XV World Forestry Congress


Thomas Hofer


Forest Biodiversity and Restoration Team Leader


Thomas Hofer is a Swiss National. He studied geography and biology at the University of Berne. As assistant to Professor Bruno Messerli he implemented his masters and PhD studies in the overall Himalayan Region with a special focus on watershed management and highland-lowland linkages. His PhD thesis entitled “Floods in Bangladesh - a highland-lowland interaction?” was awarded the “First Environmental Research Prize” of the University of Berne. In 1997 and 1998 Thomas Hofer worked as Watershed Management Advisor at the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) in Kathmandu for a regional watershed management project with field sites in Pakistan, India, Nepal and the Yunnan Province of China. In 1998 he joined the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO). From 1998 to 2017 he was based in FAO Headquarters in Rome where he was responsible for FAO’s global program on watershed management, sustainable mountain development and forest hydrology. His portfolio included the technical supervision of field projects in Asia, Africa and Latin America, the coordination of conceptual and applied research activities and the support to international processes. From 2012 to 2017 he also coordinated the Mountain Partnership Secretariat. From 2017 to 2021, Thomas Hofer was the Senior Forestry Officer and Coordinator of the Natural Resources Management Group in FAO’s Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific in Bangkok. During this assignment he also acted as Secretary of the Asia-Pacific Forestry Commission. Since September 2021, Thomas Hofer is back at FAO HQ where he leads the Forest Biodiversity and Restoration Team.