Staffan Widstrand / Rewilding Europe
The Programme Management team
The Endangered Landscapes Programme is managed by a small team within the Cambridge Conservation Initiative, based in the David Attenborough in Cambridge, UK.
David Thomas has over 30 years’ experience as a conservationist and project manager both in the field and as manager of a global portfolio of projects. After graduating he worked at University College London and then Edinburgh University, exploring landscape-scale impacts of development in Tunisia (impacts of dams and drainage) and Belize (impacts of coastal tourism development). He worked for IUCN providing technical advice on links between environment and local livelihoods at a floodplain wetland in northern Nigeria, before joining BirdLife International in 1997. As Head of Environment and Sustainable Development, he coordinated the different strands of BirdLife’s environment and sustainable development work and led on cross-cutting issues of conservation and governance, equity, rights, poverty reduction, gender and indigenous peoples. From 2010 he coordinated work focused on empowerment of local, grassroots organisations, and the linkages between biodiversity, livelihoods and well-being.
Sarah is passionate about nature, particularly supporting people to make the world a better place for both. She has a broad conservation background and wants to work with everyone to make a difference. After obtaining an MSc in Protected Landscape Management her work for the past 20+ years has ranged from enabling communities to manage natural resources at the local level, to developing the capacity of countries to address global environmental issues. Previously she has worked with the UNDP-GEF Regional Bureau for Europe and the CIS supporting countries to access funds to undertake national capacity self-assessments to assess their capacity to meet the requirements of the global environment conventions. She has also managed the RSPB’s UK Overseas Territories programme and has led the team providing support to BirdLife partners in Africa and Asia. Most recently she has managed the RSPB’s curlew recovery programme in the UK where the aim is to enable partners within priority landscapes to improve the conservation prospects for this globally threatened species.
Nancy is the Science Manager for the Endangered Landscape Programme. Her role is to support the projects funded by the ELP to make effective use of science, whether that might be using evidence to choose between restoration methods, or creating well-designed monitoring programmes that collect useful data and test new interventions. Before joining CCI Nancy worked in the University of Cambridge’s Zoology Department for several years as part of the Conservation Evidence team as Managing Editor of their Conservation Evidence journal. She was also instrumental in the creation of ‘What Works in Conservation’, a resource that provides assessments of the effectiveness of a wide range of possible conservation interventions. Previously, Nancy has worked for the British Trust for Ornithology, with particular interests in the impacts of climate change and long-distance migrant bird species, and the RSPB, where she ran a project to investigate the causes of declines in urban house sparrow populations.
Capacity & Networks Coordinator
Georgina leads on strengthening the capacity of ELP grantees to deliver landscape restoration, and building a network of grantees for exchanging knowledge, expertise and experiences of restoration. Previously, she worked as Programme Coordinator for the ELP, and has been with the Programme since 2018. Georgina has always had a fascination for wild places and things, having grown up in South Yorkshire on the outskirts of the Peak District. She graduated with a BSc in Zoology from University of Manchester in 2014, having completed several overseas conservation and development placements in Greece, Belize, Kenya and Canada. After working in London for two years in a Learning and Development role, Georgina escaped the big smoke to study an MSc in Environment and Development at University of Leeds, graduating in 2017. Georgina is interested in the many ways people interact with the natural world, and is particularly passionate about the intersection between nature recovery and psychological wellbeing.
Vicky provides administration and secretarial support to the ELP team. Prior to joining CCI, Vicky worked for more than 10 years within the NHS, where she undertook a range of project and business roles, working on regional and national NHS improvement programmes. Passionate about nature, wildlife, and spending time ‘outdoors’, in her spare time she is a work party volunteer with Essex Wildlife Trust.
The Oversight and Selection Panel
The ELP’s Oversight and Selection Panel is comprised of distinguished individuals with a wide range of experience and expertise. The Panel is responsible for recommending which projects should receive ELP grants by independently applying the Programme’s criteria and providing guidance and oversight in relation to the Programme’s overall implementation and strategy. Observer members are valued members of the Oversight and Selection Panel, but they do not have a vote on decisions made by the Panel, and are not involved in the selection of projects for funding.
The Landscape Restoration Working Group
A Landscape Restoration Working Group, with representation from each of the CCI partners, provides guidance on the strategy and operations of the Endangered Landscapes Programme in the context of CCI’s wider agenda on landscape restoration globally. Meet our co-chairs below.
Professor Bill Sutherland
Miriam Rothschild Chair of Conservation Biology, Department of Zoology, Co-Chair CCI Landscape Restoration Working Group
Bill holds the Miriam Rothschild Chair of Conservation Biology in the Department of Zoology at the University of Cambridge. His research interests largely involve predicting the consequences of environmental change. He has written The Conservation Handbook and From Individual Behaviour to Population Biology, and edited Managing Habitats for Conservation, Ecological Census Techniques, Behaviour and Conservation, Conservation Science and Action and Bird Ecology and Conservation: a Handbook of Techniques. He is currently heavily involved in exploring a range of ways of integrating conservation science and policy especially through the development of evidence-based conservation.