I am an interdisciplinary researcher in sustainable development, conservation and environmental management issues with a specialisation in ecological economics and citizen and stakeholder deliberation. My main research interest is in people’s values around nature. I enjoy taken a broad view of the notion of value and values, looking through the lenses of economics, ecology, ethics, psychology and spiritual practice, and have a particular interest in how social processes shape values and in ways we can integrate economic and deliberative methodologies to better incorporate shared values of nature into decision-making. I also work more broadly on new economics approaches, including in the context of economic recovery from COVID.
I have most recently worked at the University of York, Environment Department as Reader in Deliberative Ecological Economics, where I was programme leader for the MSc in Environmental Economics and Environmental Management. I previously worked as Principal Investigator at the Scottish Association for Marine Science (SAMS) where I lead the Laurence Mee Centre for Society and the Sea, and have lectured at the Universities of Edinburgh, St Andrews, Leicester and Aberdeen. I now run Ecologos, an independent research and consultancy company, work as a psycho-spiritual counsellor being ordained as Interfaith Minister by the One Spirit Interfaith Seminary, and enjoy landscape photography.
I have authored over 50 peer reviewed publications with more than 4000 citations (link to Google Scholar Profile). My work has received funding from European, UK, Norwegian and Finnish research councils and I currently co-lead the EU Horizon 2020 PERICLES project on maritime cultural heritage. I lead the Global Assessment for a New Economics, am a Lead Author for the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) focusing on the conceptualisation of multiple values. I was previously a principal investigator for the second phase of the UK National Ecosystem Assessment (2012-2014), leading work on shared, plural and cultural values of ecosystems. I have also served as board member of the International Society for Ecological Economics and the European Society for Ecological Economics and as editor for the journal Sustainability Science and associated editor for the journal Ecosystem Services. For my cross-disciplinary research in the Solomon Islands (South Pacific) on environmental values, I have received prizes from the European Society for Ecological Economics, the Society for Conservation Biology, and the Geographical Field Group. Before moving to the UK, I worked as an environmental campaigner in the Netherlands, Iceland and elsewhere.