Leading in Miombo woodlands carbon research

Individual Alumni News
22 June 2015

Dr. Ezekiel E. Mwakalukwa, a TBA alumnus from Tanzania, is charting the way forward in the sustainable management of the country’s Miombo woodlands. His PhD research data, which is to be included in a key publication on the role of East African Miombo forests in carbon cycling has been hailed as “simply the best that exists.”

Ezekiel’s research combines understanding the dry Miombo woodland contribution to carbon cycling and the development of management tools. His ultimate goal is to to meet human needs and development through the sustainable use of natural resources.

His work, based on a case study in the Gangalamtumba Village Land Forest Reserve in Iringa, Tanzania, was funded by the Danish development cooperation, DANIDA. It has earned him a  PhD from the University of Copenhagen.

In defending his research, Ezekiel made a powerful impression on his assessors, summed up by his supervisor, Professor Thorsten Treue,:

“This is the first time one of my PhD students has been offered a co-authorship by a member of the assessment committee. Ezekiel’s combined data is simply the best there exists…by pooling this data and making a Pan-East African publication on Miombo woodland growth estimates, the outcome would be an important and prestigious publication… We, as everyone should be, are very proud of him.”

On the news of his PhD success, Ezekiel told the TBA:, “I would like to register my sincere thanks to TBA for making me who I am today. TBA opened up the gates by offering me a scholarship which enabled me to undertake and complete my Masters of Science degree in Forestry in 2007. This focused on understanding the ecology of Invasive alien species found at Amani Nature Reserve. My work will encourage far more people to look at, understand and take appropriate action on biodiversity conservation in  dry land areas”

TBA Project Manager, Anthony Kuria congratulated Ezekiel for the successful completion of his PhD studies. “We at TBA are most excited that we have been so instrumental in the development of another ‘expert’ and a very dependable one. I look forward to working with you to apply your new knowledge to help develop Africa, and Tanzania in particular.”

Dr. Mwakalukwa is a senior lecturer, researcher and consultant in the area of forest ecology, resource assessment, management of invasive alien species and climate change at Sokoine University of Agriculture, Tanzania. He is currently working in Iringa Rural District, Tanzania, to restore water catchment forests in one of the conservation projects funded by Tanzania Forest Funds since 2013.

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