Howard Nelson spent much of his career working on forest and wildlife conservation issues in the Caribbean, including research on threatened and game species, and the policy and management aspects of conservation. After taking an undergraduate degree at the University of the West Indies at St. Augustine, he worked for five years at Trinidad and Tobago’s Forestry Division, and subsequently at Trinidad’s Ministry of the Environment as a biodiversity policy specialist, focusing on wildlife, forest and national parks policy.
Howard’s MPhil research at the University of the West Indies examined the impact of hunting on mammal populations on Trinidad, while his doctoral work at the University of Wisconsin-Madison used ecosystem modelling to understand tropical forest community patterns on Trinidad, their response to climate change, implications for wildlife distributions, and public perceptions of these resources.
Currently, he is the FFI Lecturer in Conservation Leadership on the MPhil in Conservation Leadership at the University of Cambridge’s Department of Geography. Howard is also a Fellow at Lucy Cavendish College. He also serves as Chairman of the DEFRA’s Darwin Plus Advisory Group, is a member of Council of the Linnean Society of London and is a member of the IPBES Knowledge and Data Taskforce. Previously Senior Lecturer and Programme Leader MSc Wildlife Conservation at the University of Chester, Howard was also course coordinator for the University of the West Indies’ regional MSc in biodiversity conservation. He has worked in the environmental NGO movement as a director of the Guardian Life Wildlife Trust, CEO of the Asa Wright Nature Centre in Trinidad, former President of the Society for the Conservation and Study of Caribbean Birds (BirdsCaribbean) and former Chairman of the Board and Programme Advisor for the Caribbean Natural Resources Institute (CANARI). Howard joined the GDF UK Board of Trustees in 2019.