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social science

Views sought on local issues and quality of life in Scottish communities (News)

Social scientists of the James Hutton Institute and Scotland's Rural College are seeking people’s views about wellbeing, local issues and quality of life in Scottish communities, in a drive to improve currently-available ... Read more

Five NFU presidents to judge NEWBIE award for innovative new entrants (News)

National Farmers Union presidents from England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales have agreed to judge a new award for 'New Entrant Farm Business of the Year'. Minette Batters (NFU), Andrew McCornick (NFUS), Glyn Robert ... Read more

NEWBIE award to highlight Europe's best new farmers (News)

An innovation-focused award for ‘New Entrant Farm Business of the Year’ is opening this autumn to UK farmers, crofters and smallholders, as part of a suite of opportunities being offered across Europe to help new entra ... Read more

Views sought on attitudes towards future of dairy farming in UK and Ireland (News)

There has been public controversy in recent years about indoor dairy farming. Research has found that the public are concerned about environmental and welfare implications of a move away from pasture-based systems towards more yea ... Read more

Modern dairying practices the subject of Edinburgh Fringe show (News)

Agriculture is changing. There is an increasing gap between how food is produced and public knowledge and values about agriculture. Dairy farming in the UK has changed from seasonal housing and grazing to around a fifth of farmers ... Read more

NEWBIE - New Entrant NetWork: Best New Entrant Business Award (Project)

  The Application Period for the 2018 Best New Entrant Award is Now Closed ... Read more

New research seeks to support sustainable farm businesses in Europe (News)

New farmers can face quite a number of barriers in developing sustainable businesses, including access to land, labour, capital, housing, markets, networks and knowledge. A new Europe-wide research initiative aims to overcome thes ... Read more

Enhancing innovation in rural areas: Scotland’s experience (News)

What is the Scottish perspective on rural innovation, looking forward with the recent launch of the Rural Innovation Support Service (RISS)? That was the focus of a workshop organised by the Scottish Representation to the European ... Read more

Research and innovation that underpin Scotland’s larder – come and see it at the Royal Highland Show 2018 (News)

The Royal Highland Show (21-24 June 2018) is one of Scotland's most iconic events and showcases not only the very best of farming food and rural life, but also the research and innovation that underpin Scotland’s food an ... Read more

Scottish social innovation in focus (News)

How can social innovation change the face of rural areas in Scotland? What are the most appropriate approaches, methods and tools to assess social innovation? What does policy support of social innovation mean in the Scottish cont ... Read more

Our work in the media: barley and social science (News)

The science of the James Hutton Institute continues to attract the interest of the media. This time, Professor Derek Stewart and Dr Andrew Copus were featured in recent BBC programmes, in which they discussed research on the nutri ... Read more

Scottish researchers to present at international rural development conference (News)

Researchers from the James Hutton Institute and Scotland’s Rural College (SRUC), both part of the SEFARI collective, will be among the speakers at this week’s Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OEC ... Read more

Hutton researcher awarded prestigious British Academy Postdoctoral Fellowship (News)

Orla Shortall of the James Hutton Institute’s Social, Economic and Geographical Sciences group has been awarded a British Academy Postdoctoral Fellowship. The Fellowship enables early-career academics in the humanities and s ... Read more

Emotional openness key for STEM researchers (News)

What makes a good scientist? What qualities are assets for success in the highly competitive and challenging environment of science? An outdated stereotype often paints a picture that all scientists are cold, hard, unemotional... ... Read more

Barriers to women in agriculture challenged during presentation at Scottish Parliament (News)

Evidence of significant barriers to women’s careers in Scottish agriculture has been presented at the Scottish Parliament by social researchers from Newcastle University and the James Hutton Institute. The presentation, sp ... Read more

EURAC Scientific Advisory appointment for Professor Maria Nijnik (News)

Professor Maria Nijnik, a senior scientist at the James Hutton Institute’s Social, Economic and Geographical Sciences group, has been appointed a Scientific Advisory Council member of EURAC, a research centre based in Bolzan ... Read more

NEFERTITI: Networking European Farms to Enhance Cross Fertilisation and Innovation Uptake through Demonstration (2018-2021) (Project)

NEFERTITI will establish an EU-wide highly connected network of well-specified demonstration and pilot farms, which is designed to enhance thematic knowledge exchange, cross fertilisation among actors and efficient innovation upta ... Read more

NEWBIE - New Entrant netWork: Business models for Innovation, entrepreneurship and resilience in European agriculture (2018-2021) (Project)

The overall goal of the NEWBIE network is to enable new entrants to successfully establish sustainable farm businesses in Europe. ... Read more

Dutch Royal Palace hears about social innovation in Scotland, Europe and beyond (News)

The potential of social innovation to tackle depopulation in rural areas of Europe and beyond was the focus of a presentation offered by James Hutton Institute social scientist Professor Maria Nijnik at the Royal Palace in Amsterd ... Read more

Researchers urge agricultural industry to challenge barriers to women farmers (News)

Research by Newcastle University and the James Hutton Institute has found that women play a major role in Scottish agriculture, participating in the full range of farming activities. However, barriers remain to their entry into th ... Read more

Monitoring and Evaluation for Ecosystem Management (MEEM) - Comparing theory and practice across Europe (Project)

Monitoring & Evaluation (M&E) is an essential part of the process of adaptive management, the process of learning from our actions in order to update and improve future ecosystem management.  Across Europe we have a n ... Read more

RD 1.2.4 Effectiveness of water management (Project)

This project contains several strands of research that focus on how can enable and implement improvements in water management.  It draws on a mixture of disciplinary skills and expertises, particularly the social sciences.&nb ... Read more

SEGS PhD student wins competition at American geographers' conference (News)

Research by a PhD student jointly funded by the James Hutton Institute and the University of Aberdeen has won the Student Paper Competition at the American Association of Geographers (AAG) conference held in Boston, USA, earlier t ... Read more

European social innovation research presented at international event (News)

A Hutton-led research project studying social challenges faced by rural areas across Europe and the wider Mediterranean area was presented at the fifth CRISES (Centre de recherche sur les innovations sociales) international confer ... Read more

SALSA – Small farms, small food businesses and sustainable food and nutrition security (Project)

SALSA will provide a better understanding of the current and potential contribution of small farms and food businesses to sustainable food and nutrition security. Using a food systems perspective the project will look beyond produ ... Read more

Behaviours in relation to rural diffuse pollution (Research Page)

Significant efforts and resources have been deployed to mitigate rural diffuse pollution through regulatory, guidance and voluntary measures. Despite these ongoing efforts, rural diffuse pollution remains a persisten problem. In S ... Read more

Europe-wide network aims to showcase on-farm innovation (News)

Researchers at the James Hutton Institute and collaborators from across Europe have announced the start of a project which aims to increase farmers’ access to demonstrations of best practices and innovation in agriculture. ... Read more

Research collaboration to assess impact of flooding on people and communities (News)

Researchers at the James Hutton Institute and the University of Aberdeen are collaborating on a three-year research project to understand the long-term impacts of flooding on people and communities, one year on from the December 2 ... Read more

SIMRA workshop discusses how to shape social innovation for marginalised rural areas (News)

How can social innovation change the face of marginalised rural areas in Europe and beyond? What are the most appropriate approaches, methods and tools that can be used for assessing social innovations? What does policy support to ... Read more

Short film to highlight crofting's contribution to environmental management (News)

The contribution crofters and island farmers make to managing land of high nature value will be the focus of a short film and following panel discussion planned for 7.30 pm on Thursday 10th November in the Aros centre, Portree on ... Read more

Exploring International Experiences in Integration (Project)

There have been decades of calls for more integration in water and catchment management.  Many academic and policy documents state that improving integration should aid us in improving water management, particularly to effici ... Read more

Natural health service: older people could benefit from green prescriptions (News)

Green prescribing by doctors and other health professionals could be a valuable way of helping older people reap the benefits of outdoor recreation. The idea is among a number of recommendations contained in a new report commissio ... Read more

MAGIC “Moving Towards Adaptive Governance in Complexity: Informing Nexus Security" (Project)

MAGIC takes a fresh look at the Europe’s goals for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth and the policies and instruments intended to support these goals. Many issues – including water, energy and food security - are ... Read more

Staff and Students (Research Page)

There are currently around 40 SEGS staff working within three subgroups although the interests of each subgroup overlap significantly. Details on the three sub-groups and their associated staff members and PhD students are below. ... Read more

Social innovation to promote rural growth across Europe and the Mediterranean (News)

Scientists from across Europe and the wider Mediterranean area met at the James Hutton Institute, Aberdeen, to mark the start of a 4-year project addressing some of the most important social challenges faced by rural areas. The So ... Read more

James Hutton Group awarded £22.8m for agriculture, food and environment research (News)

Scotland will remain at the forefront of ground-breaking advances in farming and food production as a result of continued Scottish Government funding for scientific research, Rural Affairs Secretary Richard Lochhead has said. Mo ... Read more

Nature conservation vs ecosystem services – what’s the trade-off? (News)

There has been a renewed drive in nature conservation policy in recent years, but is it coming at the expense of limitations in the delivery of the many services that our ecosystems provide, such as tourism and recreation, provisi ... Read more

Prospects for North East Scotland’s land-based industries outlined in report (News)

Is the land-based sector in North East Scotland resilient enough to face future challenges? This question, along with many others, is at the centre of a report commissioned by the North East Scotland Agricultural Advisory Group (N ... Read more

References to GreenHealth research project (Project)

The GreenHealth project, and its findings, are referenced by the following research teams or outputs:   ... Read more

ESCom Series: IPBES and science-policy-practice in Scotland (Event)

The Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) was established to provide decision makers with scientifically credible and independent information that takes into account the complex relationship bet ... Read more

Ecosystem services: ‘co-product’ of humans and nature (News)

Ecosystem services – the flows of resources such as clean air, water, food, materials and mental restoration – are the product of humans and nature interacting together and have a social dimension that needs to be furt ... Read more

Farming press key support for renewable technology decision making (News)

Farming papers are a key source of information for farmers interested in novel technology such as renewable energy, social scientists at the James Hutton Institute have found. Melf-Hinrich Ehlers, applied economist at the Instit ... Read more

SEGS research notes and reports (Research Page)

Researchers in SEGS have created a series of short research notes to communicate the findings of some of our recent research projects.  Please click on the titles below to view research notes and reports. ... Read more

Wanted: North East Scotland residents’ views on sustainable lifestyles (News)

A large number of residents of Aberdeen City and Aberdeenshire are being sent a questionnaire about their lifestyles as part of a research project that aims to find out more about the economic, social, individual and environmental ... Read more

Understanding barriers to community land-based activities in Scotland (News)

Many types of community activity in Scotland, such as the development of community gardens, housing projects, and renewable energy initiatives, require access to land. However, the transfer of land rights and responsibilities from ... Read more

European sociologists meet in Aberdeen to discuss rural challenges (News)

How can people in rural areas thrive during times of rapid, transformational change? How can rural Europe cope with the many pressures arising from globalisation, migration, deregulation and the effects of neoliberal policies? Ove ... Read more

Working together for better solutions to natural resource challenges (News)

Organisations from all across the UK are coming together to discuss ways of working together to achieve better outcomes when it comes to land and natural resource challenges, through a workshop organised by the James Hutton Instit ... Read more

Socio-economic performance of rural Scotland highlighted in new research (News)

The Scottish Government has unveiled today the 2015 edition of its Rural Scotland Key Facts publication, which includes a reference to a report on Socio-Economic Performance (SEP) authored by two researchers from the Social, Econo ... Read more

Social, Economic and Geographical Sciences
Social, Economic and Geographical Sciences
PhD Student
s.p.poskitt@pgr.reading.ac.uk

The James Hutton Institute
Craigiebuckler
Aberdeen AB15 8QH
Scotland UK

 

Current research interests

Doctoral Research: Scenario planning, what is it good for? Investigating the benefits scenario planning may have for managing wicked problems.

Unsustainable relationships between humans and environments have led to significant problems that cross the boundaries between human and environmental systems. Such problems are characterised by multiple drivers that interact in complex ways and by uncertain pathways and conditions in the future. In the past two decades, scenario planning (the creation of multiple, plausible narratives that describe potential future conditions) has become an increasingly popular tool for helping manage such problems. However, it remains unclear exactly how and by what mechanisms scenario planning may help manage complex human and environmental problems. Sam’s PhD explores the use of participatory scenario planning as a tool for managing such complex and uncertain problems in human and environmental systems. Specifically, he explores learning in PSP, how learning occurs and what exactly is learned by whom in scenario planning processes.

Sam's PhD is supervised at the James Hutton Institute by Dr Kerry Waylen, and at the University of Reading by Dr Andrew Ainslie.

Past research

Sam's MRes research explored local people’s knowledge and perceptions of vulnerability to climate change in Sinazongwe, Zambia. He used a rudimentary scenario planning exercise as part of his methodology and developed a keen interest in it. However, the method was difficult for participants to understand and engage in, and failed to achieve the desired results. These difficulties subsequently attracted Sam to developing a more critical understanding of scenario planning through his PhD.

Sam also researched the emotional experience of driving for his undergraduate dissertation.

MAJI: More Action for Just Initiatives for Climate Change Adaptation in Southern Africa (Project)

The James Hutton Institute helps to support effective and equitable water management that will be sustainable in the long-term (and in the face of climate change), through its role in supporting a VSO-led project called “&qu ... Read more

Workshops (Research Page)

Scotland’s peat bogs - rural community perceptions on Lewis (PDF File: 5,798KB) ... Read more

MANECO (Project)

Managing ecosystem services in low alpine cultural landscapes through livestock grazing Current tree-lines in Norway are heavily depressed by land uses associated with traditional (agri-) cultural practices, but reduced intens ... Read more

RURALREIN (Project)

Reindeer herding and commodification of the outfields in Southern Sami areas- Challenges to established rights and practices (RURALREIN) ... Read more

Food security group wins major funding for world-leading food and land research (News)

The Scottish Food Security Alliance-Crops (SFSA-C), a collaborative venture between the University of Aberdeen, the James Hutton Institute and the University of Dundee, has been awarded prestigious funding to research the global l ... Read more

Need a stress-buster? Go for a nature walk (News)

Group walks in nature are associated with greater mental wellbeing as well as lower depression and stress, an article co-authored by a James Hutton Institute researcher in Aberdeen has concluded. ... Read more

Green Health Project Scientific Publications (Project)

Publications and Knowledge Exchange Project outputs include a number of papers in scientific journals, conferences, and events for stakeholders. Examples of such outputs follow: ... Read more

Green Health Project Research Team (Project)

James Hutton Institute ... Read more

TRANSGRASS: A transdisciplinary platform and toolkit for understanding and managing grasslands as socio-ecological systems (Project)

TRANSGRASS innovatively combined collaborative video, interactive Touchtable technology, and ecological surveys with a series of workshops to develop a transdisciplinary platform for the integration of contested for ... Read more

Learning Landscape Partnerships (Project)

Despite many decades of research within protected area landscapes, many protected area management organisations struggle to use scientific expertise in their management and decision making processes. The project has been funded by ... Read more

Exploring barriers to natural flood management (Project)

This project aims to provide a better understanding of barriers to the adoption and implementation of natural flood management (NFM) in Scotland.  ... Read more

CREW projects (Research Page)

... Read more

SEGS Archived projects (Research Page)

Below is a list of archived projects the Social, Economic and Geographical Sciences group have been involved with. ... Read more

SEGS Active projects (Research Page)

The Social, Economic and Geographical Sciences group are involved in a wide range of research projects. ... Read more

Review of the economics of sustainable land management measures in drinking water catchments (Project)

Project aim The aim of this project was to review the economics of sustainable land management measures in catchments where abstraction for the provision of drinking water takes place. Funding was provided by CREW (Scotland&rsqu ... Read more

Piloting a Water Restoration Park in Scotland (Project)

The aim of this project was to support Scottish Water pilot a restoration park to reclaim waste water and market it to non-household water users. Funding was provided by CREW (Scotland’s Centre of Expertise for Waters) and t ... Read more

HUNTing for Sustainability (Project)

Project aim The overall goal of the project ‘Hunting for Sustainability’ was to assess the social, cultural, economic and ecological functions and impacts of hunting across a broad range of contexts in Europe and Afr ... Read more

Sustainable Estates for the 21st Century (Project)

The overall aim of the project was to align upland estate management in Scotland with the concept of sustainability. Funding was provided by the Henry Angest Foundation and it ran from 2007-2011.     Project Object ... Read more

Technology to support Older adults – Personal and Social interaction (TOPS) (Project)

The aim of this project was to develop technology to maximise personal and social interaction between older adults with chronic pain and their health and social care providers. Funding was provided by the Research Councils ... Read more

The contribution of green and open spaces in public health (Project)

Project aim The aim of this project was to explore the relationship between green space and human health using a range of methods and disciplinary approaches at different scales. It was funded by the Scottish Government and ran ... Read more

Water, health and wellbeing (Blue Health) (Project)

Project aim This aim of this project was to aid consideration of thinking of policy and practice linked to well-being and water. Funding was provided by Scotland’s Centre of Expertise for Waters (CREW) and it ran from ... Read more

Towards European Societal Sustainability (TESS) (Project)

The aim of TESS is to investigate the role of community-based transition initiatives in fostering a more low-carbon and sustainable Europe. TESS is a European Union project funded under the Seventh Framework Pr ... Read more

Understanding and reducing rural-urban conflicts: governing outdoor access (Project)

Project aims This project looks at the management of conflicts: ... Read more

OrkCEmP - Orkney Community Empowerment Project (Project)

Project aim Orkney Community Empowerment Project (OrkCEmP) is part of the RESAS Theme 8 (Work Package 8.2) work on 'Governance and Decision-making for community empowerment in rural communities', running from 2011-2 ... Read more

Foodscapes (Project)

Project aim Foodscapes aims to explore how arts intervention and cultural engagement can help address social and economic exclusion, food poverty, and sustainability. It has been funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Counci ... Read more

FarmPath – Farming Transitions: Pathways towards regional sustainability of agriculture in Europe (Project)

The overall goal of FarmPath is to identify and assess future transition pathways towards regional sustainability of agriculture in Europe, and the social and technological innovation needs required to initiate and progress along ... Read more

Exploring the landscapes of governance for rural community empowerment in Aberdeenshire (Project)

Despite the emerging emphasis on the roles that (local) communities can play in public service reform and attempts to ‘empower’ communities (or allow them to ‘empower themselves’) in rural areas, the tensio ... Read more

Gender, green space and wellbeing (Project)

Project aim  This project aims to understand the relationship between gender, wellbeing and greenspace. It is funded through the Scottish Government and runs from 2011 until 2016. It is part of the RESAS Theme 8 WP8.3 work ... Read more

DICE – Developing an Interdisciplinary Culture of Excellence (Project)

Project aim The primary aim of the DICE project is to improve our understanding of interdisciplinary science within the James Hutton Institute and build capacity to undertake interdisciplinary research. It is funded through the ... Read more

Prospects for Farmers’ Support: Advisory Services in European AKIS (PRO AKIS) (Project)

In times of changing conditions, with strong pressure from markets and citizens to adjust and innovate, farmers need timely access to knowledge and information, to training and education, and to facilitating and supporting service ... Read more

Ecosystem Approach Review (Project)

Project aim This project explored existing examples of the Ecosystem Approach, to identify implications for future equitable and holistic natural resource management.  ... Read more

The LandscapePartners Project (Project)

This research project aimed to identify, analyse and assess the contribution of multi-stakeholder partnerships to the sustainable management of rural landscapes and to the well-being of communities in three European countries. In ... Read more

Social, Economic and Geographical Sciences
Social, Economic and Geographical Sciences
Health/Wellbeing Social Scientist
margaret.currie@hutton.ac.uk
+44 (0)344 928 5428 (*)

The James Hutton Institute
Craigiebuckler
Aberdeen AB15 8QH
Scotland UK

 

Mags is a human geographer working in the health and wellbeing position in the Social, Economic and Geographical Sciences Group within the theme of society, institutions and governance. She joined the James Hutton Institute in January 2013.

Current research interests

Mags is interested in how different types of spaces affect health and wellbeing of people, more specifically how being in a space can affect peoples – both positively and negatively – and the ways in which interventions (policy or otherwise) can impact this. In short, Mags views herself as a human geographer, used to working as part of an interdisciplinary team and working to exchange knowledge with policy makers, public bodies and the third sector.

Mags is interested in:

(1) Innovative ways that services can be delivered in rural areas (e.g. social innovation, eHealth, flexible bus services etc)

(2) How processes of engagement, empowerment and reslience occur and change over time in different rural spaces and places

(3) Understaning peoples' motivations and barriers for using natural environments and how interactions with these spaces might differ for different people.

PhD Supervision
Gillian Dowds (University of Aberdeen) - due to submit September 2016

Andrew Maclaren (University of Aberdeen) due to submit September 2018

Rachel Creaney (University of St Andrews) due to submit September 2020

Ongoing and recent projects

  • SIMRA - Social Innovation in Marginalised Rural Areas (2016 - 2020) EU Horizon 2020 www.simra-h2020.eu
  • RELOCAL - Resituating the local in cohesion and territorial development (2016 - 2020) EU Horizon 2020.
  • Three projects through the Scottish Government's, RESAS Strategic Research Programme 2016-2021):
  • Local assets, local decisions and community resilience
  • Rural landscapes and community wellbeing
  • Place-based policy and its implications
  • Sustainable Rural Communities: Community Pilots (considering rural communities engagement around Private Water Supplies) (2015-2016) CREW - Centre for Expertise for Water.

Past research

  • Theme 8: Understanding the linkages and interdependencies between rural and urban areas (RESAS Strategic Research Programme 2011-2016)
  • WP8.3.1 Models and resource flows between rural and urban areas (RESAS Strategic Research Programme 2011-2016)
  • WP8.3.3 Understanding how urban and rural greenspace shapes wellbeing (RESAS Strategic Research Programme 2011-2016)
  • DICE – “Developing an Interdisciplinary Culture of Excellence” – James Hutton Institute Seedcorn funding
  • TOPS – Technologies to Support Older People at home: maximising personal and social interaction (through University of Aberdeen’s RCUK dot.rural research hub)
  • Evaluation of Community Nurse Consultant Role (QNIS)

Bibliography

  • Dowds, G.L.; Currie, M.; Philip, L.J.; Masthoff, J.F.M., (2018) A window to the outside world: digital technologies and new possibilities involving rural housebound older adults in local social activities., In: Curl, A. & Musslewhite, C. (eds.). Geographies of Transport and Ageing. Basingstoke, Palgrave Macmillan. Chapter 5, pp101-130.

Improving implementation and increasing uptake of measures to improve water quality in Scotland (Research Page)

Guidance and advice for improving implementation and increasing uptake of measures to improve water quality in Scotland The Scotland River Basin Management Plan (2010) requires implementation of programmes of measures to support ... Read more

URflood: Outputs (Research Page)

Main outputs from the project: ... Read more

HAPE Core researchers (Research Page)

... Read more

Social, Economic and Geographical Sciences
Social, Economic and Geographical Sciences
PhD Student
kirsty.holstead@hutton.ac.uk or kh38@st-andrews.ac.uk

The James Hutton Institute
Craigiebuckler
Aberdeen AB15 8QH
Scotland UK

 

Current research interests

My work expands a number of themes, many of which are interdisciplinary including:

  • Water and flood management including natural flood management
  • Transition to a low carbon society, including the role of grassroots initiatives
  • Natural resource governance
  • Community renewable energy production 
  • Land management and agriculture

In all these areas I use qualitative and mixed methods, with a particular interest in participatory methods. I am a trained and experienced facilitator. 

Past research projects:

  • EU FP7 FarmPath
  • Scottish Government RESAS Theme 1 Ecosystem Services and Biodiversity: Ecosystem Approach Review and WP1.2. Assessment of monetary and non-monetary values of ecosystem services and transferability.
  • In 2013/2014 I was a facilitator for the Ecosystem Approach Working Group (EAWG), as part of the Scottish Government’s research on ecosystem services. The main role of the EAWG is to facilitate research partnerships, knowledge exchange and collaboration between researchers, government agencies, NGOs and policy makers working in the area of natural resource management and ecosystem services.
  • Scottish Government RESAS Theme 3 - 3.6 Understanding land managers’ attitudes and behaviour towards the management of environmental assets and responding to climate change

Bibliography

  • Martin-Ortega, J.; Jorda-Capdevilla, D.; Glenk, K.; Holstead, K.L., (2015) What defines ecosystem services-based approaches?, In: Martin-Ortega, J., Ferrier, R.C., Gordon, I.J. & Khan, S. (eds.). Water Ecosystem Services: A Global Perspective. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, Chapter 2, pp3-13.

Community-based Management of Environmental challenges in Latin America (Research Page)

COMET-LA was a project coordinated by the University of Cordoba and funded under the European Commission Framework Programme 7. The acronym stands for “COmmunity-based Management of EnvironmenTal challenges in Latin America& ... Read more

Soil forensics (Research Page)

... Read more

Green Health (Project)

Contribution of green and open space in public health and wellbeing Partners Lead organisation: James Hutton Institute (Project Co-ordinator: David Miller) Research partners: ... Read more

Social, Economic and Geographical Sciences
Social, Economic and Geographical Sciences
Social Researcher
kerry.waylen@hutton.ac.uk
+44 (0)1224 395313

The James Hutton Institute
Craigiebuckler
Aberdeen AB15 8QH
Scotland UK

 

Current research interests

Kerry's main ongoing research projects

Her research is motivated by the following research questions:

  • When might it make sense to adopt new concepts and instruments for environmental management? How can we best understand the challenges and consequences of implementing such new concepts, especially those (such as the 'Ecosystem Approach') that encourage a systemic approach to connect multiple issues?
  • How are different knowledges produced and used in collaboration and decision-making for environmental management? If and how do concepts (such as ecosystem services) or tools (such as scenario-planning) influence processes of knowledge co-production, including in science-policy interfaces?
  • How can we better enable stakeholder participation in environmental management, including Community-Based Natural Resource Management (CBNRM) ?  What are the social and environmental consequences of doing so?

Kerry's expertise includes the following skills for carrying out, managing and communicating research:

  • Qualitative research methods e.g. semi-structured interviews, participant observation, Rapid Rural Appraisal, qualitative thematic analysis using both inductive and deductive approaches.
  • Quantitative research methods e.g. design, deployment and quantiative analysis of paper and online surveys for primary data collection, design and deplyment of systematic reviews and meta-analyses to identify and analyse secondary data
  • Extensive experience in leading design and facilitation of workshops for knowledge exchange and/or research data collection.
  • Skilled in engaging and communicating with varied audiences using varied methods, from short written briefings, longer reports and academic papers, through to videos, oral presentations and blog posts.
  • Expertise in research project management, line management, student supervision, and research ethics.

Kerry currently co-supervises 2 PhD students: Sam Poskitt, who is exploring the potential of scenario-planning to support learning for sustainable development, with Dr Andrew Ainslie at the University of Reading; and Kirsty Holstead, who is building understanding of community water governance, with Dr Shona Russell at the University of St Andrews.

Kerry is a trustee of the Orskov Foundation, a charitable foundation that supports students and communities to develop sustainable land use to support livelihoods in lower-income countries. She is also a research associate of CECHR, the Centre for Environmental Change and Human Resilience at Dundee.   Within the Institute, Kerry is leader of the 'Society Institutions and Governance' sub-group of SEGS, and she also founded the SEGS blog.

Past research

Exploring institutional constraints to adopting more systemic and/or participatory approaches to environmental management:

  • She jointly led research with Kirsty Blackstock to understand the potential and challanges of implementing the Ecosystem Approach, funded by the Scottish Government RESAS Strategic Research Programme 2011-2016.  Click here to visit the webpage of the Ecosystem Approach Review. This work also relates to the ideas of exploring the challenges multi-level governance as noted above, and of communication as noted below.

Analysing processes of knowledge co-production relating to environmental management:

  • Kerry co-led WP2 for the FP7 project ‘SPIRAL’ (Science Policy Interfaces for Research Action and Learning, for biodiversity) Visit the Project website to find out more about this project, and see the EPC paper and Biodiversity and Conservation paper in the list below for academic outputs she led on.
  • Kerry helped design the ESPPI:CREW project, which aims to monitor and evaluate science-policy and practice links for the Scottish Centre of Expertise in Waters, which has been operating since 2011.  She was also involved in CATCH II – which aimed to try to better connect policy, practitioners working in and for integrated catchment management.

Understanding and tackling the challenges faced by conservation initiatives in the 'Global South':

  • COMET-LA was a EU FP7 project on the Community-based Management of Environmental Challenges in Latin America, that ran 2012-2015.  Kerry was part of a small team exploring if and how scenario-planning can assist communities in Latin America to identify and develop sustainable community-based management for their natural resources in the face of climate change and increased competition for the use of natural resources. Visit our short animated youtube video on scenario-planning for more information about what this concept can offer.
  • Since December 2012 Kerry has supported work in Malawi to support villages and district-level planning for integrated natural resource management.  She has provided expertise to two projects lead by VSO.  The first project called "Water Futures: Towards Equitable Resource Strategies" aimed to improve the resilience of Malawian water management, whilst from late 2014 the second project 'MAJI' focuses on how to take account of climate change.  Kerry, together with Julia Martin-Ortega, provides expertise on community engagement on topics of ecosystem services and for co-constructing scenarios of future change.
  • Kerry’s past PhD work at Imperial College London (2006-2009) focused on understanding social factors linked to success in community-based conservation projects, involving fieldwork in Nepal and Kalmykia, Russia, as well as a systematic review of the factors affecting ‘success’ in developing-country community-based conservation projects. The thesis can be downloaded from the Imperial College Conservation Science website.

Prior to working at the James Hutton Institute Kerry's PhD research, carried out at Imperial College London, examined how the combination of individual views, culture and local institutions could significantly influence the outcomes of community-based conservation in developing countries.  In addition to policy-relevant work with NGOs, her prior academic experience included social research into attitudes towards nature resources in Trinidad, as part of an MSc from Imperial College. Her first degree is a MA in Natural Sciences, from Cambridge University.

Bibliography

  • Young, J.; Waylen, K.A.; van den Hove, S.; Watt, A., (2016) SPIRAL Improving science-policy interfaces for biodiversity., In: Martinuzzi, A. & Sedlacko, M. (eds.). Knowledge Brokerage for Sustainable Development. Innovative Tools for Increasing Research Impact and Evidence-Based Policy-Making. Greenleaf Publishing, Saltaire, UK, pp275-290.
  • Blackstock, K.L.; Waylen, K.A., (2016) Delivering ecosystem services at a national scale: institutions and governance., In: Brooker, R., Hester, A. & Pakeman, R. (eds.). Ecosystem Services. The James Hutton Institute, Craigiebuckler, Aberdeen, pp18-19.
  • Waylen, K.A.; Blackstock, K.L., (2016) Concepts: 'Eco' terminology., In: Brooker, R., Hester, A. & Pakeman, R. (eds.). Ecosystem Services. The James Hutton Institute, Craigiebuckler, Aberdeen, pp4-5.
  • Waylen, K.A.; Gearey, B.R.; Blackstock, K.L., (2016) Peatlands and cultural ecosystem services., In: Bonn, A., Allott, T., Evans, M., Joosten, H. & Stoneman, R. (eds.). Peatland Restoration for Ecosystem Services. Ecological Reviews Series, British Ecological Society, Cambridge University Press, Chapter 7, pp114-128.

Social, Economic and Geographical Sciences
Social, Economic and Geographical Sciences
Researcher in Agri-Environmental Approaches
sharon.flanigan@hutton.ac.uk
+44 (0)1224 395301

The James Hutton Institute
Craigiebuckler
Aberdeen AB15 8QH
Scotland UK

 

I am a qualitative social scientist with a background in rural topics, primarily focussing on aspects of agriculture, tourism, and networking in rural areas. I completed my PhD ‘Developing and applying a framework for agritourism’ at The Macaulay Institute and University of Aberdeen in 2011.

Current research interests

Demonstration activities on commercial farms

Investigation of on-farm demonstration activities through case studies across Europe to look at governance, motivations, practices and application of lessons learned at individual and community levels. This research is being undertaken as part of EU H2020 PLAID (Peer-to-peer Learning: Accessing Innovation through Demonstration) (2017-2019) and RESAS agricultural systems and land management theme (2016-2021).

New entrants to farming

Developing a network to support new entrants to agriculture and identification and dissemination of new business and entry models and innovation in the sector. This work is being conducted under EU H2020 Newbie (New Entrant network: Business models for Innovation, entrepreneurship and resilience in European agriculture) (2018-2021).

Landscape-scale agri-environmental approaches

Investigation of agri-environmental approaches from a social perspective to explore how they may be applied to achieve multiple benefits and protect natural assets. This work is being conducted as part of RESAS integrated and sustainable management of natural assets theme (2016-2021).

Past research

Collaboration in machinery rings

This project explored machinery rings as a form of agricultural cooperative, which have emerged and evolved into large collaborative institutions since they were introduced in Scotland in the late 1980s. This formed part of a wider investigation of transitions in agriculture being undertaken in the EU FP7 FarmPath (Farming Transitions: Pathways towards regional sustainability of agriculture in Europe) project (2011-2014) and RESAS Environmental Change: Land Use research theme (2011-2016).

Developing social capital and reciprocity in agritourism communities

This project explored various aspects of social capital development and capital conversion towards understanding the role of social learning groups in supporting small businesses and the people behind them. This formed part of the RESAS Environmental Change: Economic Adaptation research theme (2011-2016).

Developing and applying a framework for agritourism

My PhD project first sought to enhance conceptual understanding of agritourism through development of a theoretical typology, which I then applied in Scotland to explore what drives different types of agritourism and how that can help to understand the public and private benefits generated. This project was funded by The Macaulay Development Trust (2008-2011).

Exploring economic and legislative aspects of deer management

This project included investigation of collaborative practices, venison production, and legislation to better understand the drivers and barriers affecting deer management in the UK. This research was undertaken as part of the RELU Collaborative frameworks in land management project (2006-2009).

Bibliography

  • Flanigan, S.; Matthews, K.B., (2013) Planning to succeed agritourism (2011-2014). Mid-programme evaluation., Report to Scottish Enterprise, June 2013.
  • Matthews, K.B.; Artz, R.R.E.; Birch, A.N.E.; Blackstock, K.L.; Brooker, R.; Brown, I.; Cummins, R.; Flanigan, S.; Hallet, P.; Irvine, R.J.; Kenyon, W.; Pakeman, R.J., Prager, K.; Slee, B.; Squire, G.; Stutter, M.; Sutherland, L.; Thomson, K.; Towers, W.; Vinten, A.J.A., (2012) Developing agri-environmental measures for the next Scottish Rural Development Programme: a summary of relevant research findings from the James Hutton Institute., Report to the Scottish Government, Natural Resources Division, SRDP Technical Working Group (Agri-Environment), 11pp, 25 June 2012.
  • Flanigan, S.; Holstead, K.L., (2012) Results of focus group discussions to explore members' perceptions of machinery rings in relation to change, collaboration and sustainability., Report to Borders Machinery Ring (BMR): Summary of findings for machinery ring stakeholders.
  • Flanigan, S.; Holstead, K.L., (2012) Results of focus group discussions to explore members' perceptions of machinery rings in relation to change, collaboration and sustainability, Report to Ringlink: Summary of findings for machinery ring stakeholders.
  • Flanigan, S., (2012) Planning to succeed agritourism: Participants circumstances and expectations in year 1., Report to Scottish Enterprise, The Collection Limited and Planning to Succeed Group.

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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.