Evidence Group

The Evidence Group oversee the learning journey for the Assembly, presenting diverse views on climate change to allow Assembly members to make important and credible decisions. Alongside Involve and the Democratic Society, the group will ensure that Assembly content is balanced, accurate and comprehensive. Members of the Evidence Group are experts in their respective fields and bring a range of different approaches to tackling the climate emergency. 

Iain Stewart

Professor Iain Stewart, Director, Sustainable Earth Institute, University of Plymouth

Iain Stewart is professor of Geoscience Communication at the University of Plymouth and Director of its Sustainable Earth Institute. A geologist by background, he has worked with BBC television making science documentaries about our planet, its history and how it works, including tv shows about Scotland's landscape and geological history as well as contemporary climate change and energy issues. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh and President of the Royal Scottish Geographical Society, as well as a UNESCO Chair of Geoscience and Society.

Iain will be taking up the role of Communications Lead within the Evidence Group. He will support assembly members throughout the process to understand and interrogate the evidence provided.

Kevin Anderson

Professor Kevin Anderson, Professor of Energy and Climate Change, Universities of Manchester (UK), Uppsala (Sweden) and Bergen (Norway)

Kevin Anderson holds a joint chair between the School of Engineering at the University of Manchester (UK), the Centre for Environment and Development Studies (CEMUS) at Uppsala University (Sweden) and Centre for Climate and Energy Transformation at the University of Bergen (Norway). He recently completed two years as the Zennström professor of climate change leadership at Uppsala and previously held the role of director of the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research. Kevin is research active with publications in Climate Policy, Nature, and Science.

Kevin engages widely across all tiers of government (EU, UK and Sweden) on issues ranging from shale gas, aviation and shipping to the role of climate modelling ,(carbon budgets and ‘negative emission technologies’. With Uppsala colleagues, Kevin has made a key contribution to the development of Paris-compliant carbon budgets for Swedish Län and Kommuner, and with Manchester colleagues, his analysis contributed to the framing of the UK’s Climate Change Act and the development of national carbon budgets.

Kevin has a decade’s industrial experience, principally in the petrochemical industry. He is a chartered engineer and a fellow of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers.


Anna Birney

Dr Anna Birney, Director School of System Change, Forum for the Future

Anna is passionate about designing and facilitating systems change programmes that support people, communities and organisations transform their practice. In 2016 she launched the School of System Change, which is seeking to build an international learning community of change makers using systemic practices to address the complex challenges of our times. She has years of experience cultivating and coaching a wide number of projects and initiatives, for example the Marine CoLab and #Oneless project, Unilever’s theory of systems change, Boundless Roots Community exploring how we transition to sustainable lifestyles, Bosch Foundation’s Strategies and leading a seven year education systems change programme. Anna is the author of Cultivating System Change: A practitioner’s companion which is based on her PhD.

Kate Crowley

Dr Kate Crowley, University of Edinburgh

Kate is a Lecturer in Climate Risk and Resilience at the University of Edinburgh. She is Deputy Programme Director for the MSc in Carbon Management and Co-Director of the Edinburgh Centre for Carbon Innovation. In these roles, Kate aims to enable effective collaboration between science-policy-practitioners for effective climate change adaptation and resilience.

Kate has worked in Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) and Climate Change Adaptation (CCA) for over 15 years primarily working with communities and governments to better understand risk and to collectively take appropriate action. She has worked all over the world and is passionate about supporting the UK community to not only survive climate change but thrive.

Prior to working at the University of Edinburgh she was a Hazard and Risk Engineer at the National Water and Atmospheric Research Institute (NIWA), New Zealand. Kate has also worked as a DRR Adviser for an international NGO called CAFOD. She completed a PhD at the University of Plymouth examining cultural vulnerability and post-doctoral research at Oxford University on flood science knowledge exchange.


Tahseen Jafry

Professor Tahseen Jafry, Centre for Climate Justice

Professor Jafry is the Director of the pioneering Centre for Climate Justice at Glasgow Caledonian University. Her research interests include the justice and equity aspects of climate change, gender and poverty targeting, the management of natural resources, the geo-political nature of climate justice discourse and the psycho-social impacts of climate change.  Tahseen is a qualified engineer and social scientist and has over two decades of research and development experience in the global south.  She lectures in environmental management, sustainability and climate justice and supervises Masters and Doctoral theses. 

Tahseen brings unique insights on procedural, distributive and intergenerational justice as well as promoting the need for value driven progressive social and behavioural change to the Evidence Group.


Daisy Narayanan

Daisy Narayanan, Sustrans

Daisy Narayanan is the Director of Urbanism for Sustrans, where her role involves interweaving policy, public realm design and a broad integration of key place principles to help create liveable towns and cities. 

Drawing on her previous experience working as an architect and urban designer in India, Singapore, England and Scotland, Daisy believes passionately in the importance of creating places for people: places that reflect and complement the communities that live in them. 

Daisy brings her knowledge and expertise to a number of roles including as Board Member of Architecture & Design Scotland, member of the Edinburgh Climate Commission, and member of the Scottish Transport Awards judging panel. She led the Edinburgh City Centre Transformation Programme in 2018, where she took forward Edinburgh’s aspirations to enhance the city centre as a world class place to live, work and visit. 


Dave Reay

Professor Dave Reay, University of Edinburgh

Prof Dave Reay is Chair in Carbon Management & Education at the University of Edinburgh. Dave is also Executive Director of ECCI, Policy Director of ClimateXChange and an advisor to the Scottish Government on climate change and land use. His latest project involves managing his small farm on the west coast of Scotland to sequester a lifetime's carbon emissions.


Pete SMith

Professor Pete Smith, FRS, FRSE, FNA, FEurASc, FRSB

Pete Smith is Professor of Soils and Global Change at the Institute of Biological and Environmental Sciences at the University of Aberdeen (Scotland, UK) and Science Director of the Scottish Climate Change Centre of Expertise (ClimateXChange).  His interests include climate change mitigation, soils, agriculture, food systems, ecosystem services and modelling. 

He has been an author on many reports of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and led its work on climate change mitigation in agriculture, forestry and land for its 4th and 5th Assessment Reports, and its work on the interlinkages between land based mitigation options for the IPCC Special Report on Climate Change and Land.

He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Biology, a Fellow of the Institute of Soil Scientists, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh, a Foreign Fellow of the Indian National Science Academy, a Fellow of the European Science Academy, and a Fellow of the Royal Society (London).


John Ward

John Ward, Grantham Institute

The Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change is based at the London School of Economics. John is a Visiting Senior Fellow at the institute and an experienced economist who has spent the last 10 years working on the economics of climate change and sustainability. Until August 2018, John was Managing Director at the economics consultancy, Vivid Economics, where he helped to build a 50-person strong team that has a core focus on climate change. He has now founded his own consultancy, Pengwern Associates. Much of John’s work focuses on the intersection of climate and development, as well as on climate policy. John is able to call on other experts from Grantham and the Place-Based Climate Action Network, including Sam Fankhauser, Josh Burke, Simon Dietz and Candice Howarth.