Prof Gareth Hughes

Gareth HugesProfessor of Plant Disease Epidemiology
Fellow of the Institute of Mathematics and its Applications; Chartered Mathematician

Joined SRUC in August 2010

Research Interests

  • Quantitative epidemiology of plant disease
  • Decision-making in crop protection
  • Applications of information theory to epidemiology

Selected Publications


Hughes, G. 2012. Applications of Information Theory to Epidemiology. APS Press, St Paul
Madden, L. V., Hughes, G. and van den Bosch, F. 2007. The Study of Plant Disease Epidemics. APS Press, St Paul

Recent chapters

McRoberts, N. and Hughes, G. 2014. Epidemiology simulation games. In: Exercises in Plant Disease Epidemiology (2nd ed.), Stevenson, K.L. and Jeger, M.J. (editors). APS Press, St Paul.
McRoberts, N. and Hughes, G. 2015. Information theory and decision making. In: The Plant Protection Data Tool Box, Beresford, R.M., Froud, K.J., Kean, J.M. and Worner, S.P. (editors). New Zealand Plant Protection Society. (Forthcoming)

Selected recent articles

McRoberts, N., Hall, C., Madden, L.V. and Hughes, G. 2011. Perceptions of disease risk: from social construction of subjective judgements to rational decision making. Phytopathology 101: 654-665. [PMID:21405993]
Bhattacharya, B. and Hughes, G. 2011. Symmetry of receiver operating characteristic curves and Kullback-Leibler divergences between the signal and noise populations. Journal of Mathematical Psychology 55: 365-367.
Walters, D.R., Avrova, A., Bingham, I.J., Burnett, F.J., Fountaine, J., Havis, N.D., Hoad, S.P., Hughes, G., Looseley, M., Oxley, S.J.P., Renwick, A., Topp, C.F.E., and Newton, A.C. 2012. Control of foliar diseases in barley: towards an integrated approach. European Journal of Plant Pathology 133, 33-73. [AGID:570715]
Topp, C.F.E., Wang, W., Cloy, J.M., Rees, R.M. and Hughes, G. 2013. Information properties of boundary line models for N2O emissions from agricultural soils. Entropy 15:972-987.
Hughes, G. and Bhattacharya, B. 2013. Symmetry properties of bi-Normal and bi-gamma receiver operating characteristic curves are described by Kullback-Leibler divergences. Entropy 15:1342-1356.
Hughes, G., Burnett, F.J. and Havis, N.D. 2013. Disease risk curves. Phytopathology 103:1108-1114. [PMID:23531177]
Hughes, G. 2014. Information graphs for epidemiological applications of the Kullback-Leibler divergence. Methods of Information in Medicine 52:IV-VI. [PMID:24407730]
Hughes, G. and McRoberts, N. 2014. The structure of diagnostic information. Australasian Plant Pathology 43:267-286. [Presented as a Keynote Address at the 19th Australasian Plant Pathology Conference, Auckland, New Zealand, November 25–28 2013]
Hughes, G., McRoberts, N. and Burnett, F.J. 2015. Information graphs for binary predictors. Phytopathology 105:9-17. [PMID:24983842]
Hughes, G. 2015. Youden’s index and the weight of evidence. Methods of Information in Medicine 54:198-199. [PMID:25658987]
Bhattacharya, B. and Hughes, G. 2015. On shape properties of the receiver operating characteristic curve. Statistics and Probability Letters 103: 73?79.


Hughes, G., and Burnett, F.J. 2015. Integrating experience, evidence and expertise in the crop protection decision process. To appear in Plant Disease.
Hughes, G. and Topp, C.F.E. 2015. Probabilistic forecasts: scoring rules and their decomposition and diagrammatic representation via Bregman divergences. To appear in Entropy.

Dr Gareth Hughes

Professor of Plant Disease Epidemiology

Address: Crop & Soils Systems, Scotland’s Rural College (SRUC), Peter Wilson Building, Kings Buildings, West Mains Road, Edinburgh EH9 3JG.

Telephone: 0131 535 4062

Fax: 0131 535 4144