The world faces a crisis risking extinction of species through global warming. Due to impact of e.g., changes in land use and destruction of habitats, tropical rain forests, mangrove forests and coral reefs are disappearing and with them ecosystem functions, goods and services on which human populations are dependent. In order to conserve nature, to manage or even to restore tropical biodiversity and ecosystems, we must understand patterns of tropical biodiversity, study how organisms interact with their environment and how they respond to perturbations and change. Next to research, this is dealt with in this unique masters programme.

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TROPIMUNDO is an EC-funded and excellence-labebeled Erasmus Mundus Masters Course in Tropical Biodiversity and Ecosystems. We aim to bring together expert Higher Education Institutes (HEI), with long-standing worldwide expertise in tropical rainforests and woodlands and in tropical coastal ecosystems. TROPIMUNDO students are able to concentrate on botany, zoology and integrative ecosystem approaches in institutions worldwide in 2 Master years, of which an entire semester is spent in the tropics. Specialisation is possible on the evolution of tropical flora and vegetation, on faunistic assemblages, on informatics tools to treat and manage biodiversity data and databases (biogeographical, genetical, geographical information systems) including the management and conservation of historic collections such as herbarium sheets, on the study of diversity, dynamics and evolution of tropical and subtropical ecosystems (with a focus on four related systems, namely tropical rainforests and woodlands, mangrove forests, seagrass beds and coral reefs, including the interactions between flora, fauna, man and the environment within and between each of these adjacent ecosystems), on conservation and restoration ecology of natural habitats and their biodiversity including competences in sustainable management and governance of biodiversity, and finally, on tropical ethnobotany, exploitation and valorisation of natural resources and conservation of traditional ecological knowledge.

Click here to get your personal link to the online Information and Application Module (see also blue frame at the right of this screen).

WarningThe information in this website may be subject to changes from one year to another.

Core values

Unique mobility programme worldwide, including a unique set of threatened ecosystems

  • Study, research and field courses in Amazonian, African, Asian and/or Australian wet tropics
  • Intensive contact with different cultures and languages


While aiming at a joint Master degree, students are awarded a multiple degree depending on which European institutes were visited. In addition, each student will receive a Europass Certificate signed by all participating higher education institutes involved. Find more information on the academic learning outcome.

Basic student requirements

  • An internationally accepted Bachelor’s degree (i.e. the equivalent of 180 ECTS) with a major in Biology, Natural Sciences, Environmental Sciences, or equivalent from an accredited university.
  • Students must be able to demonstrate proficiency in English or English + French. More information on language requirements can be found in the Online Information and Application Module.
  • A personal evaluation of the applications will be done by a selection committee
  • In the 1st and 3rd semester basic and specialised extra-curricular language courses are offered based on actual trajectory needs.

Trajectory in 4 semesters

The consortium is composed of 5 institutes in Programme Countries (largely European) and 4 higher education institutes in Partner Countries (largely non-European). In a first semester, students start at a European institute of their choice to acquire similar competences. In a second semester field experience and courses will take place in a university in a non-EU country. This includes hands-on experience in 1 or 2 tropical sites. The third semester will cover a specialisation in a European university, different from the first one. Courses vary at this semester. In the fourth semester students return to where they started out for their thesis research. Every trajectory of 4 semesters constitutes a unique combination of courses and expertises. In-depth information available:

Tuition fees

Tuition fees are 8,000 EUR per year for students from Partner countries (largely outside Europe) and 4,000 EUR per year for students from Programme countries (largely European). They are to be paid to the coordinating institute. The tuition fees include consortium enrolment fees and the insurance cost. The tuition fees do not include costs related to visa and preparatory documents, accommodation, additional insurance costs, living expenses and travel and transportation costs. However, EC-funded students have additional cost coverage. Find more information here.


TROPIMUNDO Candidates can also apply for an EC scholarship, which is however limited by a number of criteria.

Applying for Tropimundo

The following information sections are extracted from the online Information and Application Module.

  1. Welcome
  2. Programme information
  3. Practical application information
  4. Manual

Students and Alumni

TROPIMUNDO students and alumni will have the opportunity to become a member of the Erasmus Mundus Students and Alumni Association - EMA.

Frequently Asked Questions - FAQ


Click here to get your personal link to the online Information and Application Module.

Detailed information on TROPIMUNDO facts, conditions, procedures, etc... is available in the online Information and Application Module. The call for TROPIMUNDO applications for self-funded applicants (= second call) is now open for applicants of all countries.

This second TROPIMUNDO call for self-funded applicants (preferably originating from one of the member states of the European Union and with a Bachelor diploma obtained from an EU member state but not restricted to this) will be opened. First call applications were evaluated as a batch after the deadline, however, second call applications will be treated on a first come first served basis. The deadline for submission of second call applications will be 30 June 2015 for Non-EU and 15 August 2015 for EU students or until all available places have been exhausted. Admissions may be done conditional of obtaining a Bachelor diploma or language proof before the start of the academic year. Click here to get your personal link to the online Information and Application Module.

The call for 2016-2017 (with scholarships) will open by the end of September 2015.

Participating universities and local coordinators

All institutes in the consortium are internationally-minded institutions with infrastructure, experience and proven results in servicing foreign students and scholars. The Local Coordinator, assisted by a Local Administrative Manager, will be the single contact point for students in all matters and will act as liaison between students and the administrative departments at their institution. All European institutes also have an International Relations Office that is used to guide foreign students and researchers, providing necessary material to help them find their way in the full program. The consortium aims to meet the highest quality requirements. More information on programme quality and evaluation is available from the Online Information and Application Module.


- Université Libre de Bruxelles - ULB (Belgium) Mangrove forests (spatio-temporal dynamics, socio-ecology and restoration), tropical rainforests and woodlands (vegetation science, population genetics, termite and ant communities)
General Coordinator: Farid DAHDOUH-GUEBAS

- Vrije Universiteit Brussel - VUB (Belgium) African Lakes (vegetation science, conservation genetics), mangrove forests (vegetation science, ecophysiology and functional anatomy), coral reefs (biodiversity, phylogenetics)
Local Coordinator: Ludwig TRIEST

- Université Pierre et Marie Curie - UPMC (France) Tropical rainforests (vegetation science, phylogeny, bioinformatics)
Local Coordinator: Jean-Yves DUBUISSON

- Musée National d'Histoire Naturelle - MNHN (France) Tropical rainforests (vegetation science, systematics, taxonomy, phylogeny, flora and fauna, man and environment, agroforestry)
Local Coordinator: Bernard RIERA

- Università degli Studi di Firenze - UNIFI (Italy) Mangrove forests and coastal biology (zoology, evolutionary biology, animal behaviour and orientation, physical landscape processes), ecotone ecosystems (marine-terrestrial ecotone and vegetated-desert ecotone : ecological, social and economic issues in environment stewardship)
Local Coordinator: Stefano CANNICCI

- Universidad Cientifica del Perú - UCP (Peru) for Amazonian forests and wetlands Amazonian ecosystems (biodiversity, landscape processes, socio-cultural diversity of Amazonian rainforests and wetlands)
Local Coordinator: Julio Ruiz MURRIETA

- Université de Dschang - UDsch (Cameroon) for African tropical rainforests African tropical rainforests and woodlands (sustainable management of forests resources, identification, characterisation and  domestication of non-timber forest products, biodiversity evaluation and characterisation)
Local Coordinator: François NGUETSOP

- Universiti Malaysia Terengganu - UMT (Malaysia) for Asian tropical forests and coastal ecosystems Humid wet tropics, mangroves, coral reefs (tropical terrestrial and marine ecosystem management, geomatics, reef communities, fisheries science, coastal and reef impacts)
Local Coordinator: Mohd. Lokman BIN HUSSAIN with B. SATYANARAYANA

- The University of Queensland (Australia) for Australian tropical forests and coral reefs Humid wet tropics, mangroves, coral reefs (tropical terrestrial and marine ecosystem management, geomatics, reef communities, fisheries science, coastal and reef impacts)
Local Coordinator: Ian TIBBETTS