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EDGE Team

Many people are involved in the EDGE of Existence Programme’s activities, developing EDGE lists, mentoring EDGE Fellows, undertaking expeditions and initiating conservation projects for poorly-known and neglected EDGE species.

Questions, comments or feedback? Contact us on [email protected]

Media enquiries? Contact our Specialist Press Office: [email protected]

Want to join us? Check out our opportunities here.

Olivia Couchman

EDGE of Existence Fellowship Manager Olivia Couchman

Olivia is the EDGE Programme Manager. She is responsible for the strategy, programme activities and fundraising. With the support of the team, Olivia oversees the EDGE Fellowships, EDGE Hero Awardees and EDGE Science. She has an MSc in Biodiversity Conservation from the University of Sussex and has undertaken applied conservation projects in East Africa and Central America.

 

 

Dr. Claudia Gray

Claudia Gray, EDGE of Existence Conservation Biologist

Claudia is the Species Recovery Programme Manager at ZSL and works closely with the EDGE team, providing technical advice and research support. She oversees the research training delivered to EDGE Fellows and supports the Regional Project Managers to ensure EDGE Fellows and Heroes build the scientific evidence needed to conserve their species. She helps lead EDGE Science, supporting our post-doctoral researcher, PhD and Masters students. Claudia joined EDGE originally as the Conservation Biologist in 2015. She previously worked as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Ecology and Conservation at the University of Sussex, where her research included an analysis of the global effectiveness of protected areas. She did her PhD and MSc at Oxford University, focussing on conservation strategies within oil palm landscapes of Sabah, Borneo.

 

Dr. Fran Cabada

Fran Cabada, EDGE of Existence Marine Biologist

Fran is the EDGE Marine & Freshwater Specialist. She supervises EDGE fellows and supports the development of our marine projects. Fran previously worked as a Lecturer in conservation and management of coastal-marine resources at Universidad Simon Bolivar in Venezuela, from where she also holds her Master’s Degree in Experimental Ecology and Ecological Data Analysis and her PhD on conservation and management of marine resources in the southern Caribbean. Fran is also a former EDGE coral Fellow; she completed her Fellowship on the pillar coral Dendrogyra cylindrus between 2014 and 2016.

 

Caroline Park

Caroline Park, EDGE of Existence Projects Coordinator

Caroline is the EDGE Projects Coordinator, supporting various aspects of the programme. Caroline has an MSc in Conservation Science from Imperial College London, during which she looked into the effectiveness of volunteer conservation projects. Further to this she has conducted research in Tanzania on the viability of wildlife corridors, plus the use of butterflies as indicators of habitat degradation, and South Africa where she lived for 4 years setting up a wildlife research base in the very north of the Limpopo Province.

 

Dr. Rikki Gumbs

Rikki Gumbs, EDGE of Existence PhD Student

Rikki is the EDGE Postdoctoral Research Scientist, and works to incorporate the latest scientific advances into our prioritisation protocol. This includes updating our existing EDGE lists, creating new EDGE lists, expanding the scope of EDGE Zones, and working on the development of a new approach to identifying priority EDGE species. Rikki’s research also explores the relationship between phylogenetic diversity, trait diversity, and extinction risk. He oversees our many Masters student projects and co-supervises EDGE PhD students from partner universities. Rikki is passionate about the conservation of reptiles, and also supports our EDGE Fellowship and scale-up  projects.

 

Dr. Davi Teles

Davi Teles, EDGE Regional Projects Manager for Latin America

Davi is the EDGE Regional Projects Manager for Latin America. He provides training and supervision for current EDGE fellows and offers assistance to EDGE alumni in this region. He also supports EDGE projects, such as the long-term monitoring and community engagement work for the pygmy sloth in Panama. Davi is a firm believer in local capacity building as an effective conservation tool and has been directly involved in biodiversity conservation research and action since 2007. He coordinated part of a community-based monitoring program inside Amazonian protected areas and more recently was involved in evaluating the influence of politics on environmental protection in Brazil.

 

Dr. Jyoti Das

Jyoti is the Regional Projects Manager for Asia. He provides training, supervision and acts as a mentor for EDGE fellows in his region. He has years of experience on research and conservation of Asian elephants in North East India. For his PhD, he studied habitat ecology of Asian elephants in a tropical forest. His research interests span population monitoring in tropical forests, human wildlife conflict and developing conservation protocols in trans-boundary landscapes. He is also a member of various conservation groups: IUCN WCPA Capacity Development; Connectivity Conservation; Transboundary Conservation and Management Effectiveness.

 

Dr. Caleb Ofori

Dr. Caleb Ofori, EDGE Regional Projects Manager for Africa

Caleb is the EDGE Regional Projects Manager for Africa. He provides training and supervision for current EDGE fellows and offers assistance to EDGE alumni in this region. Caleb is a passionate amphibian biologist and conservationist based in Ghana, with considerable experience in teaching, fundraising and managing conservation projects. His research has resulted in the discovery and description of new amphibian species to science. He founded Ghana’s first amphibian and reptile conservation NGO and spearheaded the establishment of municipal level protected area for an EDGE species (Togo slippery frog), which was also the focus of his EDGE Fellowship (2013 – 2015). Caleb holds a PhD in Wildlife Management from the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, Ghana.

 

Dr. Paul Barnes

Paul Barnes, Social Dimensions Specialist

Paul is the EDGE Social Dimensions Specialist. He supports the Fellows to understand the social and political context of their projects and guides their social data collection, analysis, strategies for stakeholder engagement, and public awareness-raising. He is also responsible for the broader monitoring and evaluation of the EDGE programme. Paul a PhD in Environmental Anthropology during which he was a member of the Human Ecology Research Group in UCL Anthropology. For his PhD, Paul explored cross-culturally informed interdisciplinary research about indigenous and local knowledge, its position in conservation, and the political ecology of conservation in the Cyclops Mountains, home to EDGE mammals Attenborough’s long-beaked echidna and the black-spotted cuscus.

 

 

 

 Collaborators

Dr. James Rosindell, Imperial College London

Ben Tapley, ZSL

Dr. Nick Isaac, Centre for Ecology & Hydrology

Dr. Monni Bohm, Institute of Zoology

Dr. Robin Freeman, Institute of Zoology

Dr. Dave Redding, University College London

Dr. Sam Turvey, Institute of Zoology

Prof. Arne Mooers, Simon Fraser University

Dr. Walter Jetz, Yale University

Dr. Dan Faith, Australian Museum

Dr. Will Pearse, Imperial College London

Dr. Caroline Tucker, University of North Carolina

Dr. Felix Forest, Kew Gardens

Dr. Kamran Safi, Max Planck Institute of Ornithology

Dr. Gavin Thomas, University of Sheffield

Prof. Mike Steel, University of Canterbury

Prof. Kate Jones, University College London

IUCN Shark Specialist Group

BirdLife International

 

 

Special thanks to

Dr. Jonathan Baillie

Dr. Nisha Owen

Dr. Ben Collen

Carly Waterman

Al Davies

James Sanford

David Tryse

Cassandra Murray

Janice Law

Charlie Debenham