You are here

Dr Ian Dawson

Dr Ian Dawson

Ian Dawson

Scotland’s Rural College
W Mains Rd


I have been engaged in projects in over 20 tropical or sub-tropical countries and maintain a strong global peer network for research and results application. Part of my work at SRUC is to contribute to its globally-facing agenda through promoting international collaborations. Before working for SRUC, I was based with work in Kenya for 6 years..

My research interests within SRUC centre on the processes involved in crop domestication, covering a broad spectrum of crops from major staples to orphan crops, and entirely new crops undergoing domestication for the first time. I am interested in applying lessons from one category of crops to another, along this domestication continuum.

Although my interests in crop domestication are mostly to do with genetic (production) aspects, over time I've become increasingly involved in work that puts domestication in a broader context. This work involves understanding how to 'mainstream' crops in different food system contexts, where both supply-side and demand-side interventions are taken into account.

In my work with CIFOR-ICRAF, I research crop domestication, as above (for nutritious orphan tree crops), and work on wider tree genetic issues. A focus of this last work currently is in developing guidelines, decision-support tools and 'seed systems' to support massive global forest landscape restoration targets that are held back by the lack of tree planting material (and knowing how and where to use it). Increasingly, work at CIFOR-ICRAF has also embraced broader biodiversity management issues.

I am also interested in informing research strategy and policy development for agriculture