Mr. Yoshihiko Iida joined UNU-IAS as a Research Associate for the Operating Unit Ishikawa/Kanazawa (OUIK) in May 2014. He is the main researcher for the Satoyama and Satoumi (SAS) project, which focuses on multi-scale assessments of biodiversity and ecosystem services in the Hokuriku region of Japan. He undertakes research in the field of sustainable natural resource management — including cultural aspects — in rural and mountainous areas of the Hakusan region, which is designated as a biosphere reserve by the UNESCO Man and the Biosphere (MAB) programme. Local natural resource management activities in Satoumi, along the Hokuriku region’s coastline, are also focal issues he will analyse in terms of their institutional and social networks and biological resources.
Prior to joining UNU, Mr. Iida contributed to several research projects during his doctoral course at Kyoto University’s Graduate School of Global Environmental Studies (GSGES), including studies on Kyoto’s urban biodiversity and its citizens’ symbiotic lifestyle (2013-2014), area landscape planning for the future of Kyoto city (2012-2013), cultural and ecological research on large and old trees in Shiga prefecture’s Kutsuki region (2011-2012), health assessment of mountain cherry tree landscapes in Nara prefecture’s Yoshinoyama (2008-2011). Each project was related to the engagement of local stakeholders, local governments and cultural ecosystem services and biodiversity. He is currently preparing his doctoral thesis on “Phenological assessment for sustainable management of cultural mountain cherry tree landscapes”.
He received a master’s degree in Global Environmental Studies (Landscape and Ecological Planning) from GSGES, Kyoto University after graduating from the department of Geography at Tokyo Metropolitan University (receiving a BSc in Geography, with specialization in climatology). He also received a Bachelor of Business Administration from Yokohama National University, Japan. Mr. Iida worked for the Japan Ground Self-Defense Force as a sergeant, specializing in weather observation and weather information services from the global scale to the regional scale, which he cultivated over the eight years he spent at the Central Air Traffic Control and Weather Unit in Tokyo.