Secretary of State for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, Andrea Leadsom, has appointed Professor Michael Winter OBE to the Board of Natural England as a member.
The appointment will take effect from 1 September 2016 for three years.
Board members provide non-executive leadership challenge and support to the executive through regular Board meetings, committees and groups. They also undertake individual lead roles on relevant issues and with local operational teams.
All appointments to the Natural England Board are made on merit and political activity plays no part in the selection process. The appointments comply with the Code of Practice of the Commissioner for Public Appointments.
Natural England is a non-departmental public body, set up under the Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act 2006. Its remit is to ensure the natural environment is conserved, enhanced and managed for the benefit of present and future generations.
There is a requirement for appointees’ political activity (if significant) to be declared. Professor Winter has confirmed that he has not undertaken any significant political activity during the past five years.
Biographical details of Professor Michael Winter OBE
Professor Winter is a rural policy specialist and social scientist with expertise covering a wide range of environmental issues and particular interests in applying inter-disciplinary approaches to policy-relevant research. He is currently Professor of Land Economy & Society and a Director of the Land, Environment, Economics and Policy (LEEP) Institute at the University of Exeter. He is also a Director of the Food Security & Land Research Alliance (encompassing the universities of Bath, Bristol, Cardiff and Exeter, Rothamsted Research and Duchy College). He is co-director of Defra’s Sustainable Intensification Research Platform.
He chairs the UNESCO North Devon Biosphere Partnership and the Uplands Alliance. Professor Winter is also a member of the governing board of Rothamsted Research, and chairs the Stakeholder Group for the Avon Demonstration Test Catchment. In addition, he is also a member of the National Trust’s South West Regional Advisory Board.
Past positions held by Professor Winter include membership of the Expert Panel for the National Ecosystem Assessment, Defra’s Science Advisory Council and being a Commissioner and board member of the Commission for Rural Communities.