Crop Science Centre - Driven by impact, fuelled by excellence

Dr Richard Harrison


Richard is the Director of NIAB Cambridge Crop Research (https://www.niab.com/about/people/dr-richard-harrison), a part of the NIAB Group, composed of research and service delivery in arable crop genetics, breeding, pathology, biotechnology and data science. 

Professor Alison Bentley


As a crop scientist working at the interface of academia and industry Alison’s research is focussed on the translation of fundamental scientific breakthroughs into tangible impacts for the agri-food sector. Alison is the Director of Genetics and Breeding at NIAB (https://www.niab.com/about/people/professor-alison-bentley) leading a team of scientists to deliver tools and technologies to improve plant breeding in the UK and internationally.

Professor Uta Paszkowski


Uta Paszkowski is Professor of Plant Molecular Genetics at the Department of Plant Sciences of the University of Cambridge (https://www.plantsci.cam.ac.uk/ research/utapaszkowski) and leads the Cereal Symbiosis Group. She did her undergraduate studies at the University Cologne (Germany) gaining a Master (Diplom) degree in phytopathology at the Max-Planck Institute for Plant Breeding.

Professor Giles E. D. Oldroyd

Giles Oldroyd studies interactions between plants and beneficial micro-organisms, both bacteria and fungi, that aid in the uptake of nutrients from the environment, especially nitrogen and phosphorus. These microbial associations are intracellular, allowing tight control of nutrient exchange, with sources of carbon delivered to the microorganisms from the plant in exchange for nitrogen and phosphorus.

Professor Uta Paszkowski

“I am excited to further my research at the Crop Science Centre. Working as a woman and mother in the science arena for more than 25 years I value equality and flexibility, and above all authenticity. Diversity is a strength that enables scientific imagination to flourish to its full potential.”

Professor Giles Oldroyd

“I am proud to be both the director of this institution and an openly gay man. For me, turning up to work authentically is important for my scientific creativity. I hope my honesty about my sexuality empowers others to also be open about who they are.”

Dr Tina Barsby

“The delivery of both public goods and economic growth is essential for today’s plant scientists, with the need to produce sufficient healthy nutritious food without harming the environment being at the top of the international agenda.”

Sustainable food production for everyone

The Crop Science Centre is an alliance between the University of Cambridge and NIAB. Our research is funded by:

Our mission

At the Crop Science Centre, we are generating crop plants that deliver sufficient food for everyone in a sustainable way

  • We deliver agricultural impact, using excellence in research
  • We strive for sustainability, reducing agricultural reliance on chemical inputs
  • We foster equality, valuing all members of our research community
  • We believe in equity, ensuring even the world’s poorest farmers can grow enough food

Years of research has provided a deep understanding of how plants function, creating opportunities to transform the way we produce our food.  I am motivated to improve the sustainability and the equity of food production worldwide

Professor Giles Oldroyd,
CSC Director

Professor Giles Oldroyd

“The delivery of both public goods and economic growth is essential for today’s plant scientists, with the need to produce sufficient healthy nutritious food without harming the environment being at the top of the international agenda.”

Dr Tina Barsby,
CEO and Director of NIAB

Dr Tina Barsby

“We envisage that new CSC crop technologies will enable higher crop yields and lower environmental impact for crop-based food production – as well as contributing to improved dietary health.”

Sir David Baulcombe,
Royal Society Professor

Sir David Baulcombe

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