Maria holds an MSc in rural development from the Swedish University of Agriculture and a BA in Asian studies and political science from Lund University. She has more than ten years of professional experience in development and environment work with 8 years based in Africa and Asia.

Maria specialises in a broad range of social theories and applications. She has vast experience of multidisciplinary projects focusing on river basin management, coastal resource management and land use planning and changes. Maria is a trained facilitator and has extensive experience in participatory community research and planning.

Maria’s research work covers many areas of development with a particular focus on governance, stakeholder engagement, learning, sustainability assessment, project evaluation and policy integration in water-, forests- and coastal systems. Before joining SEI, Maria worked with IUCN’s Asia Water and Wetlands Programme as a Senior Programme Officer where she managed projects on Environmental Flows in the Mekong Region, Health and Environment in Lao PDR and Cambodia, Community based forest management, illegal logging and forest plantations in Indonesia, PNG and Malaysia.

At SEI she has developed and secured funding for a program on land use changes, agriculture and climate change in the Mekong Region. She is leading a component under the Baltic COMPASS project on transboundary water management and eutrophication in the Baltic Sea Region.