Lauren Eckert

Lauren Eckert

PhD student at Applied Conservation Science lab
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I’m a conservation scientist, adventure enthusiast, and Ph.D. student in the Applied Conservation Science lab. My undergraduate career, which provided the privilege of ecological field experiences around the globe, exposed me to the complexities of interrelated social and ecological systems, and motivated me to delve into conservation science that upholds Indigenous knowledge and rights. My recent work at the interface of social and ecological sciences aims to value local and traditional  knowledge systems alongside empirical scientific studies using a community-engaged, Indigenous-led approach to conservation. I completed my M.Sc. in a partnership led by the Heiltsuk, Kitasoo/Xai’xais, Wuikinuxv, and Nuxalk First Nations on the Central Coast of British Columbia, Canada to contribute to their marine conservation strategies. Specifically, we examined how groundfish populations have changed over the last century in these territories, and how this information can inform management decisions by these Nations. I began my Ph.D. in 2017, continuing my work at the University of Victoria with the intention to sustain my partnerships with First Nations on the Central Coast. Specific research interests driving my Ph.D. include: Canadian environmental assessment processes and their relationship to Indigenous knowledge and sovereignty, and the role human values play in our relationship with wildlife and our environmental decisions.  I’m also a Raincoast Conservation Fellow, Vanier Scholar, and a National Geographic Explorer.

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