The University of Hertfordshire
A rising young UK University.
The Agricultural and Environment Research Unit (AERU) is based within the School of Life and Medical Sciences (LMS), UOH. Specialising in agri-environmental science and whole farm sustainability assessments, AERU's general objectives are to encourage sound environmental practices on farms and to enhance the reputation and competitiveness of agricultural and food industries across the UK, Europe and beyond.
Our main objective is to develop and test a Decision Support Tool that aims to help farmers identify the most ecologically sound and pragmatic solution for implementing farm management practices (FMPs) on their farm. The development of user-friendly software forms a core part of AERU’s experience including projects for Defra, the RSPB and the European Commission. The DST will be underpinned by metrics developed as part of the WP that will identify the impact of FMPs on biodiversity and related ES, and applying data collected as part of a farmer and citizen science based monitoring approach that will also be developed. AERU has experience in the development of metrics and indicators in both an environmental and ecological context (for example the JRC Ecological Focus Area Calculator). The DST will provide an estimate of how each choice made contributes to improved farm environmental performance and enhanced ES, for inclusion within the toolbox of agro-ecological management interventions. AERU has experience in agricultural systems and management through several years of undertaking agricultural and horticultural life-cycle assessments.