Director of Conservation and Policy
Area of work
Programme Leadership
Behavioural ecology
Strategic development
Contact details

Zoological Society of London, 

Regents Park, Outer Circle, 



I lead the Conservation and Policy Directorate at ZSL through the implementation of our new conservation plan across major ecosystem programmes in Europe, Africa, and Asia. I support the development of the organisation's conservation strategy and lead the delivery of that strategy across our international field programmes in Benin, Cameroon, Kenya, Mozambique, Mongolia, Nepal, Philippines, Thailand, and India.

The challenges facing wildlife are now more critical than ever, as illustrated in the most recent Living Planet Report, and we are in a unique position in bringing together world-leading science, extensive field experience and hands-on animal management expertise to tackle the recovery of biodiversity and ecological balance, we can create lasting impact. 

We champion species recovery from large integrated programmes for major ecosystems engineer species like elephants, tiger and sharks to some of the world’s most overlooked species, exemplified by our EDGE of Existence programme. We look to share capacity where it is needed the most, and develop close partnerships with communities, NGOs and authorities alike. 

I am also deeply committeed to changing how conservation is develivered with the goal of seeking out new and and innovative approaches that engage future leaders for conservation who have traditionally not been included in the process. 

Professional history
  • 2019 - Present:  Director of Conservation & Policy - ZSL
  • 2018 - 2019: Head of UK Development - Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust
  • 2010 - 2019: Head of Field Programmes - Durell Wildlife Conservation Trust
  • 2007 - 2010: Conservation Manager - Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust
  • 2003 - 2007: Scientific Advisor - IUCN
  • 1999 - 2022: PhD, Behviour and Conservation - University of Copenhagen
Selected publications

Smith, D., Abeli, T., Bruns, E. B., Dalrymple, S. E., Foster, J., Gilbert, T. C., ... & Ewen, J. G. (2023). Extinct in the wild: The precarious state of Earth’s most threatened group of species. Science379(6634)

Norris, K., Terry, A., Hansford, J. P., & Turvey, S. T. (2020). Biodiversity conservation and the earth system: mind the gap. Trends in Ecology & Evolution35(10), 919-926.