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Hear how we can maximise our use of land for farming and food production while enhancing its biodiversity and ecosystem services.
David Raffaelli, of the University of York’s Environment Department and Director of the Biodiversity and Ecosystem Service Sustainability (BESS) project, will deliver the opening address. Speakers include:
Professor David Raffaelli was appointed to a chair in the University of York’s Environment Department in February 2001 and was Head of Department between 2004 and 2010. Dave is also Director of UKPopNet, a collaborative Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) Centre, focused on science for sustainable landscapes and livelihoods and he has recently finished a five-year period as Director of the NERC DIVERSITAS international, inter-disciplinary project office bioSUSTAINABILITY, concerned with developing the science of conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity, in particular exploring the science-policy interface.
Dave has worked extensively on the relationships between biodiversity, and ecosystem services and functioning, funded mainly by NERC and Defra, is a member of the Global Biodiversity Sub-Committee of the GECC, and has served on several UKBRAG working groups. His work with NERC includes a Board Member of NERC Science and Innovation Strategy Board (SISB), Chair of NERC’s Services & Facilities Review Group. In recent years he has been a journal Editor (Journal of Animal Ecology), Council Member and Vice-President of the British Ecological Society. He is Director of the Biodiversity & Ecosystem Service Sustainability (BESS) NERC research programme, supported by the Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC), which is designed to answer fundamental questions about the functional role of biodiversity in key ecosystem processes and the delivery of ecosystem processes at the landscape scale.
Rosalind Forbes Adam is Chair of Hagge Woods Trust. The Trust’s objectives are to research and practise the ecological and holistic creation of new native woodlands, properly structured from high canopy to shrub layer, including the establishment of a ground flora, thus addressing the threatened biodiversity of woodland and grassland wildflowers that once were typical of ancient woods and meadows. The Trust is also establishing procedures and promoting education in innovative practices in the creation and management of biodiverse woodlands on formerly arable land. It also aims to provide open access for the benefit of the public, and to deliver woodland education by means of its website, and on site to schools, families and community groups.
Sue Hartley is a Professor of Ecology at the University of York and Director of the York Environmental Sustainability Institute. A fellow of the Royal Entomological Society and President of the British Ecological Society, she is also the Academic Lead for the N8 Research Partnership AgriFood Resilience Programme. Sue’s research focuses on using natural plant defences as a sustainable means of crop protection.
She has a Biochemistry degree from the University of Oxford and a PhD in Ecology from the University of York. She joined the University of Sussex in 2001, and moved to York In 2010 as Director of the York Environmental Sustainability Institute. This innovative research partnership brings together leading researchers from a broad range of disciplines to tackle key global challenges, such as climate change, biodiversity loss and threats to food security. She is member of the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) Strategic Advisory Panel on Agriculture and Food Security and Chair of the BBSRC/Natural Environment Research Council (NERC)/Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) Sustainable Agriculture Research Innovation Club.
James Hopwood was born into a farming family south east of York. Educated at Harper Adams University with a BSc (Hons) in Agriculture and Farm and Land Management, James’ main interests focus on the sustainability and future of agriculture. As a result, James is fully involved with the activities of the Yorkshire Agricultural Society and sits on the management team the Future Farmers of Yorkshire and the Yorkshire Food Farming and Rural Network. He is also a steward at the Great Yorkshire Show.
The Future Farmers of Yorkshire is a popular and growing network of young professional farmers interested in improving knowledge transfer. The network’s strategic activities focus on professional development for the future of agriculture in the county and the way in which, with the backing of the Society, we are tackling key area such as succession, business finance and marketing. James is Agriculture Director at Ibbotsons Produce Ltd, responsible for forging a sustainable future for the business with regards to grower relationships and the most productive methods of crop production linked into marketing, new product development, nutrient and soil management and innovation in produce.
Dr James Dyke is Lecturer of Complex Systems Simulation within Geography and Environment at the University of Southampton. He models the Earth system in order to try to understand how it works and how humans interact with it. He joined the University of Southampton in 2011 based in the Agents, Interaction and Complexity group within Electronics and Computer Science, then transferred to Geography & Environment in August 2014. His previous job at the Max Planck Institute for Biogeochemistry was centred around the Helmholtz Alliance project Planetary Evolution and Life that was coordinated by the German Aerospace Agency. James is still a member of the NASA Astrobiology Focus Group Thermodynamics, Disequilibrium and Evolution.
More recently he has become interested in how a particular species is affecting the Earth and what that may mean for life now and in the future. Anthropogenic Climate Change has become something of a cause célèbre but other impacts that Homo sapiens are having on the Earth system are arguably as profound and long lasting.
James is a Co-Chair of Sustainability Science Southampton which is an internationally recognised centre of interdisciplinary research excellence advancing the understanding of sustainability science towards alleviating some of society's global dilemmas.
Professor Chris Spray MBE, FRSA holds the Chair of Water Science and Policy at the Centre for Water Law, Policy & Science under the auspices of UNESCO at the University of Dundee. He also has a Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) Knowledge Exchange Research Fellowship with Welsh Government 2015/2016.
Before joining the university in 2009, he had over 20 years of practical experience of integrated water resource management from a number of distinct perspectives - including regulation and policy (Director of Environmental Science for the Scottish Environment Protection Agency); river basin management and planning (Chair of Tweed River Basin Management Planning Area Advisory Group); wetland ecosystem services (co-author of the UK National Ecosystem Assessment chapter on water and wetlands); Ecosystem Approach delivery (project board for national Scottish Land Use Strategy pilot in the Borders); water science and catchment restoration (Principal Investigator for the Eddleston Water Restoration project, and a series of other catchment projects); participatory environmental NGOs (Tweed Forum, RSPB director/trustee); and associated research, dissemination and advisory roles for governments (e.g. ACRE) and agencies (e.g. Scottish Natural Heritage board's Science Advisory Committee).