SEBI Team Meeting

About us

Our expertise and links with the global livestock community are crucial for success.

The team

SEBI-Livestock is uniquely positioned to close the livestock data gap, with expertise in veterinary science, data science and communications, as well as through our engagement with the global community of livestock data producers and users. 

Prof Andy Peters

Prof Andy Peters

Program director
As Program Director, Prof Peters provides overall direction and leadership for SEBI-Livestock. He is Professor of Tropical Veterinary Medicine at the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies, University of Edinburgh. His areas of interest include veterinary vaccine development, reproductive endocrinology and immunology and production medicines. Prof Peters was previously Professor of Animal Health and Production at the Royal Veterinary College, London. He has also worked in the private sector, as Head of European Vaccine R&D with Pfizer Animal Health. He is a veterinarian with PhD and DSc degrees in animal science. He has published some 160 scientific papers and two books on Vaccines for Veterinary Applications and Reproduction in Cattle respectively.
Karen Smyth

Dr. Karen Smyth

Deputy Director

As Deputy Director, Karen is responsible for providing project oversight and is responsible for operational and scientific management of the SEBI-Livestock programme. She also leads the Livestock Data for Decision (LD4D) Community of Practice. Karen brings over 15 years of senior-level scientific research coordination and management experience to this role, including as Acting Executive Director of the International Geosphere-Biosphere Programme (IGBP) in Stockholm, Sweden. Karen has worked primarily in the agricultural and environmental sector and has a PhD in Social Policy.

Fiona Allan

Dr. Fiona Allan

Research Writer

Fiona is a postdoctoral research writer, contributing to the peer-reviewed publication effort of SEBI-Livestock.  Her role within SEBI-Livestock includes writing up and publication of recent research and development work results, including field projects and systematic reviews, in peer-reviewed journals and other reports for external consumption.  Fiona is a veterinarian with specialist knowledge of the current challenges facing smallholder producers in LMICs.  She has a PhD in Infection and Immunity from the Roslin Institute, University of Edinburgh, and has multidisciplinary experience of study design and implementation, rural field work, molecular techniques, questionnaire design, and focus group workshops with smallholder farmers in Tanzania.

Dr. Louise Donnison

Senior Data Scientist

As Senior Data Scientist, Louise leads the delivery of the data component of the SEBI-Livestock project. She is committed to delivering data solutions focused on stakeholder needs. Louise previously worked in the IT industry for over 10 years delivering complex projects in multiple sectors (finance, telecoms and government) and countries (mainly New Zealand, Canada and UK). She has also managed data for a salmon genomics project and critically appraised evidence for a water quality systematic map project. She has a degree in Biological Sciences from the University of Oxford, a PhD in Grassland Soil Ecology from the University of Aberystwyth, and a diploma in Business Analysis from the British Computer Society.

Isla MacVicar

Isla MacVicar

Researcher

Isla joined the SEBI-Livestock team as a University of Glasgow graduate in 2019, with a BSc (Hons) in Veterinary Bioscience and an MSc in Biomedical Sciences. Isla is currently involved in the development of the livestock evidence base. She has a keen interest in evidence synthesis methodologies, animal health and veterinary science, data analysis and gender dimensions in the livestock sector. While studying at Glasgow University, she was involved in an equine nutrition project and she also conducted research in the fields of neuroscience, prosthesis and engineering.

 

Vanessa Meadu

Vanessa Meadu

Communications and Knowledge Exchange Specialist

Vanessa leads communications and knowledge exchange activities for SEBI-Livestock as well as for the Livestock Data for Decisions (LD4D) Community of Practice. She has a deep interest in sustainable development communications, particularly in the agricultural sector. She previously led communications for the CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) based at the University of Copenhagen, and was a Communications Officer at the World Agroforestry Centre in Nairobi, Kenya.

 

Alap Mehta

Alap Mehta

Data Scientist

Alap is a Data Scientist at SEBI-Livestock. He initially joined the team while doing his Masters degree, developing a prototype process for data extraction using novel data science tools. Alap has keen interests in building algorithms and designing experiments to merge, manage, interrogate and extract data to supply insights to colleagues, customers or the wider organisation. He has a Bachelor’s degree in Engineering, and Masters degree in Data Science.

Carys Redman-White

Carys Redman-White

PhD Candidate

Carys is a PhD candidate using interdisciplinary data-focused methods to investigate antimicrobial use and resistance at the livestock-human interface in sub-Saharan Africa, working with SEBI-Livestock and the Global Academy of Agriculture and Food Security. She is exploring how existing data covering a range of biological, socioeconomic, and environmental factors can be mobilised to fill gaps in knowledge in resource-poor locations where direct surveillance of antimicrobials is challenging. Carys holds degrees in Veterinary Medicine and Zoology from Cambridge University and worked in clinical practice before returning to university to gain an MRes in Epidemiology from Newcastle University. She is studying with the EASTBIO Doctoral Training Partnership and is supervised in her PhD by Professor Dominic Moran, Professor Andy Peters, and Dr Adrian Muwonge.

Antonia Robb

Antonia Robb

SEBI Administrator and PA for Prof Andy Peters

Antonia is responsible for leading SEBI-Livestock’s administrative and financial services. This includes the projects administrative function, co-ordinating the financial management of the project budget, organising international meetings and workshops and providing a personal assistant service to the Program Director, Professor Andy Peters. Antonia brings extensive experience in administration, having worked in administrative roles within Edinburgh University since 2006. She has previous experience working within the finance and travel industries.

Dr. Frances Ryan

Dr. Frances Ryan

Researcher (Livestock and Environment)

Frances is currently supporting SEBI-Livestock to build an evidence base, focused on the connections between livestock production and the environment. Frances has a varied environmental and biological science background. Previous work has involved researching chemicals in the environment as well as monitoring pollen. Frances has also explored the relationship between India’s mandatory corporate social responsibility spend and smallholders, who supply rice to large companies. Frances holds a PhD from the University of Edinburgh, in conjunction with Scotland’s Rural College (SRUC), where she developed a nutrient budget assessment approach for livestock and arable systems in Scotland covering a 31 year period.

Gareth Salmon

Dr. Gareth Salmon

Senior Researcher

Gareth currently supports a range of SEBI-Livestock’s activities including monitoring and evaluation, the development of the livestockdata.org website, and research on livestock production and economic modelling. He has experience working with livestock production in Low- and Middle-Income Countries, and also practical experience of livestock farming in the UK. Gareth holds a PhD from The University of Edinburgh and Scotland’s Rural College (SRUC), where he investigated productivity and GHG emissions intensity of Senegalese dairy production systems.

Dr. Christian Schnier

Dr. Christian Schnier

Epidemiologist

Christian helps to develop and implement SEBI-Livestock’s scope of activities in the collection, analysis and publication of livestock related data and information. He obtained a PhD in Veterinary Epidemiology from the University of Helsinki and has since been working on the frontline of both veterinary and human epidemiology and public health. He has published several epidemiological studies using information from large national health data sets. Christian has got a keen interest in agriculture and runs a small holding farm in the Scottish Borders.

Ciara Vance

Ciara Vance

Project Manager

Ciara is responsible for planning, co-ordination and financial management of SEBI-Livestock projects in Ethiopia, Nigeria and Tanzania to reduce livestock mortality and improve animal health and productivity. She has extensive project management experience in the animal health development sector, as well as in the coordination and monitoring of multi-site and multi-country projects. Ciara holds a BSc (Hons) in Zoology from the University of Edinburgh. Prior to joining SEBI, Ciara worked for 15 years in the animal health product development industry, as a Study Director for a global contract research organisation. There, she managed pre-clinical and clinical trials for livestock species to support the development and international registration of veterinary pharmaceuticals, agrochemicals and feed additives.

Xiawen Wang

Xiawen Wang

Data Scientist

Xiawen joined the SEBI-Livestock team as a Data Scientist to provide data processing support for the project datasets. Xiawen is interested in programming and providing technical solutions to make large-scale data more accessible and understandable. She holds a BSc (Hons) degree in Genetics and an MSc degree in Bioinformatics from the University of Edinburgh. She has research experience in processing and analysing genome-wide association data and large-scale chromatin structure imaging data.

Johanna Wong

Dr. Johanna Wong

Monitoring & Learning (M&L) Outreach Officer

Johanna is an interdisciplinary researcher interested in livestock, food systems and human nutrition. She is committed to working towards improving the livelihoods of small-scale farmers in resource-poor areas. Her PhD explored the contributions of village chickens to maternal and child nutrition in rural Timor-Leste. Johanna has experience in the design and implementation of field surveys, mixed methods research and data analysis. She has also worked on aquaculture and livestock policy analysis in Bangladesh and Nigeria. Johanna holds a degree in Veterinary Science, and a PhD in Food and Nutrition Security and Veterinary Science from the University of Sydney.

Our partners and collaborators

SEBI-Livestock partners
Members of the LD4D community in February 2020

Partnerships are critical to our success. We work with partners directly through collaborative data improvement activities, and indirectly through supporting monitoring in livestock projects on the ground.

Academic partnerships: We draw on local expertise through collaborations with the University of Edinburgh’s Bayes Centre and Global Academy of Agriculture and Food Security.

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation livestock grantees:  In SEBI-Livestock’s monitoring and learning (ML) activity, we support the foundation’s livestock grantees to improve and harmonize data and share learnings with them through the LD4D community of practice. We also share data, evidence and experiences other livestock initiatives supported by the foundation including the Global Burden of Animal Diseases (GBADs) and the Global Livestock Advocacy for sustainable Development (GLAD) initiative.

RTI: MPACT Consortium:  SEBI-Livestock’s ongoing engagement with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation AgDev MPACT initiative ensures compatibility of the outputs as well as shared learnings and insights from our ongoing work.

International collaborations: Through the Livestock Data for Decisions (LD4D) community of practice, SEBI-Livestock has engaged with key actors in the livestock development community. These include the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), OIE – World Organisation for Animal Health, the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI), the CGIAR Big Data in Agriculture Platform, the UK’s Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (formerly DFID), the US Agency for International Development (USAID), plus numerous governments, universities and the private sector including animal health companies and digital animal health service providers.

Acknowledgments

SEBI-Livestock is the continuation of the Supporting Evidence Based Interventions (SEBI) programme (2017-2020). Visit the archived SEBI website for information on that project.

SEBI-Livestock is awarded to The Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies at The University of Edinburgh and is funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.