Prof Christine Watson

Professor for Agricultural Systems
Soil Science and Systems
Crop and Soil Systems

Research interests 

My research focuses on nutrient management in agricultural systems and I have worked in a wide range of farming systems including arable, mixed farming, outdoor pig production and dairy systems as well as agroforestry. I work at a variety of scales from process based studies of nutrient fluxes associated with root turnover to crop rotation and farm scale nutrient budgets. I have recently been involved in estimating nitrogen fixation at the continental scale in the EU Legume Futures project. I am particularly interested in how we can apply interdisciplinary approaches to address global problems.

Selected research projects

  • FACCE JPI Climate Smart Agriculture: Climate Café (2014-2017)
  • Ekhaga Foundation: Healthy plants from healthy soils: Resilience and stability of organic cropping systems
  • ERANET CORE Organic Plus FertilCrop (2015-2018)
  • EU Legume Futures
  • Creative Scotland Nil by Mouth. A science/arts collaboration


I teach on the PGDip/MSc in Organic Farming by flexible learning.

PhD students

  • Marianne Kuntz (Aberdeen University)
  • Anastasia Fountouli (Aberdeen University)
  • Jonathan Kidd (Newcastle University)
  • Frances Ryan (Edinburgh University)
  • Raj Chongtham (SLU)
  • Moritz Reckling (SLU)
  • Tarirai Muoni (SLU)

Selected publications

  • Reckling, M., Bergkvist, G., Watson, C.A., Stoddard, F., Zander, P., Walker, R.L., Pristeri, A., Toncea, I. & Bachinger, J. (2016). Trade-offs between economic and environmental impacts of introducing legumes into cropping systems. Frontiers in Plant Science
  • Zander, P., Amjath-Babu, T.S., Preissel, S., Reckling, M., Bues, A., Schläfke, N., Kuhlman, T., Bachinger, J., Uthes, S., Murphy-Bokern, D., Stoddard, F. & Watson C.A. (2016) Can legume farming survive in Europe? A review on the drivers of its decline and the agro-economic challenges on its revival. Agronomy for Sustainable Development (DOI: 10.1007/s13593-016-0365-y)
  • Brooker, R.W., Bennett, A.E., Cong-W-F, Daniell, T.J., Georg, T.S., Hallett, P.D., Hawes, C., Iannetta, P.P.M., Jones, H.G., Karley, A.J., Li, L., McKenzie, B.M., Pakeman, R.J., Paterson, E., Schöb, C., Shen, J,, Squire, G., Watson, C.A., Zhang, C., Zhang, F., Zhang, J. & White, P.J. (2015) Improving intercropping: A synthesis of research in agronomy, plant physiology and ecology. New Phytologist 206, 107-117.
  • Storkey J, Döring, T., Baddeley, J., Collins, R., Roderick, S., Jones, H. & Watson, C.  (2015) Engineering a plant community to deliver multiple ecosystem services. Ecological Applications 25, 1034–1043.
  • Lindström, B.E.M, Frankow-Lindberg, B.E., Dahlin, A.S., Watson, C.A., & Wivstad, M. (2014). Effect of site and red clover proportion on micronutrient concentrations in forage mixtures. Field Crops Research 169, 99-106.

See all of Professor Christine Watson's publications.

Prof Christine Watson

Professor of Agricultural Systems / Team Leader - Soil Science & Systems

Address: Crop & Soils Systems, SRUC Aberdeen Campus, Craibstone Estate, Aberdeen AB21 9YA

Telephone: 01224 711 143

Fax: 01224 711 293