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.
Programme Assistant – Communications and Capacity
Iona is the Programme Assistant for the Endangered Landscapes Programme, leading on communications and supporting capacity and network building. Prior to joining the ELP, Iona worked as coordinator of the Ape Alliance, a coalition of over 100 organisations with the aim of bringing people together to further ape conservation and welfare. She completed a MSci in Biology at the University of Bristol, studying how British Lepidopterans’ life-histories interact with the changing climate. Iona is passionate about conservation and the natural world, and in her spare time enjoys photography and spending time in nature.
Vikki is the Programme Administrator for the Endangered Landscapes Programme. After fifteen years working in administrative office roles in both the public and private sector, she pursued a career change and spent almost ten years working as a Countryside Ranger in Northamptonshire. Returning to the Great Indoors she is looking forward to continuing her conservation journey with the ELP, combining her administrative experience with her knowledge of practical conservation work. She is currently studying part time with The Open University working towards a BSc in Environmental Science.
Taylor is supporting ELP-funded projects to monitor restoration interventions across multiple ecological and socio-economic dimensions, and more broadly to help build a robust evidence base for current and future restoration projects. Previously, as a soundscape ecologist and doctoral candidate within the project ‘Conservation of Forest Biodiversity in Multiple-Use Landscapes of Central Europe’, she investigated how acoustic monitoring can be effectively employed as a high-resolution biodiversity monitoring tool. Taylor also worked on the Dr. FOREST project, which sought to quantify the ecosystem services and disservices provided by forests and their subsequent effects on human health. Taylor’s previous research, in partnership with Flora and Fauna International (FFI), examined factors limiting the use of endangered tree species in the restoration of the highly threatened Araucaria forest. Prior to that, she worked in Cambodia to better understand the complex issues relating to deforestation and alternative livelihoods programming, and at the National Geographic Society.
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.