Dr. Vladimir Ruslan Wingate


Institute of Geography

+41 31 684 32 93
Postal Address
University of Bern
Institute of Geography
Hallerstrasse 12
CH-3012 Bern
Consultation Hour
by arrangement

I am a postdoctoral researcher with the Land Systems and Sustainable Land Management Group at the Institute of Geography, University of Bern, Switzerland. In 2018 I gained my PhD in Geography from the University of Basel’s Department of Environmental Sciences, Physical Geography and Environmental Change.  Subsequently, I completed a PostDoc with the University of Zurich’s Remote Sensing group in the Department of Geography (2019-2021). I hold a Master’s Degree in Environmental Management from the University of Stirling (2011), and a Bachelor of Science in Tropical Environmental Science from the University of Aberdeen (2010).

Research Focus

My research focuses on mapping ecological and environmental change across tropical, arctic and mountain biomes using a range of satellite and near-surface remote sensing imagery and methods. I have developed change maps which provide quantitative data on global change processes, including deforestation, land degradation, climate change, ecosystem functions and biodiversity, to help inform natural resource management. Specifically, I have experience in:

  • Land Surface Phenology
  • Essential Biodiversity Variables
  • Land-climate interactions
  • Biomass and biophysical variable mapping
  • Land cover and land use change mapping
  • Near-surface remote sensing
  • Tropical forest fragment mapping
  • Hyperspectral remote sensing



  • SUSTAINFORESTS: Tropical forest patches under pressure: Dynamics, functions and sustainable management in agricultural landscapes of the West African forest and savannah zones
  • BioMonI – Biodiversity monitoring of island ecosystems

Field experience

Ghana, Madagascar, Namibia, South Africa, Australia, Mexico, Colombia, Switzerland, Scotland, Kyrgyzstan


English, French, Spanish, German (intermediate), Russian (beginner) 

Spring semester 2021

  • 468196-FS2021-0: Assessing and monitoring land surface dynamics in Bern

Fall semester 2021

  • 100671-HS2021-0: Sustainability Forum - Persistence and Change of Forests

Spring semester 2022

  • 468196-FS2022-0: Assessing and monitoring land surface dynamics in Bern
  • 10917-FS2022-0: Seminar: Land Systems and Sustainable Land Management

Spring semester 2023

  • 468196-FS2023-0: Remote sensing and social-ecological analysis of land surface dynamics in Bern

Fall semester 2023

  • 100671-HS2023-0: Sustainability Forum - Forests as social-ecological systems

Spring semester 2024

  • 10917-FS2024-0: Forest ecology, management and governance – selected concepts and field methods
  • The Group on Earth Observations Biodiversity Observation Network (GEO BON)


  • GlobDiversity is the first large-scale project explicitly designed to develop and engineer RS-enabled EBVs. This project initiated by the European Space Agency (ESA) supports the efforts of the Convention on Biological Diversity


  • NPOC (National Point of Contact) for Satellite Images is a public service, initiated by the Swiss State Secretariat for Education and Research



Wingate, V. R., Akinyemi, F. O., & Speranza, C. I. (2023). Archetypes of remnant West African forest patches, their main characteristics and geographical distribution. Applied Geography, 158, 103024. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.apgeog.2023.103024

Bellingham, Andreas Bruder, Jillian Campbell, Michael D Catchen, and Jeannine Cavender-Bares. 2023. ‘A Global Biodiversity Observing System to Unite Monitoring and Guide Action’. Nature Ecology & Evolution, 1–5.


Wingate, V. R., Akinyemi, F. O., Iheaturu, C. J., & Speranza, C. I. (2022). A Remote Sensing-Based Inventory of West Africa Tropical Forest Patches: A Basis for Enhancing Their Conservation and Sustainable Use. Remote Sensing, 14(24), 6251.


Egli, Markus, Guido Wiesenberg, Jens Leifeld, Holger Gärtner, Jan Seibert, Claudia Röösli, Vladimir Wingate, et al. 2021. ‘Formation and Decay of Peat Bogs in the Vegetable Belt of Switzerland’. Swiss Journal of Geosciences 114 (1): 2. https://doi.org/10.1186/s00015-020-00376-0

Skidmore, Andrew K., Nicholas C. Coops, Elnaz Neinavaz, Abebe Ali, Michael E. Schaepman, Marc Paganini, W. Daniel Kissling, et al. 2021. ‘Priority List of Biodiversity Metrics to Observe from Space’. Nature Ecology & Evolution, May.

Chatenoux, Bruno, Jean-Philippe Richard, David Small, Claudia Roeoesli, Vladimir Wingate, Charlotte Poussin, Denisa Rodila et al. "The Swiss data cube, analysis ready data archive using earth observations of Switzerland." Scientific data 8, no. 1 (2021): 1-11.



Sandhage-Hofmann, Alexandra, Jörg Löffler, Elmarie Kotzé, Stef Weijers, Vladimir Wingate, Dirk Wundram, Lutz Weihermüller, Roland Pape, Chris C du Preez, and Wulf Amelung. 2020. “Woody Encroachment and Related Soil Properties in Different Tenure-Based Management Systems of Semiarid Rangelands.” Geoderma 372: 114399.

Meyer, Maximilian, Ekkehard Klingelhoeffer, Robin Naidoo, Vladimir Wingate, and Jan Börner. n.d. ‘Tourism Opportunities Drive Woodland and Wildlife Conservation Outcomes of Community-Based Conservation in Namibia’s Zambezi Region’. Ecological Economics 180: 106863.


Wingate, Vladimir R, Stuart R Phinn, and Nikolaus Kuhn. 2019. ‘Mapping Precipitation-Corrected NDVI Trends across Namibia’. Science of The Total Environment 684: 96–112.


Wingate, Vladimir R., Stuart R Phinn, Nikolaus Kuhn, and Peter Scarth. 2018. “Estimating Aboveground Woody Biomass Change in Kalahari Woodland: Combining Field, Radar, and Optical Data Sets.” International Journal of Remote Sensing 39 (2): 577–606.

Bloemertz, Lena, Martha Naanda, Vladimir Wingate, Simon Angombe, and Nikolaus Kuhn. 2018. Land, Livelihoods and Housing Programme 2015-18 Working Paper. Working Paper No. 10 Ecosystem Services and Small-Holder Farming Practices - between Payments, Development Support and Right- an Integrated Approach. Vol. 1. 1 10. Windhoek: Integrated Land Management Institute.


Dhanjal-Adams, Kiran L, Jeffrey O Hanson, Nicholas J Murray, Stuart R Phinn, Vladimir R Wingate, Karen Mustin, Jasmine R Lee, James R Allan, Jessica L Cappadonna, and Colin E Studds. 2016. “The Distribution and Protection of Intertidal Habitats in Australia.” Emu 116 (2): 208–14.

Wingate, Vladimir, Stuart Phinn, Nikolaus Kuhn, Lena Bloemertz, and Kiran Dhanjal-Adams. 2016. “Mapping Decadal Land Cover Changes in the Woodlands of North Eastern Namibia from 1975 to 2014 Using the Landsat Satellite Archived Data.” Remote Sensing 8 (8): 681.