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How did communities adapt public spaces during Covid-19?

Researchers at the James Hutton Institute are investigating the ways in which communities have adapted public spaces during the Covid-19 pandemic. Every community in the UK felt the impacts of the pandemic, and many of us experienced a complete shift in the way that we lived our lives: empty social calendars, working remotely, and limited time outdoors and in public spaces.

Institute appointed to undertake research on Mournes Mountains

The James Hutton Institute has been appointed to undertake research on the long-term future of the Mourne Mountains.

Making the announcement at a recent workshop with stakeholders at Tollymore National Outdoor Centre in Newcastle, Finance Minister, Conor Murphy has said: “The future of the Mournes is very important to me. I am determined to do all we can to sustain this area of outstanding natural beauty into the future.

Food security rests on the growth of farming indoors

This article first appeared in The Times Thunderer column on 10th October

By Professor Derek Stewart, Director, Advanced Plant Growth Centre, the James Hutton Institute

As a crop scientist with over 30 years’ experience in the research and also industry sectors; I've never been more worried about the security of our food supply than I am currently.

£13 million awarded to sustainability projects in the North East of Scotland

Scientists at James Hutton Institute, the independent research organisation, have been awarded over £13million from the Scottish Government’s Just Transition fund to establish two pioneering action-based research science projects in the North East of Scotland.

HydroGlen and the Just Transition Hub will focus on providing sustainable solutions to Scotland’s future food, environmental and water security concerns.

New funding for net zero water projects

The first four projects to help Scotland’s water sector get to net zero by 2040 have been funded through the Hydro Nation Chair’s Catalyst Fund.

Two projects from the James Hutton Institute, one from the University of Glasgow and one from the University of Stirling, in collaboration with University of Strathclyde, will help tackle the challenge of reducing process emissions associated with wastewater treatment – an urgent priority in the water sector’s journey to net zero.

DiversiTree: £500k awarded to increase UK woodland resilience

The UK Research and Innovation has awarded £516,524 to DiversiTree, a collaborative project led by the James Hutton Institute, to investigate resilience across the country’s woodlands.

Woods and forests account for more than 13% of the UK’s land surface, but the UK government’s ambition is to increase this to 17% as part of UK’s plans to reach net zero emissions by 2050. 

What will affect the future resilience of Scottish arable and horticulture production?

Scientists at the James Hutton Institute are researching ways to prepare for and prevent future threats to arable and horticultural production in Scotland.  In work funded by the Scottish Government’sRural and Environment Science and Analytical Services (RESAS), the research aims to prioritise threats to crop production and analyse likely future scenarios with stakeholders to find ways of avoiding these risks.

Queen Elizabeth II – 1926-2022

It is with great sadness that that we learned of the death of Her Majesty the Queen. The longest reigning monarch in British history, she lived through and presided over historic shifts in society as well as to the world itself. We will use this period as a time of both reflection and also a celebration of her spirit of curiosity and her life-long commitment to society.

Our condolences are with her family at this time

Scots scientists to spearhead urgent EU research into how climate change is impacting our ability to grow crops

A Scottish scientist is to co-lead an elite project group of 22 European partners, looking to create resilient crops for the future. Yield is projected to plummet by a third due to extremes in temperatures and greater variation in rainfall patterns impacting on soil and the type of crops which can be grown.

James Hutton’s legacy to launch Scottish Geology Festival

James Hutton is often regarded as the founder of modern geology, his research reset the world view on the Earth's processes and made possible other major theories such as continental drift and the theory of evolution. However, many people still know so little about this key figure of the Scottish Enlightenment.


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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.