PhD Research - Understanding the risks of biodiversity loss in PepsiCo's agricultural supply chains
The conversion of diverse landscapes to agriculture is a major cause of biodiversity loss worldwide. With a growing human population, this agricultural expansion is unlikely to decrease. Whilst protected areas are important in reducing global biodiversity loss and protecting species of conservation concern, agricultural practices may be just as important to consider in global biodiversity conservation and for the continuing provision of ecosystem services. One way to influence agricultural practices is through policies such as the UK's governmental agri-environment schemes. Another influential route is through corporate agricultural supply chains, which cover vast amounts of agricultural land across the world.
My work takes a business view on biodiversity conservation within agricultural supply chains. This angle on conserving species uses the ecosystem services concept to understand which parts of biodiversity support specific ecosystem services that companies rely on. Agricultural supply chains are becoming ever more global, influencing many landscapes across the world during the sourcing of raw ingredients, to continue providing internationally popular brands of food and drink.
Working with PepsiCo as my PhD Case partner, I am able to follow the Copella agricultural supply chain to understand what dependencies are involved with biodiversity and ecosystem services and whether they provide benefits, or dis-benefits, to farmers and PepsiCo in terms of profit, yield and reputation. More specifically, I am focussing on whether biodiversity supports the pest control ecosystem service on apple orchards and will try to value the importance of that service.
Professor Ken Norris, Institute of Zoology ZSL
Professor Georgina Mace, University College London
My PhD is funded by BBSRC with Case partnership funding from PepsiCo.
2013 – present: PhD Candidate - University College London and Institute of Zoology, ZSL
2012 – 2013: MSc Conservation Science (Merit), Imperial College London
2011 – 2013: Ecological Field Surveyor, Hankison Duckett Associates, Wallingford
2012: Volunteer Officer, The Conservation Volunteers, Reading
2011: Conservation Field Assistant and Volunteer, A Rocha International and Local Ocean Trust, Watamu, Kenya
2008 – 2011: BSc Geography (First Class Hons), Royal Holloway University of London