Steven was born in Stirlingshire; his interest in the natural environment was forged at an early age, and every opportunity to explore Scotland’s wild lands eventually led him to a career in environmental science. Steven has an undergraduate degree in Environmental Management, an MSc in Environmental Studies, and a PhD in Sustainable Rural Development from the University of Glasgow. He is a member of the Institution of Environmental Sciences and the British Ecological Society.
Steven’s research activity and published material includes the effectiveness of environmental accreditation schemes in tourism, impacts of campervan tourism in the Outer Hebrides, and baseline social and environmental data for Galloway & Southern Ayrshire Biosphere Reserve. He has also published on agritourism in southwest Scotland, ecotourism, and long-distance walking. He is currently working on an exciting cockle (intertidal bivalve) project that aims to ‘re-seed’ an area of the Solway Firth which has been commercially exploited.
Each year Steven leads an expedition with his final year students to the Outer Hebrides (Isle of Harris) where he works with the North Harris Trust (land owners) on varied land management tasks. These include managing invasive non-native species, assessments of micro-plastic pollution, upland path restoration, shore watch surveys for cetaceans, and an annual ecological restoration survey assessing the impacts of red deer on vegetation.
The Outer Hebrides are special to Steven having spent many of his summer holidays as a young man exploring this chain of inspiring, rugged and ecologically rich islands. His favourite place on planet Earth is the island of Great Bernera off the west coast of the Isle of Lewis where he tries to spend as much time as possible! Steven is keen fisherman, hill walker, cyclist, and enjoys trying to play the guitar. He lives in Scotland’s highest village, Wanlockhead, with his partner Elaine and two children Ruairidh and Eilidh.
Steven is always excited about returning to the magical places in the wild, and sharing his passion for Scotland with you! Slàinte mhath agus turas math dhuibh! (Good health and have a good journey!)