Meet Fredy, our final trainee for the year 2019. He has just started his traineeship on the rewilding of forests at the EFI office in Bonn.


Can you give us a short introduction about yourself ?

Hola Amigos/as de IFSA!  I am Fredy Polo, a Peruvian student of the master program “Tropical and International Forestry (TIF) of Göttingen University, Germany. I completed my bachelors in Forestry Sciences at Agraria La Molina National University in Peru; also did an exchange semester at Sao Paulo University in Brazil. I have received additional professional training in Europe (Ireland, Romania, and Hungary) as well as in Latin America (Panama and Colombia). Before starting my masters, I worked for private reforestation companies, international research organization (CIFOR, ICRAF and Bioversity International) and the International cooperation (GIZ). Currently, the main focus of my career is on international forest policy; however, I also have solid knowledge on ecological restoration and management of tropical silvicultural systems. I love hiking, playing soccer and practicing capoeira. I am proud that so far I have hiked to 2 of the 7 wonders of the world (Christ the Redeemer and Machu Picchu) and I hope to continue increasing this number!

Why did you apply for the DTE traineeship program and how did you hear about it?

I decided to apply to EFI traineeship because I am highly interested to expand my knowledge about the interaction between research and policy making processes. Moreover, as an international organization, I believe that this traineeship will provide me an excellent opportunity to grow personally and professionally working on policy research in a multicultural environment.

Give a little outlook on your specific placement: What is the topic? What are your expectations? What are you most excited about?

My traineeship in EFI is about “Conceptualizing rewilding for forest”. I will develop a literature compilation and analysis about the concept; facilitate group deliberation about “rewilding and forests”; and I will write two working papers about the scientific and political discourse on rewilding. Due to this, I invite all IFSA colleagues to contact me (email: [email protected]) if you are working in some rewilding-related projects so we can have a nice discussion about this topic.

What is your relationship with IFSA?

Currently, I am an active member of the LC Gottingen. Moreover, I have been part of LC CFCF-UNALM and I have participated as a delegate in the GLF 2015

What is your relationship to forests and what is your favorite tree?

I have a strong connection with forests since my childhood when I visited the Amazon rainforest with my family. From this day on I always try to visit as many tropical and temperate forests as I can in order to practice sports or for relaxation. My favorite tree is the Amazonian species Dipteryx micrantha or “Shihuahuaco” due to its ecological function as one of the most outstanding trees in the lowlands. Moreover, this species is also the home to one of the biggest eagles of the Amazon: Harpy eagle (Harpia harpyja).

What do you see currently as the biggest challenge for forests/forestry/the forest sector?

In my perspective the bigger challenges of the forestry sector are not in the forestry sector but in the conflicts with other economically powerful sectors such as: energy, industry, mining and energy. On this path, I think that the main challenge that we have as foresters (environmentalist or not) is the change of consumer behavior in order to reduce or even stop the consumption of goods that are important drivers of forest degradation. I believe that the power to change is in the hand of civil society but we, as foresters, can help educating and sensitizing people as well as providing accurate information and good advisory to decision makers.