My research interests lie at the nexus of poverty alleviation and biodiversity conservation and include forest governance, community-based natural resource management, payments for environmental services, tropical forest ecology, and participatory analysis in the developing world tropics. I am particularly interested in how overlapping institutions around conservation areas differentially affect resource access, livelihoods strategies, and forest ecologies.
Before joining the ESPM community, I spent several years working on conservation issues with subsistence-based communities in Madagascar. From 2008-2011, through Peace Corps and Peace Corps Response service, I utilized participatory development techniques to work with communities to develop more sustainable forest management practices.
I received an M.Sc. degree in Conservation Biology and Sustainable Development through the Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies at the University of Wisconsin – Madison. For my Master’s thesis, I investigated the effects of two conservation incentive programs on forest use and local natural resource management in the eastern rainforest corridor of Ankeniheny-Zahamena in Madagascar. This was a mixed-methods project that entwined household interviews, focus groups, forest transects, and participatory analyses.
With B.S. degrees in Zoology and Anthropology, I am committed to developing and utilizing inter- and transdisciplinary approaches to transcend the human/environment divide, drawing on theory from political ecology, landscape ecology, conservation biology and science studies, amongst others.
M.Sc. Nelson Institute of Environmental Studies, University of Wisconsin – Madison, 2012
B.S. Humboldt State University, 2006