Researcher biography

Valerie is a post-doctoral research fellow working on an ARC linkage project, “Unlocking the secrets of mangrove conservation and restoration success”, in Catherine Lovelock’s lab at The University of Queensland with CSIRO and partners at The Nature Conservancy and Healthy Land and Water. The project aims to identify social-economic conditions that enable effective conservation and restoration of mangroves over global and regional spatial scales.

Valerie recently completed her PhD, undertaken at UQ in collaboration with CSIRO. Her PhD focused on improving the success and cost-effectiveness of ecological restoration, and delivering multiple benefits for biodiversity conservation, carbon sequestration, and other ecosystem services. It explored people’s motivations to undertake restoration, and the factors driving restoration outcomes. It investigated how and where to undertake restoration to deliver carbon and biodiversity co-benefits, and assessed the economic feasibility of restoring coastal wetlands for blue carbon, whilst attaining co-benefits for biodiversity, coastal fisheries and nitrogen removal.

More broadly, her research interests include applied ecology, and the integration of ecological and socio-economic factors in ecosystem restoration to improve decision making in conservation and restoration actions.  Before commencing her PhD, she was a senior ecologist with an environmental consultancy, and has 12 years ecological and environmental project experience in both Australia and England. Valerie is currently the student and early career representative of the Society of Ecological Restoration Australasia (SERA).