James Richardson

Dec 132012


We had a fantastic weekend at the Life Above the Clouds event last 24th and 25th of November. There were all kinds of activities for everyone to learn about the unique Páramo ecosystem: colouring for children, video and photographic exhibitions, activities featuring live alpine plants and their different adaptations to high-altitude ecosystems; and also a Scottish Highlands vs. Páramo Ecosystem: Spot the Difference activity, you would be surprised how similar they look!




Nov 212012

One of the many ecosystems that exist in Colombia is that of the high altitude Páramo. Join RBGE PhD student Maria Camila Gomez this weekend at the Gateway to find out about this fantastic and unique Andean ecosystem.

WHEN: Saturday 24th & Sunday 25th of November, 12:30 – 3:30 pm
WHERE: Real Life Science Studio, John Hope Gateway

We hope to see you there!

Nov 022012

Scientific, horticultural and educational links are set to be strengthened between the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh (RBGE) and Jardin Botanico de Bogotá, Colombia, after the two scientific research organisations signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU).

Luisz Olmedo Martínez and Suzanne Harris sign in Bogotá.

The move makes formal the already strong relationship between researchers working on RBGE’s Colombian Project and their counterparts at Bogotá Botanic Garden. It’s aim is to strengthen collaboration in science, horticulture and education, with staff from both sides visiting and supporting each other in their research and conservation work.

“RBGE is conducting a research programme in Colombia, which is one of the most biodiverse countries on Earth”, explained Dr James Richardson. “Bogotá Botanic Garden is responsible for the greening and maintenance of public spaces in Colombia’s capital, which is home to eight million people. The surroundings of Bogotá cover an altitudinal range from 2000 to 4000 metres and may include up to 3000 species. RBGE hopes to collaborate on projects that help document that flora and improve communication of the importance of plants in and around the city in providing food and numerous ecosystem services. By signing this memorandum we can now expect to collaborate on projects to enhance the educational and scientific research capacities in both organisations. I will be travelling to Bogotá to step up our activities there”.

The technicalities of the two-way signing were achieved when Suzanne Harris, of the RBGE Learning Team, travelled to Bogotá to conduct a Training Needs Assessment. Having witnessed the signing of MOU by Luisz Olmedo Martínez, the Director of the Botanic Garden in Bogotá, on Wednesday October 10, Suzanne safely returned with the agreement, to be signed by RBGE Regius Keeper, Professor Stephen Blackmore on October 18.

Professor Steve Blackmore (front centre) signs in Edinburgh with Colombian PhD students Javier Luna Castro, Eugenio Valderrama and Maria Camila Gomez together with Toby Pennington (Head of Tropical Diversity), James Richardson (Head of RBGE’s Colombia Program) and Suzanne Harris (RBGE Education).

Professor Blackmore commented: “The MOU is a great example of how knowledge and expertise from RBGE are in demand in biodiversity rich countries. Experience shows that this new partnership will be rewarding to both ourselves and our friends in Colombia”.

Oct 232012

We aim to inform people of the work we are doing in Colombia, one of the most biodiverse countries on earth, with ecosystems ranging from deserts and rain forests to high alpine Andean vegetation. Through our work we aim to highlight the biological and cultural diversity of Colombia.

Mar 262012

Colombia is one of the most biodiverse countries on earth. Practically every kind of ecosystem can be found within its borders. The Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh’s Colombian research program aims to determine how historical processes have affected diversification in those ecosystems. We also aim to inform the public about Colombian biological and cultural diversity through multiple media.

Recent RBGE Colombia Posts