Science for Sustainability Hub

SDG 13: Climate Action

Technologies for a healthy planet

Name Area of research Description
Mohit Arora

circular economy

urban sustainability

low carbon construction

engineering for development

Interested in the current state of resource efficiency in urban systems and industries, and develops technological and policy interventions for a low carbon future. Mohit has worked with several cities to improve their materials management towards a more circular economy. In low and middle income countries, he is focusing on engineering driven solutions to achieve low carbon development solutions for buildings and construction sector.
Benjamin Bach

data visualization

data science

public engagement

Working on data visualization and making data accessible and understandable by experts and non-experts. Data visualization is essential in understanding complex processes and data sets. Especially, techniques from storytelling and visual communication have huge potential to communicate findings and information to large and diverse audiences. 
Liz Baggs

climate smart technologies

agritechnology

environmental change

Development of mitigation strategies for greenhouse gas emissions from agri-environment systems. This includes international partnerships, and with non-academic stakeholders, to enhance a circular nutrient economy that lowers reliance on inorganic fertilisers in smallholder farming systems. 
Christopher Beckett

sustainable construction

thermal performance

housing resilience

Engineering behaviour of earth building materials and structures, aiming to improve their durability and design.
Nicholle Bell

environmental adaptation

natural capital

technologies for environmental monitoring

Applying advanced analytical technologies  to understanding how peatlands, Earth's largest terrestrial carbon store, adapt to human activities and climate change. Many believe peatlands store carbon due to the antimicrobial properties of certain molecules, however until now our ability to 'see' inside peat has been hindered by the fact that peat is the most complex mixture on Earth.
Jenny Britton

climate change transformation

organisational behaviour

organisational change

Work on Executive Education, particularly with B-CCaS which provides a focal point for our efforts in supporting businesses adopt new practices.
Julio Bros-Williamson

digital twins & living labs

climate change resilience

healthy buildings

Interested in low embodied carbon materials and techniques in the built environment, energy-efficient technological solutions for the refurbishment of existing buildings, and climate change adaptation and resilience of buildings by developing solutions and low carbon building services.
Efthalia Chatzisymeon

environmental engineering

water and wastewater treatment

environmental sustainability

Development of sustainable technologies for water and wastewater treatment; life cycle assessment of environmental processes and technologies.
Christine Cooper

green washing

policy making

abuses of power

Interested in accounting technologies and how these strongly impact upon the majority of decisions made in organisations and government.
Maria Grazia De Angelis

environmental protection

biomedical applications

clean energy

sustainable materials

Membranes for greenhouse gas emission reduction, sustainable materials for packaging and other applications, and development of low water, accessible and inclusive  hemodialysis processes.
Simone Dimartino

bioprocessing

adsorption technologies

additive manufacturing

Broadly interested in adsorption technologies for applications ranging from manufacture of new healthcare products and foodstuff to CO2 capture.
Appolinaire Djikeng

tropical livestock

genetic improvement

smallholder farmers  

Director of the Centre for Tropical Livestock Genetics and Health (CTLGH). https://www.ctlgh.org/resources/publications/
Alan Duncan

pastoral livelihoods

livestock systems

climate uncertainty

Leads the Jameel Observatory for Food Security Early Action for University of Edinburgh. The Observatory is focused use of early warning technologies to better prepare for drought in East Africa. It's goals are to enhance wellbeing and reduce hunger among East African pastoral communities.
Katherine Dunn

electrosynbionics

bionanotechnology

renewable energy

Research on electrosynbionics, which involves the development of devices that use biological or bio-inspired components to generate, use or store electricity. This includes biophotovoltaics and biobatteries.
Victor Elvira

AI

statistics

signal processing

Interested in time-series, Bayesian modeling, and statistical methods for inference/prediction. Most of the tools I develop can be directly applied in problems relevant to sustainability.
Daniel Friedrich

renewable energy

heating and cooling

data-driven engineering

Develop and apply mathematical methods to practical problems in energy system design and optimisation, in particulat for decarbonising thermal energy systems.
Raja Ganeshram
environmental adaptation Most of current reaserach is on Arctic climate change through NERC's Changing Arctic Ocean  programme. specifically looking at biogeochemical and ecological impact of Arctic Climate change.
Jennifer Garden

sustainable polymers

catalysis

materials

Focus on improving the sustainability of plastics across their lifecycle. We approach this by making materials from renewable resources (e.g. plants and CO2), improving the efficiency of production processes (by making new catalysts) and investigating opportunities to improve recycling technologies.
Ross Grassie

quantum

AI

sustainability

Interested in the potential of quantum computing to address sustainability challenges.
Aliakbar Hassanpouryouzband

sustainable chemistry

renewable energy

thermodynamics

Development of tools to enable hydrogen as a low-cabon energy pathway, and the use of sustainable chemistry technologies such as climate engineering, water desalination, gas storage, cold energy storage, etc.
Sian Henley

ocean science

polar regions

ocean governance

Focussed on making ocean science more sustainable and employing science to make human use of our fragile oceans more sustainable. Also interested in ocean science and observations to underpin effective evidence-based decision-making for ocean governance, policy and management to protect and restore them.
Lea-Anne Henry

science and policy

renewable energy

environmental adaptation

Work centred on engaging with multiple stakeholders to develop the evidence base needed to implement and build better policies around oceans and marine ecosystems. I have strong links with the fisheries, tourism, oil and gas, and renewables sectors around the Atlantic. I engage with government agencies and international conventions with the aim of co-producing the evidence we need about the impacts of our activities and climate change to ensure marine policies are truly leading us on a path toward a more sustainable future.
Claire Hobday

energy

decarbonising heating and cooling

Tackling issues of heating and cooling through understanding and developing solid-state refrigerant materials. We do this by analysing the structure of materials via diffraction and computational methods and understanding how the refrigerant properties are altered.
Alex Hutchison

data & AI for good

climate change

responsible innovation

The Data for Children Collaborative with UNICEF is a joint partnership between UNICEF, The Scottish Government and the University of Edinburgh’s Data Driven Innovation Programme which seeks to enable improvement in outcomes for every child. We draw on the strengths of our partners and their network to bring insight and solve problems using data and responsible innovative data practices, with a focus on delivering against the Sustainable Development Goals. Our mission is to provide the platform that brings together the appropriate data and expertise to answer our challenge questions for children across a variety of themes and geographies.
Susan Jarvis 

sustainable Food systems

agritech

animal welfare science

I work in the area of Sustainable Food Systems, and in particular the role of animal welfare science to ensure sustainable and socially acceptable food production systems.  In regard to teaching I lead the delivery of undergraduate programmes and courses in Global Agriculture and Food Security.  I also lead the DDI Agritech Talent programme at Easter Bush Campus which is aimed at upskilling learners in data science and technology relevant to sustainable food systems.  
Emily Johnston

biotechnology

microbial cell factories

synthetic biology

Development of yeast cell factories for the production of plant triterpenoid compounds. These compounds have huge potential in many industries; for example as surfactants in cleaning products, as vaccine adjuvants and anti-inflammatories in therapeutics, and as gelling agents and foam stabilisers in food products. Some compounds provide novel functionalities (SDG 3 and 9), while others are bio-based alternatives to petrochemical-derived chemicals (SGD 12 and 13).
Joe Kennedy

sustainable food systems

 AI

chronic disease

My research runs simulations to assess the health and environmental impact of shifting diets, particularly focused on red and processed meat consumption in the US. I'm interested in utilising novel machine learning methods in such simulations to boost their performance as well as integrate new datasets to assess a broader array of questions involving land use change and biodiversity impacts. Also involved in a project aiming to assess the impact on biodiversity from organic vs non-organic agriculture.      
Ruth King

ecology

statistics/AI

conservation

Expertise in statistical ecology, and in particular developing new statistical tools and associated model-fitting tools to analyse different types of ecological data. The aim is to improve our understanding of the given ecosystem which in turn may aid, for example, conservation management.
Marc Krautzberger

renewable energy

technological solutions to manage the nexus between climate change and poverty

social science and policy

Interested in how policymakers and firms manage competing demands (e.g. economic vs. environmental goals) in the process of developing and providing technological solutions in response to societal challenges.
Wei Li

environmental remediation

greenhouse gas removal

clean air

net zero

Development of low energy solutions for multiple greenhouse gases removal at the climatically relevant scale to enable a transition to a net greenhouse gas neutral future. 
John McCloskey

risk

co-production

urbanisation

We run the GCRF Tomorrow's Cities Hub which aims to reduce disaster risk for the 2 billion new urban residents of tomorrow's rapidly expanding cities. We use interdisciplinary methods to understand risk and tools for risk assessment that can democratise the concept of risk and allow poor communities to argue for safer and more human future urban expansion.
Encarni Medina-Lopez

satellite data for coastal environmental applications

renewable energy

artificial intelligence

Expertise in water and energy and how these two interact in the natural environment. My research focuses on the development of tools to improve the monitoring of coasts and oceans using remote sensing and artificial intelligence. 
Dimitri Mignard

water-energy-food nexus

agritechnology

desalination

Technologies for irrigation, desalination and energy access, assisting with access to clean water, food production and reforestation, all using clean energy, and dedicated to serve poor communities in low income countries. 
Dominic Moran
environmental, agricultural and food systems economics
Interested in definitions and metrics of sustainability, economic appraisal of technological options using non-market valuation, and behavioral and political appraisal of technology adoption. 
Bart Pander autotrophic biotechnology bussiness Interested in non-photosynthetic autotrophic microbiology and biotechnology.
Symon Podilchak 

AI

sensors

engineering 

Working on a UoE spinout which deals with AI and RF solutions for recycling.
Pedro Rangel de Faria

synthetic biology

plastic recycling

biochemitry

Developing a biosynthetic pathway that allows the bacterium Escherichia coli to use monomers derived from PET plastics as precursors to more useful compounds, with more value added, allowing for a more sustainable and circular economy.
Björn Ross

AI

social sciences & policy

Interested in responsible use of the technologies and resilience to nefarious uses. Particular focus in people's interactions with one another over technology and people's interactions with technology, using computational methods. This includes, for example, the automatic flagging of abusive social media content and the reduction of bias in AI methods that evaluate user-generated content online.
Michael Rovatsos
AI and its application to sustainability
Focus on AI algorithms that can support the development of technologies supporting fairness, equality, and social justice. As part of my role at the intersection of research and innovation, I am also interested in many other areas of sustainability where AI and data science can be applied.
Rosa Santomartino

space microbiology

astrobiology

space biomanufacturing

Building a sustainable future for space exploration, by developing microbial biotechnologies which will implement circular economy for life support systems. 
Giulio Santori
negative emission technologies, energy 
Development of negative-emission engineering devices
Matthew Staitis

geology

palaeoclimatology

climate science

Interested in the study of past climates (palaeoclimatology) to inform us of the consequences we face under different scenarios and highlights humanity's role as a geological force in shaping our climate future going forward.
Joyce Tait

life science innovation

policy and regulation

responsible innovation

Focus on genetic technology solutions to challenges relevant to Net Zero and biodiversity policy objectives, considering: development of business models and value chains for innovative technologies; regulatory systems, standards and guidelines and how they can support of constrain innovation. 
Camilla Thomson

renewable energy

environmental impact

energy systems

Developing analytical tools for better evaluating the environmental impacts of energy systems and technologies. This aims to inform the rapid transition to low-carbon energy systems and support sustainable development. This is achieved by both evaluating emerging technologies, and exploring how they can be best combined and developed to produce energy systems that are secure, equitable, economically viable, environmentally sustainable and socially acceptable.
Shuo Wang

green financing

greenwashing

CSR disclosure

Impact of corporate ESG performance on the cost of capital;  he causes and consequences of the assurance quality of the corporate ESG disclosure; greenwashing and its capital market consequences.