Biodiversity Institute, University of Oxford, UK
Research focus: Sustainability assessment and ecosystem services valuation
If you are looking for an all-rounder on sustainability issues, you might want to check in with Green Talents winner Alexandros Gasparatos. Currently a postdoc at the University of Oxford's Biodiversity Institute, Gasparatos conducts interdisciplinary research on ecosystem services and is developing mechanisms for measuring and valuating these services, which include everything from food and energy supply to carbon sequestration, soil erosion protection, and freshwater purification.
Right now, Gasparatos is exploring how the ecosystem services approach can be used to frame, assess and convey the direct and indirect impact of biofuel production. His work, which includes case studies on jatropha landscapes in southern Africa, and sugarcane production in Sao Paolo State, has significant applied components. “My assessment tools could be used by the private sector to evaluate biodiversity and the ecosystem services it provides in different bioenergy landscapes around the world,” explains the ecological economist from Greece. “Understanding and conveying the multi-faceted role of biodiversity for human well-being is key in facilitating green economic transitions.”
The jury was impressed by Gasparatos' exhaustive research in ecosystem services and biodiversity, noting his application of the ecosystem service approach to his investigations of the social and economic impacts of energy crop cultivation. Gasparatos also impressed with his strong academic career and extensive list of publications.