Nicolena vonHedemann

Agnese Nelms Haury Fellow
School of Geography and Development

Niki vonHedemann is a Ph.D. student in the School of Geography and Development. Building upon her experience working as a biological technician on public lands, Niki brings interdisciplinary studies to her research within the realm of political ecology. Her work investigates the proliferation of payments for ecosystem services (PES) programs across the globe to incentivize ecological management and improve rural livelihoods. Her research in the western highlands of Guatemala focuses on local land user participation in national forestry incentive programs to determine if development-linked conservation actually provides benefits to the communities involved or improves forest health. Her work is timely, as the United Nations’ Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD+) program rolls out across the world and more attention is turned to using incentives to preserve forested landscapes.

Accepted Scholar:



Thomas R. Brown Family Foundation

College of Engineering 

College of Science Galileo Circle

Graduate College

Arizona Institute for Resilience

Agnese Nelms Haury Program in Environment & Social Justice

College of Social and Behavioral Sciences