Dr Eleanor Jew

Dr Eleanor Jew


My undergraduate dissertation research at Leeds University took me to the Kalahari Desert in Botswana to investigate the use of macroinvertebrates (particularly ants) as indicators of land degradation. This was my first trip to Africa, and I was captivated. Following work on a conservation project in Ecuador I undertook a Masters in Biodiversity, Conservation and Management at Oxford University, where I was able to expand my interest in research at the conservation/development interface, and return to Africa. My dissertation research in Zimbabwe examined the impacts of trophy hunting on trophy sizes in three species of antelope, and examined its potential as a conservation tool. I was able to continue to research the social aspects of trophy hunting the following year, while I was working as Principal Investigator with Frontier Tanzania, a gap year organisation running conservation and research expeditions. During this field research we discovered a new species of ant, which has recently been described and named as Polyrhachis terminata. Prior to starting my PhD I continued to work on conservation research projects, spending the summer months in Indonesia, Honduras and South Africa with another research organisation, Operation Wallacea. In October 2011 I took the opportunity to return to Africa and do a PhD at the University of Leeds.

My PhD research took place in a remote area of south-west Tanzania. I explored land use management challenges within miombo woodland with varying levels of human ultilisation. I used a range of methods, including biodiversity surveys of large mammals, trees, butterflies and birds; followed by social surveys using questionnaires, focus groups, interviews and livelihood tools. Such a diverse range of methods enabled me to understand the complexities of land use management within this area.

After completion of my PhD I undertook a postdotoral research fellow position within the Sustainability Research Institute, looking at the impact of El Nino on Conservation Agriculture in Malawi, and how climate smart agricultural techniques fare under current climate extremes. I am currently involved in a project looking at forests and livelihoods in Vietnam and opportunities for REDD+.

Jew, E.K.K. and Dougill, A.J. (2018) Impacts of deforestation and degradation on NWFPs in Miombo woodland, Tanzania. FAO NWFP newsletter http://www.fao.org/forestry/nwfp/94027/en/  

Jew, E.K.K. (2017) Tobacco hurts more than just your lungs – it damages the communities that grow it. Article in The Conversation https://theconversation.com/tobacco-hurts-more-than-just-your-lungs-it-damages-the-communities-that-grow-it-86872

Jew, E.K.K., Dougill, A.J., and Sallu, S.M. (2017) Tobacco cultivation as a driver of land use change and degradation in the miombo woodlands of south-west Tanzania. Land Degradation and Development 28: 2636-2645 http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/ldr.2827/full

Jew, E.K.K. (2016) Rapid land use change, biodiversity and ecosystem services in miombo woodland: Assessing the challenges for land management in south-west Tanzania. PhD thesis, University of Leeds. Available through http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/12380/Jew E., Dougill, A., Sallu, S., and Benton, T., (2016) Miombo woodland under threat: Consequences for tree diversity and carbon storage. Forest Ecology and Management 361: 144-153 doi:10.1016/j.foreco.2015.11.011Jew, E., Loos, J., Dougill, A., Sallu, S., and Benton, T.G. (2015) Butterfly communities in miombo woodlands: Biodiversity decreases with increasing woodland utilization. Biological Conservation 192: 436-444 doi:10.1016/j.biocon.2015.10.022

Jew, E. and Bonnington, C., (2011) Socio-demographic factors influence the attitudes of local residents towards trophy hunting activities in the Kilombero Valley, Tanzania. African Journal of Ecology, 49(3):277-285

Society for Environmental Exploration (2010) Jew, E., Bonnington C., & Fanning, E. (eds) Benefits of trophy hunting to local communities: Perception versus reality in the Kilombero Valley, Tanzania. Frontier Tanzania Environmental Research Report 125. The Society for Environmental Exploration, UK.

Frontier Tanzania (2009) Jew, E., Mansell, H., Boddam-Whetham, L., Dures, S., Seward, A., Alexander, B.E., Hall, N., Steer, M.D. & Fanning, E., (eds). Social Surveys in the Kilombero Valley: a preliminary report. Frontier Tanzania Environmental Report 122. The Society for Environmental Exploration, UK. Available through http://www.frontier-publications.co.uk/reports/Tanzania/Savannah/KilomberoValley/FTER122SocialSurveysPreliminaryReport.pdf

Frontier Tanzania Savanna Research Programme (2007) Jew, E., Fanning, E., and Howell K.M., (eds). Pre-felling Biodiversity Assessment: Majengo and Mgombalenga. An internal report for the Kilombero Valley Teak Company (KVTC).The Society for Environmental Exploration, UK

Frontier Tanzania Savanna Research Programme (2007) Jew, E., Fanning, E., and Howell K.M., (eds). Lupiro Forestry Expansion and Sawmill Site:Crop raiding around Lupiro: Current status and perceived future trends. An internal report for the Kilombero Valley Teak Company (KVTC) for inclusion in an Environmental Impact Assessment. The Society for Environmental Exploration, UK

Jew, E., (2004) Macroinvertebrates as bioindicators of land degradation in the Kalahari Desert, Botswana.University of Leeds e-journal Earth and E-nvironment (1: 205-256). Available through

Research interests

Food security and agriculture, biodiversity conservation, wildlife utilisation as a conservation tool, bioindicators, land use management

<h4>Research projects</h4> <p>Any research projects I'm currently working on will be listed below. Our list of all <a href="https://environment.leeds.ac.uk/dir/research-projects">research projects</a> allows you to view and search the full list of projects in the faculty.</p>


  • PhD, Environment and Development, University of Leeds
  • MSc, Biodiversity, Conservation and Management, University of Oxford
  • BSc, Environmental Biogeoscience, University of Leeds

Student education

I teach on a range of undergraduate and post-graduate modules, with a focus on those directly related to environment and development. I supervise students in these areas for their undergraduate and Master''s dissertations, I take any opportunity to get out into the field, so I can usually be found on fieldtrips!

Research groups and institutes

  • Sustainability Research Institute
  • Environment and Development