Miss Florence Barraud

Miss Florence Barraud

School of Society and Culture (Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Business)



I am a PhD student with the Plymouth Institute of Education and School of Biological and Marine Sciences, working in collaboration with the Manta Trust to investigate women's access to the ocean in small island and ocean-dominated states. My research focuses on learning about how women and girls access the sea for recreation, barriers to ocean access for women, and mediators that enable women to access the ocean more. As part of the research, I will co-develop a pilot programme to improve ocean access for women with community members in Laamu Atoll in the Maldives. 

Prior to starting the PhD I completed a BA (Hons) in Childhood and Disability Studies and an MSc in Marine Environmental Management. From 2018-2022, I managed the Manta Trust's education and outreach initiatives, firstly in the Maldives and then as part of the core team, based in the UK and working with 25 affiliate projects worldwide. In the Maldives, I worked with local organisations, schools and community groups to develop marine outreach initiatives and the Baa Atoll Manta Festival, both focused on experiential learning. Here, I learnt that many women and girls have never swum or snorkelled in the Maldives. After four years in the Maldives, I begun to develop my PhD proposal and in doing so discussed this ocean access disparity with organisations working in multiple ocean-dominated countries worldwide. With support from the Manta Trust, I secured funding from the COMO Foundation, the Enjoolata Foundation and public fundraising initiatives, and started my PhD in April 2022.

Supervisory team: 

  • Dr Alun Morgan (Director of Studies) - University of Plymouth
  • Dr Sian Rees - University of Plymouth
  • Professor Martin Attrill - University of Plymouth
  • Dr Guy Stevens - Manta Trust CEO & co-founder


  • MSc Marine Environmental Management, University of York (2016-2017)
  • BA (Hons) Childhood Studies and Disability Studies, Northumbria University (2013-2016)

Professional membership

  • European Marine Science Educators Association (EMSEA)

Roles on external bodies

  • Principal Collaborator - Conservation Education & Diversity - the Manta Trust
  • Project Advisor - Empower Ocean - Women in Ocean Science



Grants & contracts

  • COMO Foundation Planning Grant (2022-23)
  • Enjoolata Foundation Bold Ideas Grant (2022)
  • Luc Hoffmann Institute, IUCN CEESP and Impact Hub 'The Future of Conservation NGOs Innovation Challenge' prize (2022)
  • Big Give Green Match Fund match funding campaign (2022)