Graduate Students

Yemi Adeyeye (PhD Candidate)

YemiResearch Interests: Knowledge-sourcing in conservation, Decolonization of knowledge, Participation in sustainability systems, Communicating forestry in the 21st century

Yemi’s academic qualifications reflect exposures in technical forestry and not-so-technical forestry, with research experiences in themes that span from Bio-prospecting to environmental sociology – right from chemical extractions in labs to fieldwork in the mid-hills of Nepal. Within his areas of interests, he has created a niche in studies that aim to understand knowledge handling (production, sourcing, and the politics therein!) and transfer in the management of natural resources across different scales. His PhD research, under the supervision of Dr Hagerman stems out of this niche. He is substantially involved in the International Forestry arena, as an ardent advocate of stakeholder participation, especially in the areas of youth representation. Prior to his PhD program, he worked as the coordinator for youth engagement with the XIV World Forestry Congress team at the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO). He was also a member of the Advisory Group for the Congress. With other previous experience in areas like event organization, science communication, concept and content development, his portfolio covers experiences in Africa, Europe, America, Asia and the Pacific.

He completed the Erasmus Mundus master’s program: Sustainable Tropical Forestry, obtaining MSc Environmental Forestry from Bangor University, Wales and MSc Forests and Livelihoods from the University of Copenhagen, Denmark. He obtained a B.Tech in Forestry and Wood Technology from the Federal University of Technology Akure, Nigeria.

Yemi likes a lot of things, but movies and travelling is on top of the seemingly endless list. He has called few countries home in recent years and has visited more.

Angeline Robertson (PhD Student) Co-supervised with Rob Kozak


Research Interests: Angeline is passionate about forest ecology and environmental governance – especially in relation to protected areas. She is concerned about the impact of climate change and how management practices can be adapted to respond. She is interested in the role that standard setting and assurance systems can play in legitimizing alternative governance paradigms where social, ecological, and cultural values are given equal footing with economic interests and where indigenous and traditional rights are respected.

Angeline hails from the small town of Pender Harbour, BC. She grew up in the forest and prefers foraging edibles and identifying mosses to being in front of a computer. She holds a B.Sc. in Natural Resources Conservation and a M.Sc. in Forestry from the University of British Columbia. She was also a Research Scientist at UBC, working on sustainability assessments with the Governments of BC and the Yukon, and the Council of the Haida Nation. She held the position of Program Director for the Sustainable Forest Management Indicator Knowledge Base and oversaw the development of an international database for indicators of sustainability.

She has travelled extensively and worked in Guatemala, Japan, Hungary, and Germany. In Hungary, she worked with the United Nations on the Balaton Adaptation Project, a socio-ecological vulnerability assessment of the impact of climate change on shallow lake systems. In Germany, she spent three years with the Forest Stewardship Council as the Smallholder Support Manager where she set up a global program to support forest management and market access for small, community, and indigenous producers. For the last three years Angeline has been the Dispute Coordinator for Accreditation Services International, where she set up complaint and incident handling programs to investigate serious allegations of non-conformance with some of the world’s most prominent social environmental standard setting systems.


Natalie Swift (Master’s Student)

Natalie Research Interests: Indigenous-Settler Relations; Canadian Identity, Indigenous Law, and Legal Pluralism; Cross-Cultural Forest Governance and Management; Land/Place-Based and Relational Teaching and Learning

Natalie was born in Bath, England and raised in Peterborough, Ontario/Nogojiwanong, Anishinaabe territory. She first came to British Columbia in 2005 to volunteer on organic farms, but soon found herself tree-planting in the interior of the province. She is currently an Allied Science Forester in Training (ASFIT) with experience in field work, consulting, and volunteer projects both in Canada and abroad.

Natalie holds a Diploma in Ecosystem Management from Fleming College and B.Sc. in Natural Resources Conservation from the University of British Columbia. Her Masters research will be developed in collaboration with the Tsilhqot’in team overseeing the planning process for Nexwagwez?an (“there for us”) – an area that the Tsilhqot’in have delineated for management in a manner rooted in their values and laws. In English, the initiative is referred to as the Dasiqox Tribal Park.

When not talking excitedly about forest management and political ecology, Natalie can be found flopping around on her surfboard, identifying and drawing plants while “nerding” in the forest, and laying in the grass day-dreaming about essay ideas.

Kasmira Cockerill (Master’s Student)

NatalieResearch Interests: Concerned by the consequences of the research implementation gap, Kasmira’s research focuses on knowledge systems and exchange between research and community conservation. She is interested in understanding local and indigenous self-governance models and the interplay between local ecological knowledge and academic or external information. Her research focuses on the emerging development of local and community conservation in East Africa under the conservancy movement.

Kasmira grew up in southern Ontario to a nomadic and travel focused family. It was no surprise that during her undergraduate degree at UBC she spent time studying in both South America and Africa. Her eventual calling was to Kenya after spending time there as part of the Canadian Field School in Africa program. Following her graduation from the UBC Faculty of Science in 2012 Kasmira moved to Kenya to work in applied conservation and research. She currently resides in the northern rangelands off the slopes of Mount Kenya where her research will work with 33 community conservancies part of the Northern Rangelands Trust. Before starting her journey as a Master’s student in Dr. Hagerman’s lab, she worked as a research consultant for a variety of NGOs, universities and research organizations.

Kasmira is an avid equestrian rider and seeks getting off the grid to explore the beauty of East Africa and Canada by camping, hiking and travelling. If you can’t find her, it is because she has no cell reception.

Ricardo Pelai (Master’s Student)

Ricardo - Photo Research Interests: Forest and Conservation Governance; Community-based Natural Resource Management; Novel Interventions

Ricardo was born and raised in the Bolivian Amazon. Growing up surrounded by forests motivated him to get an undergraduate degree in Natural Resources Conservation at UBC. Ricardo is broadly interested in the human dimensions of conservation and resource management systems. For his Master’s, Ricardo will develop a comprehensive historical profile of barriers to the implementation of new paradigms in B.C. forest policy over time to identify key triggers of change where they occurred. He will also be involved with the analysis of policy barriers to the adoption of genomic and non-genomic pathways for adaptation in B.C. at multiple scales of governance. Ricardo is a nature enthusiast and is mildly obsessed with green living. He also enjoys travelling and learning about other cultures.