Johnson Nkem

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I work for the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) as the Project Manager of the Tropical Forests and Climate Change Adaptation (TroFCCA) project implemented in three global locations; Central America (Costa Rica, Honduras, and Guatemala); Asia (Indonesia, Philippines); and West Africa (Mali, Burkina Faso and Ghana). Prior to that, I was the regional coordinator for West Africa. The overall objective of TroFCCA is to promote adaptation of tropical forests to the adverse effects of climate change through the assessment of vulnerability and the development of policy-oriented adaptation strategies. I am also the project leader for the Congo Basin Forests and Climate Change (CoFCCA) project funded by IDRC.

I was a research scientist at the Natural Resource Ecology Laboratory, Colorado State University. As a member of the Soil Biodiversity and Ecosystem Function lab, our research activities included understanding how environment structures biological communities, and the factors responsible for spatial and temporal patterns in soil communities. As member of the McMurdo LTER, our research activities in the McMurdo Dry Valleys of Antarctica investigated the activities of the few but endemic soil species in these highly sensitive ecosystems, their survival techniques and their contribution to ecosystem processes. I was also involved in a global project on latitudinal changes in soil biodiversity from the North to South poles, matching aboveground and belowground biodiversity in the designated cold and hotspots of biodiversity.

My experiences include working with the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) during which our research looked at ‘alternatives to-slash-and-burn’ cropping systems contributing to deforestation in tropical rain forests. My experiences in the business industry include working with Cameroon Development Corporation, and with Del Monte Fresh Fruit Company responsible for packing quality control. During my time at the University of New England, Armidale, Australia, I participated in the teaching of various courses in agricultural sciences and natural resource management at both graduate and undergraduate levels. Some of the courses included Land Evaluation and Land Degradation, Ecosystem Rehabilitation, and Land Management and Sustainability. During that time, I also conducted research in collaboration with the Australian Cotton Research Institute in Narrabri, and in the Liverpool Plains Catchment, New South Wales, Australia. My research experiences involve varying ecosystems, land uses, and agricultural management practices ranging from small-scale subsistence farming systems to large-scale intensive farming practices under both rainfed and irrigated conditions in both tropical and temperate climatic conditions.