Steering committee

Marion Valeix is ​​a researcher at the CNRS, affiliated to the Biometry and Evolutionary Biology Laboratory (LBBE, UMR 5558, Lyon) and hosted at the Centre of research in Functional and Evolutionary Ecology (CEFE, UMR 5175). Marion has been working in Hwange National Park since 2000. Her research, at the interface between behavioural ecology, spatial ecology and community ecology, focuses on the role of interspecific interactions (predator-prey, elephant-other herbivores, carnivores-carnivores) in the functioning of communities of African large mammals. She is also interested in the impacts of human activities and global changes on these interactions.

Chloé Guerbois has not left Hwange since her Master’s degree in 2008. She is currently a post-doctoral fellow at Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University in South Africa. Her research focuses on the functioning and resilience of socio-ecological systems including protected areas. As part of the Hwange LTSER, Chloé works on human-wildlife interactions, use and dynamics of natural resources and develops participatory programs with local partners (managers and villagers) on integrated conservation and environmental change.Mathieu Bourgarel is a researcher at CIRAD. He started his research work in Zimbabwe and coordinated the first research project at the origin of the Hwange LTSER in 1999. He is currently the correspondent of CIRAD and CNRS in Zimbabwe and manages the Hwange LTSER. His research focuses on the biology of African large ungulate populations, human/wildlife conflicts, and more recently on the study of micromammals (bats and rodents) and their role in the spread of emerging zoonotic diseases.Florence Hulot is a lecturer (HDR) at the University of Paris-Sud and is attached to the Evolution Ecology Laboratory (ESE, UMR 8079, Orsay). Her work focuses on the functioning of shallow lakes, notably on interactions between food webs and physical factors of the environment. Her work in the Hwange LTSER and its periphery aims to understand the effects of water supply management of waterholes and the activities of herbivores, especially elephants, on the dynamics of food webs.

Olivier Pays-Volard is a professor at the University of Angers. Since 2009, his work in the Hwange LTSER has focused on the responses of large mammals to the landscape heterogeneity (variation in the availability of resources, in the risk of predation and in human activities) by focusing on the behavioural determinants that shape the spatial distribution of species communities and interspecific coexistence.

Alexandre Caron is a researcher at CIRAD as a health ecologist. He is currently the coordinator of the research platform “Production and Conservation in Partnership” (, which together with the Hwange LTSER promotes the coexistence between people and nature in the transfrontier conservation areas (TFCAs). He has been based in Southern Africa for 10 years (Zimbabwe and Mozambique since 2015) and is interested in the ecology of infectious transmission (e.g. avian influenza, foot and mouth disease, bovine tuberculosis) in multi-host systems at the wildlife/domestic interfaces.

Jean-Christophe Lata is a lecturer at the Pierre et Marie Curie University (UPMC) and is head of the department “community diversity and ecosystem functioning” in the Institute for Ecology and Environmental Sciences in Paris (IEESParis, UMR 7618). His work focuses on the relationships between diversity and the functions of the soil-plant compartments in the functioning of African natural and human-dominated ecosystems, with a strong focus on savannas, climate change and the nitrogen cycle.

Nadia Belaidi is a researcher at the CNRS, based at the Laboratory of Eco-Anthropology and Ethnobiology (UMR 7206, Paris), department “Men, Natures, Societies” of the National Museum of Natural History. Her work in the Hwange LTSER focuses on putting into perspective the ecological and political relations between the cross-border park KAZA TFCA in order to develop a reflection on the approach of the transboundary conservation areas in Southern Africa and more precisely on their meaning and their scope in (re)construction of ecological, social and cultural links in the specific political context of “reconciliation” of the region.