Rothamsted Research

where knowledge grows

Corporate Information

Rothamsted Research Limited is an independent charitable company, limited by guarantee and governed by a Board of non-executive Trustee Directors.

The Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) and Lawes Agricultural Trust (LAT), as our largest funder and our landowner respectively, each nominate one Trustee. The Chair is jointly nominated by BBSRC and LAT. All Board vacancies are advertised in the national press; the positions are renewable, four year appointments and are unremunerated; we welcome enquiries from interested candidates at any time. The Institute is very grateful to all who freely give up their time for its benefit. Details of the current Board members are available at: www.rothamsted.ac.uk. The Chief Executive of Rothamsted Research is the Institute Director who reports to the Board Chair and is in attendance at Board meetings along with the Associate Directors.

  1. A Charity recognised by the Charities Commission (of England and Wales), Charity number 802038
  2. A Company Limited by Guarantee registered as a company in England and Wales registration number 2393175

Information on Rothamsted Research can be found on the Charity Commission website

It's registered address is
Rothamsted
Harpenden
Hertfordshire AL5 2JQ
United Kingdom

Funding

Rothamsted Research's is primarily funded by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) and also receives funding from other Government bodies, Levy Boards and Industry.

The breadth of funding serves the range of activities undertaken by the Institute and contributes to its strength across the spectrum of users and beneficiaries represented by the BBSRC. The financial regimes become more complex as wider funding sources are utilised, partnerships become increasingly multifaceted and intellectual property management receives greater attention. However, we believe that careful attention to diverse opportunities and enthusiasm to engage with new customers ensures that the UK captures value from its investment in a high quality science base.

Government/Public Sector funders include:

Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC)
Department of the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra)
Department for International Development (DfID)
Department for Business Innovation and Skills (BIS)
Natural Environment Research Council (NERC)

Levy Boards funders include:

Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board
Horticulture Development Council
British Potato Council
British Beet Research Organisation

We also have a number of individual projects funded by  industrial partners including a major strategic scientific partnership with Syngenta

Managers and Governance

Rothamsted Research is headed by a Director with support from the Institute Management Committee, in addition to the Lawes Agricultural Trust and Rothamsted Research Board of Directors.

Institute Director

Achim Dobermann

Institute Management Committee

  • Achim Dobermann (Chair)
  • Johnathan Napier
  • John Crawford
  • Laura Smillie
  • Donna Lipsky
  • Florentin Albu

Lawes Agricultural Trust Company Limited Board of Directors

  • Lord De Ramsey DL (Chairman)
  • Professor Sir David Baulcombe FRS
  • Lord Curry of Kirkharle
  • Lord Cameron of Dillington DL, FRICS
  • Professor E C Cocking DSc, FRS
  • Lord Haskins of Skidby
  • Professor Sir Gordon Conway

Rothamsted Research Board of Directors

Richard Bardgett

Richard Bardgett graduated from the University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne in 1987 with an Honours degree in Soil and Land Resource Science, and then moved to Lancaster University where he gained his PhD in 1991. Afterwards, he held posts at the Institute of Grassland and Environmental Research and Manchester University, before returning to Lancaster University where he is now Professor of Ecology. His primary research interest is the study of plant-soil relationships in the context of nutrient cycling and plant community dynamics in natural and managed ecosystems. He has published many papers on this topic and three books, including the recently (2010) published 'Aboveground-Belowground Linkages: Biotic Interactions, Ecosystem Processes, and Global Change". Richard is Editor of Journal of Ecology and serves on the Editorial Boards of Ecology Letters and Ecosystems. He is Vice President of the British Ecological Society, Chair of BBSRC's Committee B, and a member of the Netherlands Institute of Ecology Scientific Advisory Board. Richard is a Highly Cited Scientist in the area of Environment/Ecology, an honorary Fellow of the Royal Society of New Zealand, and Fellow of the Society of Biology.

Professor Sir David Baulcombe

After his PhD, Dr. Baulcombe spent the following three years as a post-doctoral fellow in North America, first at McGill University (Montreal, Canada) from January 1977 to November 1978, and then at the University of Georgia (Athens, Georgia, USA) until December 1980. Dr. Baulcombe returned to the United Kingdom, where he joined the Plant Breeding Institute (PBI) in Cambridge and started his career as an independent scientist. At the PBI, Dr. Baulcombe initially held the position of Higher Scientific Officer, and was promoted to Principal Scientific Officer in April 1986. In August 1988 Dr. Baulcombe left Cambridge for Norwich. He joined the Sainsbury Laboratory as a Senior Research Scientist, and also served as Head of Laboratory between 1990–1993 and 1999-2003. In 1998 he was appointed Honorary Professor at the University of East Anglia, and given a full professorship there in 2002. In March 2007 it was announced that Prof. Baulcombe would become the next Professor of Botany at Cambridge University as a Royal Society Research Professor, taking up his post in September 2007. He serves on several committees and study sections, was elected Member of the European Molecular Biology Organisation in 1997 and was president of the International Society of Plant Molecular Biology 2003-2004.

In June 2009, Professor Baulcombe was awarded a knighthood by Queen Elizabeth II. Sir David resides in Norwich. He is married and has four children. His interests include music, sailing and hill walking.

Sir David Baulcombe's research interests and contributions to science are mainly in the fields of virus movement, genetic regulation, disease resistance, and gene silencing.

With Andrew Hamilton he discovered the small interfering RNA that is the specificity determinant in RNA-mediated gene silencing. Professor Baulcombe's group demonstrated that while viruses can induce gene silencing, some viruses encode proteins that suppress gene silencing. After these initial observations in plants, many laboratories around the world searched for the occurrence of this phenomenon in other organisms. In 1998 Craig Mello and Andrew Fire reported a potent gene silencing effect after injecting double stranded RNA into Caenorhabditis elegans. This discovery was particularly notable because it represented the first identification of the causative agent for the phenomenon. With other members of his research group at the Sainsbury Laboratory, Professor Baulcombe also helped unravel the importance of small interfering RNA in epigenetics and in defence against viruses.

Charles Godfray

Charles Godfray is Hope Professor of Zoology (Entomology) at Oxford University and Director of the Oxford Martin Programme on the Future of Food.  He read Zoology at Oxford and then studied for a PhD at Imperial College in community ecology. He remained at Imperial as a post doc until 1985 (including a six-month spell working on a biological control project in South-east Asia) when he returned to the Zoology Department at Oxford as Demonstrator in Ecology. In 1987 he went back to Imperial as a lecturer, and remained there until 2006, throughout based on the Silwood Park Campus. From 1999 he was Director of the NERC Centre for Population Biology and from 2004 Head of the Division of Biology. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 2001 and was made a CBE in 2011. He has been President of the British Ecological Society; a Trustee of the Royal Botanic Gardens Kew, and Chair of the Lead Expert Group of the Foresight Food and Farming Project.  Currently he is a visiting Professor at Imperial College, London; an Honorary Research Fellow at the Natural History Museum, London; a member of NERC Council; and Chair of the Defra’s Pollinator Expert Advisory Group.

Paul Leonard

After graduating in Zoology from Bristol University, Paul Leonard moved to London University's Imperial College, where he was awarded an MSc in Applied Entomology. Following his studies, he joined Dow Chemical, where he worked as an agricultural entomologist for nearly ten years. During this time, he was deeply involved in establishing the global Insecticide Resistance Action Committee, which he chaired for three years. In 1994, he moved to American Cyanamid, where he was appointed European Insecticide Technical Manager, during which time he had regular contact with Rothamsted Research. In 1999, he was appointed Director Regulatory Affairs. American Cyanamid was purchased by BASF In 2000, after which he established an "Alliance Management" function to outsource regulatory and scientific work. In 2004 he was awarded an MBA by the Open University Business School. In 1997 he transferred to BASF's Communications and Government Relations, based on Brussels, where he is now Head of Technology and Innovation policy. In this capacity he is in regular contact with stakeholders, including the European institutions, non-governmental organisations and trade associations. He is on the board of the British Chamber of Commerce in Belgium, where he chairs the Food Security Safety and Sustainability Task Force.

Sally Smith

Sally Smith's career started in the city of London in risk management, risk financing and consulting with Marsh & McLennan, moving in the late 1990s into the consumer goods sector in Treasury. Since 2004 she has established and embedded global strategy, policy, programmes and performance across environmental sustainability, occupational health & safety, risk, compliance and governance, leading a global cross functional team of experts. Since starting a family in 2009 Sally has been leading the agenda on brand sustainability, sustainable packaging and long term sustainable sourcing. As an alumni of the United World College Sally went on to Warwick University and obtained an BA in Politics and International Relations and is currently studying for a Masters in Sustainability & Responsibility.

Professor Michael Winter

Michael is a rural policy specialist and a rural social scientist with particular interests in applying inter-disciplinary approaches to policy-relevant research and in direct engagement in the policy process.

Alongside his directorship of the CRPR he is also Director of the Food Security & Land Research Alliance (encompassing the universities of Bath, Bristol, Cardiff and Exeter, Rothamsted Research and Duchy College).

His current research focuses on the governance of sustainable agro-food systems and food security; the historical and contemporary sociology of west country agriculture; & farmer environmental attitudes and decision-making, particularly in the context of diffuse pollution and water quality. He leads Project 2 of Defra’s Sustainable Intensification Research Platform. 

He is a Visiting Programme Director in Food Security at Wilton Park (Foreign Office), a member of the governing board of Rothamsted Research, and chairs the Stakeholder Group for the Avon Demonstration Test Catchment. He is a former member of Defra’s Panel of Agricultural & Environmental Economists, the National Ecosystem Assessment Expert Panel, DEFRA’s Science Advisory Council and was a Commissioner for the Commission for Rural Communities from its inception in 2006 until its abolition in 2013. In 2000, he was a member of the Committee of Inquiry into Hunting with Dogs in England and Wales chaired by Lord Burns.

Russell Brooks

Russell Brooks graduated from Cambridge University with an Honours degree in Law. He began his legal career at the London based law firm, Lovell White Durrant (now Hogan Lovells), qualifying as a property lawyer. In 1998, he joined SmithKline Beecham (now GlaxoSmithKline) to provide general transactional, operations, and regulatory law support to their pharmaceutical, consumer and nutritional healthcare research & development units. In 2002, he also qualified as an Attorney and Counsellor At Law in the State of New York. He has held various posts within GlaxoSmithKline, including heading the legal team in Europe supporting world-wide business development transactions. He was a co-developer of the Lambert Toolkit for Collaborative Research and involved in the establishment of the Stevenage BioScience Catalyst, and the Tres Cantos Open Lab Foundation. He is currently Vice President, Head of Pharma R&D Legal Operations at GlaxoSmithKline.

Russell Brooks lives locally to Rothamsted Research and is an active member of the local community in Harpenden through scouting and sports coaching.

Alastair Leake

Dr Alastair Leake attained a BSc in Horticultural Science, specialising in biological crop protection, from Reading University. He joined the CWS (Co-Op) in 1982, working first as a management trainee and going on to become a Production Manager responsible for 12 acres of heated glasshouse salad crops. In 1993, he became Project Manager for “Focus on Farming Practice” at Stoughton, Leicestershire. This involved managing a series of farm scale rotations comparing organic farming with “conventional” farm practice. In 2001 Alastair joined the Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust as Head of the Allerton Project, a twenty year research project which aimed to look at the effects of farming on wildlife and the environment.

He later became Director of Policy where he provides the technical contribution necessary to convert the Trust’s science into practice. Whilst at the trust he has gained a PhD at Leicester University for his work on the economic performance, technical feasibility and environmental impact of organic, integrated and conventional farming systems. Alastair is an accomplished speaker and sits on several committees.

Alastair has published numerous papers through his career as well speaking and chairing sessions at international conventions. He has given evidence in person to both House of Commons and House of Lords Select Committee Enquiries and is a former member of the BBC’s Rural Affairs Advisory Committee. Alastair is the current Vice Chairman of the Government’s Independent Scientific Advisory Committee for Pesticides (ACP) and has recently been appointed as a Fellow of The Royal Agricultural Society of England.

Stuart Jarvis

Dr Stuart Jarvis is a Managing Director at BlackRock, the world’s largest asset management firm. At BlackRock, he leads the analytics team within Client Solutions in EMEA and is responsible for the development of analytical tools to support asset-liability modelling within BlackRock Solutions. He oversees the modelling work that supports pensions, insurance and other retail and institutional clients who seek assistance from BlackRock in their design of an investment strategy to meet their needs.

Dr Jarvis joined the firm in 2004, initially with Barclays Global Investors (BGI). At BGI, Dr. Jarvis was instrumental in the creation of the Liability Driven Investment business. He worked with a broad range of pension fund clients to help them better understand their liabilities and to implement strategies that reduced the risk embedded within these liabilities. He then led the research effort behind solutions and strategies created to meet a wide variety of investment problems, increasingly focusing on the development of strategic asset allocation and dynamic asset allocation strategies tailored to specific client requirements.

Prior to joining the firm, Dr Jarvis was a pensions consultant at Hewitt Bacon & Woodrow (now Aon Hewitt). Dr Jarvis is a Fellow of the Institute of Actuaries and from 2013-2014 was Chair of the Finance and Investment board at the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries. He has written several papers in peer-reviewed actuarial journals on the subject of stochastic modelling and asset allocation and has spoken at numerous conferences and colloquia around the world on these topics.

Dr Jarvis earned an M.Math degree in mathematics from Cambridge University in 1991, DPhil degree in mathematics from Oxford University in 1994 and was a junior research fellow at Merton College, Oxford for three years.

Dr Oliver Doubleday

After working for a DPhil in the MRC Cell Mutation Unit at Sussex University, Dr. Doubleday worked at the Université libre de Bruxelles studying DNA repair and DNA polymerase fidelity.  He then returned to work on the family farm in Kent, growing cereals, apples, pears, cherries and keeping sheep.  With his Brazilian wife he is involved in the management of a rubber plantation and a sugar cane farm in Sao Paulo, Brazil.  He has also had experience of farming in the USA and New Zealand.

A former Chairman of National Farmers Union’s Parliamentary Land Use and Environment Committee he was a member of the UK Biodiversity Action Plan Steering Group, the Advisory Committee on Business and the Environment and the EU’s Consultative Forum on the Environment and Sustainable Development.   He has served as a director of the Brogdale Horticultural Trust (custodians of the National Fruit Collection), Silsoe Research Institute and Grainfarmers plc, and as vice chairman of the Apple & Pear Research Council and chairman of East Malling Research.

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Annual Report

Our Annual Report 2015 has been launched and can be found here

See Also