How to do good better? Cultivate curiosity & understanding, create a reflective practice, deliver evidence-based impact – I collaborate and consult with institutions and organisations around the world on interdisciplinary research projects. My work explores the relationship between people and nature, especially water environments, contributing my expertise in blue space, health and social wellbeing on national and international research projects including the EU-funded Horizon2020 project on Seas, Oceans and Public Health in Europe (SOPHIE). Fully qualified marine social scientist and research consultant, with Ph.D in Environment and Society. Selected research interests: blue space, human health and wellbeing, ocean health, nature connection, nature-based health interventions, social and ecological resilience, social impact, gender, systems change, project design, evaluation methods, qualitative methodologies, stakeholder engagement and participatory processes.
Blue Health researcher with the Erasmus+ INCLUSEA project.
Research Associate, Whitaker Institute for Innovation and Societal Change, National University of Ireland Galway. (NUIG).
2018 – 2020
Post-doctoral research fellow, EU-funded Horizon2020 project on Seas, Oceans and Public Health in Europe (SOPHIE), at Whitaker Institute, National University of Ireland Galway (NUIG).
2016 – 2018
Post-doctoral research fellow and work-package leader, EPA-HSE funded Nature and Environment to Attain and Restore Health (NEAR-Health) project, at Whitaker Institute, National University of Ireland Galway (NUIG).
Honorary Visiting Research Fellow at Sport and Leisure Studies in the Dept. of Te Oranga at the University of Waikato, New Zealand.
2013 – 2014
Post-doctoral research fellowship, Memorial University of Newfoundland, Canada. Too Big To Ignore: Global partnership for sustainable small-scale fisheries research.
Research consultant: Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) project, funded by the Rockefeller Foundation.
Peer reviewed publications – open access:
- Burtscher, M., & Britton, E. (2022). “There Was Some Kind of Energy Coming into My Heart”: Creating Safe Spaces for Sri Lankan Women and Girls to Enjoy the Wellbeing Benefits of the Ocean. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 19(6), 3342.
- The Ocean Decade—Opportunities for Oceans and Human Health Programs to Contribute to Public Health
- Accelerating sustainable ocean policy: The dynamics of multiple stakeholder priorities and actions for oceans and human health
- Blue Care: A systematic review of blue space interventions for health and wellbeing.
- Surfing and the Senses: Using Body Mapping to Understand the Embodied and Therapeutic Experiences of Young Surfers with Autism.
For more selected peer-reviewed publications, visit my Google Scholar profile.