SHOWCASE researchers participate at BES23 in Belfast

21 December 2023

Researchers Dr Amelia Hood and Dr Stuart Edwards from the University of Reading School of Agriculture presented their work within SHOWCASE at the British Ecological Society Annual Meeting 2023, held in Belfast. The event spanned over three days during which the researchers discussed the advantages and challenges of farmer-led research for designing farming interventions to enhance biodiversity and yield in addition to the benefits of citizen science for farmers, nature, and researchers.

Millie presented a poster on her reflections on the (dis)benefits of conducting farmer-led research (vs researcher-led research) to design and test novel farming interventions that could benefit both biodiversity and yield. She found farmer-led research to be a great way to build trust and community, exchange perspectives and knowledge, innovate, and create further research opportunities. At the same time, such research is costly in terms of time and expense. On balance, Millie found the process hugely rewarding and hopes the participants did too. She is looking forward to continuing to work with many of the participants through exit interviews and additional research projects that emerged during the co-design process.

Stuart focused on how incorporating farmers in citizen science projects can influence the perception of biodiversity and increase monitoring of under-recorded land. 

Their findings demonstrated the significance of farmer-led research and citizen science in enhancing biodiversity and yield within agricultural landscapes.