Consortium > CU

National Soil Resources Institute, Cranfield University

Organization short name: CU
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Description of the organization

The National Soil Resources Institute is part of the School of Applied Sciences, Cranfield University. It was established in 2001 to provide a single national centre for research, teaching and consultancy on all aspects of soil and land resources and their sustainable management, both in the UK and internationally. It is the UK National Reference Centre for Soils. It has a staff of approx. 40 including five professorships.

Expertise and experience of the organization

Soil chemistry, physics, biology, information technology, geographical information management, environmental modelling and agricultural engineering. The Institute incorporates the former Soil Survey of England and Wales, and holds and manages national soil resource inventories for England and Wales.

Selected reference projects

  • ENVASSO. Environmental Assessment of Soil for Monitoring. EU FP6 Project Coordinated by Prof. M Kibblewhite of NSRI.
  • The design of a soil monitoring scheme for the UK. Funded by Environment Agency
  • An improved empirical model of soil carbon dynamics in temperate ecosystems. Funded by NERC
  • Towards a general method to 'scale up' process models in the arable landsacpe. Collaboration with Bioinformatics & Biomathematics Division, Rothamsted Research. Funded by BBSRC
  • Modelling integrative behaviour of soil-plant systems: plant uptake of strongly-sorbed solutes. Collaboration with Mathematical Institute, Univ. Oxford, and Univ. Wales Bangor. Funded by BBSRC
  • Calcium carbonate formation in soils. Collaboration with British Geological Survey. Funded by NERC/BGS

Key scientific / technical personnel

Prof. Guy Kirk is a soil scientist with interests in biogeochemistry, mathematical modelling, and environmental change. He is Head of the Soil Systems Group which researches physical, chemical and biological processes in soils and how to model soil systems at different scales.
Pat Bellamy is a statistician with 30 years experience in applications of statistics in environmental research. Her research is concerned with analysis of spatial and temporal data using geostatistical techniques, design of monitoring schemes and application of robust and traditional statistics to soil data.

Responsibilities in CARBO-Extreme

  • Long Term Carbon Measurements and Climate (WP3)

Selected recent relevant publications

Lark RM, Bellamy PB, Kirk, GJD, Baseline values and change in the soil, and implications for monitoring. European Journal of Soil Science 57, 916–921, 2006. link to publisher

Lark RM, Bellamy PH, Rawlins B, Spatio-temporal variability of some metal concentrations in the soil of eastern England, and implications for soil monitoring Geoderma 133, 363-379, 2006. link to publisher

Darrah PR, Jones DL, Kirk GJD, Roose, T, Modelling the rhizosphere: a review of methods for ‘upscaling’ to the whole-plant scale. European Journal of Soil Science 57(1), 13–25, 2006. link to publisher

Bellamy PH, Loveland PJ, Bradley RI, Lark RM, Kirk GJD, Carbon losses from all soils across England and Wales 1978–2003. Nature 437, 245–248, 2005. link to publisher

Kirk GJD, The Biogeochemistry of Submerged Soils. Wiley, Chichester, 2004.