Plenary Speakers

Plenary Speakers

The Pathways Europe team is thrilled to announce the following speakers for Pathways Europe 2024.

Headshot of Alberto Jose Redondo Villa, Professor of Department of Zoology at University of Cordoba
Alberto José Redondo Villa
Department of Zoology
University of Cordoba

Dr. Alberto Redondo is a professor of Zoology at the University of Cordoba and is part of the UCO-CSIC Associated Unit “Society, Ecology and Environmental Management.” He has directed more than 60 nature documentaries that have been broadcast on television all over the world and has received more than 15 international awards for the cinematographic quality of his documentaries, but also for his important work in the dissemination of nature and science. Among other things, he has worked with birds, butterflies, and horses, specializing in urban fauna, and is currently leading an international scientific diving project.

pathways europe 2024 TALK:
Seeing Science

Cinema allows the narrative power of the word to be combined with the power of photography and music, all this combined with rhythm, the treatment of color, and the combination of all these elements. The result is an enormous communicative potential, capable of generating emotions almost like no other art form.

These characteristics endow the audiovisual with a tremendous communicative capacity. Telling a story with this tool is undoubtedly one of the most effective means. But it is precisely its power that determines the difficulty of controlling all the elements that determine the success of the proposal.

I have dedicated my professional life to teaching, research, and dissemination through documentaries. In this talk, I take a brief look back over my career and try to share the keys to my experience.

Headshot of Berta Martin-Lopez, Professor, International Sustainable Development and Planning, Leuphana University of Lüneberg
Berta MartÍn-lópez
International Sustainable Development and Planning
Leuphana University of Lüneberg

Prof. Dr. Berta Martín-López is Professor of International Sustainable Development and Planning and heads the Social-Ecological Systems Institute (SESI) at Leuphana with Prof. Dr. Jörn Fischer. Her research is based on three main principles: collaborative and interdisciplinary research aiming to understand the role of values, knowledge and institutions in supporting transition pathways to sustainability; impact-oriented transdisciplinary research seeking impacts within and beyond academia; reciprocity and reflexivity, in the sense of respect for all persons involved in the research process, including in particular early career scholars and researchers from the Global South. Berta Martín-López is one of the most cited researchers worldwide (2019, 2020, 2021, 2022: “Highly Cited Researchers” report by Clarivate Analytic).

pathways europe 2024 TALK:
Relational Paradigms for Human-Wildlife Coexistence

Social-ecological research has recognized the importance of relational paradigms in promoting biodiversity conservation, mitigating conflicts and reducing social injustices. This relational paradigm has not yet fully applied and operationalized when studying human-wildlife interactions.

First, I will emphasize how the ongoing unfolding of social-ecological processes can either trigger human-wildlife conflicts derived from the clash between multiple worldviews or foster human-wildlife coexistence derived from the overlap of worldviews and motivations that are simultaneously social, emotional and political.

Second, I will question and challenge the use of concepts and frameworks used in studies focusing on human-wildlife interactions.  For example, drawing on the Intergovernmental Panel on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services’ work on Nature’s Contributions to People and relational values, I will demonstrate how these frameworks can deepen our understanding of human-wildlife interactions, moving beyond the discourse of human-wildlife conflicts.

Third, I will highlight the role of scientists to unfold processes within the systems we are studying that can lead to positive outcomes of human-wildlife coexistence, equity or justice. I will discuss how adopting a relational paradigm can lead to sustainability transformations when the methodological approach and research modus are inherently relational. In doing so, I will draw on lessons learned from social-ecological research on knowledge co-production and/or guided by a feminist ethos of care.

During the presentation, I will explore each of these themes by providing examples of social-ecological research to study human-wildlife interactions at local, regional, and global scales. Finally, I will conclude by critically evaluating how relational paradigms can contribute to promoting biodiversity conservation and sustainability while reducing environmental and social injustices.

Headshot of Piero Genovesi, Head of Wildlife Service, Department for the Monitoring and Protection of the Environment and for Biodiversity Conservation
Piero genovesi
Head of Wildlife Service,
Department for the Monitoring and Protection of the Environment and for Biodiversity Conservation
Institute for Environmental Protection and Research (ISPRA);
Chair, IUCN SSC Invasive Species Specialist Group

Piero Genovesi has been with ISPRA since 2007, where he is currently Head of the Wildlife Service. Since 1999, Genovesi has served as chair of the European Section of the IUCN SSC Invasive Species Specialist Group and has been chair of ISSG since 2009. Since 2013, he has been on the Steering Committee of the Species Survival Commission of IUCN. He is also the International Science Advisor for the Center for Invasion Biology at the University of Stellenbosch, South Africa. Genovesi collaborates with many international organizations, such as the Convention on Biological Diversity, the European Union, the Bern Convention, the European Environment Agency, and the Convention on Migratory Species. His main topics of interest are invasive species, carnivores’ conservation (in particular wolves and bears), translocations, sustainable wildlife harvest, and biodiversity monitoring. Coauthor of the European Strategy on Invasive Alien Species, Genovesi was included for four years in the list of the most cited researchers (2019, 2020, 2021, 2022: “Highly Cited Researchers” report by Clarivate Analytic).

pathways europe 2024 TALK:
Conflicts Between Invasive Alien Species and Humans: Our behaviors cause invasions, while our perceptions often hinder efforts to mitigate their impacts

For millennia, humans have moved species around the globe, which has been pivotal for the advancement of our societies. However, in recent centuries, the escalating introduction of invasive alien species has inflicted severe impacts not only on nature but also on human communities, particularly the most vulnerable among them. Invasive alien species not only imperil native species and ecosystems, but also exert multifaceted impacts on human societies, causing economic losses, threatening human health, jeopardizing food security, and depleting water resources.

The recent IPBES thematic assessment on invasive alien species provides up-to-date and comprehensive information for guiding action. However, the implementation of necessary measures to prevent and mitigate the impacts caused by invasive alien species can face limited support from the public and local communities, which is essential for stepping up action against this threat. This partly arises from the complex interactions of people with alien species and from the divergent interests and perceptions regarding them.

Additionally, some of the measures required to address invasive alien species, such as culling and control, or regulation of trade, can be contentious within societies due to conflicting values.

Biological invasions are closely linked to our behaviors, and addressing the conflicts between invasive alien species and humans is an essential component of efforts to prevent and mitigate the growing impacts caused by this threat. To achieve this aim, we need to consider the multiple dimensions involved, including ecological, economic, and social, as well as the relevant ethical considerations.

Headshot of Camilla Sandstrom, Professor of Department of Political Science, Umeå University
camilla sandström
Department of Political Science
Umeå University

Camilla Sandström is a researcher and professor of political science at Umeå University.

Sandström’s research is focused on the governance and management of natural resources (especially forests, wildlife, and biological diversity, attitudes towards animals and nature, and conditions for rural development). Since 2015, she has been the deputy program manager for Future Forests, a Mistra project run by SLU and Umeå University.

Pathways Europe 2024 Talk:
Navigating Human-Wildlife Conflicts: Exploring the need for dynamic governance strategies

As biodiversity conservation gains prominence on the global agenda, it necessitates a reevaluation of strategies for managing interactions between humans and wildlife. The Global Biodiversity Framework, serving as a catalyst for change, urges nations to adopt novel governance mechanisms to address the intricate challenges posed by human-wildlife conflicts (HWC). This talk will delve into cutting-edge initiatives with ambitions to transcend traditional conservation paradigms, emphasizing transdisciplinary approaches that integrate scientific, political, and cultural dimensions. Hence, the evolving landscape of HWC governance is examined considering the Global Biodiversity Framework’s objectives, fostering a nuanced understanding of how innovations in policy, technology, and community engagement can potentially contribute to effective conflict resolution and coexistence.
Key themes include reflexive and adaptive governance structures that accommodate diverse stakeholder perspectives, and the incorporation of indigenous knowledge into decision-making processes, as well as the potential of using advanced technologies such as AI-based monitoring and early warning systems. By analyzing case studies and best practices from different regions, this talk aims to identify patterns of successful innovation and offer insights into the potential scalability and replicability of these approaches within the context of the new Global Biodiversity Framework.
Ultimately, this talk underscores the need for dynamic and forward-thinking governance strategies to mitigate human-wildlife conflicts, aligning with the aspirations of the Global Biodiversity Framework. However, it will also highlight the challenges associated with the need to identify overarching and global indicators to measure HWC and the necessity to adapt governance structures to local contexts.

Headshot of Alonso Aguirre, Dean of Warner College of Natural Resources at Colorado State University
A. alonso aguirre
Introductory speaker
Warner College of Natural Resources
Colorado State University

A. Alonso Aguirre is Dean of the Warner College of Natural Resources at Colorado State University. For the past 30 years he has worked in many countries focusing on the conservation of endangered species and ecosystems. Dr. Aguirre co-founded the emerging discipline of Conservation Medicine, the journal EcoHealth and the International Association of Ecology and Health. He has advised governments of several countries in the Americas, Asia, and Europe and briefed congress in Mexico and the USA.

Pathways Europe 2024 Cohosts:

Institute for Advanced Social Studies (IESA) logo
Spanish Research Council (CSIC) logo
human dimensions of natural resources logo
University of Cordoba, Spain (UCO) logo