Meet the Soil Security Team...​

The Soil Security Programme brings together scientists from a range of specialist areas co-ordinated by the Geography and Environmental Science​ team at the University of Reading

Professor Chris Collins

Programme Coordinator

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Chris speaking at the SSA's "Economics of Soil" event

As Soil Security Programme coordinator Chris will lead, manage and coordinate activities within the programme. The Programme is aligned to the Global Food Security programme which is where the UK’s main public funders are working together to meet the challenge of providing the world’s growing population with a sustainable, secure supply of food using less land, with lower inputs. The Programme focuses on the ecosystem services provided by soil namely; food security, climate mitigation and water and nutrient cycling.

Chris will maximise the impact of the research within the programme by ensuring links with the wide range of ongoing or developing programmes across government and the research council. By close collaboration with the policy makers at Defra and the Welsh and Scottish Governments the findings of the research will provide evidence to support current and developing policy. Agricultural practitioners will also be co-opted into the programme so that improvements in production without negative impacts on the environment can be realised. Chris’s research focuses on the factors controlling the fate of pollutants.  His approach involves combining experimental and field data with models and he particularly enjoys working at the research/regulatory/commerce nexus.

Sharon Burton

Programme support

Sharon will be coordinating the Programme Support Office and will be the key point of contact for all members of the Soil Coordinator Programme. She will be supporting Chris Collins and the Programme Coordination team with the management of the Programme. 

his will also involve organising key events such as Annual Conferences and Project Board meetings whilst maintaining a good relationship with all Stakeholders.

Jessica Ponting

Knowledge Exchange

Jessica will be supporting the Programme through collation of information from the researchers into the knowledge database. Knowledge will be gained from workshops and meetings as well as from direct communication with the various stakeholders of the Programme.  She will then be reviewing the extent of current soil knowledge and mapping this to soil research capability across the UK.

Jessica studied Biology at Cardiff University and more recently a Masters in Environmental Management at the Reading University. She is a keen researcher in the environmental field and is looking forward to engaging across the Programme to provide an understanding of its full impact

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