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“There are moments in life where the question of knowing whether one might think otherwise than one thinks and perceive otherwise than one sees is indispensable if one is to continue to observe or reflect ...” Michel Foucault

Anyone can contribute to the blog. We welcome pieces on all things related to the social, economic and geographical sciences. Please visit our main SEGS Group site for more information about us.

Will policy changes facilitate community engagement in Scottish land management?

Author: Annie McKee

In May this year, Aileen McLeod MSP, the Minister for Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform gave keynote speeches at the annual conferences of both Scottish Land & Estates, the representative body of the...

What’s in a name: authorship conventions in an interdisciplinary organisation

Author: Kirsty Blackstock

Deciding authorship of academic publications is often tricky, and recently I received some advice that made me consider this issue from a new angle. Not long ago I had an extremely useful career review meeting, to...

Shaping research methods in response to participants’ wishes and concerns

Author: Mags Currie

It is thought that greenspaces (natural and semi-natural places that are openly accessible in urban areas) can provide significant health and wellbeing benefits to people who use them. Together with my colleagues...

Lost in Space? Travel-to-Work Areas, City-Regions, and Strategic Development Planning Authorities

Author: Patricia Melo

How we live, work and travel does not often neatly fit within official administrative boundaries, such as those of Local Authorities or councils. As a result, administrative boundaries are becoming increasingly...

Re-energising Scottish Communities?

Author: Annabel Pinker

In 2011, the Scottish government outlined a target of 500 megawatts of locally-produced energy by 2020. Since then, it’s set up a fund worth £20 million for the support of local renewable energy schemes....

The ‘safety’ in ‘food security’.

Author: Bernhard Merget

I’m a colleague working on food safety within the Cells and Molecular Sciences group at the James Hutton Institute in Dundee. Additionally, I am a member of the Centre for Human and Animal Pathogens in the...

Accessible vs remote? Social and economic development in rural Scotland

Author: Jonathan Hopkins

Three out of ten people within Scotland live outside of urban areas, in rural areas or small towns, according to the 2011 census and 2011-12 Urban Rural Classification. These non-urban regions are incredibly diverse...

Uncovering the ‘Community Sector’ in Aberdeen City and Shire

Author: Joshua Msika

I am currently compiling a database of community-based initiatives active in the energy, food, transport and waste sectors, in and around Aberdeen.  This is very topical because for the past few years the...

How are the knowledge and information needs of crofters being addressed?

Author: Rachel Creaney

For a number of years I have been interested in crofting and I recently had the chance to conduct some research on access to knowledge and information by crofters on Lewis, Skye and Harris.  In case you are not...

What is “natural flood management”?

Author: Kirsty Holstead

For several years I’ve been interested in “natural flood management” (NFM) and how to implement it.  When I started working on this topic, I thought I had a good understanding of what NFM was....


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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.