Ana Paula



Research fellow

+46 73 280 76 05


Staff profile

Profile summary

  • Land change modeling
  • Participatory and multiscale scenarios
  • Cross-scale interactions
  • Pathways to a sustainable future
  • Agent based modelling
  • GHG emission estimates
  • SDGs

Ana Paula Aguiar is a research fellow working with scenarios and models in the World in 2050 (TWI2050) project

Aguiar joined SRC in mid 2017 to work in the TWI2050 (The World in 2050) project, a global research initiative in support of a successful implementation of the United Nations’ 2030 Agenda. TWI2050 aims to address the full spectrum of transformational challenges related to achieving the 17 SDGs in an integrated manner. The project provides a framework for the scientific community to explore a portfolio of needed measures to achieve all SDGs jointly, using quantitative and qualitative back-casting scenario approaches.

In the TWI2050 context, Aguiar acts as the SRC liaison person among the project working groups, linking the modeling, narrative, governance and target space project components to discuss pathways to reach the SDGs. Her specific research focuses on the methods for linking qualitative and quantitative back-casting approaches at different scales and bringing the local/regional perspectives into global scenarios.

Aguiar is also a senior researcher/technologist (on leave) for the Earth System Science Centre (CCST), a centre for sustainability science in the Brazilian Institute for Space Research (INPE). Before joining SRC, she led at CCST/INPE the development of land use models and scenarios, combining spatially explicit and participatory approaches. Aguiar holds a bachelor degree in Computer Science (UNICAMP), a MSc in Remote Sensing/Image Processing (INPE) and a PhD in Remote Sensing/Environmental Modelling, 2006 (also at INPE).

Since her PhD, her research focused on the use of models and scenarios as tools to understand diverse land change processes (deforestation, agricultural expansion/intensification, desertification). Aligned to the work she now develops in TWI2050, she has pioneered the application of back-casting to discuss pathways to a sustainable future in the Brazilian Amazon at multiple scales.

She has supervised a number of PhD and MSc students, working on various aspects of land use and cover issues, from local to regional scale, including secondary growth vegetation dynamics, institutional arrangements and land use decisions, restoration and landscape optimization, participatory scenario and agent based modelling.

Currently, Aguiar is a lead author for the First IPBES Global Assessment on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services and has contributed to IPCC as a scenario and emission expert in meetings/workshops. She is a member of the AIMES (Analysis, Integration and Modelling of the Earth System) project.

In Brazil, she is a member of the REDE CLIMA network - Brazilian Science and Technology Ministry network for climate change understanding and public policy support. She contributed to the Third Brazilian Communication to the UNFCCC (FOLU sector). She was responsible for the development of two open source, spatially explicit, modelling frameworks being used by several institutions:

  • LuccME: for Land Use and Cover Change (LUCC) modelling; and
  • INPE-EM: for deforestation driven greenhouse gases modelling

On the side, Aguiar also pursues art as a mean of expression, and aims to explore its role in transformation processes.

Publications by Aguiar, Ana Paula