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Prof. Adie Collins

Science Director

Net Zero and Resilient Farming

North Wyke, Okehampton, Devon, EX20 2SB
+44 (0) 1837 512 315
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Adie's research interests broadly encompass the sustainability and resilience of agriculture. They specifically include a number of themes: 1) characterising pollutant emissions to water and air; 2) the development and application of pollutant source tracing procedures; 3) understanding cross-sector water pollution at different scales and the development of screening tools for contextualising the role of agriculture in water quality problems; 4) the impacts of agricultural pollution on aquatic ecology; 5) measuring and modelling the efficacy of on-farm interventions for managing agricultural sustainability and resilience, and; 6) scenario-based evaluation of technically feasible mitigation impacts on multiple outcomes for policy support. His expertise includes hydro-chemical monitoring at multiple scales, integrating empirical and modelling approaches for scaling up, and pollutant source fingerprinting. Between 2009-2020, Adie was a national PI of the UK Demonstration Test Catchment (DTC) programme. He was assistant director of the landscape scale UK Sustainable Intensification Platform (SIP) between 2014-2017. His recent UK research council projects include DIVERSe, an UKRI-BBSRC project testing the impact of different vegetation treatments in riparian buffers on hydrology and water quality; an UKRI-NERC project developing real-time pesticide risk assessment tools, the UKRI-BBSRC-funded Institute Strategic Programme (ISP) at Rothamsted Research, Soil to Nutrition (2017-2023), in which Adie led the work package on optimising sustainable intensification of agriculture at multiple scales, and the current UKRI-BBSRC funded ISP on Resilient Farming Futures (2023-2028) of which Adie is overall PI.

Strategic Programme

  • Resilient Farming Futures
  • S2N - Soil to Nutrition

Science Projects

  • Global Nitrogen Innovation Centre for Clean Energy and Environment (NICCEE)
  • Development of the Woodland Water Code for the UK
  • Land Use for Net Zero Hub (LUNZ-Hub)
  • Co-benefits and trade-offs of on-farm interventions for water quality
  • Resilient Farming Futures
  • Blue and Green Biosphere
  • Greenhouse gas removal with UK agriculture and forestry via enhanced rock weathering
  • Water futures: mitigation in a changing environment

PhD Projects

  • Organic nutrients: defining risk and managing transfers at catchment scale
  • Farmer attitudes to on-farm interventions for water quality


  • 1995 - PhD in Hydrology, University of Exeter, UK
  • 1992 - BA (Hons) in Geography, University of Exeter, UK

Measures of Esteem

Member, Agriculture Advisory Group for the UK Climate Change Committee
President (2016-2020) of the International Commission on Continental Erosion (ICCE) of the International Association of Hydrological Sciences (IAHS)
Vice President (2012-2016) of the International Commission on Continental Erosion (ICCE) of the International Association of Hydrological Sciences (IAHS)
Member, UK Committee for the International Association of Hydrological Sciences (IAHS)
Member, European SedNet steering group
Member, National Science Advisory Panel, Salmon and Trout Association (formerly Salmon and Trout Association)
Co-recipient, Canadian Council of the Federation Excellence in Water Stewardship Award co-recipient in conjunction with the Southern Rockies Watershed Project (2014)
Co-recipient, Alberta Emerald Award in conjunction with the Southern Rockies Watershed Project (2014)