Nature-based solutions to sustainable infrastructure development for the achievement of the global agendas of the SDGs and Paris Agreement

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Robyn Haggis is a DPhil student at the University of Oxford’s School of Geography and the Environment, under the supervision of Professor Jim Hall and Professor Nathalie Seddon. Her interests span climate, sustainable development and nature, and she is bringing these together through a focus on nature-based solutions (NbS). Her research focuses on optimising nature in national and supra-national scale decisions on development and resilience in order to progress global agendas including the SDGs and the Paris Agreement. This involves quantifying and visualising geospatially the potential for NbS to substitute and complement built infrastructure service delivery across sectors including energy, water and transport, as well as their ability to deliver protective services in order to build resilience to climate change. Robyn is developing new methodologies, datasets and metrics which will enable decision-makers to consider and value NbS alongside traditional engineered infrastructure solutions. Her research focuses on developing countries and small island developing states, and she is currently applying it to an FCDO-funded project in Jamaica.

Robyn studied Geography at the University of Edinburgh and has an MSc in Environmental Change and Management from the University of Oxford. Her previous academic research has explored topics such as the sustainable development of lowland savannas in Belize and strategies for their future use, and the potential of NbS to meet the temperature goals of the Paris Agreement. Her background includes roles at the 2050 Climate Group, the Carbon Trust and Mandulis Energy in Uganda, spanning a broad range of topics such as energy access, industrial energy efficiency and science-based targets. Her recent roles related to NbS have included work on the infrastructure and NbS chapter for the Global Center on Adaptation’s flagship State and Trends in Adaptation (Africa) report, consultancies for UNEP focused on NbS for infrastructure and their role in progressing the SDGs and the Paris Agreement, and the development of a module on NbS for an FCDO-funded lecture series on climate-compatible growth. Alongside her DPhil studies, Robyn is continuing to work with the Global Center on Adaptation and UNEP on NbS-infrastructure consultancies and is also a member of the Nature-based Solutions Initiative in Oxford.

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