Imelda Phadtare

Visiting Research Fellow

Faculty:Faculty of Science and Engineering

Location: Cambridge

Areas of Expertise: Global Risk and Resilience

Research Supervision:Yes

Imelda works on the Global Chaos Map Project, housed under GSI’s  Global Risk and Resilience research theme. Her work explores the dynamic between natural resources and civil unrest.

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Imelda is researching the link between natural resource scarcity and social fragility leading to conflict. This research should demonstrate the opportunity for early intervention policy and action, to better manage natural resources and the rise of related social conflict. Deliverables will include: a publicly available global digital map illustrating specific natural resource scarcity events linked to social unrest, real-life case studies embedded into the digital map, a quantifiable database from which the map is designed, and a summary report outlining the methodological approach adopted.

Prior to this research, Imelda was Head Humanitarian Response Programme for ActionAid Hellas. Here she led two teams in Lesvos Island and Athens to deliver protection and education services to female refugees. Imelda worked daily with Greek Authorities, UNHCR and many NGOs to apply human rights in camp settings.

Earlier, Imelda held a Climate Change and Disaster Risk Management role with Norwegian Church Aid for three years in Vietnam, Laos and Brazil where she worked with rural and periurban communities on natural disaster readiness and future proofing. Gender, disabilities and health mainstreaming formed part of these programmes supported by civil society, government, NGOs and faithleaders.

Imelda also worked for five years as a CSR Manager in Canada developing operational sustainability and stakeholder engagement plans for businesses, utilities and social enterprises.

Imelda is from Australia and worked in waste and recycling management as well as water management with the NSW Government for four years.

Imelda has served as a Board Director with: Reverse Garbage Cooperative, Cool Northshore, Projecting Change Film Festival and EcoUrbia Network. She has also presented, facilitated and written on a variety of environmental management, sustainability and humanitarian themed topics.

Research interests

  • Circular economy
  • Climate Change adaptation
  • Urban resilience
  • Food systems
  • Water supply
  • Disaster preparedness
  • Sustainable livelihoods
  • Gender Equality


Imelda previously taught Operational Sustainability to corporate students and Urban Agriculture to community members, through University of British Columbia’s Continuing Education in Vancouver, Canada


  • Master of Science – Environmental Sciences, Policy and Management, IIIEE in Lund University, Sweden
  • Bachelor of Applied Science – Environmental Assessment and Management, University of Newcastle, Australia

Memberships, editorial boards

IEMA, UK STEM Ambassador