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Dr Mike Rivington

Dr Mike Rivington

Dr Mike Rivington

Mike Rivington

 +44 (0)344 928 5428

The James Hutton Institute
Aberdeen AB15 8QH
Scotland UK


Mark is a Land Use System Modeller at the James Hutton Institute. He joined the Institute in 1999, working on the Land Allocation Decision Support System (LADSS) project researching land management issues at the farm scale.  From this work his interests developed to follow interdisciplinary research covering social and biophysical sciences. His particular areas of interest are on climate change (from impacts, mitigation and adaptation perspectives) and sustainability, particularly considering the essential role of ecosystem services in enabling societal development. He is based in the Information and Comutational Science Group within the Institute.

Mike has an interdisciplinary research background that enables the integration of different disciplines to address complex socio-ecological system issues. He is currently working on a diverse reange of projects including:

  • Team leader, “Extreme weather and resilience of Scotland’s rural industries” and “Geospatial Risk Analysis”, integrating crop modelling, climate model uncertainty evaluation, downscaling, agro-meteorological indicators of vulnerability, threat and exposure. Projects include: Spatial cereal modelling: simulating barley for the whole of Scotland at the soil series + 5km weather resolution. Agro-meteorological Indicators: mapping multiple indicators. This work is funded by the Scottish Government's Rural and Environment Science and Analytical Services Division (RESAS) Environment, Agriculture and Food Strategic Research Portfolio to delivery information and evidence to support policy development.
  • Payment for Ecosystem Services project lead for ClimateXChange, developing PES definitions and evaluation of different mechanisms.
  • Integration Work Package lead on an ESPA (DfID, ESRC, NERC) ‘Alternative carbon investments in ecosystems for poverty alleviation’ (ALTER) project (, responsible for integrated social and biophysical sciences.
  • Developing sustainable crop production systems through the use of crop models to explore climate change and management impacts and options for adaptation.
  • Ecosystem Management, Ecosystem Services and Ecosystem Based Adaptation. Understanding complex socio-ecological systems for sustainability through ecosystem management. The role of biodiversity in ecosystem services, conservation and ecosystem restoration.
  • Inter-disciplinary research and the integration of science into policy and practical application; sustainable land management using land-use systems modelling.
  • Multi-scale Social Metabolism analytical frameworks – EU H2020 Moving Towards Adaptive Governance in Complexity: Informing Nexus Security (MAGIC) project considering the food-energy-water nexus.  

Leading Ideas

  • Rural Economy
  • Rural Businesses and Enterprise

Area of Strategic Research Programme

Further information the Scottish Government's Strategic Research Programme is available

  • Theme 2: Productive and sustainable land management and Rural Economies
  • 2.4 - Rural Industries
  • 2.4.1 Resilience of rural economies to key external drivers
  • 2.4.3 Environmental sustainability and circularity of the rural economy
  • Theme 1: Natural Assets
  • 1.4 - Integrated and Sustainable Management of Natural Assets
  • 1.4.2 Identifying and understanding multiple benefits and trade-offs