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Professor Philip White elected Fellow of Royal Society of Edinburgh

Professor Philip J. White, a research specialist in plant ecophysiology at the James Hutton Institute, has received the honour of being elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh.

The Royal Society of Edinburgh (RSE) has announced 87 new UK and International Fellows in 2021 to add to its more than 1,600-strong fellowship. Fellows are elected following a rigorous examination of their achievements, professional standing and the contribution they and their work make to wider society.  

Resilience in the face of COVID-19 in Scotland’s rural and island areas

The COVID-19 pandemic has required many people to adapt their lifestyles and livelihoods to mitigate the spread and impact of the virus. A new report by SEFARI researchers at the James Hutton Institute and Scotland’s Rural College (SRUC) has shed light on the impacts of, and responses to, the pandemic in rural and island areas of Scotland, showing strong community bonds in the face of adversity.

Volunteers wanted for innovative Scottish mountain hare survey

Volunteers are wanted for the first on-the-ground national survey to shed light on the distribution and numbers of Scottish mountain hares. The survey, which is launched today and will carry on throughout 2021, is calling on hillwalkers, naturalists and other outdoor enthusiasts to record sightings of the charismatic animals as they are out and about. No previous experience of wildlife surveys is necessary to take part.

Tay Cities Deal go-ahead for International Barley Hub and Advanced Plant Growth Centre

The International Barley Hub and the Advanced Plant Growth Centre, two flagship innovation projects supported through a transformational capital investment of £45m by the UK Government and £17m by the Scottish Government via the Tay Cities Region Deal, have been greenlighted today (19th March) by the Tay Cities Deal joint committee.

Webinar series explores legume-based business network for food security

A series of eight free-to-attend webinars and networking events will explore the many opportunities surrounding legume production and use.

The webinars series will take in April and May this year and are being organised by the European Commission-funded LegValue and TRUE projects, with presentations delivered by stakeholders with wide-ranging expertise from across different value chains – all linked by the common aim of unlocking the potential benefits of home-grown legumes.

Discovery of a gene that controls grain development may help control cereal yields

The productivity of cereal crops could get a boost in the future thanks to the discovery of new roles for a master gene regulator that influences the development of barley florets, furthering the understanding of grain development including impacts on grain shape and yield.

A new study from the University of Dundee and the James Hutton Institute, working with partners in the UK and Australia, has shown that a gene encoding a protein called HvAPETALA2 (HvAP2) has a role in the development of florets and grain.

James Hutton Institute welcomes new UK Plant Science Strategy

The James Hutton Institute has welcomed the publication of the new 10-year UK Plant Science Research Strategy.

The document provides a framework for research and skills development to ensure UK plant science can play a strong role in solving the challenges of climate change mitigation, sustainable food production, land management to protect biodiversity and to promote human health and wellbeing.

New research highlights interactions of bacteria, fungi and roots for plant nutrition

Scientists of the James Hutton Institute, working alongside partners at China Agriculture University, have discovered novel ways in which arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi, bacteria and plant roots interact to influence the transfer of nutrients to plants. Their findings could be harnessed to enhance the sustainability of agricultural crops.

World Water Day 2021: finding the true value of Scotland’s water

What is the true value of water in Scotland and what does it mean to you? On Monday 22nd March, the Hydro Nation International Centre, supported by the Scottish Government and the James Hutton Institute are hosting a free online celebration of World Water Day, bringing together Scotland’s water community to hear their perspectives on the theme of ‘Valuing Water’.

Hutton postgraduate research showcased in 2021 student event

The annual Hutton Postgraduate Student Event, which showcases the excellent science being undertaken by postgraduate students at the James Hutton Institute, took place online on 2, 3 and 4 March 2021.

This event provides a valuable learning experience for Hutton students in communicating their work to the wider scientific community and promotes a collegiate atmosphere. It broadens awareness and knowledge of the varied projects undertaken at the Institute and is an opportunity to celebrate the work of students and their supervisors.


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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.