In this episode we talk to zoologist-turned lawyer, Alexander Rhodes, about his work as Chair of Tusk conservation charity and Partner and Head of Mishcon Purpose at international law firm Mishcon de Reya.
We start with Alexander’s personal journey, from a young zoologist working alongside indigenous communities in Kenya to a leading, purpose-driven lawyer with decades of experience in both the commercial and philanthropic domains.
He talks about the relationship between business and nature; not just in terms of impact, but also the embeddedness and reliance of economies and societies on healthy, diverse and resilient ecosystems.
This translates into Tusk’s unique approach to “conservation in human context”, where funds are directed to a portfolio of projects that best maximise both conservation and human outcomes.
Championing local knowledge
The approach is firmly grounded in community, and Alexander speaks passionately about the need for conservation to champion local knowledge, initiative and priorities.
Tusk is about to hit a £100m fundraising milestone, and is anticipating the third annual iteration of its Wildlife Ranger Challenge, which began as a vital lifeline for African communities during Covid-19 and has morphed into one of the largest conservation, sporting and fundraising events on the continent.
Alexander is proud of Tusk’s long-standing success, but acknowledges much more must be done to expand conservation, livelihoods and human flourishing in a rapidly warming world.
- Communities, conservation and livelihoods
- Biodiversity and ecosystem services in Africa
- The importance of indigenous knowledge for conservation
- Gender and climate change
- The Wildlife Ranger Challenge
- Covid opens new battlefronts in Africa’s illegal wildlife trade
Host and executive producer: Dr Desné Masie
Co-producer: Peter Doerrie
Researcher: Angus Chapman
Digital Editor: Charles Dietz
Design: Jason Venkatasamy