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Rakotonasolo, Franck

Aloe vera plant
Job title: 

Kew Madagascar Conservation Centre: Collection Programme Manager and Systematics Research Coordinator

Conservation Science
Joined Kew: 


Foreign languages: 

Malagasy (mother tongue), French and English

Qualifications and appointments: 
  • BSc, Univ. of Antananarivo, Madagascar, 1984
  • MSc, Univ. of Antananarivo, Madagascar, 1985
  • DEA, Univ. of Antananarivo, Madagascar, 1989
  • PhD, Univ. of Antananarivo, Madagascar, 2007

KMCC collection programme and systematics research on the Rubiaceae

The main task is to manage the KMCC programme to enhance the collections of Kew, increasing coverage of the flora with high quality herbarium specimens, collection data, photographs, wood samples and DNA samples. The role is partly based at the national herbarium of Madagascar at Parc Botanique et Zoologique de Tsimbazaza (PBZT). Responsibilities include developing strong collaborative links between KMCC and PBZT, such as developing living collections for palms, orchids, Aloe and yams and improving the herbarium collections and data available to the botanical community in Madagascar. The role also involves improving capacity at KMCC for general identification work, training staff and students, providing expert identifications for botanical inventories, KMCC projects and conservation assessments and support for Kew staff undertaking systematcs research in Madagascar. Research includes the systematics and biogeography of the Rubiaceae family.

Selected publications: 

Davis, A.P, Rakotonasolo, F. & De Block, P. (2010). Coffea toshii sp. nov. (Rubiaceae) from Madagascar. Nordic Journal of Botany 28: 134-136.

Groeninckx, I., De Block, P., Rakotonasolo, F., Smets, E. & Dessein, S. (2009). Rediscovery of Malagasy Lathraeocarpa allows determination of its taxonomic position within Rubiaceae. Taxon 58: 209-226.

Davis, A.P. & Rakotonasolo, F. (2008). A taxonomic revision of the Baracoffea alliance: nine remarkable Coffea species from western Madagascar. Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society 158: 355-390.

De Block, P., Rakotonasolo, F. & Tosh, T. (2006). Mantalania longipedunculata (Rubiaceae) revisited. Systematics and Geography of Plants 76: 235-240.

Rakotonasolo, F. & Davis, A.P. (2006). Six species of Madagascan Genipa transferred to Hyperacanthus (Rubiaceae-Gardenieae) and new data on general morphology, placentation and ovary structure in Hyperacanthus. Taxon 55: 387-396.