National Research Program Leader, International Science Issues
1601 N. Kent Street, 4th Floor
Arlington, VA 22209
Traditional forest-related knowledge and practices (global); adaptation of forests and people to climate change; relationship between forest management, biodiversity and climate change mitigation (REDD+)
traditional forest-related knowledge in tropical regions; forest ecosystem restoration in the tropics; impacts of reforestation and afforestation on biodiversity at site and landscape scales; forests and human health
tropical forest ecology; tropical silviculture; tropical forest restoration; ecology and management of medicinal plant resources.
- Yale University, Ph.D. Tropical forest ecology and management, 1987
- University of Aberdeen (UK), M.Sc. Ecology, 1981
- Merrimack College, B.A. Biology, 1980
- Merrimack College, B.S. Chemistry, 1980
- National Research Program Leader, International Science Issues, US Forest Service, Research & Development branch, Washington, DC
2000 - Current
John Parrotta is National Research Program Leader for International Science Issues, providing scientific advice to develop U.S. policy positions in international forest policy forums, including the Convention on Biological Diversity and the United Nations Forum on Forests, and other international programs and initiatives related to forest science and sustainable forest management. A significant part of his work is conducted in collaboration with the International Union of Forest Research Organizations (of which the U.S. Forest Service is the largest member). He serves in a number of leadership positions in IUFRO, including Chair of the Collaborative Partnership on Forests’ Global Forest Expert Panel on Biodiversity, Forest Management, and REDD+ (2012), Chair of the IUFRO 2014 World Congress Scientific Committee, Deputy Coordinator of IUFRO Division 8 (Forest Environment), and coordinated the IUFRO Task Force on Traditional Forest Knowledge (2005-2010). John received B.A. and B.S. degrees (in Biology and Chemistry) from Merrimack College in 1980, an M.Sc. in Ecology from the University of Aberdeen (UK) in 1981, and his Ph.D. in tropical forest ecology and silviculture from Yale University in 1987. He is a member of the Society of Ecological Restoration, the Commonwealth Forestry Association, the International Society of Tropical Foresters and the Society of Ethnobotanists, and currently serves on the editorial boards of several professional journals, including Restoration Ecology, International Journal of Biodiversity Science and Management, Pesquisa Florestal Brasileira, and Bois et Forêts des Tropiques. Prior to assuming his current position in the WO in 2000, John held positions as a Research Forester at the Forest Service’s International Institute of Tropical Forestry in Puerto Rico from 1991-2000, and as a research scientist at the University of Puerto Rico from 1987-1990. In these positions, his research focused on tropical forest restoration, ecological dynamics of plantations and other managed forest systems, tropical silviculture, tropical forest floristics and phenology, and non-wood tropical forest products (medicinal plants) in Puerto Rico, Brazil (Amazon and Atlantic forest regions), and India. He is the author of several books, scientific journal volumes, and over 150 other research publications.
- International Union of Forest Research Organizations (IUFRO), Various Positions (1993 - Current)
Awards & Recognition
- U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Oceans and International Environment. Group Superior Honor Award, 2012
"for extraordinary efforts to advance and protect U.S. interests during the 11th Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity which furthered efforts to promote the conservation of biological diversity worldwide"
- U.S. Department of State. Meritorious Honor Award , 2011
“For extraordinary efforts to advance U.S. interests during the 10th Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity and further the conservation of biological diversity worldwide”
- International Union of Forestry Research Organizations (IUFRO) Distinguished Service Award (2010),, 2010
In recognition of achievements for strengthening IUFRO’s activities on traditional forest knowledge and providing outstanding services as Chair of the IUFRO World Congress 2010 Scientific Committee.
Featured Publications & Products
- Osman-Elasha, Balgis; Parrotta, John; Adger, Neil; Brockhaus, Maria; Colfer, Carol J. Pierce; Sohngen, Brent; Dafalla, Tallaat; Joyce, Linda A.; Johnson, Nkem; Robledo, Carmenza. 2009. Future socio-economic impacts and vulnerabilities.
- Parrotta, John A. 1999. Productivity, nutrient cycling, and succession in single- and mixed-species plantations of Casuarina equisetifolia, Eucalyptus robusta, and Leucaena leucocephala in Puerto Rico.
Publications & Products
- Parrotta, John A.; Mansourian, Stephanie; Wildburger, Christoph; Gardner, Toby; Kapos, Valerie; Kurz, Werner A.; McDermott, Constance L.; Strassburg, Bernardo B.N.; Thompson, Ian D.; Vira, Bhaskar. 2012. Conclusions (Chapter 6).
- Innes, John; Joyce, Linda A.; Kellomaki, Seppo; Louman, Bastiaan; Ogden, Aynslie; Parrotta, John; Thompson, Ian; Ayres, Matthew; Ong, Chin; Santoso, Heru; Sohngen, Brent; Wreford, Anita. 2009. Management for adaptation.
- Siddique, Ilyas; Engel, Vera Lex; Parrotta, John A.; Lamb, David; Nardoto, Gabriela B.; Ometto, Jean P.H.B.; Martinelli, Luiz A.; Schmidt, Susanne. 2008. Dominance of legume trees alters nutrient relations in mixed species forest restoration plantings within seven years.
- Francis, John K.; Parrotta, John A. 2006. Vegetation Response to Grazing and Planting of Leucaena leucocephala in a Urochloa maximum-dominated Grassland in Puerto Rico.
- Resh, Sigrid C.; Binkley, Dan; Parrotta, John A. 2002. Greater Soil Carbon Sequestration under Nitrogen-fixing Trees Compared with Eucalyptus Species..
- Kaye, Jason P.; Binkley, Dan; Zou, Xiaoming; Parrotta, John A. 2002. Non-labile Soil 15Nitrogen Retention beneath Three Tree Species in a Tropical Plantation.
- Kaye, Jason P.; Binkley, Dan; Zou, Xiaoming; Parrotta, John A. 2002. Non-labile Soil Nitrogen Retention beneath Three Tree Species in a Tropical Plantation.
- Parrotta, J. A. 1997. Acacia auriculiformis A. Cunn. ex Benth. Northern black wattle. Leguminosae (Mimosoideae). Legume family..
- Parrotta, J. A.; Turnbull, J. W.; Jones, N. 1997. Catalyzing native forest regeneration on degraded tropical lands..
- Parrotta, J. A.; Knowles, O. H.; Wunderle Jr., J.M. 1997. Development of floristic diversity in 10-year-old restoration forests on a bauxite mined site in Amazonia..
- Parrotta, J. A. 1994. Artocarpus altilis (S. Park.) Fosb. Breadfruit. Breadnut. Moraceae. Mulberry family..
- Parrotta, J. A.; Chaturvedi, A. N. 1994. Azadirachta indica A. Juss. Neem, margosa. Meliaceae. Mahogany family..
- Parrotta, John A. 1994. Coccoloba uvifera (L.) L. Sea grape. Uva de playa. Polygonaceae. Buckwheat. Buckwheat family..
- Parrotta, John A. 1994. Thespesia populnea (L.) Soland. ex Correa. Portiatree, emajaguilla. Malvaceae. Mallow family..
- Parrotta, John A. 1993. Casuarina equisetifolia L. ex J.R. & G. Forts.. Casuarina, Australian pine: Casuarinaceae. Casuarina family..
- Parrotta, John A. 1993. Cocos nucifera L. Coconut, Coconut palm, Palma de coco. Palmae. Palm family..
- Parrotta, John A. 1993. Moringa oleifera Lam. Reseda, horseradish tree. Moringaceae. Horseradish tree family..
- Parrotta, J. A.; Francis, J. K. 1993. Pouteria multiflora (A.DC.) Eyma. Jacana, Bully-tree. Sapotaceae. Sapodilla family..
- Parrotta, J. A. 1992. Acacia farnesiana (L.) Willd. Aroma. Huisache. Leguminosae (Mimosoideae). Legume family..
- Parrotta, John A. 1992. Gliricidia sepium (Jacq.) Walp. Gliricidia, Mother of Cocoa. Leguminosae (Papilionoideae). Legume family..
- Parrotta, John A. 1992. The role of plantation forests in rehabilitating degraded tropical ecosystems.
- Parrotta, John A. 1991. Pithecellobium dulce (Roxb.) Benth. Guamuchil, Madras thorn. Leguminosae (Mimosoideae.) Legume family..
- Parrotta, J. A.; Francis, J. K. 1990. Senna siamea Irwin & Barnaby. Yellow cassia, minjri. Leguminosae (Caesalpinioideae). Legume family..
- Parrotta, John A. 1990. Tamarindus indica L. Tamarindo. Leguminosae. (Caesalpinioideae). Legume family..