DR. ZUZANA BUŘIVALOVÁ is a tropical forest ecologist and bioacoustics researcher working to equitably protect tropical forest biodiversity. She is an Assistant Professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Department of Forest & Wildlife Ecology, The Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies, and the Center for Sustainability and the Global Environment (SAGE). As Principal Investigator of the Sound Forest Lab, Zuzana leads a group of researchers using soundscapes – all the sounds that can be heard in a landscape – to understand the health of rainforests. Zuzana seeks to protect biodiversity in tropical forests, both forests that are used by people, for example for logging, and forests set aside for conservation, from national parks to small community-protected areas. She has worked in the tropical forests of Madagascar, Papua New Guinea, Borneo, and Gabon.

Zuzana is the 2021 winner of the nature award for driving global impact and the 2023 Bassam Z. Shakhashiri Public Science Engagement Award. Her Sound Forest Lab created a free illustrated soundscape ebook for children, What Does the Rainforest Sound Like? She collaborates with the environmental news platform Mongabay on understanding which conservation strategies succeed and fail in tropical forests.

Born: 1987

Hometown: Madison, WI

Education: Ph.D. in Tropical Forest Conservation

Occupation: Professor of forest ecology and conservation

Expeditions: Madagascar, Papua New Guinea, Borneo, Gabon

Favorite Place To Be: The rainforest

Best Discoveries: Several species of plants new to science (but not new to local people!). Changes in rainforest soundscapes because of industrial logging

Favorite Item In The Field: My one-woman tent. It’s small, but light and mosquito-and water-proof!

Personal Heroes: So many women! Eva Bande, Mardini sisters, Greta Thunberg, this list is long!

Hobby: Rock-climbing

Website: http://www.soundforestlab.org/

Advice: If you plan a hike for 5 hours, prepare for 10 hours