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Yifan (Flora) He

Master of Science in Conservation Ecology and Environmental Informatics, School of Environment and Sustainability, University of Michigan (2017)

Bachelor of Social Sciences in Psychology, minor in Ecology & Biodiversity, University of Hong Kong (2015; graduated with first class honors)

Yifan (Flora) He is an environmental social scientist and first-year doctoral student at the Bren School. She combines political science and land system science to study dynamics in rural land governance and its environmental and social outcomes, and in particular, how out-migration influences rural land access and use.  

Previously, she was a social scientist at Conservation International, where she worked towards building a global geodatabase of area-based conservation systems, including protected areas, indigenous and community territories, eco-certifications, privately protected areas, etc. She also led analyses of spatial-temporal diffusion of conservation innovations. 

Flora has an interdisciplinary background in geospatial science, environmental governance, and conservation ecology. She received her Bachelor of Social Science degree from the University of Hong Kong in 2015, and Master of Science degree from the University of Michigan in 2017. She speaks Mandarin, Hakka, English, and Spanish, and has conducted field work in lowland Bolivia, the Tibetan Plateau, Alaska, and West Java in Indonesia. 

Year Admitted

Research Areas
Environmental politics, land system science, biodiversity conservation, land governance, land use change 

Faculty Advisor
Mark Buntaine and Robert Heilmayr (Social Science Group)

UCSB Chancellor’s Fellowship 

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