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Simon Pearson


Professor of Agri-Food Technology at the University of Lincoln, interested in all things digital and agri-robotics. Research interests include; A diverse range of agri technology applications including robotic systems, automation, energy control and management, food safety systems, novel crop development; The environmental physiology of fresh produce and ornamental crops, including impacts on crop quality and development; The post harvest physiology of vegetables, fruits and cut flowers, including the use of modified atmosphere packaging; The effects of light manipulation on crop growth and development, including the development and application of greenhouse spectral filters and LED lighting systems; The development of on farm decision support systems from remote sensing information; The development of pre and post farm gate supply and demand forecasting systems.

Farming robots that can move autonomously in an open field or greenhouse promise a cleaner, safer agricultural future. But there are also potential downsides, from the loss of much-needed jobs to the safety of those working alongside the robots. To ensure that the use of autonomous robots on farms creates more benefits than losses, a process of responsible development is required. Society as a whole needs to be involved in setting the trajectories for future farming.