Professor Kirk Semple
Director of International Engagement, Lancaster Environment Centre, Lancaster University United Kingdom
I am a Professor of Environmental Microbiology with over 30 years of research experience. I was first appointed as a Lecturer in Environmental Microbiology and Ecotoxicology into the Department of Environmental Science in 1995. In 2010, I was promoted to Professor of Environmental Microbiology, following the awarded of a personal chair. In September 2015, I was awarded a CRC CARE Fellowship by Prof Ravi Naidu (Managing Director and CEO of CRC CARE) for my work with CRC CARE in the area of bioavailability research. In 2017, I was awarded The Green Label Award by Prof Lawrence I. Ezemonye, the President of the Nigerian Environmental Society, in recognition of my contribution in pioneering academia-industry linkages and the Centre for Global Eco-innovation in Nigeria and, in 2018, I was appointed to the position of Visiting Professor at the University of Benin, Benin City, Nigeria.
My main fields of research interests include pollution in the environment, particularly in soil and, most recently, bioenergy and the use of microorganisms for energy generation and the application of resulting by-products as soil amendments or alternatives to conventional fertiliser. To support my research, I have won over £15 million in research funding, I have published over 250 peer-reviewed journal, book chapters and refereed international conference papers and I have successfully supervised 55 PhD students, with 38 from overseas, of which 22 are African.
As Director of International Engagement in the Lancaster Environment Centre and, more recently, Assistant Dean International for the Faculty of Science and Technology, I have become involved in international activities and partnerships for the university. Most of my international activities have been in Sub-Saharan Africa, where I have supported collaborations with universities and research institutes, private sector organisations and government/policy experts in Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya, Uganda, Malawi, Zambia, Angola, Cameroon and Botswana.