Jon is an ecologist and conservation leader with decades of experience in nature, natural resources, rural development and the complex interplay between politics, economics and environmental policy.
Jon joined the Luc Hoffmann Institute in 2016 after 10 years as Director of the UN Environment Programme – World Conservation Monitoring Centre (UNEP-WCMC) in Cambridge, UK. Previous to UNEP he worked for 25 years on nature conservation and rural development issues in Africa.
An ecologist who trained for a first degree at the University of Cambridge in 1978, Jon received a scholarship to study for a doctorate in African wildlife management at the University of Zimbabwe in Harare. He went on to work in southern Africa in a range of leadership positions directly linked to nature, natural resources and rural development in government, NGOs and the private sector. During his time in Africa, Jon gained a diverse portfolio of professional skills and his experiences during this period provided him with unique insights into the complex interplay between politics, economics and environmental policy.
In 1999, Jon moved to Europe where he facilitated an innovative partnership between the Zimbabwe-based ‘ResourceAfrica’ and Cambridge-based ‘Fauna & Flora International’ which he then ran for several years before joining the United Nations.
Jon has produced more than 50 peer-reviewed papers and book chapters as well as dozens of reports and conference proceedings covering issues such as conservation policy, wildlife and protected area management, community-based natural resource management, the sustainable use of natural resources and the relationship between conservation and poverty. In recognition of his academic interests he was appointed Honorary Professor of Sustainable Resource Management at the University of Kent in 2007 and elected a by-Fellow of Hughes Hall College, Cambridge, in 2017.