Verónica Relaño Écija

PhD, Zoology

Thesis Topic

De facto protection of Marine Protected Areas, a global study. My PhD research aims to combine marine biodiversity and social data to overcome the gap in the conservation decision-making framework, considering ecological, economic, and legal aspects, collectively. Moreover, I am also interested in conservation psychology, nudging and in better understanding how to communicate conservation actions to a broader audience to achieve change on the ground. In this regard, it is important to develop an adequate framework to understand individuals, communities, governments and other stakeholder, which, in the end, all play a role when it comes to implementing, enforcing and managing marine protected areas.

Supervisor

Dr. Daniel Pauly

Degrees

Oct 2016-Sep 2018: M.SC. HORTICULTURAL SCIENCES. Technical University of Munich
Sep 2013-Sep 2015: M.SC. MARINE ENVIRONMENT AND RESOURCES. Universidad del País Vasco, Université Bordeaux 1, Université de Liège and National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research
Sep 2007-Jul 2013: B.SC + M.SC. (Licenciatura) ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES. Universidad de Cadiz + Kingston University
Sep 2007-Jul 2013: B.SC + M.SC. (Licenciatura) MARINE SCIENCES. Universidad de Cadiz

Research Unit

Sea Around Us

Biography

I am from a small village in the center of Spain, that suffers from a lack of water supply every summer, despite having a lake of 835.000.000 m3. Therefore, ever since I was a kid, I learned to appreciate water’s every aspect and that abundance does not equate to affluence. As a teenager, I became very intrigued by the sea, studied taxa and saved money to become a scuba diver. Diving in rivers in the center of Spain, the most exciting thing I saw was a floating orange. Eventually, I moved south to pursue a five-year degree in Marine Sciences and another one in Environmental Sciences at the University of Cadiz.

During those years, I specialized in marine ecology and environmental impacts, while being very active in environmental, and citizen networks – always with the goal of making a difference in my community and improving marine biodiversity. I received a scholarship to study at Kingston University, where I fostered my skills in environmental impact assessment and socio-environmental relationships. Soon after, I attained a scholarship for an International Master in Marine Environmental Resources. I did my dissertation at NIWA in Wellington, New Zealand, where I planned experiments around a novel wave energy converter and effectively collated, assessed, and synthesized data.

Afterwards, I was working as a research associate at the Technische Universität München (TUM) for almost four years. That job gave me the opportunity to learn and assist both in the field and in the laboratory, while being part of two different projects: causes of the decline in Bavarian fish populations, and fish ecological monitoring at different hydropower-plants. During that time, I managed to learn German and do another Master degree in Horticultural Sciences.

Research Interests

All I do is grounded in my passion for improving marine life and society as a whole. I bring knowledge and passion to successfully work and support conservation and ecological projects. I have always been interested in enhancing marine biodiversity, development economics, and understanding causal relationships. I focus on (marine) protected areas, ecological connectivity, fishery economics and people.

Awards

2020
Robin Rigby Trust, fieldwork funds for marine conservation projects with focus on coastal community needs: “Socio Ecological Management in the San Antonio MPA, Argentina”

Aug 19 – Aug 21
La Caixa Scholarship: AWARDED BY LA CAIXA TO EXCELLENT APPLICANTS FOR THE PURSUIT OF DOCTORAL STUDIES IN NORTH AMERICA AND ASIA-PACIFIC ZONE

Feb 18 – Jun 18
Erasmus Exchange : AWARDED BY THE EUROPEAN UNION FOR STUDIES AT SZENT ISTVÁN UNIVERSITY

Sep 13 – Sep 15
Mundus Scholarship: AWARDED BY THE EUROPEAN UNION TO ACADEMICALLY STRONG APPLICANTS FOR THEIR MASTER’S STUDIES

Sep 11 – Aug 12
Erasmus Exchange: AWARDED BY THE EUROPEAN UNION FOR STUDIES AT KINGSTON UNIVERSITY

Contact Information

Email: v.relano@oceans.ubc.ca

Social Media

LinkedIn: @veronica-relano-ecija
Twitter: @Relano_Ecija