Research and expertise

My area of specialism is in natural capital and ecosystem services, and how they relate to the future development of eco-agri-land environments in the UK.

My expertise is in policy and practice relating to rural land use, and this follows 28 years of working in the sector. This experience enables me to evaluate existing concepts, tools and methods and determine their efficacy in real-world situations. 

My research outcome is to create a co-produced conceptual model, which will include a range of relevant tools, to address the most significant issues relating to biodiversity loss, climate change and environmental damage.  I will apply the model to landscapes, habitats, species, soil, and freshwater environments at different spatial scales including farm estate, land parcel, ecological network, and catchment level to ensure that impacts pathways and boundaries are identified and the outcomes clearly identified. It is important that the model is easy to use by the non-specialist to ensure its usability. Existing methods remain at the academic level, with some of them slowly filtering into national policy evaluation.  At the landowner level, there are few tools that are actually used to make decisions about how to add environmental, social and economic value to the farm. The stakeholder groups identified as co-producers (and eventually beneficiaries of the research impact) include statutory agencies and policymakers, land owner representative groups, and a range of landowners whose landholdings represent different characteristics in order to test the model as it is being produced.

Current research activity

  • Evaluation of natural capital and ecosystem service conceptual frameworks and tools and their uses in eco-agri-land environments in the UK
  • Co-produced creation of initial eco-agri-land conceptual framework

Profile

Over the last 28 years, I have dedicated my career to the achievement of sustainable development, biodiversity and climate change.

For 15 years, I was a Lecturer at DeMontfort University and Lincoln University, specialising in sustainable land policy and management methods and teaching undergraduate students. I combined my academic career with professional practice, and I have worked for statutory agencies, local governments, regeneration agencies and international consultancies at the policy/practice interface.

I am the founder and CEO of the Sustainable Land Trust charity, which includes a separate consultancy enterprise and the emerging Centre for Nature & Society.

Professional affiliations

  • Full Member of the Chartered Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management
  • Full Member of the Chartered Institute of Environmental Management & Assessment

External activities

  • Founder and CEO of the Sustainable Land Trust and the Centre for Nature & Society

Key collaborators

 My research and enterprise activities are conducted with a range of academic and stakeholder partners, including:

  • NERC - CENTA
  • Heriot-Watt University
  • Sheffield University
  • Sustainable Land Trust