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Passing of Dr Jill Crossman OUCE (2010-2017)

Co-Director of the NERC Macronutrients Programme – Oxford Directorate

I’m writing today to share some very sad news. As some of you already have heard, our friend and colleague Dr Jill Crossman passed away suddenly and far too young on last Saturday, September 11.

Jill was a driving force in Oxford helping me to direct the NERC funded Macronutrient Cycles  Programme. This programme involved 12 university groups and 4 NERC Institutes with over 120 Staff involved ranging from senior Professors to Post Docs and PhD Students, plus many Policy People from DEFRA, the UK Environment Agency and the Scottish and Welsh Governments. There was also an international advisory committee and a team from NERC. Jill helped coordinate the programme and organize many fascinating science meetings and policy groups, held mainly in the SoGe Department or in St Peters College. Despite her young age at the time, nothing fazed her and she was super-efficient and incredibly helpful to all the researchers and staff involved.

Jill was a funny and lovely person and an astute scientist. She was preparing the paperwork for promotion to associate professor at the University of Windsor in Canada, had won some major grants for environmental research in the areas of microplastics and eutrophication. Jill published widely (see her last publication https://www.mdpi.com/2073-4441/13/5/723 – a major intellectual and multidisciplinary contribution). Many of her colleagues and friends have been shocked at her early passing. Jill was always happiest surrounded by a bunch of scientists, talking non-stop and enjoying the odd glass of wine. The world will not be the same without her.

 

RIP Jill!

Prof Paul Whitehead

Macronutrient Cycles and School of Geography and the Environment

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Sayers’ work on Nature-Based Solutions in Russia

Recently, Paul Sayers has secured funding to explore the nature-based solutions (NBS) opportunities across Russia. As part of this work, he presented on 12 November at the ‘Nature-based solutions: the IUCN global standards and programmes in Russia’ workshop. Other participants included Her Majesty’s Ambassador to the Russian Federation Deborah Bronnert CMG, the Minister for Pacific and the Environment Lord Zac Goldsmith, and experts from IUCN, WWF Russia, UNIDO and UNEP.

To learn more about NBS in Russia, you can view the event here:

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DAWN – Digital Africa Water Network 

The Digital Africa Water Network (DAWN), a UKRI programme led by the University of Oxford, brings service providers, universities and enabling organisations together to explore the potential for digital technology to accelerate the development of water services in rural Africa, where over 50% of the population are without even basic drinking water. In November, the Smith School of Enterprise and the Environment hosted three DAWN workshops focusing on what digital approaches can do to a) develop innovative finance and business models for sustainable service delivery (led by Alex Money and Rob Hope); b) standardize water service performance measurement and verification (led by Patrick Thomson and Duncan McNicholl; c) enhance accountability in the water sector and inform useful government and institutional reform (led by Johanna Koehler and Rob Hope). DAWN is currently funded via a Phase I Digital Innovation for Development in Africa grant from the Global Challenges Research Fund. For further information, contact dawn@smithschool.ox.ac.uk