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Ralimanana, Hélène

Aloe vera plant
Job title: 

Kew Madagascar Conservation Centre: Team Manager

Conservation Science
Joined Kew: 


Foreign languages: 

Malagasy (mother tongue), French and English

Qualifications and appointments: 
  • BSc, Natural Sciences, Univ. of Antanarivo, Madagascar, 1989
  • MSc, Plant Ecology, Univ. of Antanarivo, Madagascar, 1990
  • DEA, Univ. of Antanarivo, Madagascar, 1994
  • PhD, Taxonomy and biogeography of Phyllanthaceae in MadagascarUniv. of Antanarivo, Madagascar, 2007
  • IUCN-SSC Madagascar Plant Specialist Group (GSPM)
  • AETFAT 2010 Organising Committee

Management of the Kew Madagascar Conservation Centre (KMCC) and coordinator of Kew’s programme in Madagascar.

Expertise: Phyllanthaceae, Euphorbiaceae, environmental education, plant diversity and conservation in Madagascar.

Management of the Kew Madagascar Conservation Centre (KMCC), including coordination of its research and conservation programme. My systematics research focuses on the Euphorbiaceae and Phyllanthaceae, including a revision of Madagascan Phyllanthus and their conservation assessment. Over 90% of Madagascan plant species are endemic and many have highly restricted distribution. My work on our overall knowledge of patterns of diversity in Madagascar is helping to inform conservation planning, particularly the prioritization of species and areas. The education programme focuses on three key areas:

1) informing communities about local biodiversity, conservation, appropriate livelihoods and development practices e.g. energy efficient stoves

2) informing schools about biodiversity and conservation in Madagascar and providing materials for teachers

3) professional training for Malagasy researchers and Kew MSc. students.

Selected publications: 

Ralimanana, H., Hoffmann, P. (2013). Taxonomic revision of Phyllanthus (Phyllanthaceae) in Madagascar and the Comoro Islands III: subgenera Swartziani, Afroswartziani and Emblica. Kew Bulletin 68: 535-558. Available online

Ralimanana, H. (2013). Biogeography and conservation status of Phyllanthus (Phyllantaceae) in Madagascar. Scripta Botanica Belgica 50: 50-53.

Besnard, G., Christin, P.-A., Male, P.-J.G., Croissac, E., Ralimanana, H. & Vorontsova, M. (2013). Phylogenomics and taxonomy of Lecomtelleae (Poaceae) on isolated panicoid lineage from Madagascar. Annals of Botany 112: 1057-1066.

Ralimanana, H., Hoffmann, P. (2011), Taxonomic revision of Phyllanthus (Phyllanthaceae) in Madagascar and the Comoro Islands I: synopsis and subgenera Isocladus, Betsileani, Kirganelia and Tenellanthus. Kew Bulletin 66: 331-335.

Kathriarachchi, H., Samuel, R., Hoffmann, P., Mlinarec, J., Wurdack, J.K., Ralimanana, H., Stuessy, T.F. & Chase, M. W. (2006). Phylogenetics of tribe Phyllantheae (Phyllanthaceae; Euphorbiaceae sensu lato) based on nrITS and plastid matK DNA sequence data. American Journal of Botany 93: 637-655.