Sonam Wangyel Wang (PhD)
Founder (Human Nature Interface Specialist)
wangsonam@himalayanstudies.edu.bt

Dr. Sonam Wang is the founder of Bhutan Institute of Himalayan Studies (BIHS) and leads the institute as its CEO. He is also currently a Research Professor in the Division of Environmental Science and Ecological Engineering at Korea University, South Korea and has special interest in understanding the fundamentals of human-environmental interface and the impact of climate change on this relationship. Dr. Wang is a doctoral graduate of Cornell University in Natural Resource Policy and a Master of Science in Natural Resource Policy and Management. In addition, he also holds a Master in Public Administration from Harvard University and BSc (hons) in Forestry from University of Wales, Bangor, UK. Dr.

In the past he has worked as the chief of Bhutan’s national park service, Director of Bhutan Royal Education Council, and as research associates at Montana University, USA, the Smithsonian Institution, Washington D.C. USA. He has also worked as a consultant to governments, NGOs and International agencies on issues ranging from climate change adaptation, poverty, gender, biodiversity, to project developments. He was also the candidate for member of parliament of Bhutan from historic Punakha Constituency, Bhutan.

Area of Expertise

  • Natural Resources Policy and Management
  • Political Science
  • Public Administration
  • Ecology
  • Climate change adaptation
  • National park management
  • Project evaluation

Research Interests

Understanding the dynamics of human nature interface (especially biodiversity, water, and food security nexus), natural resources policy, climate change adaptation, and poverty in the Asia High Mountains, which is an important landscape in the Mid Latitude Region.

Education

PhD Natural Resource Policy and Management, Cornell University, Ithaca NY, USA
Master in Public Administration, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA. USA
Master of Science in Natural Resource Policy and Management, Cornell University, Ithaca NY, USA
BSc. Hons. Forestry, University of North Wales, Bangor, UK

Professional Experience

  • Research Professor, Division of Environmental Science and Ecological Engineering, Korea University, Republic of Korea
  • Founder and CEO, Bhutan Institute of Himalayan Studies, Wang Research and Consultancy, Tiger Adventures Bhutan
  • Associate Professor, Faculty of Social Sciences, Royal Thimphu College, Bhutan
  • Director/CEO, Royal Education Council (REC), Bhutan
  • Director, Nature Conservation Division, Ministry of Agriculture, Royal Government of Bhutan
  • National Park Manager, Jigme Singye Wangchuck National Park, Royal Government of Bhutan
  • Assistant Director of Forest, Department of Forestry Service, Royal Government of Bhutan

Publications

  • Wang, S.W. et al (2017). Low carbon pathways in Indian agriculture, Change Adaptation Socio Ecol Systems, 3:18-26.
  • Wang, S.W. et al (accepted). An assessment of climate chage impacts and adaptation in South Asian Agriculture. International Journal of Climate Change Strategies and Management.
  • Thinley, P., Kamler, J.F., Wang, S.W., Lham, K., Stenkewitz, U., Macdonald, D.W. (2011). Seasonal diet of dholes (Cuon alpinus) in northwestern Bhutan. Mammalian Biology, 76: 518-520.
  • Wang, S.W. (2010). Estimating population densities and biomass of ungulates in the temperate ecosystem of Bhutan. Oryx, 44: 376 – 382.
  • Wang, S.W. (2009). Feeding habits and niche partitioning in a predator guild composed of tigers, leopards and dholes in a temperate ecosystem in central Bhutan. Journal of Zoology (Lond.). 277: 275
  • Wang, S.W. (2009). The use of camera traps for estimating tiger and leopard populations in the high altitude mountains of Bhutan. Biological Conservation, 142: 606-613.
  • Namgyel, U., Siebert, S., Wang, S.W. (2008). Shifting cultivation and biodiversity conservation in Bhutan. Conservation Biology, 22:1349-1351.