Dr Louise Gallagher

Honorary Senior Research Fellow

Sustainable Minerals Institute

Overview

Dr Louise Gallagher has worked towards transformative change at the environment and development nexus for 20 years with organisations like the UN Environment Programme, WWF, The University of Geneva and The University of Queensland, among others. Louise's current research advances multistakeholder cooperation, sustainability analysis, public policy design and responsible sourcing practices for questions linked to sand and sustainability. She is the lead author of the UNEP (2019) report on Sand and Sustainability: Finding new solutions for environmental governance. She led the governance research and action for UNEP/GRID-Geneva’s Global Sand Observatory initiative until 2021. She was a lead contributor to The University of Queensland and the University of Geneva’s collaboration on Ore Sand: a potential new solution to the mine tailings and global sand sustainability crises. She co-authored the UNEP (2022) Sand and Sustainability: 10 strategic recommendations to avert a crisis. She currently works with The University of Queensland’s Sustainable Minerals Institute where she co-leads an initiative with IKEA and other partners on responsible sourcing of sand and silicates with Professor Daniel Franks on the Development Minerals Team.

Background

Holding a PhD in ecological economics and environmental policy from University College Dublin, Louise's expertise lies in bridging interdisciplinary research and practical application to sustainable consumption and production issues. As an accomplished human geographer and ecological economist, Louise possesses extensive practical expertise across various fields, including sustainability science, natural capital valuation, circular and green economies, chemicals and waste management, environmental policy, local energy transitions, inclusive land use planning, the water-energy-food-climate nexus, and minerals resource governance. While at UNEP, she actively contributed to key initiatives such as fisheries subsidies reform at the WTO, waste and circular economy considerations in the Green Economy Report (2008), the sound management of chemicals mainstreaming in development planning, and the first Global Chemicals Outlook (2011). She established WWF's first green economy programme in the Greater Mekong region in 2012, championing biodiversity conservation and sustainable development in significant transboundary landscapes across Southeast Asia. From 2014 to 2017, she spearheaded collaborative strategies for science-policy-practice innovation at WWF focusing on improving biodiversity and ecosystem services analysis as one approach to valuing nature. More recently, Louise's research and teaching at the University of Geneva revolved around sustainability innovation processes that foster inclusive, deliberative policy-making and collective action in integrated water-energy-food strategic resource planning, local energy transitions and global governance of sand resources. Louise joined the Development Minerals Program at the University of Queensland’s Sustainable Minerals Institute in 2022 driven by an interest to further her direct engagement with private sector and other nongovernmental partners on sand and sustainability questions.

Research interests and approach

Louise’s research interests lie in theories of systematic change and action for sustainability transformations, encompassing the governance of environmental public goods, sustainable consumption and production and fostering successful collaboration in implementation. She applies inclusive transdisciplinary research methods to integrate diverse perspectives and reach deep insights into sustainability challenges and opportunities. She also works as an independent advisor and evaluator beyond university settings, lending her valuable expertise to a wide array of projects and programs for organisations engaging with strategy and action planning for systems change and transformation. The Mastercard Foundation, the International Institute for Environment and Development, the Packard Foundation, WWF are among her recent clients.

See her profiles on Google Scholar and ResearchGate for more information.

Skills and expertise

  • Sustainability risk, impact & reputational analysis and assessment

  • Participatory sensemaking & visioning for developing theories of systemic change

  • Strategy & action planning

  • Partnership brokering & facilitating multi-stakeholder processes

  • Powering impactful collaboration through co-design, co-creation, and facilitation

  • Complex project management

  • Evaluation

Knowledge domain expertise

  • Global environmental sustainability and governance

  • The Environment-Development nexus

  • Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services analysis, Conservation social science

  • Sustainability indicators

  • Science-Policy-Practice innovation

Languages

  • English

  • French

Research Interests

  • Development minerals
    My current research at the Sustainable Minerals Institute focuses on sand and sustainability, and responsible sourcing of sand and silicates.
  • Sustainability transformations
    My main research interest is the catalysis and implementation of sustainability transformations, including shaping governance of environmental public goods.
  • Transdisciplinary research design and evaluation
    I favour transdisciplinary research with mixed methods approaches and have developed a research strand over the years on science-policy-practice linkage design / theory of systemic change and action, strategies for effective collaboration in action research and evaluation of transdisciplinary research effectiveness and impact.

Research Impacts

Louise's research with the Development Minerals Program at The University of Queensland's Sustainable Minerals Institute is framing what sourcing standards and practices for sand and silicate minerals may be needed in future in voluntary private action and public policy. Her work enhances the understanding of risks and responsibilities associated with sand and silicate sourcing, while also fostering new avenues for constructive engagement between the scientific, business and policy communities.

Publications

  • Vander Velpen, Arnaud , Smeets, Astrid , Torres, Aurora , Matheson, Alexander Bruce, Friot, Damien, Franks, Daniel M. , Cuperus, Geert , Yusuf, Halinishi , van der Vegt, Helena, Selby, Ian , Reimer Lynggaard, Josefine , Dawson, Kate , Pereira, Kiran , Gallagher, Louise , Goichot, Marc , Russell, Mark , Hemon, Nataša , Chuah, Stephanie, Wagenaar, Sybren , Peduzzi, Pascal , Van Lancker, Vera and Guigoz, Yaniss (2022). Sand and sustainability: 10 strategic recommendations to avert a crisis. . Geneva, Switzerland: GRID-Geneva, United Nations Environment Programme.

  • Golev, Artem, Gallagher, Louise, Vander Velpen, Arnaud, Lynggaard, Josefine R., Friot, Damien, Stringer, Martin, Chuah, Stephanie, Arbelaez-Ruiz, Diana, Mazzinghy, Douglas, Moura, Luanna, Peduzzi, Pascal and Franks, Daniel, M. (2022). Ore-sand: A potential new solution to the mine tailings and global sand sustainability crises: Final report. Brisbane, Australia; Geneva, Switzerland: The University of Queensland; The University of Geneva. doi: 10.14264/503a3fd

  • Ofir, Zenda and Gallagher, Louise (2021). The danger of the single story. Ethics for evaluation. (pp. 188-210) edited by Rob D. van den Berg, Penny Hawkins and Nicoletta Stame. New York: Routledge. doi: 10.4324/9781003247234-12

View all Publications

Publications

Book Chapter

  • Ofir, Zenda and Gallagher, Louise (2021). The danger of the single story. Ethics for evaluation. (pp. 188-210) edited by Rob D. van den Berg, Penny Hawkins and Nicoletta Stame. New York: Routledge. doi: 10.4324/9781003247234-12

  • Scolobig, Anna and Gallagher, Louise (2020). Understanding, analysing and addressing conflicts in co-production. The Palgrave handbook of co-production of public services and outcomes. (pp. 613-636) Cham, Switzerland: Springer. doi: 10.1007/978-3-030-53705-0_32

  • Bassi, Andrea and Gallagher, Louise (2019). Integrated economic and spatial planning for the food-energy-water nexus. Sustainable infrastructure: breakthroughs in research and practice. (pp. 458-476) Hershey, PA United States: IGI Global. doi: 10.4018/978-1-7998-0948-7.ch020

  • Gallagher, Louise A., Norman, Bob and Zuehlke, Robert T. (2014). Matching supply and demand in IPES: The case of the greenpalm initiative. Global biodiversity finance: The case for international payments for ecosystem services. (pp. 140-169) edited by Joshua Bishop and Chloe Hill. Cheltenham, United Kingdom: Edward Elgar Publishing. doi: 10.4337/9781782546955.00019

Journal Article

Conference Publication

  • Gallagher, Louise, Laflaive, Xavier, Zaeske, Andrew, Brown, Casey, Lange, Glenn-Marie, Ahlroth, Sofia, Castaneda, Juan-Pablo, Fanaian, Safa, Joyce, John, Kamar, Eiman, Bahri, Akica and Miralles-Wilhelm, Fernando R. (2016). Embracing risk, uncertainty and water allocation reform when planning for green growth. Annual World Water Week on Water for Development, Stockholm, Sweden, 23-28 August 2015. Amsterdam, Netherlands: Elsevier. doi: 10.1016/j.aqpro.2016.06.004

Other Outputs

  • Vander Velpen, Arnaud , Smeets, Astrid , Torres, Aurora , Matheson, Alexander Bruce, Friot, Damien, Franks, Daniel M. , Cuperus, Geert , Yusuf, Halinishi , van der Vegt, Helena, Selby, Ian , Reimer Lynggaard, Josefine , Dawson, Kate , Pereira, Kiran , Gallagher, Louise , Goichot, Marc , Russell, Mark , Hemon, Nataša , Chuah, Stephanie, Wagenaar, Sybren , Peduzzi, Pascal , Van Lancker, Vera and Guigoz, Yaniss (2022). Sand and sustainability: 10 strategic recommendations to avert a crisis. . Geneva, Switzerland: GRID-Geneva, United Nations Environment Programme.

  • Golev, Artem, Gallagher, Louise, Vander Velpen, Arnaud, Lynggaard, Josefine R., Friot, Damien, Stringer, Martin, Chuah, Stephanie, Arbelaez-Ruiz, Diana, Mazzinghy, Douglas, Moura, Luanna, Peduzzi, Pascal and Franks, Daniel, M. (2022). Ore-sand: A potential new solution to the mine tailings and global sand sustainability crises: Final report. Brisbane, Australia; Geneva, Switzerland: The University of Queensland; The University of Geneva. doi: 10.14264/503a3fd

  • Louise Gallagher and Pascal Peduzzi (2019). Sand and Sustainability: Finding New Solutions for Environmental Governance of Global Sand Resources. Geneva: United Nations Environment Programme.