Robert Fletcher is based at the Sociology of Development and Change group at Wageningen University in the Netherlands. A former ecotourism guide, he is an environmental anthropologist with research interests in conservation, development, tourism, globalization, climate change, human-wildlife interaction, social and resistance movements, and non-state forms of governance. He uses a political ecology approach to explore how culturally-specific understandings of human-nonhuman relations and political economic structures intersect to inform patterns of natural resource use and conflict. His publications include the books The Conservation Revolution: Radical Ideas for Saving Nature beyond the Anthropocene, co-authored with Bram Büscher, and published by Verso Books in 2020, and Romancing the Wild: Cultural Dimensions of Ecotourism, published by Duke University Press in 2014.
Dr. Susan Gardner is a Mexican-American environmental scientist, known for her pioneering research on ecotoxicology and her critical contributions to the Minamata Convention on Mercury. Dr. Gardner has over two decades of experience in supporting countries in conserving and restoring their terrestrial, freshwater and marine ecosystems. Prior to serving as the Director of UNEP’s Ecosystems Division, she was a senior official in the United States National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the U.S. Department of State, and she worked for the Mexican Federal Government as an environmental scientist at the Centro de Investigaciones Biológicas del Noroeste. She holds a Doctoral Degree in Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences from the University of Washington and a Master’s of Science Degree in Toxicology from North Carolina State University. Her research has generated over 30 publications including a book and book chapters on topics related to ecology, toxicology, fisheries management and species conservation.
Angela Gurnell commenced her research career with a BSc in Geography (awarded 1970) and subsequently a PhD (1973) and DSc (2000) from the University of Exeter. She was appointed to a lectureship at the University of Southampton in 1973 and then to Senior Lecturer and Reader. In 1994 she moved to the University of Birmingham, where she was awarded a personal chair in 1995. From 2002 to 2009, she was Professor of Physical Geography at King’s College London, serving as Head of the Department of Geography from 2003 to 2006. She then moved to her current post at Queen Mary University of London as Professor of Physical Geography.
Over five decades, Angela has conducted research within the field of river science. Her main interests are in the natural functioning of river systems and the ways in these systems respond to human interventions and pressures. At an early stage, she investigated the important but often overlooked role of vegetation in river system functioning, emphasising vegetation as a third crucial control on river channel dynamics in addition to the river’s flow and sediment transport regimes. This fundamental work led to applied research on the impacts of human actions on the character and condition of rivers. This applied research has included consideration of river flow regulation, sediment delivery to rivers resulting from land use change, vegetation management, invasions by non-native plant species, and the dynamics of all of these in the context of climate change. Recently, she has devoted considerable time to the promotion of Citizen Science, developing methodologies through which volunteers can contribute to understanding the physical condition of river systems. She also devised a method for professionals to assess river condition within the UK’s Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs’ methodology for assessing Biodiversity Net Gain.
Throughout her career, Angela has led and contributed to numerous international and national projects in river science funded by both UK and European Union funding sources. She has also served on committees awarding research funding (e.g. chair of the UK Natural Environment Research Council’s Freshwater Sciences Peer Review Committee); providing guidance on the management of rivers (e.g. member of the writing group: European Guidance Standard for Assessing the Hydromorphological Features of Rivers) and supporting NGOs in their work on river conservation and restoration (e.g. member of the Board of Trustees of The Rivers Trust).
In recognition of her fundamental and applied research contributions, she was awarded the Royal Geographical Society’s Victoria medal in 2002; the British Society for Geomorphology’s Linton medal in 2012; and the European Geosciences Union’s Alfred Wegener medal in 2021.
Dr. Nitin Pandit is the CEO of the Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and Environment (ATREE) in Bangalore, India. Previously he was the Director of Priority Initiatives at the World Resources Institute (WRI) in Washington, DC, USA, focusing on restoration and energy efficiency, after serving as the CEO of WRI India and led WRI’s work in India.
Before WRI, Nitin was President of the International Institute for Energy Conservation (IIEC), with offices and programs in a dozen countries, for implementing novel sustainable energy approaches for developing countries. In the 90s, Nitin formed a boutique high-tech consultancy specializing in artificial intelligence (AI) applications in environmental and renewable energy systems. In the 80s, Nitin worked with reputed consulting firms.
Nitin has a bachelor's and a couple of masters’ degrees in engineering, and a doctorate in public policy.