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Cristi Gherghiceanu is the executive president of Fundatia ADEPT, a Romanian non-profit dedicated to protecting Transylvanian biodiversity and traditional agriculture through innovation and education.

ADEPT partnered with Opwall to set up our projects in Transylvania, and have deepened the relationship by working with Friends of Wallacea to set up the Angofa Wildlife Centre in a house they restored to fund conservation in Romania year-round.

Cristi himself studied IT, economics, and accounting before becoming passionate about rural development. Growing up in Transylvania, he came to understand the local heritage that makes this region so special and ecologically important, and was moved to use his skills to oversee the daily operates of Fundatia ADEPT to provide value to those conserving traditional lifestyles in Transylvania.

In this episode, we discuss why ADEPT was created to protect Transylvania, how to conserve natural and cultural heritage, and what the world can learn from this very special place.

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Episode Outline: 

  • [0.43] Cristi’s Background
  • [2.50] The impact of Covid-19 on ADEPT
  • [4.00] How Cristi ended up working for ADEPT
  • [6.11] An introduction to Viscri and the surrounding area
  • [9.22] An introduction to Fundatia ADEPT
  • [12.47] An explanation of High Nature Value areas and the connection between Transylvanian biodiversity and traditional land management
  • [15.19] The importance of the wildflower meadows in Transylvania
  • [16.24] The impact of the Natura 2000 designation on conserving Transylvania’s natural heritage
  • [20.57] What project is ADEPT working on that Cristi is most excited about?
  • [23.12] What project is Cristi most proud of?
  • [25.27] What lessons can we learn from Transylvania about the management of agriculture and biodiversity?
  • [30.42] What is the craziest thing Cristi has seen working in the field?
  • [33.36] Advice for someone starting a career in conservation
  • [35.37] What keeps Cristi fighting to protect biodiversity?
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