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Dr Jonas Geldmann

Dr Jonas Geldmann

Research fellow

Room 3.01 David Attenborough Building
Office Phone: +44 7412885112



  • 2014: PhD in Conservation Biology, University of Copenhagen (Denmark), PhD thesis: Evaluating the Effectiveness of Protected Areas for maintaining Biodiversity, securing habitats, and reducing threats. Supervisor: Professor Neil D. Burgess
  • 2008: MSc Biology. University of Copenhagen (Denmark)
  • 2005: BSc Biology. University of Copenhagen (Denmark)


  • 2016–present: Research fellow in the Conservation Science Group. Dept. Zoology, University of Cambridge, Cambridge (UK). Funded by the Carlsberg foundation, the Villum Foundation and the EU Marie Skłodowska-Curie Individual Fellowships program 
  • 2014–2015: Postdoctoral researcher at the Center for Macroecology, Evolution and Climate, Natural History Museum of Denmark, University of Copenhagen (Denmark) (3/4 full time)
  • 2014–2015: Consultant for the World Bank’s Global Environmental Facility (GEF) and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) (1/4 full time)
  • 2009-2010: High school biology teacher at Det Frie Gymnasium, Copenhagen, Denmark


  • Member of the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s World Commission on Protected Areas (IUCN-WCPA) (since 2013)
  • Member of the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s Species Survival Commission (IUCN-SSC) (since 2012)
  • Member of the Minster for the Environment's national committee on forests and forestry (between 2011-2016)
  • Member of the IUCN SSC-WCPA joint taskforce on Biodiversity and Protected areas (since 2010)
  • Member of board of governors of the Danish Society for Nature Conservation, largest Danish NGO with more than 130,000 members (since 2009)

Research Group

Conservation Science Group:
Postdoctoral Researcher

Research Interests

My work focuses on understanding pressures and threats to protected areas and how globally applied management effectiveness tools like the Management Effectiveness Tracking Tool (METT) can be used to inform what makes protected areas effective in reducing human pressure. I also work on evaluating the effectiveness of protected areas internationally combining management effectiveness data with data on changes in biodiversity outcomes.

My research builds on a strong tradition of mapping human pressure using remotely-sensed data (e.g. the Human Footprint) to explore patterns of effectiveness across the globe. I am also interested in understanding how pressure as measured by remote sensed data, which often represents drivers or sources of pressure can be combined with on the ground perceptions of pressure to better understand how human processes translates in to biodiversity loss.

Collaborators outside this directory

Key Publications

Gill, DA, Mascia, MB, Ahmadia, GN. Glew, L, Lester, SE, Barnes, M, Craigie, ID, Darling, E, Free, CM, Geldmann, J, Holst, S, Jensen, OP, White, A, Basurto, X, Coad, L Gates, RD, Guannel, G, Mumby, PJ, Thomas, H, Whitmee, S, Woodley, S, and Fox, HE (2017) Capacity shortfalls hinder the performance of marine protected areas globally. Nature: 543, 665-669.

Barnes, M, Craigie, ID, Harrington, L, Geldmann, J, Collen, B, Whitmee, S, Balmford, A, Burgess ND, Brooks, T, Hockings, M and Woodley, S (2016) Correlates of wildlife population trends in protected areas. Nature Communications: 7, 12747.

Geldmann, J. Heilmann-Clausen, J, Holm, TE, Levinsky, I, Markussen, B, Olsen, K, Rahbek, C, Tøttrup, AP (2016) What determines spatial bias in citizen science? – Exploring four recording schemes with different proficiency requirements. Diversity and Distribution, 11: 1139-1149 

Joppa L, O’Connor, B, Visconti, P, Smith, C, Geldmann, J, Hoffmann, M, Watson, JEM, Butchart, SHM, Virah-Sawmy, M, Halpern, BS, Ahmed, SE, Balmford, A, Sutherland, WJ, Harfoot, M, Hilton-Taylor, C, Foden W, Di Minin, E, Pagad, S, Genovesi, P, Hutton, J & Burgess, ND (2016) Filling in biodiversity threat gaps. Science: 352, 416-418.

Geldmann, J, Coad, L, Barnes, M, Craigie, ID, Hockings, M, Knights, K, Leverington, F, Cuadros, IC, Zamora, C, Woodley, S and Burgess ND (2015) Changes in protected area Management Effectiveness over time a global analysis. Biological Conservation, 191: 692-699.

Coad, L, Leverington, F, Knights, K, Geldmann, J, Eassom, A, Kapos, V, Kingston, N, de Lima, M, Zamora,C, Cuardros, IC, Burgess, ND and Hockings, M (2015). Towards the assessment of protected area management effectiveness. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences: 20140281.

Geldmann, J, Joppa, L, Burgess, ND (2014) Mapping change in human pressure globally on land and within protected areas. Conservation Biology, 28, 6: 1604-1616.

Geldmann, J, Barnes, M, Coad, L, Craigie, ID, Hockings, M and Burgess, ND (2013). Effectiveness of terrestrial protected areas in reducing habitat loss and population declines. Biological Conservation 161, 230-238. [2nd most cited paper of 2013]


Other Publications

Craigie, ID, Barnes M, Geldmann, J and Woodley, S (2015) International funding agencies - potential leaders of impact evaluation in protected areas? Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences: 20140283.

Butchart, SHM, Clarke, M, Smith, B, Sykes, R, Scharlemann, JPW, Harfoot, M, Buchman, G, Angulo, A, Balmford, A, Bertzky, B, Brooks, TM, Carpenter, KE, Comeros-Raynals, M, Cornell, J, Ficetola, GF, Fishpool, LDC, Fuller, R, Geldmann, J, Harwell, H, Hilton-Taylor, C, Hoffmann, M, Joolia, A, Joppa, J, Kingston, N, May, I, Milam, A, Polidoro, B, Ralph, G, Richman, N, Rondinini, C, Segan, D, Skolnik, B, Spalding, M, Stuart, SN, Symes, A, Taylor, J, Visconti, P, Watson, J, Wood, L and Burgess, ND (2015) Shortfalls and solutions for meeting national and global protected area targets. Conservation Letters, 8: 5: 329-337.

Mascia, MB, Pailler, S, Thieme, ML, Rowe, A, Bottrill, MC, Danielsen, F, Geldmann, J, Naidoo, R, Pullin, AS and Burgess, ND (2014). Commonalities and Complementarities among Approaches to Conservation Monitoring and Evaluation. Biological Conservation, 169: 258-267.

Coad, L, Leverington, F, Burgess, ND, Cuadros, IC, Geldmann, J, Marthews, T, Mee, J, Nolte, C, Stoll-Kleeman, S, Vansteelant, N, Zamora, C, Zimsky, M and Hockings, M (2013). Progress towards the CBD protected area management effectiveness targets. Parks, 19: 1: 13-24.