Science and Economics


The Science and Economic Knowledge Team facilitates and catalyses integration of science into IUCN’s programme and promotes enhanced knowledge management to support better conservation practice.

Working with IUCN’s Members, Commissions, Secretariat and partners around the world, we strive to ensure the best possible scientific basis for IUCN policy and action.

We work from Gland, Switzerland and Washington DC, USA, but are pleased to hear from you wherever you are based!

Head, Science and Knowledge ManagementTom Brooks

Chief Scientist

Contact Tom

Tom is an ecologist, geographer, and ornithologist by education, with a B.A. (Hons) in Geography from the University of Cambridge (1993) and a Ph.D. in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology from the University of Tennessee (1998). He previously held biodiversity science positions in NatureServe, Conservation International and The Nature Conservancy, as well as visiting appointments at the World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF) in the University of the Philippines Los Baños and in the Department of Geography of the University of Tasmania. His field experience is primarily from tropical forest hotspots: in Kenya, Paraguay, Indonesia and the Philippines. He served on the Executive Committee of the BP Conservation Leadership Programme (2002–2010), and co-chaired the IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas/Species Survival Commission Joint Taskforce on ‘Biodiversity and Protected Areas’ 2009–2013. He has authored more than 200 scientific and popular articles. 

Dr Juha SIIKAMAKI - Chief Economist Photo: Juha SIIKAMAKI

Juha Siikamäki
Chief Economist

Contact Juha

Juha is a graduate of the University of California at Davis and University of Helsinki with the unique combined skills focusing on environmental and natural resource economics but also encompassing forestry, agronomy, and ecology. Throughout his career, Juha has specialized in the economics of ecosystems and nature, including economic valuation of ecosystem services, benefit-cost evaluations of conservation programmes, and spatial targeting of conservation investments. Juha’s career spans two decades of policy-relevant work. Since 2004, Juha has worked at Resources for the Future (RFF), a non-partisan research organization based in Washington DC, most recently as Associate Research Director and Thomas J. Klutznick Senior Fellow. Prior to joining RFF, he was a Senior Economist at Arcadis company. He also has experience from University of California at Davis and Natural Resources Institute Finland. His work is internationally broad, including United States, Canada, Brazil, China, Costa Rica, Mexico, Tanzania, Kenya, Ethiopia, South Africa, Finland, and Sweden, as well as various regional and global assessments. Juha has a broad publishing record with more than 60 publications, including academic journal articles in general economics, general interest science, environmental and resource economics, econometrics, and ecology, focusing on exploring different aspects of conservation and ecosystem services. 

Daisy LariosDaisy Larios

Library and Publications Manager

Contact Daisy

Daisy joined IUCN in June 2014 as the librarian for IUCN headquarters. Prior to coming to Gland, Switzerland, Daisy worked in Seoul, South Korea, first arriving as a 2011 Luce Scholar for the National Digital Library of Korea and then staying on to work in publishing. Daisy holds a B.A. in History from Occidental College in Los Angeles, the city she calls home, and a Master’s degree in Library and Information Science from Drexel University in Philadelphia, where she worked as a Mellon Library Fellow for Swarthmore College and then as a library assistant for Drexel University.

Nicholas MacfarlaneNicholas Macfarlane

Senior Scientist and Programme Manager

Contact Nicholas

Nicholas comes to IUCN from the US National Academy of Sciences, where he was a Science and Technology Policy Fellow working on assessment of restoration monitoring efforts subsequent to the Deep Water Horizon oil spill and the cumulative impacts of stressors on marine mammals. He has a PhD in Biology and Oceanography from MIT and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, an MSc in Technology and Policy from MIT, and a BA in Psychology and Neuroscience from Princeton. Originally from Canada, Nicholas has field experience from Florida, Spain, Honduras, Indonesia, and Ecuador, and is fluent in all three of IUCN’s official languages. Nicholas’ primary responsibility is to lead implementation of the Global Environment Facility -supported project on “The Global Environmental Commons – Solutions for a Crowded Planet”, which is contracting white papers and organising a science-policy dialogue and a high-level conference to review and make recommendations regarding the effectiveness of conservation actions. Nicholas is kindly hosted by the IUCN DC office.

Flore Lafaye de Micheaux Photo: Flore Lafaye de Micheaux Flore Lafaye de Micheaux

IPBES Programme Officer

Contact Flore

Flore holds Master degrees in Environmental Sciences and Civil Engineering. She has a broad background working in environmental policy, water and flood management as well as coastal ecosystem restoration in France. Her 17-year carreer also brought her to Ethiopia, India and Switzerland. In 2010, she joined the Embassy of France in India as Sustainable Development Counsellor, fostering partnerships and projects in the environment sector, sustainable urban development and renewable energy. She recently moved to the IUCN Secretariat as IPBES Programme Officer. She is in charge of facilitating and strengthening the IUCN-IPBES strategic partnership.

S. van der PloegSarina van der Ploeg

Publications Officer

Contact Sarina

Sarina joined IUCN as a Publications Officer in 2017. She is responsible for providing guidance to the Union on all aspects of publishing, ensuring the high quality of our publications, and enhancing the effective dissemination of IUCN’s conservation knowledge. Prior to joining IUCN, she worked at United Nations Environment  Programme and at the Secretariat of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) in Geneva, Switzerland. Sarina holds a Master's degree in Literature from the University of Amsterdam and has worked over 10 years as an editor and publisher at various publishing houses, where she was involved in all aspects of the publishing process. 


Philippe Puydarrieux
Lead Natural Resource Economist

Contact Philippe




Philippe is a conservation economist and policy advisor with an expertise on a range of topics including natural capital methodology and accounting, conservation finance and industrial policy. Prior to joining IUCN, he was head of the Global Public Goods unit in the department in charge of economics at the French Ministry of Environment. In addition to leading the French Assessment of Ecosystems and Ecosystem Services (EFESE), he worked closely on green economy and climate change issues, including innovative finance, links between trade and environment and international governance of natural resources. Previously, Philippe has held various positions in the French public sector, including with the National Research Institute of Science and Technology for Environment and Agriculture (IRSTEA) and the National Forest Office (in Corsica and La Reunion) and he has also worked for several private companies.


Damien Mittempergher Photo: Damien Mittempergher

Damien Mittempergher

Contact Damien




Damien joined IUCN in April 2019 as an Economist within the Economic Knowledge Unit. Damien holds a B.S. in Economics and Finance with a major in Economics and a M.S in Economics with a major in Economic Policy, both from the University of Neuchâtel, Switzerland. During his Master degree Damien worked as a project manager for a NGO with a focus on the Agenda 21 and its implementation in the Geneva region. Damien is based in Gland, Switzerland.


Matías Piaggio

Contact Matías

Matías joined IUCN in January 2020 as an Economist within the Economic Knowledge Unit. Prior to that, he was a Senior Research Fellow in the Environment for Development (EfD) Center for Central America, hosted by the Tropical Agricultural Research and Higher Education Center (CATIE) in Costa Rica. He was also an associate professor at Economics College of the Universidad de la República in Uruguay. He has a Ph.D. in Applied Economics in the Autonomous University of Barcelona (2013). His work has focused on quantifying the human benefits from nature, designing policy instruments to enhance conservation, and evaluating the impact of conservation policies. Methodologically, his work includes microeconomic analysis, cost-benefit analysis, impact evaluation, and footprint analysis using input-output techniques. Matías is based in Washington D.C.


Leander Raes Photo: Leander Raes Leander Raes

Contact Leander




Leander joined IUCN in March 2016 as an Economist with the Regional Office for Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean. He was based in Costa Rica until October 2019, when he joined the Economic Knowledge Unit in Washington DC. Leander has a double degree PhD in Applied Biological Sciences from Ghent University, Belgium and in Resource Economics from the Humboldt University of Berlin (2016). Leander’s work focuses on the socio-economic and environmental evaluation of nature based solutions, mainly forest landscape restoration and ecosystem-based adaptation, and the development of policies, action plans, programs and business cases to implement these solutions. He also works on assessing the economic aspects related to marine plastic pollution and the evaluation of potential interventions to address this. Methodologically his work includes cost-benefit analyses, ecosystem service assessments and Monte-Carlo simulations.


Florence Curet Photo: Florence Curet Florence Curet
Senior Project Officer - Engagement of Non-State Actors

Contact Florence




Prior to joining IUCN in 2018, Florence worked for 19 years for L’Oréal and several brands of the Group where she has held various leading positions such as financial controller, brand director and marketing director. She holds a Master Degree in Business Management from the EDHEC Business School of Lille (France) and a Bachelor in Economics and Finance from Science-Po Paris. She also graduated from the Executive Sustainable Business Program run by BSL Lausanne & HSG Saint Gallen and has an initiation certificate in permaculture and a certificate in circular economy. Her personal experience also includes volunteering activities in a humanitarian context especially in Nepal and Sudan.

Go to top