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Department of Computer Science and Technology

Friday, 19 May, 2023 - 13:00 to 14:00
Rachael Garrett, Cambridge
FW 11, Willam Gates Hall. Zoom link:

Tropical forests are critical for human wellbeing through their contributions to climate stability, biodiversity conservation, food production, and rural livelihoods. Despite numerous global commitments to help conserve and restore tropical forests, these areas are disappearing faster than ever. The goal of this research is to provide major advancements in our understanding of the conditions under which forest-focused supply chain policies (FSPs), a form of voluntary environmental governance, can lead to improved conservation and livelihoods in the tropics. My proposal overcomes major methodological limitations of past work through four major innovations: i) a coordinated pan-tropical analysis of multiple forest-risk commodities, ii) simultaneous examination of conservation and livelihood outcomes, iii) a focus on mechanisms of impact, not just measures of impact, and iv) comparative study with triangulation across multiple scales and methods. By identifying the conditions under which different types of FSPs and related implementation mechanisms can deliver improved conservation and livelihood outcomes, the resulting analysis will provide urgently needed policy recommendations to companies and other policy makers for how to better tailor the design of FSPs to specific contexts.

Bio: Rachael Garrett is the Moran Professor of Conservation and Development in the Department of Geography, Her research examines the drivers and impacts of land change, primarily in forest landscapes, and the effectiveness and equity of forest conservation and sustainable agriculture policies and practices. She works closely with farmers and national agriculture and forestry agencies. Her research spans Brazil, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Indonesia, Switzerland, and the Republic of Georgia.

Seminar series: 
Energy and Environment Group