Sunday Mail Reporter
Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority (ZimParks) has appointed ecologist Professor Edson Gandiwa to the post of director of research to strengthen and broaden the Authority’s conservation and management strategies.
Before his appointment, Prof Gandiwa was the executive dean at the Chinhoyi University of Technology (CUT)’s school of wildlife, ecology and conservation.
ZimParks spokesperson Mr Tinashe Farawo said the appointment was in line with international best practice.
“The appointment is in line with recommendations from a recent study commissioned by our partners, the European Union, which sought to review our operations,” said Mr Farawo.
“The study came up with recommendations on how we can improve our operations and become more efficient, and the appointment of a full-time director of research was one such recommendation.
“Prof Gandiwa will be our go-to man when we attend highly technical international meetings such as the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species meetings.”
Prof Gandiwa holds a BSc (Hons) in Environmental Science and Health (First Class, National University of Science and Technology, 2004), a MSc in Tropical Resource Ecology (Merit, University of Zimbabwe, 2007) and a PhD in Wildlife Conservation and Management (Wageningen University and Research, the Netherlands, 2013).
He has authored and co-authored over 140 peer-reviewed scientific publications in national, regional and international journals. He has contributed to several projects at national, regional and international levels, including the revision of protected area management plans, development of the Zimbabwe Tourism Master Plan, the recent Communal Areas Management Programme for Indigenous Resources (CAMPFIRE) review, Regional Assessment report on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services for Africa under the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES), and global Land Degradation and Restoration Assessment Report under IPBES.
He has successfully supervised four PhD graduates, among other accomplishments.