Thursday, 4 July 2013

Strengthening links with the University of Nottingham

One of the great strengths of the Allerton Project is that our independence allows us to work with universities and other research organisations across the country.  This collaborative approach has served us well over the years, bringing a wide range of expertise to the equally wide range of rural issues we explore at and around Loddington.

Our links with the University of Nottingham are particularly strong as it is one of the closest universities to us, and has an excellent Geography Department and agricultural campus at Sutton Bonington.  For several years we have co-supervised PhD, MSc and undergrad students, delivered lectures on campus, and hosted field trips to Loddington and the nearby sites on which we work.  Student projects have included a social science study of farmers' 'environmental learning careers' through their involvement in Stewardship schemes, a landscape scale bird community study, and an assessment of infiltration rates associated with different land uses.  Topics covered in lectures include catchment management, land use and biodiversity, and West African agro-ecology.

It is a real privilege recently to have been made an Honorary Professor with the university and I look forward to building on our existing links to our mutual benefit.

Nottingham University student, Grant Thompson identifying invertebrates in the lab at Loddington as part of his work that will provide us with new information on the ecology of the farm, and him with an MSc.  Co-supervision between the university and ourselves combines high academic standards with practical experience and applied results. 

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