Institute for Sustainability people
The Institute for Sustainability brings together a transdisciplinary network of social and natural scientists, technologists, and non-academic stakeholders in the public, private and third sector.
Take a look at the team responsible for leading and growing the Institute.
Meet the team
Professor Lorenzo Fioramonti
Director of the Institute for Sustainability
I am the Founding Director of the Institute for Sustainability at the University of Surrey and a former member of Parliament and Minister of Education, University and Research in Italy. I am passionate about sustainability education and research and my books include: Wellbeing Economy: Success in a World Without Growth (MacMillan 2017) and The World After GDP: Economics, Politics and International Relations in the Post-Growth Era (Polity 2017), which have been featured – among others - by Bloomberg and the Financial Times. My opinion pieces have been published by The New York Times, Financial Times, The Guardian, Foreign Policy, Harvard Business Review, TruthOut, Die Presse, The Conversation, Das Parlament, Der Freitag, The Mail & Guardian, Business Day and www.opendemocracy.net. I am a member of the Club of Rome (a leading international institution dedicated to rethinking growth through a wellbeing lens) and the Co-chair of Surrey County Council's Greener Futures Board. I am also a sought-after public speaker on issues regarding sustainable wellbeing, governance innovation and purpose-driven business. If you want to know more, my personal website is www.lorenzofioramonti.org.
Professor Prashant Kumar
Co-Director of the Institute for Sustainability (Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences)
Prof Kumar is a founding Co-Director of the pan-university Institute for Sustainability, Professor & Chair in Air Quality and Health, and founding Director of the internationally-leading research centre Global Centre for Clean Air Research (GCARE) at the University of Surrey, UK. He is the founder of successfully running Guildford Living Lab, a Trustee at Zero Carbon Guildford (ZERO), an Adjunct Professor at Trinity College Dublin, Ireland; and a Guest Professor at Southeast University, China.
He joined the Senior Leadership team of the Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences as an Associate Dean (International) in 2020 and subsequently took up another senior leadership role to help setup the new pan-University Institute for Sustainability as a founding Co-Director in 2023. As an Associate Dean (International), he worked on implementing the University's Global Strategy and provided leadership to the international agenda, including student recruitment, transforming the PGR international placements through Turing and other mobility schemes, building several successful international research partnerships, coordinated numerous UG and PGT partnerships and joint PhD programmes, and led the QS submission for the University as a 'QS Impact Champion'.
Earlier, he served as a Reader (2015-2017), Senior Lecturer (2012-2015) and Lecturer (2009-2012) before promoting to Chair and Full Professor of Air Quality and Health (2017-) at the University of Surrey. He was the Deputy Director of Research for the Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering during 2018-2021.
An engineer by training, Prof Kumar obtained his PhD (Engineering) from the University of Cambridge (UK) after winning a Cambridge-Nehru Scholarship and Overseas Research Scholarship award. He earned his Master's Degree in Environmental Engineering & Management from the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi, where he won the ‘Outstanding Postgraduate Student Award’ for his exemplary performance (CGPA 9.8/10 and rank 1). Prior to his PhD, he worked in the construction industry and a CSIR Research Institute for about 7 years.
Prof Kumar has won numerous prizes and awards in recognition of his academic and research excellence throughout his study and academic career. Consequitively in 2022 and 2023, he was bestowed with the global accolade of being recognised in the top 1% of ‘Highly Cited Researchers’ by Clarivate. The award reinforces Prof. Kumar’s ‘significant and continued broad’ contribution across scientific fields as one of the world’s top-cited researchers in Web of Science. He was the winner of the University of Surrey’s Vice-Chancellor award ‘Researcher of the Year’ in 2017.
His fundamental and application-oriented cross-disciplinary research is focused on the interfaces of clean air engineering, human health and smart/sustainable living in cities/megacities. His current research projects are focused on broad multidisciplinary areas of air pollution monitoring/modelling, low-cost sensing, nature-based solutions, climate change mitigation and developing innovative technological and passive (e.g. green infrastructure) solutions for air pollution exposure control for both developing and developed world. He is currently the lead PI on the UKRI (EPRC, NERC, AHRC) funded RECLAIM Network Plus.
In response to the global public health crisis, Prof Kumar played an active role in the clean air community. He participated in the Royal Society Rapid Assistance in Modelling the Pandemic (RAMP) volunteer initiatives and was part of an international effort making a case to the WHO for the recognition of airborne transmission. Among others, his team studied the impact of lockdown on air quality in different cities, including ODA countries, and how different types of face masks can offer protection from the infection of SARS-CoV-2 in public built spaces.
A prolific author with over 350 journal articles (and the same number of conference presentations and articles), his research has attracted over 20,000 citations, with an h-index of 71 (i10-index, 270). These include several highly downloaded, cited and almetrics articles, new directions around air quality challenges, wood burning, climate change and cities, and agenda-setting papers in the area of low-cost sensing, green infrastructure design, ultrafine particles, non-exhaust emissions, smart homes, nature-based solutions and particles and policies.
He has secured over £11.5M of individual research funding from projects total worth over £30M, funded by the RCUK (e.g, EPSRC, ESRC, NERC, AHRC, MRC, HEFCE, British Council, Innovate UK, Research England, GCRF), industry, international funding bodies (e.g., European Commission, Qatar National Research Foundation, Commonwealth Commission, FAPESP) and charities (e.g. Ove Arup Foundation, RSA, Impact on Urban Health, Global Action Plan).
He serves on editorial boards of several international journals (e.g. Scientific Reports) and scientific evaluation panels of numerous funding agencies. He is Editor-in-Chief of the air quality section of the ‘Atmosphere’ journal (since July 2020) and founding Speciality Chief Editor of the ‘Climate Change & Cities' section of Frontiers in Environmental Science journal. He serves the editorial board of several reputed journals (e.g. Scientific Reports) and is Editor-in-Chief for the ‘Atmosphere’ journal (since July 2020) and founding Speciality Chief Editor of the ‘Climate Change & Cities' section of Frontiers in Environmental Science journal.
He is a reviewer and advisor to scientific evaluation panels of numerous funding agencies in the UK (e.g. NERC, EPSRC) and outside (e.g. Austrian Science Fund) and sits on the scientific advisory board of a number of companies. He advises local councils, and national and international governmental bodies on air pollution and urban nexus.
He has developed a network of collaborators across four continents. His research has featured regularly in well-read media outlets such as the BBC and The Times. Further information on his work can be found on the GCARE website.
Professor Monique Raats
Co-Director of the Institute for Sustainability (Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences)
I am a founding Co-Director of the University's Institute for Sustainability, and director of the Food, Consumer Behaviour and Health (FCBH) Research Centre. Together with the university’s Department of Nutritional Sciences, FCBH was awarded the prestigious 2017/2018 Queen’s Anniversary Prize. FCBH research domains include:
- food-related behaviour and policy interventions to achieve sustainable and healthy lifestyles;
- social, policy and ethical issues relevant to the grand societal challenges such as sustainability and obesity;
- study of food systems from the perspective of significant actors and stakeholders within the system; and
- methodologically advancing food consumer science through exploring novel data sources and methods of data linking.
I previously worked at the Institute of Food Research (now Quadram Institute), Health Education Authority and University of Oxford. My expertise is in the area of public health and behavioural nutrition research, gained on a variety of projects. My research is wide ranging both in terms of topics covered (e.g. food choice, policy development, food safety) and methodologies used (e.g. qualitative, quantitative, stakeholder consultation). I have also been involved in the evaluation of health promotion programmes and developing tools for use in nutrition education. To date I have published over 145 refereed papers, numerous non-refereed publications including 20 book chapters 20 book chapters and have edited two books ("The Psychology of Food Choice" (2006) and "Food for the Ag(e)ing Population" (1st edition 2009; 2nd edition 2016).
I am one of the founding members, member of the Board of Directors (2001-2006) and was secretary (2004-2006) of the International Society of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity. The society was set up to combine interests in diet and physical activity; and to stimulate, promote and advocate innovative research and policy in the area. The society now plays an important role in fostering excellence in research in this field through its annual meetings and journal called the International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity.
Dr Tom Roberts
Co-Director of Institute for Sustainability (Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences)
I am a Senior Lecturer in Environmental Sociology, in the Department of Sociology, at the University of Surrey. My research focuses on the relationship between people and the environment. More specifically I am interested in the impact of climate change on everyday life, healthcare and crime; public perceptions and understanding of environmental change and new low carbon technologies; the challenges associated with transitioning to a low carbon society, particularly in relation to work and skills; the environmental impact of consumption and waste disposal practices. My research has been funded by The British Council; The British Academy; Public Health England; The Economic and Social Research Council; The Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council.
Director, Institute Operations, Innovation and Partnerships
Nathalie is responsible for leading the operational initiatives for the Institute such as communications, team structure and financial management, as well as creating strategic relationships with external organisations and facilitating knowledge exchange and innovation activities.
Dr Damiete Emmanuel-Yusuf
Research Fellow in Sustainability Transitions, Institute for Sustainability
Damiete’s role as the research fellow for transitions is to provide support for the establishment and operations of the institute’s research programmes, facilitate interdisciplinary research by coordinating the activities of the sustainability fellows within and across programmes and collaborating on relevant research calls. She also applies her research expertise in response to research requests from the institutes’ external partners and is working on the development of a research portfolio based on sustainability transitions.
Damiete Emmanuel-Yusuf has a background in Environmental Management/Biological Sciences with a PhD in Environment and Sustainability. She started her career as an environmental consultant with leading environmental consultancies including the Environment Agency.
Her research/teaching career began in 2008 at the Centre of Environment and Sustainability, University of Surrey. As a researcher, Damiete has worked in the areas of sustainable energy system analysis, environmental management, sustainable development assessment and social research on sustainability, for a number of projects including the TSEC-BioSys project (Natural Environmental Research Council), Decentralised Poly-generation of Energy (Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council), The Transitions Pathways to a Low Carbon Economy and the Realising the Transitions Pathway to a Low Carbon Economy projects (EPSRC and EON UK) and more recently EnergyREV funded by the industrial Strategy Challenge Fund’s Prospering from the Energy Revolution (PFER) programme.
In addition, she has contributed to teaching Masters degree modules such as 'Transitions to Low Carbon Economy' as well as 'Corporate, Social & Environmental Responsibility' at the Centre for Environment and Sustainability, University of Surrey.
Institute Administrator and Assistant to Professor Lorenzo Fioramonti, Director of the Institute for Sustainability