Alison Smith

Senior Research Associate, University of Oxford

Alison is a senior researcher in the biodiversity group at the Environmental Change Institute, which is part of the University of Oxford. She works on developing and applying simple tools for mapping and valuing the many benefits that nature provides for people, such as food, clean air and water and a stable climate, as well as the cultural value of nature. These tools are typically developed and tested in partnership with decision-makers and stakeholders in government, the private sector and civil society. Prior to this, Alison worked for 20 years as a consultant specialising in energy, transport, waste management and climate policy. She is particularly interested in the synergies and trade-offs between these different sectors, and how we can achieve better outcomes by looking at the whole system. For example, she wrote a book which showed the many benefits of climate action for air quality, food and energy security and economic development - but also the potential trade-offs associated with some low-carbon options. By looking at the big picture, we can find options that offer multiple benefits and minimise trade-offs.