Sharon works on a range of projects related to biodiversity management by the private sector. Her role within the Business and Biodiversity team is to develop projects that support improved corporate performance regarding biodiversity and ecosystem services, while improving the knowledge base at the business and biodiversity interface. Specific themes include the biodiversity safeguards of voluntary sustainability standards, approaches taken to mitigate impacts, indicators for monitoring and reporting, and the provision of tools and guidance for informed decision making by business.
Prior to joining the Centre, Sharon worked on a number of projects that aimed to reconcile conservation objectives with those of social development. She has led field based research and conservation projects in Mauritius, Sri Lanka and Cambodia, working in affiliation with a number of institutions, including the Wildlife Conservation Society. Sharon has an MSc in Applied Ecology and Conservation and a PhD in the field of conservation and development, both carried out at the University of East Anglia, and has carried out post doctoral research at the University of Cambridge and the Universidade da Paraíba in Brazil.
A major area of Sharon’s current work focuses on the ability of voluntary sustainability standards to safeguard biodiversity. To date, this work has aimed to improve the integration of biodiversity and ecosystem services within the policy content of standards systems, including those set by certification schemes and financial institutions. Sharon is currently involved in developing further work on this theme that addresses the practical implications of specific biodiversity management approaches, and assesses the overall effectiveness of voluntary standards and certification schemes in achieving biodiversity conservation.
Sharon was involved in the initial development of the A-Z of Biodiversity and the delivery of the first resource – the A-Z of Areas of Biodiversity Importance.
Sharon was involved in the development of an approach for incorporating ecosystem services into corporate reporting for the Global Reporting Initiative.