Hi I'm
Dr Lou Ralph

  • Position: Programme Leader Organic Farming
  • Location: Craibstone Campus
  • Expertise:
    • Agriculture, Crops and Soils
    • Climate, Environment and Wildlife

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I’ve had a lifelong interest in both the environment and farming. I studied agriculture to give me an understanding of how farming, as the UK’s main land use, not only produces our food but also interacts with the environment. Since then my further studies and work have been based around aspects of the environment and rural land use, with a focus on sustainability and organic farming. I’ve been the programme leader for SRUC’s Organic Farming MSc since 2011, although I first joined SAC (now part of SRUC) as a fairly lowly research assistant in 1993.

I try to pass on my passion for these subjects through my teaching and encourage students to think creatively and look for links between/within subject areas. I see education as a way of resolving conflicts in land use and I think it's important that students in the land-based sector have an understanding of wider land based issues outside their immediate sphere.

There are a lot of reports in the media on issues like climate change, carbon sequestration, food security, land use and different food production systems, and it's crucial to help people navigate some of the technicalities and the sometimes-conflicting information.

Land is my element. I enjoy birdwatching and being in the natural world, photographing interesting things that I see. I also enjoy cooking and experimenting with new recipes – where food comes from and how it is produced is important to me.

Areas of expertise and interests

  • Agriculture, Crops and Soils
  • Climate, Environment and Wildlife

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