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Biography

Dr Hale spent four years in Portugal at the Instituto de Botanica, Universidade do Porto, first as a Royal Society European Research Fellow and for three years as invited Auxiliary Professor. Returning to the UK in 1985, he took up a post in the Environmental Science Department at Bradford, where most recently (since 2000) he has held the position of Senior Lecturer in Environmental Science.

Research

My primary research focus has been on the ecological issues of regeneration and establishment of plant communities (e.g. in reclamation of degraded land), and the management of plant community change, particularly on upland moorland. I have also been interested in ecological studies of individual weed species, at present focussing on the groundsel, Senecio vulgaris. However, these interests have led on to a wider focus on applied ecological or environmental problems, and in particular the biological and chemical monitoring of environmental pollution. I have also had a continuing research interest into the practice of environmental education. I have been involved in research into, and the practice of, statistical and computer methodologies to analyse ecological and environmental data since my PhD studies.

These various research themes are reflected in the topics studied by research students under my supervision, including theses on the following themes: Ecology of the weed species Capsella bursa-pastoris; The ecology and conservation value of roadside verges;  Environmental education in protected areas in Brazil; The role of fire and elephants on the woody savannah vegetation of a National Park in Ghana; Possible environmental factors causing top-dying in mangrove forest trees in the Sundarbans in Bangladesh; Media coverage of environmental items in Kuwaiti newspapers and magazines; The use of myco-herbicides to control common weed plants; The teaching of geography at university level in Libya; The impact of forest fires on soil properties in Libya; The role of introduced Acacia shrubs in desertification processes in Libya;  The impact of sand dune movement on human activities in northern Libya. Current PhD students’ themes involve: Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in soils; Using light isotope analysis to detect palaeo-climatic changes; Multi-spectral detection methods for forensic materials.

Publications

Peer Reviewed Journal
TitleFloristic composition and environmental determinants of roadside vegetation in North England. (2011)
AuthorsAkbar, K.F.; Hale, William H.G.; Headley, Alistair D.D.
 
TitleFloristic composition and environmental determinants of roadside vegetation in North England (2009)
AuthorsAkbar, K.F.; Hale, William H.G.; Headley, Alistair D.D.
 
TitleCapsella bursa-pastoris (L.) Medic. as a biomonitor of heavy metals (1999)
AuthorsAksoy, A.; Hale, William H.G.; Dixon, Jean M.