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Iain Gordon

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Staff picture: Iain Gordon
Honorary Fellow
+44 (0)844 928 5427

Aberdeen AB15 8QH
Scotland UK

Dundee DD2 5DA

Iain, who holds both British and Australian nationality, returned to Scotland to take up the post after eight years working with CSIRO - the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation - in Canberra. CSIRO is the national government body for scientific research in Australia.

Professor Gordon is native to Aberdeenshire and graduated with a zoology honours degree from the University of Aberdeen. He was awarded his PhD by the University of Cambridge.

He worked at the Macaulay Land Use Research Institute in Aberdeen, leading the Ecology Group, before moving to Australia in 2003.

Main areas of scientific expertise:

  • The foraging behaviour of ruminant herbivores as it affects animal performance and vegetation dynamics.
  • The use of domestic herbivores as tools for grazing management within areas of nature conservation interest.
  • The management of wildlife to meet the objectives of rural development and environmental restoration.
  • The role of parasites in modifying the foraging behaviour of ungulates.
  • Re-introduction of rare ungulates into the wild.
  • The effect of dietary specialisation on life history and social organization in ungulates.
  • Human community involvement in wildlife management.

Professional Experience:

  • 1986: Research Assistant Large Animal Research Group, Department of Zoology, University of Cambridge. Red deer distribution in the Highlands of Scotland.
  • 1986: Research Assistant Conservation Monitoring Centre, Cambridge. Biosphere Reserves Project.
  • 1986-1996: Research Consultant Zoological Society of London. Scimitar-horned Oryx reintroduction project.
  • 1987-1988 ; Research Associate Station Biologique de La Tour du Valat, The Camargue, France. Use of domestic herbivores in wetland conservation and comparative nutritional ecology of equids and bovids.
  • 1988-2003: Higher Scientific Officer to Principal Senior Scientist Officer (Individual Merit) Macaulay Land Use Research Institute, Aberdeen. Headed programme on the Ecology of Grazed Ecosystems.
  • 2003-April 2011: Research Associate, Macaulay Institute, Aberdeen.
  • 2003-2007: Group Leader, Sustainable Ecosystems, CSIRO – Davies Laboratory, Townsville, Australia. Managing sustainable savannas systems program.2004 – 2010; Officer-in-Charge, CSIRO – Davies Laboratory, Townsville, Australia.
  • 2007-2009: Healthy Terrestrial Ecosystems Theme Leader, CSIRO.
  • 2009-2010: Theme Leader – Building Resilient Australian Biodiversity Assets, CSIRO.
  • 2010-present: Chief Executive and Director – The James Hutton Institute.

Current research interests 

  • Small mammal community dynamics
  • Pest animal management


Highlighted publications

Recent publications

  • Email:
  • Phone: +44 (0)844 928 5428
  • Craigiebuckler Aberdeen AB15 8QH Scotland
  • Invergowrie Dundee DD2 5DA Scotland
A Scottish charitable company limited by guarantee. Registered in Scotland No SC374831.
Registered office: The James Hutton Institute, Invergowrie Dundee DD2 5DA. Charity No SCO41796

Printed from /staff/iain-gordon on 26/06/16 10:58:59 AM

The James Hutton Research Institute is the result of the merger in April 2011 of MLURI and SCRI. This merger formed a new powerhouse for research into food, land use, and climate change.