary research groups and technical assistance projects with various development NGOs that focus on aid and environmental conservation, as well as governmental institutions. During the last two years he has worked on modeling changes in land use and ground cover using advanced instruments such as CLUE-S, Idrisi or DINAMICA-EGO, developing land use change scenarios on a national scale for Panama and Paraguay and on a local scale for the RAAN in Nicaragua, under the framework of the UN-REDD initiative to help identify potential sites for REDD+ projects. Juan Carlos combines his research responsibilities with capacity building and teaching activities.


Tel. +(506) 2558-2349
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DEVELOPMENT AND ADPATATION PRACTICES
CLAUDIA MEDELLÍN

Claudia Medellín – Development and adaptation practices. Originally from Mexico, Claudia’s academic training is in International Commerce from the Technology Institute of Monterrey, Mexico. She holds a master’s degree in development practices from CATIE, Costa Rica. She has lived in Costa Rica since 2011, and has been connected with several research and development projects in Central America. She collaborates with the LMA on analyses of vulnerability and adaptive capacity to the effects of climate change. She supports information gathering in the field and logistics in various study sites.

Tel. +(506) 2558-2338
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DATA ENTRY AND CLIMATE DATA RESCUE
LILLIANA QUIRÓS

Lilliana Quiros – Data entry and climate data rescue. Lilliana is originally from Turrialba, Costa Rica, and was trained as an executive secretary at the American Business Academy. Since 2012 she has collaborated with the LMA on digital data entry of climate information. She is currently an essential part of the laboratory, supporting administration and serving as liaison for the climate data recovery project for Central America, which is jointly coordinated by the Laboratory and the ACRE initiative (http://www.met-acre.org/).

Tel. +(506) 2558-2343
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CONSERVATION BIOLOGY AND CLIMATE CHANGE
LENÍN CORRALES

 

Lenin Corrales – Conservation biology and climate change. Lenin holds a bachelor’s degree in biological sciences, a licentiate degree in marine biology from the UNA, and a master’s degree in information technologies from the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM), in Mexico. He has additional specialization studies in natural resource evaluation from the University of Bologna, Italy in Environmental Impact Assessment from the University of the Andes-CIDIAT, in Venezuela; and the Central American Institute of Business Administration (INCAE) in Costa Rica.

He was a member of two project teams awarded international prizes. The first, in 1995, was the Peter F. Drucker Award for Nonprofit Innovation from the Peter F. Drucker Foundation. The second, in 2002, was the Conservation by Design Award, conferred by The Nature Conservancy.

In September 2011, he was included on the list of world experts on climate change adaptation of the UNFCCC’s Nairobi Work Program. He has worked in Argentina, Belize, Colombia, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Ecuador, Guatemala, Hawaii (USA), Honduras, Italy, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, the Dominican Republic and Venezuela. He has also participated in the publication of more than 33 titles, including scientific articles, books, conference papers, and work methodologies in conservation biology.

He is a lecturer in the chairs for protected area planning and general ecology at the Universidad Latina of Costa Rica.



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LANDSCAPE ECOLOGY
REBECCA RIVERA

 

 

Rebecca Biala MSc - Landscape ecology. Rebecca is a graduate of biology from the UCR with a master’s degree in management and conservation of tropical forests and biodiversity from CATIE. She has worked in the LMA for the last year as a researcher, specialist in seed dispersal and changes in the distribution in tree species, as support to new initiatives for modeling and creating connectivity route proposals for Costa Rica.

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PROGRAMMER
ALLAN COTO

Allan Coto – Programmer. Originally from Cartago, Costa Rica, Allan is trained as a systems programmer. In 2014 he began an internship with the LMA for the design of a database management system for weather stations. He is currently developing a data distribution portal for the laboratory, supporting the group with server maintenance and offering assistance with the group’s high level programming tasks.

He also collaborates with the climate data recovery project for Central America, managing the databases that the laboratory coordinates jointly with the ACRE initiative (http://www.met-acre.org/ ).

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COLLABORATING RESEARCHERS

 

Miguel Cifuentes – Coordinator of the Climate Change Mitigation Unit.

Mario Chacón – landscape management and climate change

Claudia Vallejo MSc. - REDD+ policies and synergies for adaptation to climate change

Jaques Avelino - agriculture and climate change (CIRAD, Costa Rica)

Peter Laderach – climate change and agriculture (CIAT, Nicaragua)

Lee Hannah – conservation biology (CI, USA)

Nelson Zamora – taxonomy and conservation biology (InBio, Costa Rica)

Eric Alfaro – meteorology and climatology (CIGEFI/UCR, Costa Rica)

Hugo Hidalgo - hydrology (CIGEFI/UCR, Costa Rica)

Bruno Locatelli - ecosystem services and climate change (CIRAD, Peru)

Philippe Ciais - global biogeochemical cycles (LSCE, France)

Rob Allan - climate data rescue (Met Office, United Kingdom)

Sinchan Chou – meteorology and climatology (INPE-CPTEC, Brazil)
 

 

STUDENTS

MARILYN MANROW

ZAYRA RAMOS

PETER SCHLESSINGER

 

INTERNS

Sofía Pana, quality control of hydrological data, Cordoba University, Argentina (2014)

Megan Beardsley, climate risks for agriculture, EPA, USA (2014)