European Natura 2000 Award
All eligible applications are assessed by the team of seven independent evaluators.
Mariella Fourli holds an MSc in Natural Resource Management. Her career has spanned over 18 years, and focusses on biodiversity conservation and protected areas in Europe, as well as Latin America and Africa. She has worked for six years as member of the external monitoring teams for LIFE-Nature, getting hands on experience with the implementation of Natura 2000. She also gained significant experience in evaluation and team management skills as coordinator of the LIFE-Nature evaluation team for two consecutive years.
Mariella is currently working as a consultant for various international organisations, including the European Commission, providing support for biodiversity-related issues. In parallel, she manages Microsfere, an NGO that she founded in 2007, which focuses on biodiversity conservation and rural development in two protected areas in Ghana in West Africa. She has been the coordinator of the evaluators’ team for the Natura 2000 Award since 2014.
Claus Goldberg holds an MSc in Biology and a BA in Social Studies and Civics. His areas of expertise include habitat and species protection, international agreements and conventions on nature protection, and the national implementation of these agreements. Claus was responsible for implementing the Habitats Directive in Denmark between 1992 and 1997. Claus also previously worked for the European Commission in evaluating LIFE applications, and as project manager on the ‘Wildlife and Sustainable Farming Initiative’, a project focusing on the biodiversity benefits that RDP measures can bring.
As project manager in a number of projects, Claus has assisted with the implementation of the Habitats and Birds Directives in various countries including Estonia, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Latvia, Croatia and Poland. He also has experience in evaluating funding related to nature and agriculture, including LIFE and Rural Development Programme (RDP) funding.
In 2004, Tilmann graduated "cum laude" as a Civil Engineer in Landscape Planning at the Technical University of Berlin and received a scholarship in the post-graduate Programme for International Affairs of the Robert Bosch Foundation and the German National Academic Foundation. Since 2006, he has worked as a consultant for the European Commission, the German Federal Environmental Ministry and the German Federal Environmental Foundation. He has over five years of experience as a LIFE-Nature application evaluator.
In recent years, Tilmann has focused on conservation financing and private land conservation. Since 2012, he has been acting as coordinator for the National Network for Nature, an umbrella organisation for conservation landowners in Germany.
Viera Šefferová Stanová holds a PhD in Vegetation Ecology and works as a deputy director and biodiversity specialist at DAPHNE Institute of Applied Ecology, based in Slovakia. She has 23 years of professional experience in the vegetation and flora of Central Europe and the Mediterranean area. She cooperates with scientific institutions and experts in developing the Natura 2000 network, carries out management and restoration planning for protected areas, along with monitoring and reporting.
Viera has a successful track record in designing projects and developing proposals for major donors. She is currently leading a team of experts monitoring and reporting on non-forest habitats of Community importance in Slovakia. She has coordinated several projects focused on grassland and wetland mapping, management and restoration. Viera has also led an international team of experts from seven Carpathian countries to develop a biodiversity information system of flora and habitats. She is co-editor of several books, such as the ‘Catalogue of habitats in Slovakia’, on the implementation of Natura 2000.
Boriana Mihova has more than 20 years of experience in nature protection and sustainable development projects. Graduating with an MSc in Biology and Biochemistry from the University of Sofia, she worked on her PhD thesis, the ‘Origins of life’, at the Institute of Philosophy of the Bulgarian Academy of Science. In 1991 Boriana joined the IUCN’s East European Programme as Project Facilitator for Bulgaria. Since 1997 she has been a member of the IUCN’s World Commission on Protected Areas.
Boriana gained practical experience in protected area management as leader of a number of projects, including managing national parks and establishing Natura 2000 sites both nationally and in Croatia and Kosovo. This work also included two years of on-the-job training in project management, monitoring and evaluation delivered by the Zurich NADEL Institute. Since 2002, Boriana has been working as a freelance consultant and in the last couple of years has specialised in project development and evaluation work.
Ana Guimarães Ferreira holds an MSc in Animal Diversity Conservation and a Diploma in Biology. Her areas of expertise include mammal ecology, wildlife tourism and scientific illustration. She has worked for eight years as member of the external monitoring teams for LIFE-Nature and has more than ten years of experience as a LIFE-Nature application evaluator, three of them as deputy coordinator of the LIFE-Nature evaluation team.
Ana is currently working as a consultant for several international organisations, including the European Commission, providing support on infringement procedures and complaints regarding the application of environmental law in Portugal as well as other biodiversity-related issues, namely compliance assessments of Operational Programmes for ERDF, Cohesion Funds and RDP with the Birds and Habitats Directives. In parallel, she works as an FSC auditor for the Smartwood European Office/RainForest Alliance.
María José holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Biological Sciences and a Postgraduate Course in Management and Conservation of the Ecological Heritage, with a focus on stakeholders’ involvement and consultation. She has worked for 10 years as expert evaluator for the EC LIFE Financial Programme (LIFE- Nature and Biodiversity; LIFE- Integrated Projects).
Since 1995, she has been working on planning, implementation, management and evaluation of projects for the conservation of biodiversity and the sustainable management of natural resources in protected areas (Natura 2000, UNESCO-Biodiversity Reserves). She has also worked on projects dealing with IAS (Invasive Alien Species) and recently, on climate change adaptation (defining guidelines on vulnerability criteria for habitats and species of Community interest, and adaptive management for the Natura 2000 network of Spain).