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James Hutton Institute Blogs

Shining a light on the latest flood risk management research in Scotland: a summary of 5 ‘spark’ talks and discussion

Rachel Helliwell

Coordinated by Rachel Helliwell, Manager, Centre of Expertise for Waters (CREW) Thought-provoking and action-orientated ‘Spark’ talks took place during a short session at the Scotland Flood Risk Management Conference (30-31st January 2020) at the Technology & Innovation Centre...

Debating energy futures on Lewis: Energy transitions, emergent politics, and the question of the commons

Annabel Pinker

It is widely accepted that we are in the midst of an energy revolution, transitioning from carbon-based fuels to renewable and increasingly decentralised forms of energy production. But does this entail a new politics as well? How do new renewable energy schemes reconfigure existing arrangements...

Integrating distributional concerns into natural capital accounts

Paola Ovando

"ScottishForest" by is licensed under CC BY 2.0 The natural capital concept is gaining traction in political and economic discourses in Scotland. For instance, Scotland’s Economic Strategy deems natural capital enhancement and ensuring sustainability as...

The economic benefits of invasive species management

Michaela Roberts

Bushtail possum, a native of Australia is now an invasive species in New Zealand. Credit: Brisbane City Council. Invasive species are increasing worldwide, and with them so is our understanding of how they damage native ecosystems. Control of invasive species is therefore becoming increasingly...

Policy Listening Session | Newbie UK Blog

Adam Calo

Policy Listening Session At the Start to Farm workshop hosted by farming Connect, the Newbie project put on a “Policy listening session”. The goal of the 1-hour session was to create a space for dialogue between policy makers (and policy influencers) and new entrant farmer...

Am I an agritourist?

Sharon Flanigan

I am a social researcher working on topics relating to agriculture. It is my job to ask questions, but one I have been asking myself a lot recently is, Am I an agritourist?

Rural community resilience: the ‘everyday’ and the ‘emergency’

Mags Currie

During the winter of 2015/16, the North East of Scotland faced the worst flooding in recent history. The ongoing Long-term implications of flooding1 project that I’m co-leading focuses on the impacts on people and communities of flooding over a three-year period. We chose two case study...

“It was like the Titanic”-Some thoughts on the social amplification of risk

Dominic Duckett

Certain risk events attract a lot of media coverage and this can have knock-on effects. Recent prime time TV coverage of the stricken cruise ship Viking Sky, battered by heavy seas with rescue helicopters circling overhead, will understandably have put some people off booking an arctic cruise...

Reflecting on participation in the Citizens’ Jury at the Scottish Parliament & the idea of expertise

Kirsty Blackstock

Last month I had the privilege of contributing to The Scottish Parliament’s inaugural Citizens’ Jury held 29-31st March 2019, in the heart of our Parliament Building. Twenty-two citizens, randomly selected from across Scotland, came together to deliberate on the question, “...


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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.