This #seminal#review paper summed up much of the thinking and research that I had been involved with for around a decade as a research scientist at the former Silsoe Research Institute at #Wrest Park Bedfordshire. (Wrest Park is a fabulous Stately home and was a gorgeous setting for UKs public sector agricultural engineering institute)
In many ways I remain an heir to that legacy with the remaining team members at Cranfield University. My work lies under Systems Modelling for Decisions -mostly under 1 and 2, but dipping into the rest
Day, W., Audsley, E., & Frost, A. R. (2008). An engineering approach to modelling, decision support and control for sustainable systems. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London B: Biological Sciences, 363(1491), 527–541. https://doi.org/10.1098/rstb.2007.2168Cite
Reputation is social mental construct that lives a very real existence entirely outside of you. It is the other person’s perception of another person’s perception of you. Essentially, it is social proof of trust in you. It can be influenced, it can be destroyed, but it can’t be explicitly created. It is slow to grow and readily damaged.
Reputation can inspire those around and motivate you to reach great fulfillment of self. Reputation precedes you and can make people far away defend your name as well as being a great marketing asset.
1a) What area of research do you want to be recognized for?
I want to be best known for research into the impact of better, novelty, innovation, and change on farmers’ decisions and #agricultural systems
2) to fully grasp the environmental burdens of decisions I develop agricultural system model-based Life-Cycle Assessments (LCA). These are quantitative hard-systems engineering approaches.
2) Do you want to be known as a specialist or a generalist?
Operational researchers are interdisciplinary generalists. I am a relative specialist with my core competence at the interface of #agriculture, decisions, and the environment. I can be flexible and already extend towards modelling connections out to waste water treatment and renewable energy systems
3) Which academics around the world do you admire and why?
Ian Frommer (@or4green) came to my attention several years ago as a prolific blogger and tweeter of Operational research for Green. Ian Frommer is an Associate Professor of Mathematics at the U.S. Coast Guard Academy* in New London, CT with interests in energy and the environment. I admire Ian for bringing the area of #Operational Research and the Environment to greater prominence on social media
I first came to read Stafford Beer‘s works in the 1990s and gained many of my formative influences as an Operational Researcher. I liked that he was a good communicator, a conceptual thinker on management cybernetics, and a of bit left field character
Eric Audsley I admire for his thought leadership in my field in the UK and Europe, for his stewardship of the same and for the numerous models and programs of his that I use. He has been my line manager and or project manager since October1996 at the former Silsoe Research institute
Andres Weintraub (left) a Professor in the department of industrial engineering in the University of Chile and Carlos Romero (right) a professor of economics at the Technical University of Madrid I first met at The Euro Summer School on Operational Research in Agriculture and #Forestry management in 2009 in Lleida and Solsona, Spain. I admire both for their career long prestige and international stewardship of my field, best embodied as two of the four editors of The Handbook of Operations Research in Natural Resources
I admire Richard Dawkins fierce integrity in challenging society’s preciously held eternal truths and his broad spectrum skills at communication of science via many different media
Christopher Ryan, PhD really impressed me by having an idea that changes the way we can see the world. I was impressed that he wrote it up as a New York Times bestseller and presented it a TED conference. His academic and communication skills are impressive and as is his fearlessness in confronting taboos, norms and beliefs with science.
Brian Camm, David Morris, and Bill Dilke from Seale Hayne College and Paul Webster and Nigel Williams from Wye College all helped inspire and teach me quantitative approaches to farm planning and control. A big shout out goes to Professor Jim France and Dr Les Compton for their stewardship of Agricultural Research Modellers Group
What are my take outs for top role model traits: Thought & opinion leadership, stewardship, communication skills, advocacy, perseverance, honesty, integrity, & trustworthiness.
What doesn’t take prominence: I know nothing of their private wealth nor if they wield political power. I am more aware of their intellectual achievements, but I can’t often say that they are directly useful to me. The later point is a bit like Antarctica…it feels good to know it exists, but I’ve never been there.
What matters here is that reputation is a natural outgrowth of one’s self and one that is easily damaged if you are caught faking it. Trust is fragile and social proof of trust can turn against you.
4) What key activities do you want to do that define who you want to be?
a) Research: Applied agricultural systems decision modelling
b) Communication: Written, oral and digital channels to peers, clients, industry & public
c) Leadership: Contribute ideas and coordinate networks
d (a) Educator & Trainer
d (b) Life long learner
5) What is your publication strategy?
Number of papers to date?
Number of papers you want?
1? Journal of the Operational Research Society
0.91 2013/2014 journal impact factor – Kudos and contribution to my profession
9) What items of esteem/ activity do you NOT value?
None of these are bad per se, but one needs to carefully balance costs with benefits.
Excessive membership of Professional societies
Excessive refereeing of papers and grant proposals
Onerous conference/ session organization
10) What is your dissemination strategy?
The outcomes of my work tend to best inform the thinking of scientists, engineers, the policy community, and the more progressive innovative section of the farming community. The dissemination ‘ecosystem’ is in a state of flux with the advent of open access journals and digital & social media bringing everything to within a Google mouse click. The trend maybe away from print to digital, but face to face is important. Being out there is good, being found above the white noise is better.
This paper cites work that I did for the Climsave project on using the Silsoe Whole Farm Model linear programme to predict future landuse under climate change in the EU 27 see for the background to the project