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We are honored when ELTI's work is shared in local and international channels. We also enjoy sharing exciting news about ELTI's programs.

September 26, 2018 | IUCN

ELTI and IUCN started a partnership in 2016 to develop capacity on forest landscape restoration and the Restoration Operations Assessment Methodology (ROAM). Together, we have trained over 290 leaders working in Africa, Asia and Latin America. Read more on our work with IUCN in the August issue of Arborvitae.

September 10, 2018 | IPÊ

ELTI and IPÊ – Institute for Ecological Research launched a field course for residents of agrarian reform settlements in the Pontal do Paranapanema, Brazil. In September 2018, we trained 20 small-scale farmers aged 15-69 years old who want to adopt sustainable practices to conserve biodiversity and increase productivity of their properties.

July 17, 2018 | Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies

ELTI is featured in the spring issue of Canopy, the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies' alumni magazine. See page 29 to read about the ELTI-led student field trip to Panama as part of a seminar on tropical forest restoration.

June 29, 2018 | ATBC 2018

Dr. Arbainsyah ("Insya") will be attending the 55th Annual Meeting of the Association for Tropical Biology and Conservation in Kuching, Sarawak, Malaysia, July 1-5, 2018. He has been accepted to give a presentation entitled, "Capacity-building to promote coal mine site rehabilitation in Kalimantan (Indonesian-Borneo)." His presentation will occur on Wednesday, July 4, as part of a series of talks on Seeding Resilient Forest Landscape Restoration and Its Contribution to Sustainable Development Goals.

June 27, 2018 | Mongabay

ELTI Fellow, Elham Shabahat, reports on how climate change is reshaping relations between parks, people and the mountain gorillas of Rwanda.

June 20, 2018 | The Washington Post

A photo of an intensive silvopastoral system in Colombia from ELTI’s Colombia Coordinator and partner organization (Zoraida Calle; CIPAV - Colombia’s Center for Research on Sustainable Agriculture Production Systems) was featured in The Washington Post article highlighting the potential of silvopastoral systems for climate change adaptation and mitigation.

CIPAV designs, evaluates and promotes intensive silvopastoral systems that are able to boost per-hectare milk and meat production, while sequestering carbon and enhancing biodiversity and ecosystem services. Silvopastoral systems can be used to rehabilitate lands degraded by extensive ranching and agriculture. At the same time, their efficiency allows farmers to release fragile and marginal lands for ecological restoration.

March 14, 2018 | ELTI

We cordially invite you to attend a three-part webinar series entitled, "Tropical Reforestation and Climate Change." The series is free of charge and is offered in partnership between the People and Reforestation in the Tropics Research Coordination Network (PARTNERS), ELTI and international guest speakers.

Webinar #1: Reforestation and Forestry in the Tropics as Climate Change Mitigation Solutions

Webinar #2: Reforestation as Biodiversity and Climate Change Adaptation Solutions

Webinar #3: The Social Aspects of Reforestation for Climate Change: Where, When and How?

Each 1.5 hour webinar will feature three speakers and a guided Q&A session from 10:00-11:30 am EDT (GMT-4).

Webinar #1 will take place March 29; 10:00-11:30am EST

Click here to register.

February 26, 2018 | Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies

The Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies recently published an article highlighting ELTI and IUCN’s partnership to deliver online training on forest landscape restoration for 125 professionals from 32 countries in Africa, Asia, and Latin America. The article highlights the history and ongoing partnership between IUCN and ELTI, discusses the collaborative way in which ELTI’s online course approach was blended with IUCN’s Restoration Opportunities Assessment Methodology (ROAM), and presents outcomes realized by participants as a result of the course series. Read the full article here.

February 20, 2018 | IUCN

ELTI partnered with IUCN-NEPAD to offer a blended training course to 30 government officials in Niamey, Niger. The course consisted of a two-week online primer on social, ecological and restoration fundamentals, followed by a four-day in-person training. Participants learned from interactive presentations on key theory, diverse case studies from around the globe, and conversations with their peers. The training supports the government of Niger in implementing its national and sub-national sustainability efforts, as well as working towards the AFR100 and Bonn Challenge goals.

February 5, 2018 | Yale Daily News

At the 2018 International Society of Tropical Foresters (ISTF) conference held at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies, two members of the ELTI team and one ELTI alumna gave featured talks. Dr. Eva Garen (ELTI director) and Zoraida Calle (ELTI Colombia Coordinator) participated in a plenary panel that addressed scale in socio-ecological complexity. Joining them was Mirjam Kuzee of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature. Their presentation offered diverse perspectives on enhancing the capacity of restoration practitioners worldwide.

ELTI alumna Denise Matias, from the Center for Development Research at the University of Bonn, attended the ISTF conference. Loreta Alsa, a member of the Tagbanua community in the Philippines, joined her to present their research on the traditional practice of honey-hunting in the Tagbanua community. Together, they won the 2018 Innovation Prize and received $3,000 to continue their research.

Read more about the 2018 ISTF conference and ELTI's involvement in the Yale Daily News.

December 22, 2017 | ELTI

Karin Bucht, ELTI's Program Associate for the Online Training Program, recently represented ELTI at the Global Landscapes Forum in Bonn, Germany. On December 19-20, 2017 the Global Landscapes Forum brought together 1,000 attendees from 103 countries in the World Conference Center in Bonn.  In total, 21,610,513 people were reached across social media and fully 51,000 people tuned in live from 114 different countries to connect, learn, share and act around our planet’s greatest climate and development challenges.

December 12, 2017 | ELTI

ELTI was selected by Yale’s Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL) to receive support to develop and deliver a one-year online certificate program at Yale F&ES. The certificate program is based upon ELTI primary training themes and will build upon the existing work of the online program and involve contributions from diverse Yale faculty members and ELTI's international partners. The year-long program will include four online courses, a practical project course and a field experience at an ELTI training site in the tropics. Gillian Bloomfield, Desirée Lopes and Eva Garen have begun working with the F&ES Dean's office on strategic planning for the program. The program will be launched in January 2019.

Go to to sign up for updates on the certificate program.

September 19, 2017 | IUCN

In March 2016, IUCN and the Environmental Leadership and Training Initiative (ELTI) of the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies launched an online course on the Restoration Opportunities Assessment Methodology (ROAM) to enhance the capacity of restoration practitioners across the world. Within a year, the course reached 125 individuals in 30 countries. These are their stories.

August 28, 2017 |

ELTI staff members will be attending the 7th World Conference on Ecological Restoration, hosted by the Society for Ecological Restoration (SER). The 2017 SER conference is in combination with the Iberoamerican and Caribbean Congress for Ecological Restoration and the Brazilian Ecological Restoration Conference. 

ELTI will be hosting a welcome reception for ELTI Alumni and Partners. If you will be at the conference and interested in attending, please contact Gillian Bloomfield.

Also, registered conference attendees are invited to the following:

- The ELTI-led symposium: Field-based focal training sites: Examining a unique opportunity to link scientific research and applied experience to develop capacity for ecological restoration
- A pre-conference training course and symposium by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) on the Restoration Opportunities Assessment Methodology (ROAM). ELTI will be participating in both IUCN's course and symposium.

Please let us know if you will be in attendance. We would love to connect!

August 9, 2017 | IUCN website

In order to scale up the use of silvopastoral systems and their integration with ecological restoration practices, Colombia has been implementing the Mainstreaming Biodiversity in Sustainable Cattle Ranching Project in five different regions since 2012. Among the project’s legacies is a network of well-established pilot farms whose owners are committed to providing farmer-to-farmer training in the years to come. Having redefined their relationship with nature, these pilot farmers will help promote the kind of cultural change needed to achieve landscape transformation in Colombia. But cultural change is a long-term process that requires the transfer of both knowledge and values across generations.

Designed to foster this cross-generational relay, a three-day Silvopastoral Heirs Workshop at El Hatico brought together young people from 19 pilot farms in the project’s five regions, the upcoming generation of silvopastoral farmers. Individual presentations, lectures, field visits and folk songs were alternated with group exercises in which children, teens and adults worked collaboratively. The importance of family values, pride in a rural identity, and the need to heal the environment emerged as common threads throughout the discussions. A final definition of Silvopastoral Heirs (SH), their guiding values and principles, and their mission* was approved by consensus, and the Colombian Network of Silvopastoral Heirs was born.

This workshop was sponsored by the Center for Research on Sustainable Agricultural Production Systems (CIPAV), Colombian Cattle Ranching Federation (FEDEGAN), El Hatico Nature Reserve and The Environmental Leadership and Training Initiative (ELTI).

April 3, 2017 | Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies News

The Environmental Leadership & Training Initiative (ELTI) has received a $4.9 million grant from Arcadia, a charitable fund of Peter Baldwin and Lisbet Rausing, to continue its work. The new grant represents Arcadia’s third gift in support of ELTI, with Arcadia support now reaching $15.3 million since the program’s inception in 2006. Through field-based training, leadership support, innovative online instruction, and open access information, ELTI has reached more than 5,000 individuals — including landholders and farmers, practitioners and policymakers — across tropical Latin America and Southeast Asia. With this new support from Arcadia, ELTI will strengthen its training activities and materials within the five focal field training sites (Panama, Colombia, Brazil, Philippines and Indonesia); integrate on-site training with an increasing number of online training courses; increase support and networking opportunities for alumni to strengthen their local impact; and implement a monitoring and evaluation strategy.

November 30, 2016 | Bioversity International

The First Regional Training on Forest Genetic Resources was held in Beijing and Shandong, China from October 28 - November 2, 2016, and was organized by Bioversity International, the Asia Pacific Forest Genetic Resources Programme, FAO, the Chinese Academy of Forestry, and the China Happy Ecology Industrial Co. Although forest restoration has been globally recognized as an important strategy to address the threats to biodiversity, the decline in ecosystem services, and the impacts of climate change, the relevance of the genetic aspects of restoration are often overlooked. The training provided an introduction to the principles of genetic conservation of tree species and featured the Forest Genetic Resources Training Guide -- a flexible, easy to follow tool developed by Bioversity International for  practitioners and trainers alike to learn about forest genetic resources issues. The guide provides case studies, teacher notes, and audiovisuals that demonstrate the value of forest genetic resources for responsible decision-making in forest and natural resource management. The guide is accessible online at

Hazel Consunji, the Philippines Program Coordinator, shared her thoughts about the relevance of this training course to ELTI's work in an article by Riina Jalonen of Bioversity International, entitled "Seeds of change: training restoration practitioners to solve genetic problems".

November 21, 2016 | Biotropica

Gillian Bloomfield, ELTI Online Training Program Coordinator, collaborated with colleagues from the network People and Reforestation in the Tropics: a Network for Education, Research and Synthesis (PARTNERS - to publish an article entitled "Stakeholders and tropical reforestation: challenges, trade-offs, and strategies in dynamic environments".

Lazos-Chavero, E., Zinda, J., Bennett-Curry, A., Balvanera, P., Bloomfield, G., Lindell, C. and Negra, C. (2016), Stakeholders and tropical reforestation: challenges, trade-offs, and strategies in dynamic environments. Biotropica, 48: 900–914. doi:10.1111/btp.12391

This article was published in the Peer-Reviewed Journal, Biotropica, in a Special Issue exploring "Natural regeneration in the context of large-scale forest and landscape restoration in the tropics" by guest editors Robin Chazdon and Maria Uriarte

November 18, 2016 | El Salvador Cacao Alliance (website)

Jacob L. Slusser, Panama Coordinator for the Neotropics Training Program, was invited by ELTI Alumni Frank Cardoza (Agroecology and Forest Restoration Course – Colombia, July 2016) to present on ELTI’s native tree species nursery guide, at an event entitled, “Capacity building workshop for the establishment of nurseries with native tree species adapted to agroecological farm conditions.” The course was facilitated by the Cacao Alliance of El Salvador, El Salvador Ministry of the Environment and Natural Resources, German Society for International Cooperation (GIZ), with the objective to strengthen the capacities of both producers and ministry officials on the establishment of native tree species nurseries to produce trees to be used in the Cacao Alliance project regions. ELTI also donated thirty (30) copies of the native species nursery guide to be distributed to course participants.

November 2, 2016 | ELTI Staff News

ELTI Staff Members: Dr. Eva Garen (Director), Jacob L. Slusser (Panama Coordinator for the Neotropics Training Program), Gillian Sarah Bloomfield (On-Line Training Program Coordinator), and Saskia Santamaría (Neotropics Training Program Assistant) collaborated with Latin American colleagues to write a book about the social dimensions of ecological restoration. The book, entitled, Beyond Restoration Ecology: Social Perspectives in Latin America and the Caribbean, illustrates research presented during the Latin American and Caribbean Society of Ecological Restoration’s (known by its Spanish acronym as SIACRE), IV Iberoamerican and Caribbean Congress of Ecological Restoration, held in Buenos Aires, Argentina in 2015. Staff members composed two chapters, which illustrate ELTI’s forest restoration capacity building efforts in the region:

Chapter 18: Strengthening the capacities of small farmers to implement sustainable ranching: The experience of the Association of Livestock and Agrosilvopastoral Producers of Pedasi (APASPE)
- Jacob L. Slusser and Saskia Santamaría

Chapter 21: Capacity building experiences for ecological restoration in Latin America
- Zoraida Calle, Gillian Sarah Bloomfield, Saskia Santamaría, Pedro Brancalion, Severino Ribeiro Pinto, Gabriela González, Marina Campos, Eva Garen, Jacob L. Slusser, Carlos Estrada

September 6, 2016 | ELTI Staff News

ELTI staff members - Eva Garen (Director), Hazel Consunji (Philippines Country Coordinator) and Karin Bucht (Online Program Associate) – attended the IUCN World Conservation Congress in Honolulu, Hawaii, during which they presented a poster on ELTI’s work and participated in a session to showcase a new partnership between ELTI and IUCN for online training related to Forest Landscape Restoration in the tropics.

July 13, 2016 | El XI SIMPOSIO Internacional de Ambiente

The 11th International Symposium on the Environment was held in Panama City, Panama on July 12-13, 2016. The event, which was organized by the International Development Bank, Panama Canal Authority, Ministry of the Environment, Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, Industrial Labor Union of Panama and Suma-RSE, was an opportunity for the public and private sectors to discuss and analyze the environmental challenges for Panamanian industry. Held two weeks after the inauguration of the Panama Canal Expansion, the symposium covered diverse themes including; energy and emissions, waste management, watershed management and potable water management.

ELTI's Principal Investigator from the Smithsonian, Dr. Jefferson Hall, presented a talk entitled "Watershed Management to Ensure the Ecosystem Services in the Neotropics" during the watershed management symposium. ELTI's Neotropics Program Coordinator Jacob Slusser and Assistant, Saskia Santamaria also attended the event and distributed ELTI publications and training materials from an informational stand.

May 28, 2016 | Marine Pollution Bulletin

Hazel Consunji, Philippines Coordinator at ELTI, co-authored a newly published article entitled, "Preliminary Assessment of Post-Haiyan Mangrove Damage and Short-term Recovery in Eastern Samar, Central Philippines."

This journal article describes the findings and policy recommendations of a group of scientists and NGO members, including ELTI's Philippine Program Coordinator, Hazel Consunji, based on field assessments they conducted after the super typhoon Haiyan. The preliminary assessment showed that there was generally less damage and more signs of recovery in natural mangrove stands compared to mangrove plantations. Main recommendations were to protect recovering mangroves, to only plant in totally damaged sites (e.g., plantations), and to only plant naturally dominant species, e.g., Sonneratia alba and Avicennia marina, instead of the popular but inappropriate Rhizophora sp.

May 23, 2016 | ELTI's Online Training Program

El Programa de Capacitación en Línea de ELTI recientemente lanzó el primero de una serie de seis cursos en asociación  con la Unión Internacional por la Conservación de la Naturaleza (UICN) titulado: ¨Restauración del Paisaje Forestal en los Trópicos¨. ELTI implementó este primer curso en inglés para una audiencia de 21 participantes basados principalmente en el Este y el Sur de África. Varios de los participantes son líderes y tomadores de decisiones en el campo de la Restauración del Paisaje Forestal en sus respectivos países o regiones. Durante el próximo año, ELTI continuará ofreciendo este curso en Español, Portugués, Francés e Inglés para aliados de UICN alrededor del mundo.

March 7, 2016 | California Academy of Sciences

Este artículo describe un simposio reciente en el cual ELTI participó durante la Reunión Anual de la Asociación Americana para el Avance de la Ciencia (AAAS) en Washington, D.C., el 14 de febrero de 2016. El simposio se enfocó en el rol de la ciencia en la conservación y el desarrollo e incluyó una presentación presentada por la Dra. Eva Garen sobre el trabajo de ELTI en Panamá titulado: ¨Empoderando la Conservación a través de la Construcción de Capacidades con Base Científica¨. El simposio también incluyó presentaciones por el Dr. Jefferson Hall del Instituto Smithsonian de Investigaciones Tropicales (STRI), el Dr. Stephen Box del Instituto Smithsonian, y de Jacobo Paz Bodden, Secretario de Agricultura y Ganadería en Honduras.

February 14, 2016 | California Academy of Sciences - Science News

ELTI's Director, Dr. Eva Garen, participated in a symposium with Dr. Jefferson Hall (STRI; ELTI), Dr. Stephen Box (STRI), and Jacobo Paz Bodden (Secretary of Agriculture and Livestock, Honduras) during the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C. The symposium was entitled, "Using Biodiversity Science for Conservation and Development" and was hosted by the Smithsonian Institution. The title of Eva's talk was, "Empowering Conservation through Science-based Capacity Building."

January 30, 2016 | TVN Noticias

Thursday January 28, 2016. A special 20 minute documentary shown on TVN – national news, entitled “El Niño: la sed del planeta.”  ELTI Alumni who are members of the Association of Livestock and Agro-Silvopastoral Producers of Pedasí (APASPE) were interviewed about their sustainable ranching and forest restoration practices, which they have conducted on their model farms in the Province of Los Santos in the Azuero Peninsula with the help of ELTI training and mentoring. They discussed how their farms are less vulnerable to the consequences of El Niño droughts and extreme weather caused by climate change, because their restoration practices reintegrate ecosystem services and therefore sustain production on-farm. APASPE interviews start at minute eleven.

January 29, 2016 | La Prensa

Viernes 29 de Enero, 2016. Un artículo en La Prensa de Panamá titulado: ¨Abogan por una ganadería sostenible¨, presenta al Coordinador para Panamá del Programa de Capacitación del Neotrópico de ELTI, Jacob Slusser, quien fue entrevistado sobre el rol de ELTI en proveer capacitación dirigida a aquellos tomadores de decisiones que tienen influencia sobre el uso del suelo, vinculando la ciencia con la práctica. Jacob debate sobre estrategias de ganadería sostenible como lo son la restauración forestal y los sistemas silvopastoriles, los cuales sirven como alternativas a las prácticas convencionales, ayudan a restaurar los servicios ecosistémicos y crean paisajes agrícolas más resilientes y menos vulnerables a climas extremos. Sumado a esto, él menciona como estos conceptos están siendo enseñados en el curso de campo de ELTI titulado: ¨Servicios Ambientales y Restauración de Bosques Tropicales¨, el cual se lleva a cabo en el Proyecto Agua Salud de STRI y es ofrecido a una audiencia internacional de profesionales de la restauración de Latinoamérica.

September 14, 2015 | ETFRN News

Since 2009, ELTI's Neotropics Program has supported the establishment and development of the Association of Livestock and Agro-Silvopastoral Producers of Pedasí (referred to by the Spanish acronym APASPE), which is Panama's first community-based sustainable cattle ranching association. This article highlights ELTI's work to establish APASPE with alumni of ELTI's Training Program, as well as the initial successes and hurdles and the long-term successes and challenges faced by APASPE members. The article was published by the European Tropical Forest Research Network (ETFRN) News 57, entitled "Effective Forest and Farm Producer Organizations".

July 11, 2015 | ELTI Online Training Program

ELTI's Online Training Program launched a Spanish and Portuguese version of the six-week introductory course entitled, Tropical Forest Restoration in Human Dominated Landscapes of Latin America, on Monday, July 13. The course was advertised for two weeks for participants within the Neotropics, during which time 618 applicants applied for only 40 spaces. Learn more about ELTI's Online Training Program.