Department of Life Sciences
Imperial College London
Silwood Park Campus
I am passionate about the conservation of endangered primates, particularly great apes. My conservation work and research has focused on understanding the drivers of wildlife exploitation in tropical forests and investigating potential strategies for minimising the ecological impacts of wildlife hunting and trade.
My main areas of interest are the bushmeat and great ape pet trades in West and Central Africa.
The unsustainable hunting of bushmeat threatens an array of species with extinction in West and Central Africa. Primates are particularly vulnerable to this large-scale commercial trade, but intervening presents a conservation and poverty dilemma in a situation where wildlife is an important source of income and food for local people. Livelihood interventions that encourage the adoption of substitution activities and resources have become a mainstay in conservation but the lack of monitoring and evaluation has resulted in uncertainty about outcomes as well as concern about the risk of unintended consequences. Sharing knowledge of effective and ineffective approaches and the causes of success and failure is imperative to enable cumulative learning and avoid wasted conservation investment.
The success or failure of conservation interventions ultimately depends on human behaviour change. If the decision-making process of resource users regarding the adoption of substitution activities and the subsequent continuation or rejection of hunting practices is better understood, the design of interventions aimed at changing behaviour can be improved. Meaningful policy recommendations are needed by conservation practitioners in order for them to make evidence-based decisions.
The aim of this research is to assess the effectiveness of livelihood interventions in changing hunting behaviour, as well as identifying the broader-scale drivers and inhibitors of human behaviour change in the bushmeat context. The findings will inform policy decisions regarding bushmeat management strategies in the region.
This research builds on a series of long-term studies investigating the social and biological dynamics of bushmeat systems in West and Central Africa conducted collaboratively by ICCS and the Bushmeat Research Programme at the Zoological Society of London (ZSL).
2013 – present: PhD student, Imperial College London / Zoological Society of London
2011 – 2013: Equatorial Guinea Project Manager, Zoological Society of London
2009 – 2011: Project Officer, Bees for Development
2007 – 2011: Lebialem Hunters’ Beekeeping Initiative Project Coordinator (voluntary), ERuDeF
2007 – 2009: Conservation Educator (voluntary), Great Apes Film Initiative
2006 – 2011: Project Advisor (voluntary), And Albert Foundation
2006 – 2007: Administration Assistant (voluntary), The Gorilla Organization
2006 – 2007: MSc Primate Conservation, Oxford Brookes University. Dissertation: The value and significance of bushmeat to rural communities in the Lebialem Highlands of Cameroon in collaboration with ERuDeF
2006 – 2010: Primate Carer (voluntary), Ape Action Africa
2005 – 2006: Assistant Primate Keeper (voluntary), The Monkey Sanctuary
2002 – 2005: BSc Geography, University of Manchester. Dissertation: The primate pet trade in Indonesia: a rural perspective
Wright, J.H. Hill, N.A.O. Roe, D. Rowcliffe, J.M. Kümpel, N. F. Day, M. Booker, F. Milner-Gulland, E.J. (2016) Reframing the concept of alternative livelihoods. Conservation Biology 30, 7-13. Roe, D. Booker, F. Day,
M. Zhou, W. Allebone-Webb, S. Hill, N.A.O. Kümpel, N. Petrokofsky, G. Redford, K. Russell, D. Shepherd, G. Wright, J. Sunderland, T.C.H. (2015) Are alternative livelihood projects effective at reducing local threats to specified elements of biodiversity and/or improving or maintaining the conservation status of those elements? Environmental Evidence 4, 1-22.
Wright, J.H. Priston, N.E.C. (2010) Hunting and trapping in Lebialem Division, Cameroon: bushmeat harvesting practices and human reliance. Endangered Species Research 11(1), 1-12.
Wright, J.H. (2010) Use of film for community conservation education in primate habitat countries. American Journal of Primatology 72(5), 462-466.
For a full list of publications, please visit my profile on ResearchGate
Wright, J. (2016) Grappling with the complexity of social-ecological systems: examining natural resource use by out-migrants in rural Cameroon. Institute of Zoology Student Conference, 26 April 2016, London, UK.
Wright, J.H. Hill, N.A.O. Rowcliffe, J.M. Kümpel, N.F. Roe, D. Booker, F. Day, M. Milner-Gulland, E.J. (2015) Reframing the concept of ‘alternative livelihoods’. International Congress for Conservation Biology, 2-6 August 2015, Montpellier, France.
Wright, J. (2013) Evaluating the alternative livelihood approach to reducing bushmeat hunting in West and Central Africa. Institute of Zoology Student Conference, 26 February 2013, London, UK.
Wright, J.H. Kümpel, N.F. Gill, D.J. Evans, V.C. (2012) Assessing the socioeconomic situation for the implementation of appropriate bushmeat alternatives in mainland Equatorial Guinea. International Primatological Society Congress, 12-17 August 2012, Cancun, Mexico.
Wright, J.H. Bradbear, N. (2010) Beekeeping as an economic alternative to bushmeat hunting in Cameroon. International Primatological Society Congress, 12-18 September 2010, Kyoto, Japan.
Wright, J. (2010) Searching for solutions to the bushmeat crisis in Africa. MSc Primate Conservation 10th Anniversary Conference, 23-24 April 2010, Oxford, UK.
Wright, J. Lowore, J. Bradbear, N. (2009) Modern hives are out of date in Africa. Plenary, Apimondia Congress, 15-19 September 2009, Montpellier, France.
Wright, J. (2009) Can beekeeping be a realistic alternative to bushmeat hunting in Cameroon? Apimondia Congress, 15-19 September 2009, Montpellier, France.
Wright, J. (2009) Could beekeeping be an economic alternative to bushmeat hunting in Cameroon? UK Bushmeat Working Group Meeting, 9 June 2009, London, UK.
Wright, J. (2008) Developing alternatives to bushmeat: a discussion of the options with reference to the Lebialem Hunters’ Beekeeping Initiative. Primate Society of Great Britain Winter Meeting, 3 December 2008, London, UK.
Wright, J.H. Priston, N.E.C. (2008) Bushmeat in Cameroon: the hunters’ perspective. International Primatological Society Congress, 3-8 August 2008, Edinburgh, UK. Redmond, I.
Wright, J. Carroll, B. Buckland, H. (2008) Survival of the great apes. The Liv Sidse Jansen Memorial Lecture, Bristol Festival of Nature, 7-8 June 2008, Bristol, UK.
Wright, J. Westwood, M. (2007) Can wildlife documentaries change attitudes? A pilot project for the Great Apes Film Initiative in Cameroon [poster]. Primate Society of Great Britain Winter Meeting, 17-18 December 2007, London, UK.
Wright, J. (2005) The primate pet trade in Indonesia: a rural perspective [poster]. Primate Society of Great Britain Spring Meeting, 22-23 March 2005, Chester, UK.