Charlotte Smith


Head of Discovery and Learning

I joined Chester Zoo as Head of Learning in 2014, having previously worked in education leadership roles in the museums and galleries sector. I am passionate about creating learning programmes that empower people to make positive changes for themselves and for the environment.

My remit at the zoo encompasses the strategic development of all of our education, visitor and community engagement activities. It includes events and daily activities for zoo visitors, school, college and university programmes, outreach, community development, field based engagement projects, capacity building for educators, volunteering, interpretation and digital learning.

Our education research enables us to increase the efficacy of our work by understanding which education techniques are more effective in which situation and with the many different stakeholders we work with.

I am particularly interested in the factors that influence human behaviour, both in individuals and at a societal level, and in research that enables us to design more effective education programmes, whether that is enabling zoo audiences to make their gardens more wildlife friendly and make more informed consumer choices, or engaging communities around our field sites. I am also interested in how we build the capacity of our partners and others within and without the conservation sector to deliver more effective education and engagement programmes.

Projects I'm involved in

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