Science Society: Can biodiversity make children happy?

Child holding leaves
Ms Kate Howlett PhD student in the Department of Zoology, University of Cambridge
Date 10/06/2022 at 17.45 - 10/06/2022 at 19.00 Where Roger Needham room (Chancellor's Centre)

What are the benefits of exposure to biodiversity and how can they improve children's wellbeing at school? 

Child holding leaves

Kate Howlett will explore the benefits of exposure to biodiversity and green space for our health and wellbeing, including how this can reduce social health inequalities, and how this could be used to improve children’s wellbeing at school. She will also talk about her own research with local primary schools, what biodiversity can be found there, how these green spaces are used by teachers and what children’s drawings can tell us about children’s awareness of local wildlife and their favourite animals.


Kate Howlett is a final-year PhD student, funded by NERC and based in the Museum of Zoology. Her research is centred on UK primary schools, investigating the biodviersity conservation potential of these spaces as well as how they affect children’s relationship with the natural world. She has previously completed an MSc in Human Evolution and Behaviour at UCL, where she researched the origins of lethal conspecific violence in great apes, and an undergraduate degree in Natural Sciences at Newnham College, where her final-year research project investigated the potential of nature restoration in a secondary school for improving students’ wellbeing. She has recently undertaken a postgraduate fellowship at the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology, where she produced a briefing on environmental housing, and an internship at the Science Media Centre, where she worked on science-media relations. In her spare time, she enjoys getting involved in public engagement events, writing, museums and theatre.