Dr James Watson
James is an Honorary Associate Professor at the University of Queensland (UQ) and leads the Climate Change Program for the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS). James began working with UQ on research now assocated with CEED's Theme 3 as a postdoctoral fellow. In this role he worked closely with different government agencies and environmental NGOs to prioritize conservation investment in different countries. James appointment as an Honorary Associate Professor at UQ in 2011 has allowed this research to continue and expand with his role at WCS.
As a Program Leader for WCS, he leads two different climate teams: the climate adaptation team and the climate mitigation and forestry team.
The climate adaptation team provides technical expertise and helps incorporate anticipated impacts of climate change into the planning and implementation of conservation projects throughout WCS's 80 landscape, seascape, and species conservation programs.
The climate mitigation and forestry team, who work on getting the 13 active WCS REDD projects (spread across 10 countries) VCS and CCBA certified and into the carbon market. The team also works on HCV planning and forestry certification in a number of landscapes.
Both teams actively collaborate with other NGOs, university and government partners, and engage in national and international policy dialogues.
James completed his doctorate at the Oxford University in 2004, where funded by a Rhodes Scholarship he explored the effects of habitat fragmentation on birds in Madagascar and Australia. Since then, he has worked as a post doctoral fellow at the University of California (San Diego) and as a senior campaigner for The Wilderness Society in Australia. James has been the president of the Society of Conservation Biology (Oceania section) (his term ended in 2011), and is now part of the SCB's governance committee.