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Improving lives by solving problems in agriculture and the environment
Staff image of Hariet L  Hinz

Hariet L Hinz Country Director and Head Weed Biological Control

T: +41 (0)32 421 48 72

Address

Rue des Grillons 1 CH-2800 Delémont, Switzerland

Qualifications

BSc in Horticulture, MSc in Pest Management/ Applied Entomology, PhD in Ecology/ Biology

My training is in horticulture, pest management, applied entomology and ecology, which provides an ideal background for my main research interest, classical biological weed control. I have over 20 years of experience in this area, including studies on the biology, host specificity and impact of herbivorous insects, the population biology of plants, and more recently, chemical aspects underlying the host-choice behaviour of insects. I am also interested in potential invasion mechanisms of invasive plants and have supervized several graduate projects on this subject, including biogeographic comparisons between the native and introduced ranges of invasive plant species.


Since 2006, I have led the Biological Weed Control Programme at CABI's centre in Switzerland. This role involves managing 16 ongoing weed biological control projects for the USA and Canada, developing new projects to ensure the financial sustainability of the programme as well as coordinating a team of six project scientists and several support staff. Since 2002 I have been an Affiliated Professor at the University of Idaho, where I am currently co-supervizing two PhD and one MSc student.


I feel fortunate in having a job that offers me an ideal combination of scientific and applied aspects in the area of biological weed control. I also enjoy the international nature of my work, which includes frequent travelling and collaborating with people from different cultures.


In October 2015 I was appointed Country Director of CABI's Swiss centre, which offers me an exciting opportunity to be even more involved in CABI’s overall operations and CABI-wide collaborations. 

Project image: Controlling Japanese knotweed in Great Britain

Locating a biological control for tutsan in New Zealand

Tutsan, native to Europe, was introduced to New Zealand but is now a major invasive species. In 2011, CABI’s Swiss centre was approached by Landcare Research to investigate prospects for the biological control of tutsan. Surveys in the native range revealed a suite of insects and pathogens. CABI’s...
Project image: Controlling Japanese knotweed in Great Britain

An old problem revisited: biological control of toadflaxes

Native to Europe, toadflaxes were introduced to the USA and Canada over 100 years ago as ornamental plants. They now occur over much of temperate North America and are declared noxious in eight US states. CABI is part of an effort to identify specific natural enemies that can be introduced into North America...
Project image: Controlling Japanese knotweed in Great Britain

Exploring options to control Canada thistle

Despite the name, Canada thistle’s natural home is Eurasia. It has spread throughout the temperate world to become one of the worst weeds in rangeland and crops. One reason for this is the absence of the natural enemies that attack it in its area of origin. In North America six insect natural enemies have...
Project image: Controlling Japanese knotweed in Great Britain

Giving dyer’s woad the blues

Dyer’s woad is an ancient source of blue dye and was grown as a textile dye crop in Europe and Asia for centuries. It was introduced to North America by early colonists, but escaped cultivation. Today, it is recognized as a serious weed in the western USA. One reason for its impact is the absence of the...
Project image: Controlling Japanese knotweed in Great Britain

Controlling hoary cress in the United States

Trade in seed brought crops to new regions, but many weeds were spread by this route too. Whitetops, also known as hoary cresses, arrived in the USA as contaminants of seed from Eurasia. They are now aggressive invaders of crops, rangeland and riverbanks. One reason for this is the absence of the natural...
Project image: Controlling Japanese knotweed in Great Britain

Hope for biological control of houndstongue in the USA?

An invasive weed with close relatives among native species is a challenge for biological control. Houndstongue was introduced accidentally to North America from Eurasia in the mid-19th century. It has since invaded most Canadian provinces and adjacent US states. There are many native plants in the USA in the...
Project image: Controlling Japanese knotweed in Great Britain

Biological control of flowering rush

Attractive pink flowers make the Eurasian plant flowering rush a popular aquatic ornamental. But since it was introduced to North America it has become an aggressive invader of freshwater systems in the midwestern/ western USA and western Canada. One reason for this is the absence of the natural enemies that...
Project image: Controlling Japanese knotweed in Great Britain

Biological control of garlic mustard

Crushed garlic mustard leaves and seeds smell like cultivated garlic and have been used as flavouring in cooking for centuries. Garlic mustard is a brassica from Eurasia that was accidentally taken to North America and became invasive in many of its forests. Together with partners, CABI is exploring the...