Rachel Palfrey


I am a second year PhD student based at the University of Leeds and am part of the ESRC White ROse DTC program and the University of Sheffield’s Conservation and Development Evaluation group. My project is also run in association with the World Land Trust (WLT). My project investigates the impacts of privately protected areas (PPAs) in Latin America using large spatial datasets. I have an MSc in Sustainability: Environment and Development from the University of Leeds, for which I was awarded a distinction and an MSc in Biodiversity, Conservation and Management from the University of Oxford. In addition to my research, I have assisted with teaching masters students at the University of Leeds. Modules I have taught on include Introduction to sustainability and Research Methods.  Before starting my PhD I worked at Operation Wallacea managing their Madagascar Research Site.


My research focuses on where do private conservation efforts take place? What effects do they have for both the environment and communities living nearby? And how does this compare to state or community based conservation efforts? To answer these questions I use matching methods, econometrics and conduct spatial analysis within ArcGIS.


Teaching Interests

SOEE5281M Introduction to Sustainability

SOEE5010 Research Methods 


Support duties

Postgraduate Research Representative for Sustainability Research Institute (SRI)



RasamisonAndriandraotomalaza-RavelosonPalfrey, R. H.  Martin, T. E. (2018) Records of Van Dam's Vanga Xenopirostris damii in Mariarano forest, north-west Madagascar, Bulletin of the British Ornithologists' Club 138(3):275-277



  • 2012, BSc, Environmental Science, University of Birmingham, UK, First Class Hns.
  • 2013, MSc, Biodiversity, Conservation and Management, University of Oxford, UK
  • 2017, MSc, Environment and Development, University of Leeds, UK, Distinction