Virgilio Viana


Place of Birth Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil
Nomination 3 August 2021
Field Biology
Title CEO at Foundation For Amazon Sustainability (FAS); Special Professor at Dom Cabral Foundation; Guest Professor at National Amazon Research Institute (INPA)


Most important awards, prizes and academies
Director General, Foundation for Amazon Sustainability (FAS), 2008-present; Member of the Lancet Commission on Covid-19 (2020);  International Fellow, International Institute for Environment and Development, London, 2011-16; Visiting Professor at National Institute of Amazon Researches (INPA), 2011-present; Visiting Professor, University of California at Santa Barbara, 2010; Visiting Professor at Yale University, 2009; Professor of Tropical Forestry, Department of Forest Sciences, University of São Paulo, ESALQ, 1989-2010; Member, Global Agenda Council on Poverty and Sustainable Development (GAC) organized by World Economic Forum (WEF); Member, International Task Force on Education for Sustainable Development, Earth Institute, Columbia University; State Secretary, Environment and Sustainable Development of the State of Amazonas, 2003-08; President and founder of IMAFLORA Institute 1993-99; Founding Board Member of IPÊ, Instituto Terra and FUNBIO; Coordinator of the Sustainable Development Solutions Network for the Amazon (SDSN Amazônia); Member of the Ethics in Action Commission for Sustainable Development, Pontifical Academy of Sciences; Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Alliance for the Bioeconomy of the Amazon (ABIO); Creator of the Covid Amazon Alliance; Founding member of the Instituto Amigos da Amazônia; Co-chair of Forests, Biodiversity and Environmental Services of the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN); International Fellow of the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED); Member of the Royal Society Task Force on Ecosystem-based adaptation and resilience; International Advisor to the Environmental Services and Poverty Alleviation (ESPA) Program.
Awards: Citizen of Amazonas State 2021, awarded by the State Assembly of Amazonas State; UNESCO 2019 Prize on Education for Sustainable Development; Prémio Calouste Gulbenkian 2016 – Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian; Honourable Mention in the Celso Furtado Regional Development Award, Ministry of National Integration 2012 – Secretariat for Regional Development; Environmental Chancellor – Brazilian Institute for the Defense of Nature (IBDN); National Highlight in Sustainable Development – Congress and International Exhibition on Forests – FOREST, Brasília; National Highlight in Environment, Sustainable Development and Social Responsibility – BIOSFERA Environmental Institute, Rio de Janeiro; Featured in Biodiversity Conservation, World Parks Congress, Durban / South Africa; Diploma Citizen Humaitaense, City Council of Humaitá/AM; Title of Citizen of Amazonas – Legislative Assembly of the State of Amazonas; Diploma of the Order of Legislative Merit Medal of the State of Amazonas, Legislative Assembly of the State of Amazonas; Diploma for his remarkable contribution to the knowledge of medicinal plants in Brazil as a supporter, XVIII Symposium on Medicinal Plants in Brazil INPA; For the relevant services rendered in defense of the Amazon - Military Police of the State of Amazonas; Amazon and Citizenship Award and Nilton Lins Journalism Award, UniNilton Lins; Forest Certification and Climate Change Award, Yale University; Sustainable Development the Amazon Award: From Theory to Practice, Yale University; Top Socioenvironmental Award, Third Sector National Category, Association of Sales and Marketing Managers of Minas Gerais, ADVB MG; Forest Values Award, Professional Association of Forest Engineers of the State of Amazonas, APEFEA; Contribution Award for Sustainable Development, encouraging and promoting adequate, socially beneficial and economically viable environmental forest and agricultural management, IMAFLORA; Recognition Award for State Environmental Conservation Policies (PZFV) - US Embassy; Recognition of Contribution, APAE of the Municipality of Iranduba/AM.

Summary of scientific research
My professional career has been focused on four tracks: scientist, public policy, civil society organizations and international relations. All four have something in common: a passion for education. They include public schools in the slums of Rio de Janeiro, academic teaching at the University of São Paulo, and creating public policies to back environmental education and south-south international cooperation.
As a scientist, I began my career as a young scientist during my graduation on forestry at Luis Queiroz College, University of São Paulo, with a focus on genetics and ecology. My academic career was inspired by my work in environmental education under the leadership of Professor Darcy Ribeiro - one of the most distinguished educators of Brazil. Later, I earned a Masters and PhD in Evolutionary and Organismic Biology from Harvard University (1989) and did postdoctoral work at the University of Florida. I was also a tenured professor at Luis Queiroz College, University of São Paulo, from 1989 to 2010, and a visiting professor at various institutions, including the International Institute for Environment and Development, Yale University and the University of California, Santa Barbara.
In the public policy area, I became the first State Secretary for Environment and Sustainable Development of Amazonas, the Brazilian state with the largest forest cover in the continent (1.5 million Km2). I coordinated a cross sectoral policy of sustainable development – the Green Free Economic Zone, which became a historic reference in Brazil for its innovations and results. The State of Amazonas enacted the first climate change law in Brazil and implemented a number of other pioneering policy initiatives, which led to the reduction of the deforestation rate by more than 70% and increased protected areas by more than 12 million hectares. As a State Secretary, I was able to launch a large multi-institutional environmental education program that changed the paradigm of public debate towards a positive perception for environmental policies. This education program was key to the successes obtained in Amazonas.
In civil society organization, I have had different roles. I chaired the consultation in Brazil in the process of creation of the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) in 1993. I was founder and president of IMAFLORA, the first forest certification organization in Latin America. I also participated in the creation of the Ecological Research Institute (IPÊ), the Brazilian Biodiversity Fund (FUNBIO), Instituto Terra and the Institute of Conservation and Sustainable Development of the Amazon (IDESAM). Since 2008, I am the CEO of the Sustainable Amazon Foundation (FAS), an institution in which I was one of the mentors. FAS has grown to be one of the largest Brazilian NGOs and is responsible for implementing one of the largest programs of payments for ecosystem services (PES) in the world. This REDD+ program (Bolsa Floresta) benefits over 570 local communities, 9,000 families and 10 million hectares of Amazonian rainforest. FAS became the largest NGO of the Brazilian Amazon, and has been elected the best NGO in the Amazon twice (2017 and 2019). FAS also received the Gulbenkian Annual Award (2015) and the UNESCO-Japan Prize on Education for Sustainable Development (2019).
In international cooperation, I have served in a number of international committees and initiatives. At present, I am a member of the Executive Committee of the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN), as well as chair of the SDSN-Amazon. I have served as a member of the Ethics and Action Committee of the Pontifical Academy of Sciences, International Advisory Board of the Ecosystem Services for Poverty Alleviation programme in the UK (DIFID, NERC) and served as a member of the Royal Society ́s Task.
Force on Ecosystem-based Adaptation and Resilience. I also served as a member of the World Economic Forum (WEF)’s Global Agenda Council on Poverty and Sustainable Development – among others. I have been quite active in South-South cooperation for sustainable development and climate change agenda.
Currently my scientific activity is focused on developing solutions for sustainable development, with a focus on the Amazon. I am writing a book with a synthesis of results from practical action. I am also serving as advisor to a number of Ph.D. and master students at various universities, including Dom Cabral Foundation, National Amazon Research Institute (INPA) and Amazon State University (UEA).

Main publications
VIANA, V. Caderno indígenas na Amazônia [livro eletrônico]: juventudes indígenas do baixo Rio Negro, 2020; W.K. Al-Delaimy, V. Ramanathan, M. Sánchez Sorondo (eds.), Health of People, Health of Planet and Our Responsibility, Viana, V.; Chapter 13. Health Climate Justice and Deforestation in the Amazon, 2020; VIANA, V., ADEODATO, S., Em nome da vida na floresta, 2020; VON BRAUN. J, KAUFFELS T., RAVEN. P., VOGEL. J., M. SÁNCHEZ SORONDO (eds.), Science and Actions for Species Protection. Noah’s Arks for the 21st Century; Editora The Pontifical Academy of Sciences; VIANA, M.V. Chapter 18 Engaging Traditional Populations and Indigenous Peoples in Biodiversity Conservation through Amazon Bioeconomy, 2020; VIANA, V., ADEODATO, S., PESSOA, A. Retratos Culturais do Arco e Flecha no Amazonas: Uma ponte entre a tradição e a modernidade. 1. ed. 124p. Manaus, 2016; VIANA, V., ADEODATO, S., Fundação Amazonas Sustentável 10 anos: Desenvolvendo Soluções Participativas para a Melhoria da Qualidade de vida e Conservação Ambiental. 1. ed. 120p. Manaus: Fundação Amazonas Sustentável, 2018; MACE, G., ; BALMFORD, A. ; BATES, P. ; BROWN, K. ; COX, P. ; DOUGLAS, R. ; GODFRAY, C. ; GRIMM, N. ; HEAD, P. ; NICHOLLS, R. ; SOKONA, Y. ; TOULMIN, C. ; TURNER, K. ; VIRA, B. ; VIANA, V. ; WATSON, B. . Resilience to extreme weather. 1. ed. Londres: The Royal Society, 2014. Available at: ARAKAWA. H., VIANA, V. et al (2014). Paying For Zero: Global Development Finance and the Post-2015 Agenda. Davos: World Economic Forum. Available at:; VIANA, V. M. ; VIANA, C. ; EULER, A. ; GRIEG-GRAN, M. ; BASS, S. . Economia Verde no Estado do Amapá, Brasil: Avanços e perspectivas. 1. ed. Londres: International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED), 2014; VIANA, V. M. . Desafios da sustentabilidade na Amazônia: a experiência da Fundação Amazonas Sustentável. In: Instituto Sabin. (Org.). Investimento social privado no Brasil. 1ed.Brasília: Instituto Sabin, 2013, v. 1, p. 06-144; VIANA, V. M. ; BORNER, J. ; WUNDER, S. ; REIMER, F. ; BAKKEGAARD, R. K. ; TEZZA NETO, J. B. ; PINTO, T. M. ; LIMA, L. M. T. ; MAROSTICA, S. . Promoting Forest Stewardship in the Bolsa Floresta Programme: Local Livelihood Strategies and Preliminary Impacts. 1. ed. Rio de Janeiro: Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR), 2013. 63p; VIANA, V. M. ; TEZZA NETO, J. B. ; SOLIDADE, V. ; SANTOS, C. ; PINTO, F. ; LIMA, L. ; CRISTO, M. ; DIAS, R. ; MEGID, T. . Planificação participativa para REDD+: A experiência de aplicação do programa Bolsa Floresta para Moçambique. 3. Ed, 1. Vol, 46p. 2012. London, UK. International Institute for Environment and Development – IIED; RENAULT, L. ; VIANA, M. ; CANTELLI, P. ; VIANA, VIRGILIO . Discriminação. 2. ed. São Paulo: LTr, 2010; VIANA, V. M. Sustainable Development in Practice: Lessons Learned from Amazonas. 3. ed. 2010. London, UK. International Institute for Environment and Development – IIED; OLIVEIRA, C. A. ; PINTO, J. G. ; VIANA, V. M. . Amazônia, Responsabilidade de Todos!. 1. ed. Manaus: Editora da Universidade Federal do Amazonas, 2009. 143p. VM VIANA; Bolsa Floresta: um instrumento inovador para a promoção da saúde em comunidades tradicionais na Amazônia. Estudos Avançados 22, 143-153, 2008; VIANA, V. M.; SANTOS, V. . Legislação sobre o meio ambiente e o desenvolvimento sustentável no Amazonas. Manaus: Valer, 2008. 312p; VIANA, V. M.. As florestas e o desenvolvimento sustentável na Amazônia. 1. ed. Manaus /AM: Editora Valer, 2006. v. 1. 144p; ACSA DIEGUES, VM VIANA; Comunidades tradicionais e manejo dos recursos naturais da Mata Atlântica: coletânea de textos apresentados no Seminário - Alternativas de Manejo Sustentável de Recursos. Editora HUCITEC, 2004; VIANA, V. M.. Jardinagem Florestal Participativa no Projeto de Assentamento Agroextrativista Chico Mendes.. Piracicaba,SP: Grafica Papiro, 2002. 44p; VIANA, V. M.; MAY, P. ; LAGO, L. ; DUBOIS, O. ; GRIEG-GRAN, M. . Instrumentos para o manejo sustentável do setor florestal privado no Brasil ? Uma análise das necessidades, desafios e oportunidades para o manejo de florestas naturais e plantações florestais de pequena escala. 1. ed. Londres: International Institute for Enviroment and Development, 2002. v. 1. 90p; VIANA, V. M.; DIEGUES, A. C. (Org.) . Comunidades Tradicionais e Manejo dos Recursos Naturais da Mata Atlântica. 01. ed. São Paulo: NUPAUB/USP, 2000. v. 01. 273p; VIANA, V. M.; LELE,U., ; A., V. ; VOSTI, S. ; PERKINS, K. ; S.A., H. . The forest and forest sector in Brazil - Forests in tehe Balance: challenges of conservation with development. 01. ed. Washington: The World Bank, 2000. v. 01. 195p; A AUGUSTO, J TABANEZ, VM VIANA; Patch Structure within Brazilian Atlantic Forest Fragments and Implications for Conservation1. Biotropica 32 (4b), 925-933, 2000; UJ LELE; Brazil: forests in the balance: challenges of conservation with development. World Bank Publications, 2000; HEM NASCIMENTO, A DIAS, AAJ TABANEZ, VM VIANA; Estrutura e dinâmica de populações arbóreas de um fragmento de floresta estacional semidecidual na região de Piracicaba, SP. Revista Brasileira de Biologia 59, 329-342, 1999; VM VIANA, L PINHEIRO; Conservação da biodiversidade em fragmentos florestais. Série técnica IPEF 12 (32), 25-42, 1998; FLÁVIO JESUS LUIZÃO, JOHN PROCTOR, JILL THOMPSON, REGINA CELI COSTA LUIZÂO, ROB H MARRS, DAVID A SCOTT, V VIANA; Rain forest on Maracá Island, Roraima, Brazil: soil and litter process response to artificial gaps. Forest ecology and management 102 (2-3), 291-303, 1998; VM Viana; Dynamics and restoration of forest fragments in the Brazilian Atlantic moist forest. Tropical forest remnants: ecology, management, and conservation of fragmented communities, 1997; WILLIAM F LAURANCE, RO BIERREGAARD JR, C GASCON, RK DIDHAM, AP SMITH, AJ LYNAM, VM VIANA, TE LOVEJOY, KE SIEVING, JW SITES JR, M ANDERSEN, MD TOCHER, EA KRAMER, C RESTREPO, C MORITZ; Tropical forest fragmentation: synthesis of a diverse and dynamic discipline. Tropical forest remnants. University of Chicago Press, Chicago, 502-514, 1997; AAJ TABANEZ, VM VIANA, AS DIAS; Conseqüências da fragmentação e do efeito de borda sobre a estrutura, diversidade e sustentabilidade de um fragmento de floresta de planalto de Piracicaba, SP. Revista brasileira de biologia 57 (1), 47-60, 1997; RO BIERREGAARD, WF LAURANCE, JW SITES, AJ LYNAM, RK DIDHAM, M ANDERSEN, C GASCON, MD TOCHER, AP SMITH, VM VIANA, TE LOVEJOY, KE SIEVING, EA KRAMER, C RESTREPO, C MORITZ; Key priorities for the study of fragmented tropical ecosystems. Tropical forest remnants. Ecology, management, and conservation of fragmented communities, 1997; VIANA, V. M.; ERVIN, J.; DONOVAN, R.; ELLIOT, C. ; GHOZ, H. . Certification Of Forest Products: Issues And Perspectives. 1. ed. WASHIINGTON D.C.: ISLAND PRESS, 1996. v. 1. 261p; VIANA, V. M.; DUBOIS, J. ; ANDERSON, A. . Manual Agroflorestal da Amazonia. 1. ed. RIO DE JANEIRO: REBRAF, 1996. v. 1. 180p; V VIANA, A TABANEZ; Biology and conservation of forest fragments in the Brazilian Atlantic moist forest. 1996; VM VIANA; Conservação da biodiversidade de fragmentos de florestas tropicais em paisagens intensivamente cultivadas. Abordagens interdisciplinares para a conservação da biodiversidade e dinâmica do uso da terra no novo mundo. Belo Horizonte/Gainesville: Conservation International do Brasil/Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais/University of Florida, 1995; VM VIANA, AJA TABANEZ, JLA MARTÍNEZ; Restauração e manejo de fragmentos florestais. Revista do Instituto Florestal (Brasil) v. 4 (pt. 2) p. 400-406, 1992; DC NEPSTAD, IF BROWN, L LUZ, A ALECHANDRE, V VIANA; Biotic impoverishment of Amazonian forests by rubber tappers, loggers, and cattle ranchers. Advances in Economic Botany, 1-14, 1992; J THOMPSON, J PROCTOR, V VIANA, W MILLIKEN, JA RATTER, DA SCOTT; Ecological studies on a lowland evergreen rain forest on Maraca Island, Roraima, Brazil. I. Physical environment, forest structure and leaf chemistry. Journal of Ecology, 689-703, 1992; ACSA DIEGUES, P KAGEYAMA, V VIANA; The social dynamics of deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon: an overview. United Nations Research Institute for Social Development, 1992; VM VIANA; Biologia e manejo de fragmentos florestais naturais. Congresso florestal brasileiro 6, 113-118, 1990; PY KAGEYAMA, VM VIANA; Tecnologia de sementes e grupos ecológicos de espécies arbóreas tropicais. Simpósio Brasileiro sobre tecnologia de sementes florestais 2, 197-215, 1989.


Professional address

Fundação Amazonas Sustentável – FAS
Rua Álvaro Braga, 351
Parque 10 de Novembro - CEP 69.055-660
Manaus (AM)


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