The world faces a crisis risking extinction of species through global warming. Due to impact of e.g., changes in land use and destruction of habitats, tropical rain forests, mangrove forests and coral reefs are disappearing and with them ecosystem functions, goods and services on which human populations are dependent. In order to conserve nature, to manage or even to restore tropical biodiversity and ecosystems, we must understand patterns of tropical biodiversity, study how organisms interact with their environment and how they respond to perturbations and change. Next to research, this is dealt with in this unique masters programme.


  • ULB
    Université Libre de Bruxelles (Belgium)

  • VUB
    Vrije Universiteit Brussel (Belgium)

  • SU
    Sorbonne Université (France)

  • MNHN
    Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle (France)

    Università degli Studi di Firenze (Italy)

  • UdG
    Université de la Guyane Française (French Guiana)

  • UdA
    Université des Antilles (Guadeloupe)

  • UDsch
    Université de Dschang (Cameroon)

    Universite d Antananarivo (Madagascar)

  • RUH
    University of Ruhuna (Sri Lanka)

  • UMT
    Universiti Malaysia Terengganu (Malaysia)

  • HKU
    University of Hong Kong (Hong Kong)

Download Summary:


TROPIMUNDO is an EC-funded and excellence-labelled Erasmus Mundus Masters Course in Tropical Biodiversity and Ecosystems. We aim to bring together expert Higher Education Institutes (HEI), with long-standing worldwide expertise in tropical rainforests and woodlands and in tropical coastal ecosystems. TROPIMUNDO students are able to concentrate on botany, zoology and integrative ecosystem approaches in institutions worldwide in 2 Master years, of which an entire semester is spent in the tropics. Specialisation is possible on the evolution of tropical flora and vegetation, on faunistic assemblages, on informatics tools to treat and manage biodiversity data and databases (biogeographical, genetical, geographical information systems) including the management and conservation of historic collections such as herbarium sheets, on the study of diversity, dynamics and evolution of tropical and subtropical ecosystems (with a focus on four related systems, namely tropical rainforests and woodlands, mangrove forests, seagrass beds and coral reefs, including the interactions between flora, fauna, man and the environment within and between each of these adjacent ecosystems), on conservation and restoration ecology of natural habitats and their biodiversity including competences in sustainable management and governance of biodiversity, and finally, on tropical ethnobotany, exploitation and valorisation of natural resources and conservation of traditional ecological knowledge.

Click here to get your personal link to the online Information and Application Module (see also blue frame at the right of this screen).

The information in this website may be subject to changes from one year to another.


The first call for 2019-2020 applicants in need of a scholarship is now open. Please note availability of scholarships will depend on financing by the European Commission (results expected in July 2019 for students scheduled to start their MSc Programme in September 2019). Please note that for 2018-2019 no scholarships have been offered.

Detailed information on TROPIMUNDO facts, conditions, procedures, deadlines, etc... is available in the online Information and Application Module.

Click here to get your personal link to the online Information and Application Module.

This first TROPIMUNDO call is for scholarship seekers or self-funded applicants and will be evaluated as a batch after the deadline. If any available places remain a second call for TROPIMUNDO applications will be opened in the first trimester of 2019 (presently CLOSED), only for self-funded applicants from all countries. Second call applications will be treated on a first come first served basis. The deadline for submission of second call applications will be 15 June 2019 for Non-EU and for EU students (preferably originating from one of the member states of the European Union and with a Bachelor diploma obtained from an EU member state) or until all available places have been exhausted.

Admissions may be done conditional of obtaining a Bachelor diploma or language proof before the start of the academic year.

Click here to get your personal link to the online Information and Application Module.

The call for 2020-2021 will open by the start of October 2019.


Core values

Unique mobility programme worldwide, including a unique set of threatened ecosystems
  • Study, research and field courses in Amazonian, African, Asian and/or Australian wet tropics
  • Intensive contact with different cultures and languages


While aiming at a joint Master degree, students are awarded a multiple degree depending on which European institutes were visited. In addition, each student will receive a Europass Certificate signed by all participating higher education institutes involved.Find more information on the academic learning outcome

Basic student requirements

  • An internationally accepted Bachelor’s degree (i.e. the equivalent of 180 ECTS) with a major in Biology, Natural Sciences, Environmental Sciences, or equivalent from an accredited university.
  • Students must be able to demonstrate proficiency in English or English + French. More information on language requirements can be found in the Online Information and Application Module.
  • A personal evaluation of the applications will be done by a selection committee
  • In the 1st and 3rd semester basic and specialised extra-curricular language courses are offered based on actual trajectory needs.

Trajectory in 4 semesters

The consortium is composed of 5 institutes in Programme Countries (largely European) and 6 higher education institutes in Partner Countries (largely non-European). In a first semester, students start at a European institute of their choice to acquire similar competences. In a second semester field experience and courses will take place in a university in a non-EU country. This includes hands-on experience in 1 or 2 tropical sites. The third semester will cover a specialisation in a European university, different from the first one. Courses vary at this semester. In the fourth semester students return to where they started out for their thesis research. Every trajectory of 4 semesters constitutes a unique combination of courses and expertises.
In-depth information available:

Tuition fees

Tuition fees are 8,000 EUR per year for students from Partner countries (largely outside Europe) and 4,000 EUR per year for students from Programme countries (largely European). They are to be paid to the coordinating institute. The tuition fees include consortium enrolment fees and the insurance cost. The tuition fees do not include costs related to visa and preparatory documents, accommodation, additional insurance costs, living expenses and travel and transportation costs. However, EC-funded students have additional cost coverage.Find more information here.


TROPIMUNDO Candidates can also apply for anEC scholarship, which is however limited by a number of criteria.

Applying for Tropimundo

The following information sections are extracted from the online Information and Application Module.


awards & LAUREATES

TROPIMUNDO awards two annual prizes:
  • The TROPIMUNDO Best Student Award, awarded to the student with the highest overall course average.
  • The Lorenzo Borella Memorial Award, awarded to the student with the highest thesis mark. The eponymy is in loving memory of the TROPIMUNDO alumnus Lorenzo Borella and is described here in English, Italian, French and Dutch). This award was originally named the TROPIMUNDO Best Thesis Award.
2018 Laureates:
James HAGAN (TROPIMUNDO Best Student Award)
Thomas LUYPAERT (Lorenzo Borella Memorial Award)

2017 Laureates:
Catherine TURNER(TROPIMUNDO Best Student Award)
Elena QUINTERO BORRERO(Lorenzo Borella Memorial Award)

2016 Laureates:
Barbara HENDUS (TROPIMUNDO Best Student Award)
João NUNES DE MATOS FARMINHAO (Lorenzo Borella Memorial Award)

2015 Laureates:
Mathil VANDROMME (TROPIMUNDO Best Student Award)

Students & Alumni

TROPIMUNDO students and alumni have the opportunity to become a member of theErasmus Mundus Association - EMA.

2018 TROPIMUNDO Graduates

Name Country Thesis title
AUDA, Emeline The effect of forest anthropization on the activity budget, postural and locomotor behaviours in a forest lemur
BANSE, Marine  Thermal performance curves of tadpoles from populations of different elevations of the Andean poison frog Epipedobates anthonyi
BATEN, MD Abdul  The Sundarbans mangroves as social-ecological system: a case-study on ecosystem functions, goods and services in Satkhira District, Bangladesh
BELANGER, Noémie  Evaluating the relative importance of different larval habitats for cacao pollinators in cacao agroforestry systems in Nicaragua
CAIRO, Milena  The foraging effort during migration and breeding of a partial migrator: the wandering albatross
CHOWDHURY, Zinat  Emergent traits of social immunity in primitively eu-social hover wasps (Hymenoptera: Stenogastrinae)
DE ANDRADE SCALABRIN, Camila  Utilization of fishing resources and mangrove wood products in Mamanguape River Estuary (MRE), Northeastern Brazil
DE BETHUNE, Stef  Management regimes linking man and mammals in the Dja Conservation Complex, Cameroon
DURRINGTON, Benjamin  Specificity of tropical ectomycorrhizas and plant hosts along a phosphorus gradient
EVERS, Sophie  Human-wildlife conflicts: a behavioural study using animal sounds to deter chacma baboons (Papio ursinus)
FIORINI TORRICO, Roberto  Evaluating the importance of the golden-headed lion tamarins for the seed dispersal of fruiting trees in South Bahia, Brazil
GAWRA, Janan  An update to the phylogeography of Symphonia globulifera L. f. (Clusiaceae) in tropical Africa
HAGAN, James  Increased late season rainfall has limited effects on winter annual communities during drought
HARIRI, Mehran   Investigating the antidiabetic properties of mangrove plant species and identifying causative genes for diabetes using CRISPR-cas9 in a zebrafish model system
HEWITT, Olivia   Larvae under the light: Response of bacterial symbionts in larvae of the coral reef sponge Amphimedon queenslandica to varying environmental light regimes
JEBESSA, Fikadu  Termite species diversity and their ecological role at Wenago indigenous agroforestry, Ethiopia
KARSSA, Tiruha  Cultivation of Arthrospira strains in tropical conditions, with particular reference to Ethiopia
LACHS, Liam  Sewage-derived resort runoff threatens coral reefs? A pilot isotopic assessment of nitrogen at Pulau Redang, Malaysia
LIBRIO, Martina  Soil fertility in a semi-arid region: role of Prosopis laevigata and perception of the indigenous people of the Mezquital Valley, Mexico
LUYPAERT, Thomas  Wildlife response to no-take zone establishment in the tropical rainforests of New Guinea
McCARTHY, Morgan  Reading the bones – how archived skulls can inform temporal genetic variation in central Queensland’s dugong population
MICKLEM, Jessica  Ticking the boxes but not meeting the goal? An assessment of management interventions for green turtle snorkelling tourism in Apo Island, a marine protected area in the Philippines
MONDRAGON BOTERO, Gladys Ariadna  Forest structure, composition and functional diversity of a tropical dry gallery forest at Berenty Reserve, Madagascar.
MUMU, Nazia  Estimating the growth rate of immature stages and indirect effect of climate change on the development and fecundity of Helicoverpa armigera (Hübner) (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae)
OÑATE CASADO, Javier  Effect of tidal surface currents on the offshore hatchlings dispersion. A comparative study among green and hawksbill turtles on Chagar Hutang Turtle Sanctuary, Pulau Redang, Malaysia.
PETERS, Laura  Ocelot (Leopardus pardalis) as a top predator in Trinidad: factors influencing occupancy across habitats
PUNTIN, Giulia  Use of stable isotopes to investigate nutrient dynamics in the zooxanthellate jellyfish Cassiopea xamachana
RANDRIANIAINA, Heritiana  Ethnoecology and analysis of the effectiveness of community-based mangrove management (CBMM): a case study of the Andrevo and Ambondrolava mangroves in southwestern Madagascar.
SAKHALKAR, Sailee  The effect of distance to nearest neighbour on the behaviour of pollinator Epicephala sp. within a leafflower–leafflower moth (Glochidion hohenackeriEpicephala sp.) obligate brood-site mutualism system
SARKER, Kishore  Comparative analysis of the population genetic diversity and structure of Avicennia alba and Avicennia marina in Peninsular Malaysia
SHANKAR POTI, Meenakshi  Conservation and consumption of sea turtle eggs in Redang Island, Peninsular Malaysia
SIRIEYS, Auxane  Koala home range across Australia: a synthesis informing landscape design
TALUKDER, Rasendra  Source identification and ecological risk assessment of heavy metal pollution in sediments of Setiu Wetland, Malaysia.
URRUTIA SANCHEZ, Miguel  Reading the signs: variation in growth and mortality rates in the tropical rainforests of French Guiana

2017 TROPIMUNDO Graduates

Name Country Thesis title
AGUIRRE-ALCOLEA, Rosa A step into the unknown: a first survey of the koinocystidid (Rhabdocoela: Kalyptorhynchia: Koinocystididae) microturbellarians of Cuba
BALDUCCIO, Nadia Distribution and habitat preferences of the Critically Endangered yellow-tailed woolly monkey (Lagothrix flavicauda) in the Utcubamba Province, Peru
BAZZICALUPO, Enrico The origin of the Mediterranean population of the tropical sea slug Bursatella leachii: reconstruction of its phylogeny and population dynamics
BONNEFOND, Anaïs Are tropical anurans able to adjust their calling behavior to changing hydric environments?
CARMINATTI WENCESLAU, José 24 years of green turtle´s (Chelonia mydas) conservation in Chagar Hutang Turtle Sanctuary, Redang Island, Malaysia: Effects of recruitment, ENSO and EAWM
CHAMBON, Mouna Sustainability assessment of the management of the populations of Bismarckia nobilis Hildebr. and H.Wendl. in relation to global changes in the protected area of Antrema, Madagascar
COLLINS, Laura Support base for discourses on mangrove forests in Singapore and assessment of (mis)matches with management and regulations
de LAAGE de MEUX, Raphaël Outils moléculaires de traçabilité pour l’élevage du charançon des palmiers en Afrique tropicale
EDE, Antoine Wildlife and human interactions on the edge of an African National park: Case study of Kibale National park, Uganda
FERNANDEZ PRADEL, Mirna Drivers of diversity patterns in bromeliad aquatic communities along an elevational gradient in the Tropical Andes
HOSSAIN, Mohammad Mosarof Integrated assessment of mangrove ecosystem services in the Sundarbans, Bangladesh: focus on fisheries and timber
HIRWA, Jean-Paul Interactions among large mammals feeding on Astrocaryum standleyanum fruit on Barro Colorado Island, Panama
INJIGU, Berhanu Gebrekidan Biodiversity of phytoplankton and zooplankton communities in a tropical crater lake (Lake Hora, Ethiopia): The role of macrophyte habitats
JAGANNATHAN, Suneha Understanding diver perceptions of coral reef health
LACARRA, Emile Etude de la complémentarité fonctionnelle de diverses espèces de champignons mycorhiziens à arbuscules pour l'adaptation des plantes au sol ultramafique. Application à la restauration écologique
MARTINEZ ESPINOSA, Columba Assessment of local stakeholder perceptions and crab community analysis as key components to understand the sustainability of the social-ecological system of Matang Mangrove Forest Reserve
NGUYEN, Viet Anh Remote sensing and GIS application for monitoring invasive Merremia eberhardtii species in Son Tra natural reserve, Vietnam
QUINTERRO BORRERO, Elena The effectiveness of fruits as a resource for seed-dispersing birds in the Atlantic rainforest
SANCHEZ ORTIZ, Tania Seed dispersal effectiveness of Pachycereus weberi in south-central Mexico
TURNER, Catherine You can’t ignore your neighbours: Context dependent habitat selection amongst bromeliad infaunal communities

2016 TROPIMUNDO Graduates

Name Country Thesis title
AMOUSSOU Biowa Eldys  Using species distribution modelling to predict the impact of climate change on the distribution of non-timber forest products in tropical Africa
BEN SAADI Celina Prey catch selectivity and pitcher infaunal community composition in two Nepenthes species in Peninsular Malaysia.
BORELLA Lorenzo Population structure and exploitation of Blacktip Reef Sharks (Carcharhinus melanopterus) from Redang and Bidong, Islands of Terengganu, Malaysia
BUTLER Eleanor Using the FRAP method to detect early stress responses in two scleractinian corals
CIPRIANI Vittoria Is the dietary variation related to changes of the venom composition in the Australian brown snakes (Pseudonaja sp.)?
de MESTIER du BOURG Astrid Study of the variation of scents emitted by the palm tree: Chamaerops humilis and characterization of the spatial genetic structure within and among populations
DURAN RODRIGUEZ Gisela Exploring links between climate and diversity patterns in tank bromeliads in Mexico
EMIRU Kassu Tesfaye Fine-scale spatial genetic structure and diversity of Cyperus papyrus populations: a case of human impacted Cheleleka swamp (Ethiopia)
GABORIAUD Clémentine An analysis of green turtle tagging and nesting data from Redang Island, Terengganu Malaysia
GOLDENBERG Jonathan Venom variation in Australian Black Snakes (Pseudechis sp.). An ecological and proteomics approach
GUILLEN OTERO Thais Diversity and functionality of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi: A comparison between restored and natural ecosystems in ultramafic soils of New Caledonia. Application to ecological restoration.
HENDUS Barbara Exploring links between bat colonies and invertebrate biodiversity in tropical cave systems – a case study with closed cenotes in Yucatán, México
IZABAL MARTINEZ Juan Domingo Spatio-temporal variability of sea surface temperature and chlorophyll-a in the Southern South China Sea based on long-term (2005-2015) MODIS satellite data
KAVAK Pinar Climate-based changes in net primary productivity (NPP) over forest ecosystems in Peninsular Malaysia
MAHMUD Anisul Islam Population estimation and behavioral patterns of Irrawaddy dolphins, Orcaella brevirostris (Owen in Gray 1866) in the Brunei Bay, Malaysia
NORTHCOTE Sally-Jane Behavioural ontogeny, communication and social interactions between Humpback Whale Mother and Calf (Megaptera novaeangliae) during the breeding period in the Indian Ocean.
NUNES DE MATOS FARMINÃO João To lump or not to lump: revisiting the taxonomy of Rhipidoglossum and its allied genera Cribbia, Margelliantha, and Rhaesteria (Angraecinae, Orchidaceae)
REBOREDO SEGOVIA Ana Laura Eyes on the equator: conservation research effort in the tropics
RUWAIMANA Monika Like a drone come true: Mapping of Mangroves in Setiu Wetland, Malaysia using ground-truth, satellite and drone imagery
SYLVESTER Janelle Comparing seedling recruitment limitation among three methods of tropical forest restoration
TATIN Yannick Diversity and pharmacology study of selected Zingiberaceae of Peninsular Malaysia
TOT Adrian Hatching success and natural predators of green turtle (Chelonia mydas) eggs and hatchlings at Chagar Hutang, Redang Island, Terengganu, Malaysia
UDDIN Mohammad Mazbah Is phytoremediation an ecosystem service? Heavy metal accumulation and partitioning of consumable and non - consumable mangroves of the Kelantan Delta, Peninsular Malaysia
VAN LEEUWEN Pauline Biological collections as documentation for assessing the effects of environmental factors on altitudinal distribution and morphological variation of Nepalese amphibians

2015 TROPIMUNDO Graduates

Name Country Thesis title
ABRHA Abadi The ecology of Harwood’s Francolin (Pternistis harwoodi) at Merhabete District, Central Ethiopia: implications for conservation
BRAVO GOUVEIA Henrique Coral reef quality off the west coast of Unguja Island, Zanzibar
CAMPERIO CIANI Giorgia Galapagos giant tortoises and farmers: coexistence or conflict?
CHAMBERS-OSTLER Alexander The influence of fire and vegetation physiognomy on an ant-plant interaction in the Brazilian Cerrado
CLEMENTYsharda Climate variability and climate change in zooplankton off eastern Australia
DALCHAND Deepshikha Assessing nearshore wave dynamics and their impact on coral reefs in the Ruvuma Region of Cabo Delgado, Mozambique
GARCIA ABALOS Carlos Knowledge and use of the ecosystem along different environmental and socioeconomic gradients in native and rural communities of the Peruvian Amazon: Matsés, Kandozi-Shapra and Allpahuayo-Mishana. Loreto region
JECMENICA Vladimir Towards better taxonomic classification of the continental African Angraecum species from sections Conchoglossum and Afrangraecum (Orchidaceae)
KAMGA Yanick Borel Modèles de différenciation d’Erythrophleum suaveolens, le long des gradients environnementaux au Cameroun
MAKSIMOVIC Ana Mitigating the impact of the tropical tuna purse seine fisheries on Silky sharks (Carcharhinus falciformis): small scale behavioral analyses and future improvements in the protocol for video data acquisition in the purse seine net
MGELWA Abubakari Said The variation of plants and birds diversity along an urbanization gradient in Arusha Region, Tanzania
MOLCHANOVA Mariia Benthic diatoms assemblages in highlands of Ethiopia
MONTECINOS LLERENA Daniel Links between forest degradation and metacommunity structure of bromeliad infauna in a Bolivian humid mountain forest
ROSCOE Charlotte Supporting pollinator communities and supported by stakeholders? Measuring the ecological and social values of green roofs in Singapore
SAVAGE Jessica The effects of a major marine heat wave on zooplankton communities: a case study of the 2010/11 events off Western Australia
SEID Mohammed Adefa A survey on the diversity, abundance and vegetation structure of woody plant species in burial sites in Gobeya Rural Administrative of Tehuledere District, South Wollo, Ethiopia
VANDROMME Mathil Disentangling drivers of alpha and beta diversity in bromeliad metacommunities along a tropical elevational gradient
VEGA GRAU Adriana Soil macro invertebrates in understory forests under tropical exotic tree plantations
WYNS Arthur Arrested succession in Costa Rican lowland secondary rainforest through a Dicranopteris pectinata understory


Frequently Asked Questions - FAQ

Participating universities and local coordinators

All institutes in the consortium are internationally-minded institutions with infrastructure, experience and proven results in servicing foreign students and scholars. The Local Coordinator, assisted by a Local Administrative Manager, will be the single contact point for students in all matters and will act as liaison between students and the administrative departments at their institution. All European institutes also have an International Relations Office that is used to guide foreign students and researchers, providing necessary material to help them find their way in the full program. The consortium aims to meet the highest quality requirements. More information on programme quality and evaluation is available from the Online Information and Application Module.


Associate partners

(in alphabetical order, contact details available to TROPIMUNDO staff and students)

Royal Museum for Central Africa (BE)

AgroParisTech (FR)

AMAP Sustainability (SE)

Biodiversity International (IT)

Botanic Garden Meise (BE)

Corporación para la Investigación in Ciencias Marinas Manejo de Recursos y Tecnología (CO)

Centre de Cooperation Internationale en Recherche Agronomique (FR)

EtcTerra (FR)

Society for Tropical Ecology - gtö (DE)t

Institut de Recherche pour le Développement (FR)

Institut Français de Pondichéry (IN)

Instituto de Ecología (MX)

International Society for Mangrove Ecosystems (JP)

Jimma University (ET)

Kenya Marine and Fisheries Research Institute (KE)

Kenya Wildlife Service (KE)      

King Abdallah university of Science and Technology (SA)

Mangrove Action Plan (US)

MangroveWatch (AU)

Malaysia Perak State Forestry Department (MY)

Malaysian Mokutan & Trading (MY)

Museo delle Scienze (IT)

National University of Singapore (SG)

Royal Academy for Overseas Sciences (BE)

Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences (BE)

Smithsonian Institution - Smithsonian Environmental Research Center (US)

South African Institute for Aquatic Biodiversity (ZA)

Sud Expert Plantes Développement Durable - SEP2D (FR)

Sustainable Bolivia (BO)

Sylhet Agricultural University (BD)

ULB Coopération (BE)

Universidad Central del Ecuador (EC)

Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (MX)

Universidad Nacional del Santa (PE)

Universidade Estadual Paulista (BR)

Universitas Atma Jaya Yogyakarta (ID)

Université de la Réunion (FR)

Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (MY)

United States Geological Survey (US)

Universität Wien (AT)

Usense (BE)

Vlaams Instituut voor Technologisch Onderzoek (BE)

Flanders Marine Institute (BE)

Zentrum für Mariene Tropenforschung
Leibniz Centre for Marine Tropical Research (DE)

Former associate partners