Scottish Alliance for Geoscience, Environment and Society

Prof. Paul van Gardingen

Department / group: School of Geosciences, Geography and the Lived Environment
Google Scholar URL: Not available

Research interests:

Science, Technology and Development Policy

Since 2006, a new research area has been expanding on the contribution of Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) to the social and economic development in Africa Recent contracts with DFID to support NEPAD’s Office of Science and Technology. This work has involved an analysis of the role of STI in the economies of developed and developing countries. This analysis is being used to form policies supporting STI in development by regional groupings (African Union and NEPAD), African nations (Rwanda) and development donors (DFID and the World Bank).

Global Challenges

(Including Climate Change, Food Security and Loss of Biodiversity)

There is increasing recognition that a range of global challenges will impact on development processes for both developing and developed countries over the next decades. The UK Government’s Chief Scientific Adviser, Professor John Beddington has highlighted these to promoted debate in both the research and policy communities. DFID’s 2009 White Paper (Building our common Future) capture some of the challenges, mainly, climate change, food security, water and conflict. This is an emerging research theme and my current activity is to engage a range of stakeholders in a process to start addressing the links between global challenges and development.

Sustainable Forest Management.

A significant research programme was developed as part of the DFID funded Indonesian Tropical Forestry Management Programme. This work has now developed into broader aspects of research supporting the development and evaluation of sustainable forest management in SE Asia.

Conservation of Biodiversity

As Chair of the Technical Group of DEFRA’s Darwin Initiative’s (DI) Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) Project, I have responsibility for the M&E process that aims to enhance the contribution of DI projects to the Conventional on Biological Diversity. This review process covers the experience gained from over 600 projects.

Career history:


-Professor of International Development, The University of Edinburgh (Personal Chair)

-Director: Edinburgh International Development Centre (EIDC)

Employment history

-Professor of International Development, The University of Edinburgh, August 2008 –

-Senior Lecturer, (Sustainable Development) The University of Edinburgh, 2003-2008.

-Lecturer (Crop Science), The University of Edinburgh, 1991-2003.

-Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, Post Doctoral Research Fellow, MAF Technology, Lincoln, New Zealand, November 1989 – July 1991.

-AFRC Post Doctoral Research Fellow, University of Edinburgh, November 1986 – October 1989.

Active research projects:

Not available

Recent publications:

Howe, C., Suich, H., van Gardingen, P., Rahman, A. and Mace, G.M., 2013. Elucidating the pathways between climate change, ecosystem services and poverty alleviation. Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability, 5(1), pp.102-107.

Msoffe, F.U., Kifugo, S.C., Said, M.Y., Neselle, M.O., Van Gardingen, P., Reid, R.S., Ogutu, J.O., Herero, M. and de Leeuw, J., 2011. Drivers and impacts of land-use change in the Maasai Steppe of northern Tanzania: an ecological, social and political analysis. Journal of Land Use Science, 6(4), pp.261-281.

Msoffe, F.U., Ogutu, J.O., Kaaya, J., Bedelian, C., Said, M.Y., Kifugo, S.C., Reid, R.S., Neselle, M., Van Gardingen, P. and Thirgood, S., 2010. Participatory wildlife surveys in communal lands: a case study from Simanjiro, Tanzania. African Journal of Ecology, 48(3), pp.727-735.

Valle, D., Staudhammer, C.L., Cropper, W.P. and Gardingen, P.R., 2009. The importance of multimodel projections to assess uncertainty in projections from simulation models. Ecological Applications, 19(7), pp.1680-1692.

Valle, D., Phillips, P., Vidal, E., Schulze, M., Grogan, J., Sales, M. and van Gardingen, P., 2007. Adaptation of a spatially explicit individual tree-based growth and yield model and long-term comparison between reduced-impact and conventional logging in eastern Amazonia, Brazil. Forest Ecology and Management, 243(2), pp.187-198.

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