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Marion Alexandre,

A painter and illustrator, Marion was born in the South of France, where her parents enjoyed a bohemian life among the olive groves where her father worked. In 1986 they decided to return to their home region of Normandy. Leaving a landscape of mountains and perched villages, she arrived in a landscape of bocage where trees were equally very present. Trees have accompanied Marion since her early childhood.

"I've always loved drawing, loosing myself and then finding myself again in the meanders of its branches".

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Emilie Barrucand,

A committed anthropologist, she works with indigenous peoples in the Amazon and Brazil, and other countries in Asia and Africa. She is founder and director of the NGO Wayanga and ambassador in France of the international movement “BelieveEarth”.
She also acts as an expert advisor to international organizations and policies for the implementation of strategies for the respect of the rights of indigenous peoples and the protection of the environment. She also works with government and international funds on sustainable development projects with strong social and environmental impacts.
She is the winner of the «Prix Conscience» and was elected in 2010, "French woman of the year committed to a sustainable way of life and for the preservation of the environment", by the magazine Féminin Bio and the Fondation LéaNature.
She is the author of the book «Wayanga: Amazonia en Sursis», 2005, editions Cherche Midi and «Les Gardiens de la forêt - Sagesse, art de vivre et philosophie du bonheur des peuples autochtones», 2023. It shows in these books how indigenous peoples protect biodiversity and climate, gives the relevant opinion of these peoples on our ways of acting, as well as their conception of Nature and their knowledge in agroecology, climate prediction and adaptation. They also teach us how to reinvent our relationship with Nature and better protect it. Through her interviews with the Kayapo, Paresi, Guarani and Huni Kuin Indians, she describes how these peoples understand education, family, work, leadership, spirituality, resilience, harmony with themselves and others.

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Romain Blanc,

Romain began his journey in the forestry world in 2007 with an apprenticeship as a forester-lumberjack in the layered forests of Le Locle – La Chaux-de-Fonds. He then trained as a forester at the CEFOR forest training center in Lyss, then continued with a bachelor's degree in forest sciences at the Bernese University of Applied Sciences (HES) HAFL in Zollikofen. He is now a teacher at CEFOR, a cantonal forest planner in Neuchâtel and a collaborator at the forestry competence center in Lyss.

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Claire Boulch-Pedler,

An adult trainer for 10 years, Claire Boulch trained in outdoor learning in Finland, where she lived for 3 years. She wrote a research paper in Educational Sciences on the effects of outdoor learning and connection to nature on child development. This university work followed an observation internship in a forest school. The research results were collected in the documentary “Finnish Forest School, Meaningful Education”. Responsible for teacher training at Formiris, Claire was able to identify the needs of teachers and introduce the practice of the outdoor classroom as a training priority. As independent trainer, she now trains, with enthusiasm, teachers from the Loire region in the practice of the outdoor classroom.

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Dominique Bourg,

A philosopher and honorary professor at the University of Lausanne, he is in charge of the  "Ecology in questions" collection, and the "New Earth" collection with Sophie Swaton; the “Grands articles” series and the magazine

He is a member of many organisations: National Council for Sustainable Development, Grenelle de l'Environnement, etc. and scientific advisory bodies: Ademe (2004-2006), FNH (1998 – 2019), Foresight body of the State of Vaud (2008 - 2017), Zoein Foundation (2018 - ).

His research focuses on ecological thinking, the circular economy, ecological democracy and ecological issues. He has written many books on these matters.

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Susanne Braun,

Susanne was born in the forest area of Bavaria (Germany), and qualified as a forestry and timber industry engineer at Munich technical university; she later obtained a master’s degree in tropical forestry at Montpellier ENGREF-Agroparitech (France).

In this way she was able to aquire the necessary skills to the management and exploitation of forests in a profitable and ecological way, which added to her professional experience in Rothenbuch (Germany).

Suzanne has also studied the impact of varying degrees of exploitation on the level of forest natural health, compared with that of primary beech forests or integral nature reserves.

As a partner in the forestry smallholding owners’ group of Waldmunchen (WBV, Waldbesitzerverband) she herself manages the family forest in her native region.

For four years, she was also the coordinator of an international cooperation project (GIZ) in the Congo basin, which aimed at improving the coordination, organisation, planning and animation of a network of environment and forestry training institutions in central Africa, as well as developing a training policy agreed upon across government departments.

She has been living in France since 2012 (in Dordogne then in Corrèze) and currently works for the ecological forestry group “Avenir Forêts”. She is officially a Professional Forestry Manager (GFP) by the DREAL of the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region.

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Professor of Philosophy of Science, Laboratory of Minimal Intelligence, University of Murcia, specialist in cognitive philosophy, author of numerous publications on plant neurobiology and ecological psychology. His latest book “Planta Sapiens” has been translated into several languages.


Lara Chaslot,

Lara has been an actress for over 10 years. She works with many theatrical companies between Angers and Paris.

Supported by the MONA BLANK company, she has published her first writing "L'arbre endormi" ("The sleeping tree"), a poetic and ecological utopia where a tree is the main character! 


Gilbert Cochet,

Associate professor of life and earth sciences, a naturalist and photographer, Gilbert has traveled France, Europe and the world for over twenty years in search of the best preserved wild ecosystems. He collaborates on a daily basis in his research work with his wife Béatrice Kremer-Cochet.

Gilbert is a member of the the French National Museum of Natural History, a designated expert at the Council of Europe, and the president of the Scientific Council of the "Gorges de l'Ardèche" nature reserve.

In the "Wild Worlds" collection, he has published "Réensauvageons la France" ("Rewilding France") (2018) with Stéphane Durand and "Europe réensauvagée, vers un nouveau monde" ("Toward a new world with a re-wilded Europe")France (2020) with Béatrice Kremer-Cochet, .

He is also the author of "Rivers and wild rivers along the French nature reserves" (Delachaux and Niestlé, 2010) and "Le Grand-Duc d'Europe" ("The European Eagle-Owl") (Delachaux and Niestlé, 2006).

He is involved in the charity "Forêts Sauvages". (Wild Forests)

Béatrice Kremer-Cochet,

Gilbert Cochet and Béatrice Kremer-Cocher founded together with a group of friends the association Forêts Sauvages (Wild Forests), and are respectively its president and vice-president. Both are university teachers and experts within the Ardèche regional Scientific Council of natural heritage, and above all are passionate naturalists on the ground, and have been travelling together across our planet probing the state of the natural environment for decades.

They have co-authored "Rewilded Europe" published by Actes Sud in 2020 (France).

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Marie-Anne Cohendet,

Marie-Anne Cohendet is a professor of public law at the Sorbonne Law School. She has directed the public law department of the Doctoral School of Law at the Sorbonne and currently co-runs masters 1 and 2 in environmental law. She is the author and co-author of numerous books and articles on constitutional law and environmental law, including: "Constitutional law on the environment", "Ecological democracy", "An undisciplined thought", "The deliberative Citizen Initiative Referendum", and more.

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Pascale D’Erm,

French journalist, essayist and director, specialist in nature and environment issues, Pascale has worked for several foundations and Ushuaïa TV where she directed the investigations of the magazine “Passage au Vert”. She has collaborated with several magazines and written many books on nature and its benefits on well being.

Her latest book “The forest school”,written in collaboration with the French Network for pedagogy through nature, is right there. Between pedagogy, educational principles and workbooks, the book offers a complete view of the various ways to do ‘forest schooling’.

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Eric Fabre

A journalist by training, and with a degree in literature and a master's degree in history, he is a graduate of CESA HEC. He was regional councilor for Limousin and also created several cultural associations (Eymoutiers-Culture-et-Mécénat, Les Amis du Théâtre de la Passerelle, Compagnie Corde Verte), before founding in February 2019 with Francis Hallé, the Francis Hallé Association for the Primary Forest.

Cécile Faulhaber,

After long studies and a successful career in new technologies in Paris, Cécile felt the call of  “something else”. She left her comfortable life to go in search of a fairer life. She walked for a long time, alone, in nature, where she first experienced Connection, carried out alternative projects, and then synchronicities took her to British Columbia. The global vision and the experiences she had at the Wolf school were so powerful that she decided to make a film of it, "The Other Connection, a school in the wilderness". This school, based on indigenous cultures, is one of the most successful in the world in terms of the time spent by children in nature. Its purpose is to repair culture through mentorship and community, with nature being the teacher. "It takes a whole village to raise a child."

Chrystele Ferjou,

Departmental education advisor, Crystèle is also coordinator of the departmental group "Classe Dehors"(Outdoor classroom) in Deux-Sèvres (79). A practitioner of the outdoor classroom since 2010, she provides numerous training courses on the subject. Co-author of the book "Take the children outside!" published by Robert Laffont in 2020 and author of the educational book "Once upon a time... the class outside!" published by Hachette Education in 2022.

In January 2022, she took over the co-management of the family organic farm in dual activity.

Gabriel GABRIEL,

Gabriel Gabriel studied Yoga, Āyurveda and the different branches of Indian philosophy with Sri TK Sribhashyam, in France and India. He is involved in teacher training at the Yogakshemam school, where he notably teaches Āyurveda applied to Yoga.

His latest book devoted to Āyurveda (in the process of being published), also gives an important place to trees; not only tree medicine (Vrikshāyurveda) but also how trees enable human beings to heal from their illnesses.

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Alfonso Gomez,

Born in Spain, Alfonso Gomez arrived in Geneva at the age of 14. After obtaining a degree in economics and social sciences, he worked briefly as a bank auditor, then turned to humanitarian work by joining the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC). Delegate-administrator from 1989 to 2004, he was notably sent on missions to Iran, Sudan and the former Yugoslavia. In 2004, after completing his training with a master's degree in administrative management, he joined the State of Geneva, where he served for six years as Administrative and Financial Director within the Department of Public Education. In 2010, he became Deputy Director of the People's Conservatory of Music, Dance and Theatre, a position he held until May 2020.

Alfonso Gomez joined the Geneva Greens in 2004. Municipal councilor of the City of Geneva from 2013 to 2020 and member of the finance commission, group leader at the Municipal Council and member of the management of the cantonal party, he co-chaired, then chaired the City of Geneva section between 2012 and 2016. Elected to the Administrative Council of the City of Geneva on April 7, 2020, he took over as head of the Department of Finance, Environment and Housing (DFEL) on June 1, 2020.

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Paola Deda

Director of the Forests, Housing and Planning Division at the European Economic Commission of the United Nations (UN-EEC). 

Before entering the UN-EEC in 2008, Paola had been working for the United Nations Programme for the environment in Montreal, Bonn and Geneva. She holds a master's degree in architecture from the Milan Polytechnique school, and a doctorate in regional development and environmental planning from the Turin Polytechnique School.


Francis HALLÉ,

Botanist and biologist, Francis Hallé graduated from the Sorbonne and the University of Abidjan. Professor of botany at the University of Montpellier, he specialized in the study of trees and tropical rainforests.

Among his works, the series of scientific missions he led from 1986 to 2003, called "The Raft of the Peaks" is remarkable. Thanks to an innovative light platform installed above the tree tops of the primary forests, he and his team were able to observe the forest, the trees from above, at the level of the canopy in an original way and thus discover an extraordinary plant and animal  biodiversity still unknown in Guyana, Gabon, Madagascar and Panama. Based on an original idea by Francis Hallé, the filmmaker Luc Jacquet made a film in 2013 on threatened tropical forests: “Once upon a forest”.

He has written many books including: In praise of plants, The Raft of the Peaks, Plant Architecture, Advocacy for the tree, The Origins of Plants, The Tropical Condition, For a good use of trees, A garden after the rain, ... and a few films including "Once upon a forest"...

Olivier HAMANT,

Olivier Hamant is a biologist and research director at INRAE, within the Ecole Normale Supérieure in Lyon. He has published over a hundred scientific papers on plant biophysics and development, showing in particular how plants use forces to perceive their own form. This research topic also raises the question of the robustness and resilience of living organisms from a new angle. Nourished by this fundamental research, and in his function as director of the Michel Serres Institute, he contributes to several projects in the fields of art, science and education around the existential issues of the Anthropocene. The question of biological resilience comes in particular to feed a reflection on the lessons to be learned from the natural world on how to inhabit the Earth.


Benoit Hartenstein,


Benoît Hartenstein is a notary in Metzervisse (Moselle), founder of the association "La Voix de l'Arbre" (The Voice of the Tree), member of a national multidisciplinary reflection group supported by the CAUE (Council of Architecture, Urbanism and Environment ) of Seine et Marne and by the ARBRES association (Arbres Remarquables:  Assessment, Research, Study and Safeguarding) whose objective is to formulate proposals to improve the legislation protecting trees, excluding forest, co-correspondent Moselle for the association ARBRES, which aims  for the recognition of the Rights of Nature.

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Quentin Hiernaux,

Philosopher of science, FNRS Qualified Researcher in Belgium, lecturer at the Brussels Free University (ULB), he is part of the Applied Ethics Research Group of the Philosophy Research Center (PHI) of the ULB. He is also a scientific collaborator at the Botanical Garden Meise.
He is interested in a little-studied theme: the philosophy of plants. It addresses the philosophical and ethical questions raised by plants as well as the status of plants in the history of science and in the history of philosophy.

Quentin Hiernaux is also coordinator of the "Innoviris Doubt my sciences" project, which promotes the scientific culture to young people aged 16 to 18 through epistemology workshops organised in schools..

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Antonio Hodgers,

Son of opponents of the Argentinian dictature, Antonio Hodgers reached Switerland in 1981 together with his mother and sister, after transiting through Italy (1977) and Mexico (1979). He became political refugee in 1983.

Between 1993 and 1996, he sat in the Meyrin Youth Parliament, of which he was president in 1995-96. Between 1998 and 2006 he was also president of "J'y vis, j'y vote" ("I live here, I vote here"), an association that promotes voting rights for foreigners at local council level. In 1997 he was elected at the Grand Conseil de la République et Canton de Genève.

Between 2006 and 2008, he became president of the Geneva Greens, and sat on the board of the cantonal legislative body until 2007. In 2007 he was elected at the National Council, then re-elected in 2011, while presiding over the Greens parliamentary group from 2010 to 2013. On 10th November 2013, he was elected to the State Council of the Republic and Canton of Geneva, then re-elected on 6th May 2018 and 30th April 2023. 

He is in charge of the Department for Planning and Environment, and for the second time is president of the government, over the 2023-24 period.

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Alice Khelifa,

Alice Khelifa is in charge of communication, documentary and pedagogy at the Zoein Foundation. After 12 years as a journalist, Alice wanted to engage more concretely in the ecological transition by joining the Zoein Foundation, and by co-founding the association For My Planet, which gives young people the means to take action to restore their connection to nature and to each other.

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Laure Oberli,

Laure Oberli is an anthropologist and a forest engineer, forest planner for the canton of Neuchâtel and teacher in a professional school for the training of foresters. At the same time, she is involved in communication, the transmission of knowledge and respect for Nature. Its flagship project, entitled "l'Arbre-lien"(the Tree-Link), aims to promote the respect and preservation of very old trees as well as the recognition of the various values (spiritual, aesthetic, cultural, etc.) that can be attributed to the plant world. When she's not visiting old trees, she enjoys the company of the "elders" of the human world. Passionate about ancestral knowledge, she seeks to acquire precious know-how (and interpersonal skills!) from the guardians of our societies, before they take these precious heritages with them.

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Michael Reinhart,


Head of the Forest Division at the Federal Office for the Environment (OFEV).

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Marie-Monique Robin,

Marie-Monique was born in 1960 on a farm in Poitou (France). After studying in Germany, she graduated from the University Center for Journalism Education (CUEJ). She began her career at the Capa agency, for which she directed numerous investigative documentaries. In 2011, she set up a civic production company with her family. In 38 years, Marie-Monique has produced more than 200 reports and documentaries. A dozen of them are associated with books. Winner of around thirty international prizes, she received the Albert-Londres prize in 1995, then in 2009 the Rachel Carson prize in Norway. In 2016, she received the Christophe de Ponfilly prize from the SCAM for her entire body of work.

Among his documentaries and books:

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Philippe Roch,

Philippe Roch is a doctor in biochemistry. Committed very early to the protection of nature and the environment, he was Secretary of State and Director of the Federal Office for the Environment, Forests and Landscape from 1992 to 2005 (Switzerland).

At the international level, Philippe Roch has represented Switzerland in environmental negotiations. Member and twice co-chair of the Board of Trustees of the Global Environment Facility (GEF/GEF), he served on the Board of Trustees of the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) . He was also President of the Conference of the Parties to the Basel Convention (1999-2002) and the Rotterdam Convention (2004-2005). Member of the Ethics and Deontology Committee of the University of Geneva, Philippe Roch currently works as an independent consultant in the field of the environment. He is dedicated to research, writing and communication on ecological, philosophical and spiritual issues. In 2008, he received an honorary doctorate in geosciences and environment from the University of Lausanne "for his contribution to environmental awareness and the development of knowledge in this field in Switzerland and abroad, for his humanity and his enlightened nonconformity".

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Lia Rosso,

Her interest in science is above all marked by its impact on daily life, as well as in existence. Doctor in cellular and molecular biology from the University of Nice Sophia-Antipolis and Milan, she then worked at the University of Lausanne as a researcher.

In 2010, she became a freelance journalist and, as she likes to say herself, a scientific “discloser”. She also gives conferences and courses for the general public on topics related to biology. After creating the publishing house Rosso Éditions in 2014, she published her first scientific novel, "Le Pituicyte", a year later. In 2019, she published "La Nature Sauvage en Nous" with Éditions Slaktine, a scientific "disclosure" text supported in part by the Association of Swiss Science Journalists and the Swiss Academy of Sciences.

In parallel to her scientific dissemination activities, she currently works at the State of Fribourg as a scientific collaborator.

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Melila Saucy,


Mélila discovered the layered forest during an internship in the Leberberg forest, near Solothurn (Switzerland). After a bachelor's degree in forestry sciences at the Bernese University of Applied Sciences (UAS) HAFL in Zollikofen, she returned to Leberberg as an joint forest warden. Since then, she has been involved in promoting gentle and close-to-nature management of the Leberberg forests, part of which has been listed as a UNESCO World Natural Heritage Site since 2021.

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Melila Saucy,


Mélila discovered the layered forest during an internship in the Leberberg forest, near Solothurn (Switzerland). After a bachelor's degree in forestry sciences at the Bernese University of Applied Sciences (UAS) HAFL in Zollikofen, she returned to Leberberg as an joint forest warden. Since then, she has been involved in promoting gentle and close-to-nature management of the Leberberg forests, part of which has been listed as a UNESCO World Natural Heritage Site since 2021.

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Julie Schnydrig-Kettenacker,


Julie has studied psychology at the University of Geneva, as well as at the Berlin Humbold Universität. As a postgraduate in Social Psychology, she has always been interested in the workings of social influence and impact on human behaviours, as well as in the analysis of collective phenomena.

She grew up in a family deeply engaged at the environmental level, and they gave her these strong environmentalist values from birth.

Having worked in the domain of family and education policy for about 15 years, Julie has been involved in promoting children's rights and the defence of their interests, as well as in associations protecting the environment. She was president of the Geneva branch of Pro Natura Switzerlan until June 2023, and sits on the Climate Council mandated by the Geneva State Council.

Since August 2023, she has brought together her expertise in public administration with her commitments in sustainable development as the new director of the Agenda 21 for a Sustainable City Service of the city of Geneva.

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Jean-Pierre Sorg,

Forest Engineer and doctor in Natural Sciences from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology of Zurich (ETHZ), Assistant to the chair of silviculture at the ETHZ 1970-1977, further trained in silviculture, forest vegetation and phytosociology, holds a doctoral thesis in natural sciences on a topic relating to the management of mountain spruce forests.

Specialised in tropical forestry (reforestation, preservation and management of natural mountain forests and dense dry forests, agroforestry, village forestry, applied research for development).

Scientific collaborator and head of the Forestry for Development Group (GFD) in the Department of Environmental Sciences at ETHZ (1986-2011). Teacher in international forestry and agroforestry. Research topics: participatory forest management, human-forest interface, agroforestry, non-timber forest products, management of forest landscapes. Numerous publications and work reports.

Editor of the Swiss Forest Journal (2002-2007) and amateur botanist.

Member of the central committee of Pro Natura Switzerland (1996-2018), vice-president (2010-2018) and also various natural science societies and development cooperation associations.

Honorary member of Pro Natura (2018) and Doctor honoris causa of the Forestry University of Sofia, Bulgaria (2005).

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Hervé Coves

Agricultural engineer, Franciscan monk and great supporter of permaculture, he is passionate about living things, bacteria, plants, fungi and animals as well as the relationships that unite them. At the head of a research service for the Corrèze Chamber of Agriculture, he notably manages the experimental truffle of Chartrier-Ferrière.

  His maxim: "Life is beautiful".


Sophie Swaton,

A philosopher and economist, a woman of action worried about the collapse of life, Sophie Swaton founded the "Zoein Foundation" in 2017. Lecturer and researcher at the Faculty of Geosciences of the University of Lausanne, specialist in transition issues including economics and spiritualities, she conceptualized the Ecological Transition Income, which is currently being tested. Sophie Swaton also co-directs the Ecology in Question and Nouvelles Terres collections at the Presses Universitaires de France.

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Odile Tacchi, Sponsor of the Second International Tree Forum

From 1983 to 2004, on foot and with backpack, Jean-Pierre and Odile Tacchi repeatedly explored the rainforest of western Canada, which covers the mountains bordering the Pacific in British Columbia, one of the last major primary forests on the planet.

The work “ In the Western Canadian Rainforest », a real plea for the preservation of this forest, gives us a unique and edifying, sometimes poignant testimony, on this ultimate refuge for wildlife. “Only in the midst of nature free from any trace of human occupation, in total solitude, can we express the feeling of the sublime", according to the author, Jean-Pierre Tacchi.

An engineer whose professional career took place between IGN (Institut Géographique National) and CNRS (Centre National de Recherche Scientifique), Jean-Pierre (1940-2018) showed an insatiable taste for wide open spaces from adolescence. A lifelong diarist, through his work he makes us live, day by day and over the years, a great adventure in the heart of the temperate rain forest of British Columbia.

Odile, his wife and traveling companion, will give us her testimony while alerting us to the too short-term disappearance of one of the last great wild forests on the planet: a world of giants, lush vegetation, centuries-old trees, among tallest in the world...


Paula Tiirakari,

Kindergarten teacher in Finland. She is one of the pioneers of Nature schools in Finland and started her own Nature kindergarten in the early 2000s, with great success. She has trained many Finnish and foreign students in the nature area. She also helped to start a pre-school in the United States. She also works in the Nature area with her community in Järvenpää, Finland.

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Marine Yzquierdo,

Marine Yzquierdo is a lawyer in environmental law and administrator of the association "Notre Affaire à Tous" ("Our common business'), which works for climate justice and the rights of living beings. She assists collectives and local elected officials who wish to deploy the rights of nature on their territory (Tavignanu, Têt, Garonne rivers, Parliament of the forest, etc.) and has edited the work "Les droits de la Nature - Toward a new paradigm for the protection of life”.

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Ernst Zürcher,Sponsor of the First and Second International Tree Forum,

World-renowned forest engineer, doctor of natural sciences, professor emeritus and researcher in wood sciences at the Bernese University of Applied Sciences, until recently lecturer at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Lausanne (EPFL), at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology of Zurich (ETHZ) and at the University of Lausanne. He studies more particularly the temporal structures of trees (chronobiology). He is the author of numerous scientific articles and the general public book "Les Arbres entre visible et invisible" published by Acte Sud and several other works: "Planting a tree and creating a forest", "Listening to the Forest". ...

He is also at the center or at the origin of several documentaries and films.

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