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Jessica Maxwell

Staff picture: Jessica Maxwell
Social, Economic and Geographical Sciences
Social, Economic and Geographical Sciences
Macaulay Development Trust Fellowship
+44 (0)1224 395 403

The James Hutton Institute
Aberdeen AB15 8QH
Scotland UK


Jessica Maxwell (née Boucher) was a Macaulay Development Trust (MDT) Fellow in Placemaking, Planning and Ecosystem Services in the Social, Economic and Geographical Sciences Group (SEGS) from 2016-2018. This role involved investigating the relationship between placemaking, planning and ecosystem services in order to build capacity and understanding towards integrated land use planning.

Jessica's former research focused on natural resource management, land-use change, environmental impact mitigation, biodiversity conservation and stakeholder engagement. Watch her 2013 University of Edinburgh TEDx talk here. She has also worked on a variety of cross sector knowledge exchange projects in collaboration with intergovernmental, private and civil society organisations.

Jessica holds a BSc. (Hons.) in Environmental Science, an MSc. in Physical Geography and a PhD in Environmental Change and Sustainability. Her PhD research investigated the global stakeholder engagement process that informed the development of a new standard for identifying areas of importance for biodiversity (International Union for Conservation of Nature, Key Biodiversity Area Standard).

Throughout her career she has participated, presented and facilitated at numerous conferences, courses, meetings and workshops. These experiences often involved engaging, communicating and collaborating with diverse stakeholders. She has a strong communications track record and significant experience in building partnerships, designing engagement processes, developing engagement materials, facilitating knowledge exchange and evaluating engagement outcomes.

Past research

Jessica's MDT Fellowship research informed planning theory, policy and practice through collaborative partnerships with academics, planning professionals and policymakers.

Jessica worked with colleagues Katherine Irvine, Scott Herrett and Laure Kufuss in collaboration with five partner organisations on a project funded by the European Observation Network for Territorial Development and Cohesion (ESPON). The project is referred to as ‘GReen infrastructure: Enhancing biodiversity and ecosysTem services for territoriAl development’ (GRETA). The GRETA project aimed to develop a comprehensive knowledge base for enhancing green infrastructure to benefit territorial development in different European regions and cities.

Jessica also worked within an interdisciplinary team on a project analysing how policy instruments shape soil, water and biodiversity, which is funded by the Scottish Government Rural and Environment Science and Analytical Services (RESAS) Strategic Research Programme (SRP) 2016-2021.

Jessica was invited to join the 2018 International Network of Resource Information Centres (aka The Balaton Group) Meeting on 'The Role of Education and Learning in Sustainability: How We Engage'.



  • Roberts, D.; Torrance, L.; Stirton, G.; Britton, A.J.; Craig, C.; Kyle, C-A.; Abel, C.; Macaulay, C.; Fielding, D.; Watson, H.; Pohle, I.; Robertson, J.; Maxwell, J.; Irvine, K.; Sutherland, L-A.; Dawson, L.A.; Shepherd, L.; Miller, P.; Ellis, R.; Richards, S.; Blok, V.; Hackett, C.; Kettle, H., (2018) Women in Science., The James Hutton Institute, 25pp.

Printed from /staff/jessica-maxwell on 19/02/19 09:29:29 PM

The James Hutton Research Institute is the result of the merger in April 2011 of MLURI and SCRI. This merger formed a new powerhouse for research into food, land use, and climate change.