Latest Briefing

Potatoes (c) James Hutton Institute

How investment in fundamental scientific research leads to practical outcomes

The societal benefits of funding applied scientific research – research which addresses a question that is immediately and directly relevant to an end user such as a farmer or policy maker – are clear. It is nearly always relatively straightforward to identify practical outcomes that emerge from such projects, making them highly attractive to funding bodies and industrial collaborations, particularly at a time of financial constraint. However, these applied outcomes frequently rely upon and develop previous fundamental research programmes for which practical outcomes were not immediately or obviously apparent at the time. This article describes how Scottish Government (SG) investment in a number of fundamental scientific areas at Main Research Providers (MRP), through the Strategic Research Programme has underpinned research which is now yielding practical outcomes that are making a difference in Scotland and beyond.

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Published on 8 March 2016 in Food, health and wellbeing

Recent Briefings

Can Deer Management Help Control Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases?

The impact of reducing deer numbers by fencing or culling was shown to have an impact on tick abundance, this research showed. Read more

Published on 24 February 2014 in Sustainability and Communities , Food, health and wellbeing

Controlling Ticks by Treating Deer with Acaricides

This research used a mathematical modelling approach to explore whether treating deer with acaricide could, in theory, be an effective way of controlling ticks as an alternative to culling deer. Read more

Published on 21 February 2014 in Sustainability and Communities , Food, health and wellbeing

Peatland Restoration may aid the Ecosystem Service of Regulating Pests and Disease

This research looked at the impact on tick numbers when forestry was felled and the land restored to peatlands. Read more

Published on 19 February 2014 in Sustainability and Communities , Food, health and wellbeing

The Childbearing Years: A Teachable Moment for Weight Control?

The inter-pregnancy period may be a teachable moment when women are more receptive to guidance to achieve or maintain a healthy weight and thereby optimise pregnancy outcome in their second and subsequent pregnancies. Read more

Published on 6 February 2014 in Food, health and wellbeing

Biofuels from Cereal Straw

Sustainably produced second generation bio-fuels (and associated co-products) from cereal straw could lead to reduced greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, contribute to national energy security and lead to growth and jobs, particularly in the agricultural and renewable energies sector. Read more

Published on 29 January 2014 in Climate, water and energy

Breeding For Climate Change: Future-Proofing The Scottish Potato Industry

The ability to adapt potato to withstand multiple pest, pathogens and environmental stresses is critical to its future growth as a major food source. Read more

Published on 27 January 2014 in Sustainability and Communities , Climate, water and energy , Food, health and wellbeing

Mothers Matter: Identifying Best Practice Management for Pregnant Livestock

A new SRUC campaign launched its animal welfare experts on prenatal animal care . Read more

Published on 27 January 2014 in Food, health and wellbeing

Investigation Barriers to the Uptake of Nitrogen Use Efficiency in Scottish Agriculture

Nitrogen Use Efficiency (NUE) has been an explicit goal in agricultural policy for a number of decades. Read more

Published on 17 December 2013 in Climate, water and energy

Biodiversity, Ecosystem Services and Sustaining Food Production

A recent review has considered the role of biodiversity and biophysical processes in delivery of ecosystem services in Scotland. Read more

Published on 10 December 2013 in Ecosystems and biodiversity , Food, health and wellbeing

EPIC - The Scottish Government's Centre of Expertise on Animal Disease Outbreaks

The overarching purpose of EPIC is to provide access to high quality advice and analyses on the epidemiology and control of animal diseases that are important to Scotland and to best prepare for the next major disease incursion. Read more

Published on 17 October 2013 in Sustainability and Communities , Food, health and wellbeing

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