I specialize in human-wildlife conflict and socio-cultural aspects of wildlife conservation. My work focuses on conflict theory and process, community‐based conservation, livelihoods, and human behaviour change. My approach to HWC involves studying the underlying social, cultural and political drivers of conflict and developing strategies that transfer capacity and decision-making to the affected parties.
In addition to co-supervising doctoral and postdoctoral research out of WildCRU, I run the Conservation Science department of Chester Zoo, where my team and I lead a number of projects around the world, and I focus on R&D, strategic partnerships and institutional impact evaluation. I am also the founding Chair of the IUCN SSC Task Force on Human-Wildlife Conflict, and am a member of the IUCN SSC Cat Specialist Group, the Asian Elephant Specialist Group, and the IUCN SOS Technical Advisory Group.
My work on human-wildlife conflict began in 2000 with social research on cattle ranchers and jaguars in the Pantanal of Brazil. Since then, I have worked on many different human-wildlife conflicts, spanning elephants, lions, tigers, bears, jaguars, armadillos and fruit bats. For example, I founded the ‘Assam Haathi Project’ in India, the ‘Living with Tigers’ project in Nepal, developed a Whitley award-winning project for Andean Bears in Bolivia, have worked extensively with cattle ranches in Brazil and Venezuela, carried out a global study of human-jaguar conflict involving empirical research across seven countries, and have designed and led four Darwin Initiative grants.
In the past I also worked extensively on the topic of zoos and conservation, an interest which began while working at the Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust during my BSc years. After I joined Chester Zoo in 2000 as their first conservation scientist, where my job was to develop field conservation projects, I also began writing about the role of zoos in conservation, and eventually leading a symposium with ZSL and WCS, and lead-editing the book ‘Zoos in the 21st Century’ (Cambridge University Press).
I studied Zoology at Leeds University (BSc, 1997), Conservation Biology at the Durrell Institute for Conservation and Ecology (MSc, 2000), carried out my doctorate in Wildlife Conservation at WildCRU, Oxford University (DPhil, 2014), and trained in nonprofit strategic management at Harvard Business School (2015) and negotiation and dispute resolution at Harvard Law School (2017).
S. Pooley, M. Barua, W. Beinart, A. Dickman, G. Holmes, J. Lorimer, A.J. Loveridge, D.W. Macdonald, G. Marvin, S. Redpath, C. Sillero-Zubiri, A. Zimmermann, & E.J. Milner-Gulland (2017) An interdisciplinary review of current and future approaches to improving human–predator relations. Conservation Biology, DOI: 10.1111/cobi.12859
Zimmermann, A., (2014). Jaguars and people: a range‐wide analysis of human‐wildlife conflict. D.Phil. Thesis. Wildlife Conservation Research Unit. University of Oxford
Wilson, S., Davies, T.E., Hazarika, N. & Zimmermann, A. (2013) Understanding Patterns of Human-Elephant Conflict in Assam: An Analysis to Inform Mitigation Strategies. Oryx.
Chartier, L., Zimmermann, A. & Ladle, R.J. (2011). Habitat loss and human–elephant conflict in Assam, India: does a critical threshold exist?. Oryx. 45 (04): 528-533.
Davies, T. E., Wilson, S., Hazarika, N., Chakrabarty, J., Das, D., Hodgson, D. J. & Zimmermann, A. (2011), Effectiveness of intervention methods against crop-raiding elephants. Conservation Letters. 4: 346-354
Zimmermann, A., Baker, N., Inskip, C. Linnell, J.D.C., Marchini, S., Odden J., Rasmussen G. & Treves, A. (2010) Contemporary views of human-carnivore conflicts on wild rangelands. In: Wild Rangelands: Conserving Wildlife While Maintaining Livestock in Semi-Arid Ecosystems. Editors: J. du Toit, R. Kock & J.C. Deutsch. Wiley-Blackwell, UK. 129-151.
Cavalcanti, S., Marchini, S., Zimmermann, A. , Gese, E.M. & Macdonald, D.W. (2010). Jaguars, livestock and people in Brazil: reality and perceptions behind the conflict. Biology and Conservation of Wild Felids. Eds D.W. Macdonald & A.J. Loveridge. Oxford University Press. Oxford UK. 383-402
Davies, T.E., Hazarika, N., Wilson, S. & Zimmermann, A. (2010). Living with elephants in Assam. Lifelines. BIAZA. British and Irish Association of Zoos and Aquariums. 14-15.
Zimmermann, A. (2010). The role of zoos in contributing to in situ conservation. In: Wild Mammals in Captivity. D. Kleiman. et al. (Ed). Chicago University Press, Chicago. USA.
Inskip, C. & Zimmermann, A. (2009). Human-Felid Conflict: A Review of Patterns & Priorities Worldwide. Oryx 43 (1): 1-17.
Zimmermann, A., Davies, T.E., Hazarika, N., Wilson, S., Chakrabarty, J., Hazarika, B. & Das, JC. (2009). Community-based human-elephant conflict management in Assam. Gajah. IUCN SSC Asian Elephant Specialist Group. 30: 34-40.
Wilson, S., A. Zimmermann, N. Hazarika, J. Chakrabarty, D.J. Das, et al (2008). Living with Elephants in Assam. EcoSystems-India and North of England Zoological Society. Guwahati, Assam, India.
Zimmermann, A., Hatchwell,M., Dickie,L. & West, C. (2007) Zoos in the 21st Century: Catalysts for Conservation? Cambridge University Press, Cambridge UK.
Zimmermann, A. & Wilkinson, R. (2007). The conservation mission in the wild: Zoos as conservation NGOs. In: Zoos in the 21st Century: Catalysts for Conservation? Ed. A. Zimmermann et al. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge UK. pp. 303-321
Leader-Williams, N., Balmford, A., Linke, M., Mace, G., Smith, R.J., Stevenson, M. Walter, O., West, Cd., & Zimmermann. (2007). Beyond the ark: Conservation biologists’ views of the achievements of zoos in conservation. In: Zoos in the 21st Century: Catalysts for Conservation? Ed. A. Zimmermann et al. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge UK. pp.236-256.
Mace, G., Balmford, A., Leader-Williams, N., Manica, A., Walter, O., West, C., & Zimmermann, A. (2007) Measuring zoos’ contributions to conservation: A proposal and trial. In: Zoos in the 21st Century: Catalysts for Conservation? Ed. A. Zimmermann et al. Cambridge University Press, pp. 322-342
Balmford, A., Leader-Williams, N., Mace, G., Manica, A., Walter, O., West, C., & Zimmermann, A. (2007) Message received? Quantifying the conservation education impact of UK zoos. In: Zoos in the 21st Century: Catalysts for Conservation? Ed. A. Zimmermann et al. Cambridge University Press, pp. 120-138.
Zimmermann, A., Walpole, M. J., & Leader-Williams, N. (2005) Cattle ranchers’ attitudes to conflicts with jaguars in the Pantanal of Brazil. Oryx. 39 (4): 406-412.
Zimmermann, A. (2000). Jaguar-Rancher Conflict in the North Pantanal of Brazil. MSc Thesis. Durrell Institute of Conservation and Ecology, University of Kent, UK.
Zimmermann, A. (1997). Status Analysis of Ex-Situ Conservation of Primates. B.Sc.Diss. University of Leeds.
Zimmermann, A. (1996). Effects of Feeding Enrichment on Behaviour in Ruffed Lemurs. B.Sc.(Hons) Dissertation. University of Leeds.