Georgina's first degree was in Zoology and she has a PhD in evolutionary ecology. Her research interests are in measuring the trends and consequences of biodiversity loss and ecosystem change.

She led the scientific work behind the criteria used in IUCN’s Red List of threatened species (2000), was responsible for biodiversity elements in the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (2005), and the methodology used in the UK National Ecosystem Assessment (2011).

She was the winner of the 2007 International Cosmos Prize and the 2016 Heineken Prize for Environmental Science. Currently she is a member of the UK Government’s Natural Capital Committee, and a member of the Council of NERC.