Rocío Pozo

Visiting Fellow 

WhatsApp Image 2019-04-17 at 11.34.40



Autobiography: I have been working in conservation in Africa, Latin America and Europe for over ten years. As a qualified vet from Chile, I worked with mammal and bird populations from the Atacama desert to the far end of Patagonia. I then broadened my skills during my MSc in Conservation Science at Imperial College London, studying habitat-species associations in the Dominican Republic. I finally dived into conservation conflicts during my PhD in Zoology at the University of Oxford, for which I worked to decrease conflicts between the conservation of African elephants and local agriculture in northern Botswana. All of these projects have reinforced my passion for biodiversity conservation and the need for interdisciplinary approaches to reducing the impact of conservation conflicts.

Research interests: Conservation conflicts are a key driver of species declines, but also of poverty, food insecurity and social inequality worldwide. Therefore, my research interests lie at the socio-ecological interface of conflicts that aims to benefit both, local food production and biodiversity conservation. I’ve been successfully implementing conflict mitigation methods in Southern Africa. Methods that I’m looking forward to implementing in my new Newton Fund collaboration in Latin America.


Cusack J.J., Duthie A.B., Minderman, J., Jones, I., Pozo R.A., Rakotonarivo, S., Redpath S., & Bunnefeld N. (2020). Integrating conflict, lobbying and compliance to predict the sustainability of natural resource use. Ecology and Society.

Minderman, J., Cusack, J.J., Duthie, A.B., Jones, I.L., Pozo, R.A., Rakotonarivo, S. & Bunnefeld, N. (2019). Decision trees for data publishing may exacerbate conservation conflictNature Ecology & Evolution.

Pozo, R.A., Cusack, J.J., McCulloch, G., Stronza, A., Songhurst, A. & Coulson, T. (2018) Elephant space-use is not a good predictor of crop-damage. Biological Conservation.

Jones, T., Cusack, J., Pozo, R.A., Smit, J., Mkuburo, L., Baran, P., Lobora, A.L., Mduma, S. & Foley, C. (2018). Age structure as an indicator of poaching pressure: insights from rapid assessments of elephant populations across space and time. Ecological Indicators.

Cusack, J., Duthie, B., Rakotonarivo, O.S., Pozo, R.A., Mason, T., Nilsson, L., Tombre, I.M., Eythórsson, E., Madsen, J., Tulloch, A., Hearn, R.D., Redpath, S. & Bunnefeld, N. (2018). Time series analysis reveals lack of synchrony between conflict management effort and increasing large grazing bird populations in northern Europe. Conservation Letters.

Duthie, B., Cusack, J., Jones, I.L., Nilsen, E.B., Pozo, R.A., Rakotonarivo, O.S., Van Moorter, B. and Bunnefeld, N. (2018). GMSE: an R package for generalised management strategy evaluation. Methods in Ecology and Evolution.

Pozo, R.A., McCulloch, G., Stronza, A., Coulson, T. & Songhurst, A. (2017). Chilli-briquettes modify elephant temporal behaviour but not their numbers. Oryx.

Pozo, R.A. (2017) Burning chillies and dung could help stop elephants damaging farmers’ crops, The Conversation, 4.12.2017.

Pozo, R.A., McCulloch, G., Stronza, A., Coulson, T. & Songhurst, A. (2017). Determining baselines for human-elephant conflict: a matter of time. PlosONE.

Smit, J., Pozo, R.A., Cusack, J., Nowak, K. & Jones, T. (2017). Using camera traps to study the age-sex structure and behaviour of crop-using elephants in Udzungwa Mountains National Park, Tanzania. Oryx.

Pozo, R.A., Schindler, S., Cubaynes, S., Cusack, J., Coulson, T. & Malo, A. (2016). Modelling the impact of selective harvesting in red deer. The Journal of Wildlife Management.

Media articles