2021–Present: PhD Researcher, Science & Solutions for a Changing Planet DTP - Institute of Zoology, ZSL; Grantham Institute (Imperial College London) and Centre for Environmental Policy (Imperial College London)
2021–Present: Research Associate, Interdisciplinary Centre for Conservation Science, University of Oxford
2019–2021: Project Coordinator, Oxford Partnership for Operationalising the Conservation Hierarchy (OxPOCH), University of Oxford
2016–2019: BA in Biological Sciences, Merton College, University of Oxford
I am generally interested in how people interact with nature, what problems this can cause, and what solutions can be found. My previous work has looked at a range of different stakeholder engagement techniques to reconcile differing points of view when it comes to the use of nature and sustainable development. Like many others, I find fascination with the challenges presented to us for this century in dealing with the climate, biodiversity, and social crises, and I am inspired to work and research on resolutions to tricky and controversial topics.
My current PhD focuses on the control of bovine tuberculosis (bTB) disease in the UK. The disease principally affects cattle herds, especially in the South West of England, but the European badger (Meles meles) is also known to harbour a reservoir of the disease which can be transmitted to cattle. The UK Government has recently announced no new badger culling licences will be granted, and these licences are required for badger removal as they are a protected species. Instead, the Government aims to pivot bTB control to focus on developing new tests and vaccines for cattle herds in the medium-to-long-term, and deploying badger vaccination programmes in the short-to-medium-term.
The aim of my research is to build a ‘social-ecological-system’ (SES) analysis of the situation, by understanding how these different control mechanisms could work in tandem in the future, and by considering different stakeholder opinions. bTB control is not simply a numbers game – there are significant controversies and loaded values from all stakeholders which can significantly affect the efficacy of control options. Furthermore, there are a number of ecological, environmental, financial, and moral trade-offs that have to be balanced, which differ in various parts of the UK. This PhD will assess the landscape stakeholders and decision makers have to navigate and see where synergies could be exploited, and trade-offs addressed, to maximise outcomes for farmers and minimise negative impacts on the natural world.
I grew up in the countryside of West Sussex, and come to this PhD with both a deep rooted appreciation for the natural world, especially UK flora and fauna, as well as for farmers and farming. My main hope is to be able to connect the dots between different stakeholders to achieve a bTB-free country.
Dr Caroline Howe, Centre for Environmental Policy, Imperial College London
Professor Rosie Woodroffe, Institute of Zoology, ZSL
Grub, H. (2019) Delivering biodiversity net gain for infrastructure development through stakeholder engagement. Undergraduate dissertation, University of Oxford.
Grub, H. (2019) Delivering More Effective Biodiversity Net Gain by Incorporating Stakeholder Inputs. Charted Institute of Ecology & Environmental Management Spring Conference.
Milner-Gulland, E.J., et al. (2021) Four steps for the Earth: mainstreaming the post-2020 global biodiversity framework. One Earth, 4(1): 75-87.