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  • Craibstone Estate, Bucksburn, SRUC, Ferguson Building

    AB21 9YA Aberdeen

    United Kingdom


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Personal profile

Research interests

My research investigates how biological functions in soil meet our ecosystem demands through careful controlled experiments to elucidate mechanisms and field experiments to test theory in situ. I believe that the application of ecological theory can help deliver increasing sustainability of our agricultural system, contributing directly to food security and climate change mitigation. 

My primary interests lie in linking nutrient cycling processes to measureable aspects of the soil microbiome and the interaction of soil biology with soil physical and chemical properties and mangagement practices to produce resilient responses to external stress. 


Year tutor for 3rd year Organic Farming MSc (distance learning based at SRUC Craibstone)

Lecturer for

  • Research Skills and Data Analysis (3rd year undergraduate across all degree programmes)
  • Grass and Fodder Crop Production (1st year undergraduate Agriculture and RBM (elective))
  • Soil and Crop Establishment  (1st year undergraduate Agriculture)
  • Soil and Fertility (National Certificate Agriculture)
  • Combinable Crop Production (National Certificate Agriculture)


Other work

Lay member of steering committee for CHOICE study being undertaken at the Usher Institute, University of Edinburgh From January 2020


Current Research Students:

Functional responses of distinct soil communities to a large-scale cultivation disturbance in grass leys. Summer studentship 2021, funded by The Stapeldon Memorial Trust

Effects of different rotations on soil health. SRUC Honours project 2020/21

Effects of different cultivation methods on soil health. SRUC Honours project 2020/21

Previous Students:

Effect of freeze:thaw cycles on nitrous oxide release from temperate soils at different pHs. University of Aberdenn Honours project 2017/18

Compost tea as a fertiliser for turf grass. Cranfield University MSc project 2015/16

Effects of compost tea as a fertiliser on soil health metrics. Cranfield University MSc project 2014/15



Soils Programme Research Partnership: Management for soil biology and health. AHDB (2020)

RESAS Strategic Programme 2016-2021: WP 2.3 Productive and sustainable land management (2020 - 2021)


RESAS Strategic Programme 2016 - 2021, WP 1.1.2 Soil resilience to change (2016 - 2019)

Fundamental basis of soil biological resilience. BBSRC and DEFRA (2013 - 2016)


Education/Academic qualification

PhD, University of Stirling

Award Date: 30 Nov 2013


Award Date: 30 Nov 2007

Bachelor, University of St Andrews

Award Date: 27 Jun 2006

External positions

University of Aberdeen

1 Sep 201630 Aug 2019

Cranfield University

11 Feb 201316 Aug 2016


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