Hi! My name is Lourence Balatbat, I am 21 years old, and I’m from Manila, Philippines. I am pursuing my Master of Arts degree in Political Economy at the University of Asia and the Pacific. Broadly, I am interested in environmental sustainability and development; specifically, I am passionate about biodiversity management and wildlife trade regulation. Coming from the Political Economy perspective, my approach to conservation is policy-oriented: I study how international agreements and national legislations are translated into effective and sustainable local action, particularly in developing countries. Currently, I am doing a research project about environmental governance in my country by dissecting the implementation of the Philippine Wildlife Act of 2001 and the management of Critical Habitats of Endangered Species.
In the Y4WC forum, I am most excited about the opportunity to explore local conservation initiatives in Sri Lanka and to engage in an elevated discourse with my co-delegates. Likewise, I am thrilled by the extraordinary privilege to witness the negotiations at the CITES CoP, and to see how global policies are crafted which ultimately shape the work we do on the ground.