Dr Bianca Currie

PhD (Nelson Mandela University)

Current project involvement 

  • Participative mapping and comparison of cultural ecosystem services (CES) that flow from a neighbouring national park and protected environment. 
  • Exploring the value stakeholders hold of the presence of free roaming elephants in the Knysna forest.
  • Exploring the possible changes of 1st years students’ attitudes, behaviour, knowledge and beliefs in the School of Natural Resource Management at Nelson Mandela University.
  • Understanding crop raiding baboon patterns and farmer perceptions of deterrent methods in Waboomskraal Herold and George agricultural areas in the Western Cape, South Africa.
  • Coastal living of the future: Garden Route 2050.

Research interests:

Social ecological systems, social learning, public participation and stakeholder engagement, adaptive co-management, eco-system services. Human wildlife conflict.

Contact details: bianca.currie@mandela.ac.za

Find me on Linked In…


Professor Christo Fabricius

Professor Emeritus

PhD (Cape Town)

Current Projects:

  • Communities of practice, adaptive co-management and social-ecological transformation in the Garden Route

  • Vulnerability, social learning and mal-adaptations to climate change

Research interests:

Resilience, transformations and adaptive co-management in disorderly social-ecological systems

Contact details: christo.fabricius@mandela.ac.za

Find me on Google Scholar… or Linked In…


Adjunct Professor Dirk Roux

Research Associate, Adjunct Professor & Manco member

PhD (UJ)

Research Interests:

Conservation of freshwater ecosystems, sharing the benefits derived from their services, and the role of Protected Areas in achieving this, processes of adaptive management, cooperation and trans disciplinary learning.

Contact details: dirk.roux@sanparks.org

Find me on Google Scholar...


Professor Janine Adams

Manco member, Professor for Botany Department & Deputy Director of CMR (Institute of Coastal and Marine Research).


Current Projects & Research interests:

  • Conservation and managemnt of estuaries (including environmental flow requirements, ecological health & importance indices).

  • Blue carbon ecosystems and responses to climate change (salt marsh, magroves, seagrasses).

  • Ecophysiology of estuarine macrophytes.

  • Water quality management and harmful algal blooms.

Contact Details: janine.adams@mandela.ac.za


Professor Lyn Snodgrass

Department of Political and Conflict Studies

DPhil (Nelson Mandela University)

Current Projects:

  • Trans-disciplinary research projects that interrogate deep-rooted, intractable conflict with an emphasis on Africa.

  • Current research focus is the role of collective emotion, communal memory and narrative in the manifestations of violence in post-conflict societies and communities.

  • Conflict resolution interventions and facilitation include conflict management systems design, conflict analysis and ‘mapping’, negotiation and mediation for inter alia civil society, government and non-governmental organisations and business.

Contact Details: lyn.snodgrass@mandela.ac.za

Jeanette Pauw



Contact details: jeanette.pauw@mandela.ac.za


Dr Peter Novellie

Research Associate

DSc (Pretoria)

Research interests:

Adaptive management and adaptive governance of social-ecological systems, with particular reference to governance of wildlife conservation in South Africa.

Contact details: novellie@netactive.co.za


Professor Robert Fincham

Research Associate

PhD (Rhodes)

Research interests:

Landscape scale appreciation of African landscapes; Monitoring & Evaluation of development initiatives & food security.

Contact details: Fincham@ukzn.ac.za


Adjunct Professor Hervé Fritz

Research Associate, Adjunct Professor

PhD in Ecology (UPMC Paris)

Current Projects:

  • Coupling behavioral and community ecology to understand the role of trophic relationships in the functioning of conservation orientated socio-ecological systems

Research interests:

Wildlife management; the interface between theoretical and applied sciences; social-ecological system dynamics.

Institutional websites:

Contact details: hrv.fritz@gmail.com

Find me on Research Gate and Google Scholar.


Dr Jeanne Nel

Research Associate

PhD (Cape Town)

Current Projects: 

  • Specific place-based strategies for building resilient landscapes within risk hotspots

  • From National Freshwater Conservation targets to local action

Research interests: 

Water management and policy within the fields of biodiversity, ecosystem services and human wellbeing and sustainability science.

Contact details: jnel4water@gmail.com

Dr James Dabrowski

Research Associate


Research interests:

Ecological Risk Assessment, Aquatic Ecology, Water Quality, Ecotoxicology, Geographical Information Systems.

Contact Details: james@confluent.co.za

Find me on Google Scholar


Dr Jackie Dabrowski

Research Associate

PhD Veterinary Science (Onderstepoort, University of Pretoria)

Research interest:

Freshwater ecology, aquatic food webs, eutrophication, water quality, drought, ephemeral waterbodies, biodiversity, fish kill diagnosis and fish health, mine rehabilitation.

Contact details:

Tel: 083 2563159

Email: Jackie@confluent.co.za

Find me on LinkedIn , Website: www.confluent.co.za  or find us on Facebook


Dr Karin Badenhorst

Research Associate

PhD (University of Johannesburg)

Research Interests:

Alternative governance mechanisms to enable sustainable transformation in the socio-economic-ecological nexus; agri-cultural and agri-processing value chains, with the aim of specifically benefiting socio-economically and ecologically vulnerable communities;exploring new economic pathways and opportunities created by the rapidly growing Green Economy

Contact details: karinb@iafrica.com  


Dr Jaco Barendse

Research Associate


Research Interests:

Sustainable social-ecological systems; natural resource management, especially fisheries; marine policy development; biodiversity conservation. Specific topics of interest include use of historic ecological data, shifting baselines, stewardship, invasive species management, risks and opportunities in seafood value chains, and mechanisms that enable effective knowledge transfer, fisheries capacity building in the Global South, small scale fisheries environmental improvements and certification.

Contact details:

Email: jaco.barendse@gmail.com

Find me on ResearchGate or Google Scholar or ORCID


Dr Ernest Dube

School of Natural Resource Management

PhD (University of Fort Hare)

Current projects: Manageing soil-vorne diseases in conservation agriculture.

Research interests:

Conservation agriculture, Sustainable soil management and Plant production.

Contact details: Ernestd@mandela.ac.za



Dr Chloé Guerbois

Post-doctoral fellow

PhD in Ecology (MNHN Paris)

My current projects focus on theoretical and applied interdisciplinary research on the dynamics of social-ecological systems including protected areas in Southern Africa:

Host: Prof Christo Fabricius

Research interests:

Complex systems, protected areas, natural resources, biodiversity conservation, human-wildlife coexistence, vulnerability transfers, indigenous knowledge, ecosystem services, value systems, connectedness.

Study areas: Garden Route, Hwange National Park, Niassa Game Reserve

Contact details: Chloe.Guerbois@mandela.ac.za


Tatenda Mapeto

Doctoral student

Title of current project:

Mater balance processes in indigenous and introduced tree production systems.

Study area: Southern Cape region.

Promoters: Prof Jos Louw, Dr Mark Gush and Dr Richard Bugan

Contact details: tatenda.mapeto@mandela.ac.za


Current Masunungure

Doctoral student 

Title of project: Decision support system to prioritise the management  of woody invasive alien plants.

Study area:  Garden Route Biosphere Reserve

Promotor:  Prof Christo Fabricius and Dr Tineke Kraaij

         Contact details:  currentmasunungure@gmail.com or  current.masunungure@mandela.ac.za

Samantha Mc Culloch

Doctoral student

Title of project: Promoting systemic and adaptive governance in conservation: a national protected area expansion project

Study area: Associated G.E.F 5 projects in Western Cape, Northern Cape, Eastern Cape

Promotors: Peter Novellie, Dirk Roux and Bianca Currie

Contact details: Samantha.mcculloch@mandela.ac.za

Find me on Linked In…


Zanele Hartmann

Doctoral student

Title of project: Social-ecological systems approaches to integrated water management: The Swartkops Estuary as a laboratory

Aims and Objectives:

  • describe the current management system of the estuary;
  • assess the views of local stakeholders, and authorities (policy makers ) policy implementers about the management system; 
  • evaluate the consequences, for human well-being and ecosystem services, of the current management system;
  • and co-develop a novel, transformative management system with stakeholders;
  • and Evaluate its legitimacy acceptability and practicability.

Study Area: Swartkops Estuary, Port Elizabeth, Eastern Cape

Duration of project: 2017 - 2021

Promoters: Prof Christo Fabricius and Dr Bernadette Snow

Contact details: s197486860@mandela.ac.za and Zanele.hartmann@gmail.com


Jama Mashele

Doctoral student

Title of project: Small-scale organic farming and the use of the Participatory Guarantee System(PGS) in rural and peri- urban South Africa:  case studies of farmers in Garden Route Western Cape and Giyani.

Study Area: Giyani (Limpopo) and the Garden Route ( Western cape)

Promoters: Prof Raymond Auerbach & Prof Robert Fincham

Contact details: JamaM@mandela.ac.za


Keesha Chetty

Msc Nature Conservation

Title of project: Identifying the relationship between baboon raiding deterrent methods and crop height in George, Western Cape, South Africa.

Study Area:

         George and surrounding areas.

Promoters: Dr Brandi Wren and Dr Bianca Currie

Contact details: s212247158@mandela.ac.za


Nontethelelo Ramantswana

Msc Forestry

Title of project: Assessing community engagement programmes to mitigate uncontrolled fires in forest plantation-community interface, Kwazulu-Natal, South Africa.

Study Area:

         Kwazulu-Natal, South Africa

Promoters: Prof Coert Geldenhuys and Dr Bianca Currie

Contact details: nontethelelor@mandela.ac.za


Nelsiwe Mpapane

Msc Nature Conservation

Title of project: Participative mapping and comparison of cultural ecosystem services (CES) that flow from a neighboring national park and protected environment. 

Study Area:

         Mountain Zebra National Park & Mountain Zebra-Camdeboo Protected Environment.

Promoters: Prof Dirk Roux and Dr Bianca Currie

Contact details: Nelsiwe.Mpapane@sanparks.org


Mpho Sekhoto

SRU/NRF Interm

BSocSci Honors in Environmental and Geographical Studies (University of Cape Town) 

Research Interests:

         Environmental policy and governance, complex human-ecological systems, human-environmental interactions

Supervisors: Dr Bianca Currie and Prof Herve Fritz

Contact details: Mpho.Sekhoto@mandela.ac.za


Peter Makumbe

Doctoral Student

Title of project: Migration patterns, behaviour and ecology of male elephants (Loxodonta africana) in the Hwange-Shangani corridor: Implications for elephant conservation.

Study area: Shangani ranch, Hwange National Park, Corridor (Ngamo, Sikumi, Gwaai, Bembesi, Umgusa, Lake Alice and Gwampa forests)-Zimbabwe

Promotors: Prof Hervé Fritz  and Dr Jan  Venter

Research Interests:

Biodiversity conservation especially in human dominated landscapes, human-wildlife coexistence, wildlife behaviour, ecosystem function and resilience.

Contact details: pmakumbe7@gmail.com


Monicah Mbiba

Post-doctoral fellow

Phd in Animal, Plant and Environmental Science (University of the Witwatersrand)

Host: Prof Christo Fabricius

Research Interests:

Biodiversity and conservation in human dominated landscapes, natural resource use and rural livelihoods, and Savanna ecology

Contact details: mambiba@gmail.com


Alice Bernard

Doctoral Student

Title of project: Trophic guild distorsion in anthropogenic landscapes. Testing anthropodependence in African mammal species. 

Study Area:

         De Hoop Nature Reserve, Overberg area, Wilderness and Garden Route National Park

Research Interests:

Ecology, biodiversity conservation, human-wildlife coexistence, mammal communities 

Promoters: Prof Hervé Fritz, Dr Jan Venter & Dr Chloé Guerbois

Contact details: alice.bernard14@free.fr


Elie Pedarros

Doctoral Student 

Title of project: Combining wildlife monitoring and local ecological knowledge to understand the ecology of large mammals communities and to catalyse conservation in southern Africa.

Study Area:

         Garden Route National Park (South Africa) & Hwange National Park (Zimbabwe)

Research Interests:

Ecology, Conservation, Socio-Ecological Systems, GIS, Anthropology of Nature

Promoters: Dr Hervé Fritz & Dr Chloé Guerbois

Contact details: elie_pedarros@hotmail.fr