I’m Julia, and I have been working with Joern’s group at Leuphana since February this year. I joined as part of a project called MULTAGRI on the governance of multifunctional agricultural landscapes. In this project I work closely with Joern and with Prof. Jens Newig in the governance working group of the Institute of Sustainability Communication (INFU). I was asked to introduce myself via the blog, and I thought I would do so by giving 5 facts about myself, loosely related to research:
- I started out as a natural scientist. I am now on the more social side of interdisciplinary, but I did my undergraduate degree in Environmental Science at the University of Manchester in the UK. Its provided me with a great overview of some fundamental concepts in ecology, geology and chemistry. In every research project since, I have been grateful that I can begin to understand the physical processes that I am dealing with.
- I run. My favourite thing to do with a free day is to spend it running through hills and mountains. In northern Germany, I have to make do with flat forests, but that’s not really something to complain about.
- I like to define my research by concepts rather than by topic. I am a governance researcher; I examine how diverse interests come together to manage natural resources. For example, how interests around mineral extraction, climate change mitigation, community development, agriculture and biodiversity compete over the same area of forest for conflicting interests, whose interests are represented (how and why) and what impact this has. The resources (topics) I have worked on include groundwater, forests, soils and biodiversity.
- I’m nomadic (and have a nomadic cat). After finishing school at 18, I went to Peru for a few months and stayed for a couple of years, and I’ve had ‘itchy feet’ ever since. After doing my BSc and MSc at Manchester (UK) I went to Budapest for my PhD, including secondments in Greece and Italy. I’ve also lived in the Czech Republic, then time back in the UK working at University of Leeds, with fieldwork in Malawi, Zambia and Tanzania. Now I’m in Germany. The cat has been moving around with me since the Czech Republic.
- I’m scared of snakes. I know they aren’t slimy, and I’m sure they are very beautiful, but I would rather never make contact with a snake. Unfortunately, there have been a few snake close encounters… including an anaconda in the Amazon, a puff adder in Malawi (that I narrowly avoided running over on a mountain bike) and a spitting cobra in Zambia.