Born and raised in Zimbabwe, Godfrey Mtare has over 15 years of working experience in the field of ecology and wildlife conservation; including transboundary conservation. He joined Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority (ZimParks) as an Ecologist in 2006 and has always demonstrated convincing passion and great zeal to significantly contribute towards biodiversity conservation in his home country Zimbabwe, and at a transfrontier landscape-level scale. He had a unique opportunity of having worked in Hwange National Park for 7 years as both an ecologist and senior ecologist, handling the portfolio of research and ecological monitoring whilst working under a collaborative arrangement with various international research organizations including the University of Oxford’s WildCRU.
In 2013, Godfrey joined Zimbabwe’s Transfrontier Conservation Areas Programme as the Coordinator for KAZA TFCA on secondment to the KAZA TFCA Secretariat, working with Angola, Botswana, Namibia, Zambia and Zimbabwe governments and stakeholders alike. He was further elevated in 2019 to be the National TFCAs Coordinator for Zimbabwe (6 TFCAs), a position currently holding and involves regional work at SADC level. His responsibilities involves leadership and coordination of the National TFCA Programme for Zimbabwe, which includes KAZA, Great Limpopo , Greater Mapungubwe, Chimanimani, ZIMOZA and Lower Zambezi – Mana Pools TFCAs. Godfrey has a considerable experience in conservation of biodiversity and development of TFCAs in SADC but would like to harness more understanding of how to find innovative solutions towards global challenges the world is facing.
His work and passion in TFCAs has led himself towards contributing to a number of transboundary initiatives in the SADC region including transboundary integrated development planning for connectivity, development of cross border tourism (KAZA UniVisa, KAZA Golf Classic), marketing of SADC TFCA initiatives, community engagement and livelihoods development etc. One of the most significant impacts of the transboundary work he does is to allow policy makers to visualise and prioritise biodiversity conservation needs at a landscape scale leading to more effective and resilient transboundary conservation outcomes.
Godfrey’s interest in carnivore conservation and the transboundary movement (connectivity) was developed and nurtured in close collaboration with WildCRU. As such, being part of such an outstanding team has continued to sharpen his skills, improve the understanding and nourishing his passion for biodiversity conservation at landscape-level scale, and conservation of African lion in particular. This engagement in meaningful and impactful research work has nourished his professional career in conservation and he strongly believes that the research skills and leadership experiences that he will obtain from the DPhil in Zoology will give him the tools to cultivate a deeper relationship with University of Oxford’s WildCRU and his present position as National TFCAs Coordinator for Zimbabwe. Further, he intends to use results and findings from his study to contribute towards science and policy in African transboundary conservation and development.