Welcome to NRI

Dr Leonel D. Lara-Estrada

Fellow in Agroforestry

Agriculture, Health and Environment Department

+44 (0)1634 88 3015

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Leonel Lara-Estrada joined NRI at the beginning of 2020. He moved from Germany, where he did his doctorate on evaluating the potential for adaptation and mitigation of agroforestry systems to climate change, at the R.U. Sustainability and Global Change of the Hamburg Universität (2019). He obtained an M.Sc. degree in Tropical agroforestry from The Tropical Agricultural Research and Higher Education Center (CATIE) in Costa Rica, his Master’s thesis describes the effects of biophysical factors on the coffee quality and productivity. He completed his B.Sc. degree in Agronomy at the Universidad Nacional Agraria in Nicaragua, his thesis describes the response of different common bean genotypes to mineral fertilization.

After his Master’s degree, Leonel has worked in research and development for the industry and academy. He worked as R&D coordinator for ECOM-Coffee group in Nicaragua (2006-2009) where he was in charge of validating and promoting the use of new coffee hybrids in agroforestry systems as a sustainable intensification strategy for coffee production in the Central American Region. Next, he worked for CATIE in a pilot project to develop a Weather-Index Insurance for coffee in Nicaragua and Honduras (2010-2011). After this, he became a guest researcher at the R.U. Sustainability and Global Change, where he worked in the development of a model to infer the quality of the coffee produced in Nicaragua (2013-2014). Then, Leonel worked in a pilot-project implemented by the World Coffee Research (WCR) and RD2Vision, where Leonel led the activities to identify the threats for coffee production in El Salvador, and the possible farming adaptation practices to face the expected impacts of climate change on the coffee areas in the country (2018).

In parallel, Leonel had been invited to participate as an instructor/speaker in courses and workshops on sustainable agriculture from universities, NGOs and local technical schools (2006-2011, 2017); the topics included agroforestry, coffee breeding, best farming practices, and others.
During this career, Leonel has collaborated and interacted with researchers, practitioners, decision-makers, and farmers; and local and international organizations.

  • 2021. Lara-Estrada L., Rasche L., and Schneider U.A. Land in Central America will become less suitable for coffee cultivation under climate change. Regional Environmental Change, 21(3), 88. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10113-021-01803-0
  • 2018. Lara-Estrada L., Rasche L., Sucar L.E., & Schneider U.A. Inferring Missing Climate Data for Agricultural Planning Using Bayesian Networks. Land, 7(1), 4. https://doi.org/10.3390/land7010004
  • 2017. Lara-Estrada L., Rasche L., and Schneider U.A. Modeling land suitability for Coffea arabica L. in Central America. Environmental Modelling & Software, 95, 196–209. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.envsoft.2017.06.028
  • 2011. Bertrand B., Alpizar E., Lara L., SantaCreo R., Hidalgo M., Quijano J.M., Charmetant P., Montagnon C., Georget F., Etienne H. 2011. Performance of Coffea arabica F1 hybrids in agroforestry and full-sun cropping systems in comparison with American pure line cultivars. Euphytica 181(2)147-158. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10681-011-0372-7

Leonel is interested in evaluating the potential of agroforestry and agricultural systems under diverse scenarios, particularly considering different farming strategies and socioeconomic and biophysical constraints. Including the performance of such systems considering production, adaptation and mitigation objectives under climate change conditions.

Also, Leonel is interested to describe the potential of production systems and farming practices in the scope of sustainable intensification agriculture. Especially, exploring the impact of the goods and services provided by agroforestry systems.

As a final and transversal objective, Leonel looks for generating data, knowledge, and tools to support decision making and farm planning processes at the farm, local and regional levels

Member of International Environmental Modelling and Software Society