Associate, England, UK
Rob McInnes is an independent Chartered Environmentalist with more than 25 years’ experience in wetland-related environmental research, consultancy and conservation. He possesses specialist knowledge of wetland ecosystems and has expertise in three key areas: understanding their biodiversity and the wider ecosystem services provided to human society; the practical restoration and creation of wetlands for multifunctional benefits; and the development and implementation of wetland conservation and wise-use policies and strategies.
Prior to working independently Rob was Head of Wetland Conservation at a Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust and managing director of their specialist wetland consultancy. He has also worked in ecological consultancy and in academia at the Universities of Exeter and London.
Core skills and qualifications
Rob serves on the Ramsar Convention’s Scientific and Technical Review Panel and is currently task lead on urban wetlands. He contributed to the joint Ramsar and UNWTO publication on ‘Destination Wetlands: Supporting Sustainable Tourism’.
His recent work includes undertaking wetland-related projects in Tanzania, Saudi Arabia, South Africa and Russia, as well as projects for private companies, national governments and NGOs. Recent major projects have included the development of a strategy for UN Habitat on urban biodiversity and ecosystem services and the development of an action plan for wetland conservation in Myanmar.
Rob was lead author on the publication ‘Handbook on the Best Practices for Planning, Design and Operation of Wetland Education Centres’. The publication provides guidance on developing education centres as sustainable tourism destinations which promote the wise use of wetlands.
In addition to his project work Rob has been president of the European Chapter of the Society of Wetlands Scientists and in 2011 was awarded the President’s Service Award for the significant contributions he has made in promoting the goals of the society. He is also a judge on the Chartered Institute of Water and Environmental Management’s (CIWEM) annual Sustainable Wetland of the Year Award
Rob has worked on more than 400 wetland-related projects both within the UK and overseas and has knowledge extending across a range of wetland types from upland peatlands to lowland floodplains to coastal systems and urban ponds. He specialises in developing opportunities that optimise the benefits that wetlands provide for people and ensuring that the multiple values of wetlands are considered in decision-making. He regularly publishes articles in peer-reviewed papers, books and conference proceedings and has recently co-edited an encyclopaedia of wetlands.