University of Oxford
11a Mansfield Rd
Melissa Felipe Cadillo
Later, I specialised in building strategic alliances to develop proposals for climate funding with companies involved in coffee and cocoa value chains. Through my work, I became interested in the interplay between biodiversity conservation, policy management, and poverty reduction, particularly in biodiversity hotspots in the Amazon region. This interest motivated me to pursue a Master's degree in Biodiversity, Conservation, and Management at the University of Oxford.
During my time at Oxford, I deepened my passion and commitment to conservation in the Global South, advocating for fair, equitable, and decolonised conservation action that values the knowledge and voices of indigenous peoples, local communities, and women's rights.
My research interests lie in the domain of conservation, with a focus on indigenous peoples and local communities. I aim to gain valuable insights into the challenges they face and how conservation can be made more effective. I am particularly interested in how evidence is produced and how space and territory are governed over time in conservation efforts. Additionally, I am keenly aware of the power dynamics at play in conservation and the role of ethics in ensuring that interventions are culturally sensitive and effective. My area of interest is primarily tropical forests in South America. I am drawn to the use of social and participatory research methods for the production of knowledge.
In collaboration with Dr. Aoife Bennett, my ongoing research builds on my MSc dissertation insights and aims at academic publication. The paper will analyse the threats facing tropical peatland ecosystems within indigenous territories in the Peruvian Amazon. This research collectively seeks to provide a comprehensive perspective on the multifaceted challenges for tropical peatland conservation with challenging socioeconomic dynamics, governance structures, and new actors, contributing to more informed and effective conservation strategies.
Furthermore, as an active participant in the Interdisciplinary Conservation Network (ICN) 2023, I am part of an initiative that empowers early career researchers by fostering global collaboration and equipping them with essential skills to advance their careers. I am currently engaged in a collaborative effort with fellow early career researchers from across the world, focusing on Qualitative Impact Evaluation in Conservation. We aim to produce an academic publication that emphasizes the significance of using qualitative methodologies in impact evaluation in the conservation field. We believe that these approaches offer distinctive insights into comprehending transformative change. By integrating the perspectives of a wide array of stakeholders, qualitative methods unveil both explicit and implicit assumptions, aiding in navigating the intricacies of complex conservation issues.
University of Oxford | MSc Biodiversity, Conservation and Management |
Weidenfeld and Hoffmann Scholar
Thesis: “Peatlands, People, and Policy: Analysing the Relationship between Amazonian Indigenous Knowledge and State-Led Conservation in the Protected Imiria Lake Region, Peru”
Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú | Bachelor’s Degree in Social Management
2023 – present
Programme Coordinator for the Biodiversity and Society Programme, Biology Department, University of Oxford
2019 – 2022
Corporate Business Officer, Practical Action Latin America
2018 – 2019
Business Development Analyst, Practical Action Latin America
2017 – 2018
Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning Assistant, Practical Action Latin America