Editorial Board

Dr. Felicity Crotty, PhD, Editorial Board GSBI BLOG

Institue of Biological, Enivronmental and Rural Sciences - Aberystwyth University, Wales, UK

Felicity is currently working as a postdoctoral researcher at Aberystwyth University; she is interested in investigating how soil quality affects soil biology, with a particular focus on soil invertebrates. It is not fully understood how above-ground management can affect below-ground ecosystems, and her work focuses on this question regarding how manipulation of management strategies can improve yield and quality of forage/grasslands in agriculture, whilst also maintaining a “healthy” soil. This builds on her previous post-doc (Dalhousie/Saskatchewan University, Canada) and PhD (Rothamsted Research - North Wyke, UK). Felicity's post-doc in Canada investigated the fungal feeding channel within the soil food web, culturing soil fauna and performing feeding preference tests, tracing consumption through enrichment with stable isotopes. Whilst her PhD investigated the path of C and N through the soil fauna focusing mainly on the bacterial feeding channel, tracing consumption of bacteria by in situ populations of soil fauna through enrichment with stable isotopes. Felicity has built up an array of invertebrate taxonomic skills including Acari, Collembola and Earthworms; as well as knowledge of immature Coleoptera and Diptera; and some Nematology. It is really important to her that soil biodiversity knowledge is in the forefront of people’s minds when considering our environment, as without the soil fauna the nutrient cycle would be impaired leading to reduced crop yields and potential increases in greenhouse gas emissions.

Dr. Mike Whitfield, PhD, Editorial Board GSBI BLOG

Botony Department, School of Natural Sciences - Trinity College, Ireland 

Mike is a postdoctoral Research Fellow at Trinity College, Dublin where he's working on modelling Ireland's agricultural greenhouse gas emissions, extrapolating them to the landscape scale to ultimately produce a predictive map.  He recently completed his PhD, which focused on measuring peatland plant and microbial diversity and ecosystem functions - carbon storage and greenhouse gas emissions - at the landscape scale, using geostatics and remote sensing to improve estimates of ecosystem carbon stocks.  In his spare time, he writes about his experiences as an early-career researcher here: mikewhitfield.co.uk.

Andre Franco, PhD Student, Editorial Board GSBI BLOG

Center for Nuclear Energy in Agriculture - University of Sao Paulo, Brazil

Andre is currently a doctorate student at the University of Sao Paulo in Piracicaba, Brazil.  He has investigated the effective environmental sustainability indicators of the land use changes resulting from sugarcane and other agroenergy crops, with a special focus on soil carbon dynamics and soil invertebrates biodiversity.  Franco states his main objectives of his research as promoting field measurements to track changes of these environmental sustainability indicators in the landscape scale, and to propose a way of integrating the different sustainability indicators.  You can read a bit more about Andre's research in his blog post here.