Conservation Assessment Scholar, Do-Gooder, Wanderer. Enjoys Lofty Titles.

I am an NSF SEES Fellow & Conservation Assessment Scholar at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography‘s (SIO) Center for Marine Biodiversity and Conservation (CMBC), and the founder & co-chair of CMBC’s Small-Scale & Artisanal Fisheries Research Network (SAFRN).  

For my postdoctoral research, I’m working with Octavio Aburto and the Gulf of California Marine Program at CMBC, Ratana Chuenpagdee and Too Big To Ignore, the Marine Conservation Institute, and more, to evaluate how Marine Protected Areas (MPAs), Locally Managed Marine Areas (LMMAs), and Other Effective area-based Conservation Measures (OECMs) meet ecological and social management objectives, ranging from protection of biodiversity to human rights.

My general research interest is interdisciplinary conservation of nearshore environments in developing nations.  While behavioral ecology of mammals and birds is my “pure science” passion, conservation is more of a life passion that incorporates my love of ecology and nature, and my concern for human well-being. I also seek to understand and improve how the conservation community communicates and collaborates, so that recommendations resulting from research can better be linked to concrete, effective action.

For the future, I aim to pursue a career that combines rigorous research with effective conservation action.  Whether I try to do that from academia, an NGO, or as a “conservation consultant” remains to be seen, though I am increasingly intrigued by the last option.  Assessment of conservation projects is a big gap in the field at the moment, and there is a real need for interdisciplinary consultants to keep track of the true progress of conservation initiatives and to guide future development of more effective projects.

Mission statement: See and explore and experience as much of this world as possible…particularly in the tropics.  Hopefully learn & do enough to do some good for the environment and people.  Work hard, but also take time to enjoy and appreciate the countries where I work.  If this involves relaxing on a white-sand beach, so be it.  Also, eat a lot of Thai and Indonesian and Malaysian food.  And enjoy life in my beloved San Diego.