Iain completed his BSc (Hons) at Aberdeen University in 1984, then obtaining a PhD in Soil Physics (1987) in the same institution. He then moved to The Scottish Crop Research Institution (SCRI) as a Research Leader in 1988 - now theJames Hutton Institute. Spending 12 years at SCRI, he became Head of the multidisciplinary Soil-Plant Dynamics group, before moving to Abertay University as the Founding Director and Professor of the Scottish Informatics Mathematics, Biology and Statistics (SIMBIOS) Centre. During Iain’s tenure at SIMBIOS, the group was assessed as in the top five research teams in Environmental science in the UK.
During his tenure at SIMBIOS, Iain was a founding member of the SAGES Alliance, Director of the Dundee Science Centre, and served on many UK and EU research Council research committees.
In late 2008, Iain moved to Australia to take up a role as Head of the School of Environmental & Rural Science. He became President of the Australian Council of Deans of Agriculture and is the current Immediate Past President. He is the Chair of the National Soil R, D & E Strategy Implementation Committee in Australia, and a member of the National Primary Industries Research & Innovation Committee. He is a past Board member of Soils for Life, to which he continues to provide advice. He is one of four advisors to the National Soil Advocate. Iain is a research leader in the CRC-Polymers.
Iain became the inaugural head of the School of Life and Environmental Sciences at the beginning of 2016.
In the past decade Iain has won over $60 M in competitive research and facilities grants. Iain has published over 150 peer-reviewed publications and he continues to act as a research assessor for many research organisations across the world.