Alicia Donnellan is a postdoctoral researcher associated to the University of Bergen UNESCO Chair. Her work focuses on UNESCO Biosphere Reserves as social-ecological systems which are testing sites for sustainability and earth stewardship.
She is trained as a terrestrial ecologist, and now works at the intersection between the natural and social sciences, interested in progressing inter- and transdisciplinary research which is fair and equitable for people and land. Her work is informed by resilience and complex adaptive system thinking, which provide the backdrop for investigating examples of biosphere stewardship across the globe. Her research areas include ecosystem services and social-ecological networks, land-use change, biodiversity conservation, adaptive co-management implementation, and sustainable development goal (SDG) implementation. She also has a strong interest in group process work, young stakeholder concerns and political ecology. She is currently a Youth Focal point for youth concerns for the Man and Biosphere (MAB) UNESCO programme.
She holds a PhD in Applied Environmental Science from Auckland University of Technology in New Zealand (2014-2018). Additional to a background in academic plant ecology, she has worked across the globe in the non-profit sector and in grassroots organizations. These experiences have given her rich understanding of the importance of connecting diverse fields if we are to rise to the challenges and opportunities presented by the Anthropocene.
- 2021. Voices of young biosphere stewards on the strengths, weaknesses, and ways forward for 74 UNESCO Biosphere Reserves across 83 countries. Global Environmental Change.
- 2021. Stewards of the Future: Accompanying the rising tide of young voices by setting youth-inclusive research agendas. . Sustainable Earth.
- 2021. How will afforestation impact on ecosystem services values in non-forested landscapes? A participatory mapping study in western Norway.
- 2020. If we work together, 2020 can be a true "super year" for biodiversity. ensia.
- 2020. Forskning og diplomati i naturens superår. Khrono.no.
- 2019. Environmental drivers of stem radius change measurements and heterogeneity of stem radial water storage in the mangrove Avicennia marina (Forssk.) Vierh. Agricultural and Forest Meteorology.
Alicia is currently leading the following projects:
Stewardship and youth - young peoples perspectives and roles within environmental governance and sustainable development initiatives.