Formal project team

Tibi ANA2905.

Tibor Hartel, PhD

Tibor is Associate Professor at Babes-Bolyai University, Faculty of Environmental Science and Engineering. Tibor`s interests are targeting social-ecological systems with wood-pastures, large carnivores and urban systems as model systems. Tibor received an Alexander von Humboldt research fellowship (2012-2014) and was awarded with Peregrinus Prize of Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities (2019) for his research achievements. Since 2021 Tibor is also elected member of the Academy of Europe – Academia Europaea. Within this project Tibor is the formal responsible of the Romanian team, he contributed conceptually to the project development and is also the scientific coordinator of the research implemented within this project.

Frank Wagener Foto Kuno Martini

Frank Wagener

Frank Wagener has studied Agricultural Sciences with focus on nature protection and landscape ecology at the Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität in Bonn (Germany).

From the very beginning of his professional work he concentrates on landscape protection through sustainable cultivation concepts, and has by now gained experience in the field of implementation of these concepts on various levels: as scientific and managing director of the non-profit association “House of Nature”, as responsible and managing engineer of international projects and as departement manager of the “Natural Forum” from the municipality of Nettersheim (North Rhine-Westfalia). Since 2006 he is coordinating the departement “Biomass and Cultural Landscape Develepment” of the Institute of Applied Material Flow Management (IfaS), which comprises – among others – topics like material flow analyses of biomasses, extensive landuse and nature protection strategies and practical nature protection, sustainable cultural landscape development as well as consulting services for communal authorities. Frank Wagener’s work is characterised by a holistic view on landscape and a close link between scientific approach and practical implementation.


László Rákosy, PhD

László is professor at Babes-Bolyai University, Faculty of Biology and Geology. He is an international expert in butterflies and his research interests includes the systematics, taxonomy and ecology of lepidopterans, the conservation of natural habitats, ecology, zoogeography, protected area management and cultural ecology. László contributed to the development of an agri-environmental policy package for Maculinea butterflies, inspired a regional biocultural brand (Ținutul fluturelui albastru) and has genuine collaborations with the civil society. He is also a popular and charismatic public speaker; his latest speech at TEDxCluj can be seen here: Within this project László is scientific adviser and will develop a popularization book about the Transylvanan wood-pastures.


Cristian Valeriu Maloș, PhD

Cristian is a Lecturer at the Department of Environmental Science, Faculty of Environmental Science and Engineering, Babeș-Bolyai University. He joined Babeș-Bolyai University in 2008 and was appointed lecturer in 2014. He is doing research on environmental projects, mainly conservation projects, and GIS. He has been involved in more than 30 projects related to GIS, land monitoring and conservation. Some of the responsibilities included the usage of models (GIS coupled) to evaluate water quality and develop land management strategies. At the same time he became familiar with the European legislative system, related to GIS and conservation. After some more years of teaching and researching as part of the Environmental Science and Engineering Faculty at Babes-Bolyai University, he is more involved in the field of GIS and conservation. Currently he teaches GIS and Spatial statistics. Also, he is involved in several research projects focused on ecosystem services and GIS. Within our project Cristian provides GIS assistance.


Imola Püsök

Imola is a PhD student of Cultural Anthropology/European Ethnology at the Faculty of Humanities of the Georg-August University of Göttingen. She is a social anthropologist by training, interested in understanding the dinamics of social and ecological relations in post-industrial landscapes. She is currently writing her PhD thesis focused on dwelling in Corna, Roșia Montană in the process and aftermath of a mining conflict. Her scientific attention is now turned to stories and histories of dwelling, dwelling in landscape and space, deindustrialisation processes, post-socialism, human-environment relations, post-socialism, and navigating micro- and macro-worlds among others.

Within this project Imola is working on WP2.

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Mihaela Spac

Mihaela Spac is a student at the Environmental Campus Birkenfeld, Trier University of Applied Sciences from Germany, who is currently completing the third year of her Engineering Bachelor’s Degree in Sustainable Business and Technology. Currently, she is working as a student assistant at the Institute for Applied Material Flow Management (IfaS) from Germany. Her main interests are in project management, green technologies and renewable energy, sustainable development and climate-neutral practices.

In the project she mainly assists the project management, including communication and networking, dissemination and website development.

Her extensive knowledge of the English, Romanian and German languages is used to facilitate the communication and to bridge the language gap between the stewards of Transylvanian wood-pastures and the scientists involved in our project.

Till Wagener (klein2)

Till Wagener

Till Wagener is a student at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) and is currently completing the second year of his Bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering and Information Technology. At the same time, he works as a student assistant at the Institute for Applied Material Flow Management (IfaS) at Trier University of Applied Sciences from Germany.

With years of experience in professional photography and film production, he is responsible for the visual documentation and public relations in this project. This includes the film production from shooting in the wood-pastures to the final editing, management of the project’s own Youtube channel and website development.


Árpád Szapanyos

Árpi is the President of the ‘Ecotransilvania Educational Association’ and manager of the Remarkable Trees of Romania project. Árpád has a well established history and experience with ancient wood-pasture systems of Transylvania, with inventorying over 150 wood-pastures for ancient trees and being manager for 5 years of the Breite ancient oak wood-pasture reserve near Sighişoara / Schäßburg. Árpád was a trustable field assistant for the main projects implemented by Leuphana University from Lüneburg in Transylvania, he being involved in data collection (social and ecological research), database building as well as assisting other researchers. Within this project he is working on WP1 and WP2.


Henrietta Boda

Henrietta Boda is a student at Babes-Bolyai University, Faculty of Environmental Science and Engineering who is currently completing the third year of her Bachelor’s Degree in Evironmental Science. She has a wide range of scientific interests, including ecology, sustainable practices, and cultural and social relations to nature and local environments. Her extensive knowledge of the English and Hungarian languages is used to bridge the language gap between the stewards of Transylvanian wood-pastures and the scientists involved in our project.


Mihai Pop

Mihai has a background in environmental sciences and his interest is in vegetation ecology. Since 2022 (September) Mihai is is PhD student at Babes-Bolyai University – Faculty of Geography. His research topic is the biocultural characterization of the Transylvanian wood-pastures, the PhD project being implemented within the current DBU funded project.

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Kinga-Olga RETI, PhD

Kinga is lecturer and vice-dean at Babes-Bolyai University, Faculty of Environmental Science and Engineering. She is environmental scientist interested in environmental impact assessment, soil pollution and erosion and waste management. Recently, she was also involved in research related to the domain/field of social-ecological systems as well as wood-pastures. Due to the position she holds in the management/staff of the faculty (2012 to present), she has very good administrative and organizational skills. Within this project Kinga has a role as facilitator, administrative coordination and field assessments.

Advisory board


Florentina Călugăr

Florentina is the manager of the Association ‘Grupul de Acțiune Locală Dealurile Târnavelor’ (, with the office located in the commune of Saschiz. She graduated journalism and pedagogy. Besides the projects directly relevant to the local communities, Florentina values also the projects which targets the valorization of the rich intangible heritage values, cultural and natural. She is member of several local initiatives which resulted in the emergence of local associations, such as the ‘Women`s Neighborhood Association’ (Asociația Vecinătatea Femeilor), ‘Saschiz Volunteer Association’ (Asociația Voluntarilor din Saschiz). The wood-pasture ‘Branistea Saschizului’ ( inspired Florentina to propose the project ‘Silvicultural Museum’ (, where the Local Action Group collaborated also with our project team member Tibor Hartel.


Florentina Florescu

Ecologist with a master’s degree in Sustainable Development, Florentina has extensive experience in the development and implementation of nature conservation, ecotourism and education projects for sustainable development. She has been working in the Transnylvanian Highlands  (Colinele Transilvaniei) area since 2005 and is attached to this area, being involved in nature conservation projects together with local communities. She believes that this area is extraordinary due to its natural and cultural wealth and especially through local initiatives. All these ingredients are definitely the most important in having an ecotourism destination where experiences are wonderful. Florentina is genuinely interested in the ancient wood-pastures in the area covered by Colinele Transilvaniei and she is helping in mainstreaming the key results of our project in the regional touristic and educational activities and networks.


Alexandru – Sabin Bădărău, PhD

Sabin an Associate Professor, PhD at Babeș – Bolyai University in Cluj-Napoca, Romania, Faculty of Environmental Science and Engineering. Bu formation, he is a biogeographer and conservationist, dedicated to the analysis of various species and ecosystems from all biogeographical regions and to the management of the protected areas across the world. A special focus in his research is represented now by the species composition, ecosystem functioning and biocultural values of the wooded pastures (especially the ones with oak species) from the whole Holarctic realm (including the ones in the temperate belts of the mountains from the tropics). As a great supporter of wood-pastures for their natural and biocultural values, Sabin is working on a global overview of the biocultural values of the oak wood-pastures and takes an important role in mentoring Mihai, our PhD student colleague.


Cristian-Remus Papp, PhD

Cristian is a senior international expert on nature conservation, environmental protection and sustainable transport, having a PhD in ecological corridors for large carnivores in Romania. He has 20 years of experience in biodiversity conservation and 16 years in project management (coordinated/participated in the implementation of more than 50 national and international projects). Cristian is the manager of the Wildlife department of WWF Romania. He is active in several international (e.g., he is a member of the IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas, in the scientific committee of the Infrastructure and Ecology Network Europe (IENE), in the Global Wildlife Connect Initiative, etc.) and national (e.g., he is member in the National Working Group for the Conservation of Large Carnivores in Romania, in the Scientific Council of the Maramureș Mountains Natural Park) professional networks. He is an Associate Lecturer at the Faculty of Biology and Geology of UBB. Cristian has participated as a speaker and/or panelist in conferences and workshops in over 20 countries and has extensive experience in stakeholder engagement and participation processes.

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