AgResearch scientist gains Professorship at Lincoln University

AgResearch Principal Scientist in the Land and Environment Science Group Richard McDowell

Science collaboration at Lincoln has been strengthened with the appointment of AgResearch Principal Scientist in the Land and Environment Science Group Richard McDowell as a Professor within the Faculty of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Lincoln University. The position is part-time (0.2 of a full time equivalent) with the balance of his work remaining with AgResearch.

The professorship is recognition of the quality of Professor McDowell’s research as well as an acknowledgement of his role in the development of the next generation of agricultural scientists.

“The new role is partly a continuation of what I have been doing for the past few years, and an extension to help further good land and water outcomes,” he says.

Professor McDowell, who is based at Invermay, has expertise in soil science and hydrology and currently leads freshwater research within AgResearch as the programme leader for the multi-organisational programme Clean Water Productive Land.

His research interest spans the investigation of water quality contaminants from source to sink, designing strategies to mitigate their impact and facilitating their uptake. He has a particular interest in managing and mitigating the impact of nutrients (especially phosphorus) on surface water quality and has published more than 300 journal articles, books and reports on this topic.

For many years he has been supervising Lincoln post-graduate students based at Invermay.

“A few years ago I recognised a lack of capability and opportunities for graduate students in our region,” he says.

“Giving newly graduated students the opportunity to work alongside successful teams in science organisations has proven to be a real advantage for them. The successful completion of post-graduate work in a supervised environment gives potential employers the reassurance that these young people are both capable and work ready.”

“The new professorship position with Lincoln University formally recognises the valuable work Professor McDowell is already engaged in for the University; such as supervising postgraduate students, and his involvement in a range of research collaborations,” says Dean of the Lincoln University Faulty of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Professor Bruce McKenzie.

“It’s great to be able to further solidify this working relationship to ensure a continuation of the benefits he brings to the Lincoln and AgResearch partnership.”

AgResearch Research Director Professor Warren McNabb agrees that this new role is not only a well-deserved recognition of Richard’s contribution to the agriculture industry but a further enhancement of the collaboration and research quality opportunities for both institutes.

“Bringing together capability across research and academic organisations allows for a more effective and collaborative approach to tackling science issues and better outcomes for the pastoral sector,” he says.

“Collaborations, such as this one, will grow as the establishment of the Lincoln Hub continues.”

Media contact:
Alex Fear, Senior Communications Advisor, AgResearch.
Tel: 07 834 6636 / 021 773 674
Email: alex.fear@agresearch.co.nz