Characteristics and Impacts of Air Pollution: Recent advances and Future Directions

Confirmed speakers

Professor Roy Harrison OBE

University of Birmingham

Roy Harrison has held the position of Queen Elizabeth II Birmingham Centenary Professor of Environmental Health at the University of Birmingham, UK since 1991, and has recently been appointed Distinguished Adjunct Professor at King Abdulaziz University, Saudi Arabia. He also currently serves as part-time Strategic Theme Leader for Environment, Pollution and Human Health for the UK Natural Environment Research Council. Roy’s research interests focus primarily on air pollutants in the urban environment, ranging from studies of emissions through atmospheric processes to personal exposure and effects on human health. 

Recent work has been focused primarily on airborne particulate matter, including studies of engine exhaust in both the laboratory and the atmosphere, urban air quality processes through both measurement and modelling, personal exposure studies and collaborative studies of particle toxicology, epidemiology and human challenge. He has also been heavily engaged at the science/policy interface and is a member of several government technical advisory groups for the Department of Health and the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) in the U.K. including until recently membership of Defra’s Science Advisory Council. 

He was a contributor to the latest World Health Organization Global Air Quality Guidelines and the Guidelines for Quality of Indoor Air. In recognition of his government advisory work, he was appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the 2004 New Year Honours List. He is author of almost 400 papers in the peer-reviewed literature, has an h-index of 56, and is listed by ISI as a Highly Cited Researcher.


Professor Duncan Laxen

Air Quality Consultants Ltd.

Professor Laxen is the Managing Director of Air Quality Consultants, a company which he founded in 1993.  He has over forty years’ experience in environmental sciences and is a member of Defra’s Air Quality Expert Group and the Department of Health’s Committee on the Medical Effects of Air Pollution.  He has been involved in major studies of air quality, including nitrogen dioxide, lead, dust, acid rain, PM10, PM2.5 and ozone and was responsible for setting up UK’s urban air quality monitoring network. 

Professor Laxen has been responsible for appraisals of all local authorities’ air quality Review & Assessment reports.  He has carried out air quality assessments for power stations; road schemes; ports; airports; railways; mineral and landfill sites; and residential/commercial developments.  He has also been involved in numerous investigations into industrial emissions; ambient air quality; indoor air quality; nuisance dust and transport emissions.  Professor Laxen has prepared specialist reviews on air quality topics. and contributed to the development of air quality management in the UK.  He has been an expert witness at numerous Public Inquiries and published over 70 scientific papers and given numerous presentations at conferences.


Professor Rob Mackenzie

University of Birmingham

Rob MacKenzie is an atmospheric scientist interested in problems at the interface of air quality, atmospheric chemistry, and climate. A great deal of his work has used specialist research aircraft to gather data which he interprets with the aid of atmospheric models of various kinds.


Dr John Gulliver

Imperial College

John Gulliver is Lecturer in Environmental Science within the MRC Centre for Environment and Health at Imperial College London. He specialises in the use of geographical information systems (GIS) and environmental models for studies linking environment and & human health. His research focuses on developing and applying GIS-based air pollution and noise pollution models for individual- and population-level exposure assessment, over different spatial and temporal scales, for epidemiological studies and health risk assessment.

Other main areas of research include personal and ambient monitoring of air pollution exposures and the development of geo-statistical and interpolation methods in GIS. His current work includes the development of web-based air pollution exposure assessment software for health risk assessment (FP7 GENESIS), development of air pollution exposure models for Bristol and Avon (MRC ALSPAC), monitoring and modelling personal air pollution exposures in London to study exposure misclassification from ‘traditional’ models (FP7 MACC), and development of GIS-based exposure models for noise and air pollution in London (NERC ‘Traffic and Health in London’).


Dr Ruth Doherty

University of Edinburgh

Ruth is a senior lecturer in Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Edinburgh. Her research interests lie in the area of modelling climate-chemistry interactions and the impacts of air pollution on human health. She leads the modelling component of the cross research council funded interdisciplinary project: "Air pollution and weather-related health impacts: a methodological study based on spatiotemporally disaggregated multi-pollutant models".

She is a also a member of the Task Force on Hemispheric Transport of Air Pollution. Before she came to Edinburgh, she worked at the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia and at the National Center for Atmospheric Research, Boulder, CO, USA.


Dr Cathryn Tonne

London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine

Cathryn Tonne is the module organizer for Environmental Epidemiology through the Distance Learning programme at LSHTM and is a seminar leader for Basic Epidemiology. Her main research interest is the health effects of air pollution. Her current work focuses on the application of toxicity based measures of exposure to particles in epidemiological studies as well as socioeconomic inequalities in exposure and susceptibility to air pollution.

She holds a PhD in epidemiology and environmental health from the Harvard School of Public Health and is currently an ESRC early career fellow in the Environment and Human Health Programme.


Dr Juana Maria Delgado- Saborit

University of Birmingham

Juana Maria Delgado Saborit is a Research Fellow in the Division of Environmental Health & Risk Management within the School of Geography, Earth & Environmental Sciences at the University of Birmingham. Her main research interests are the measurement and modelling of inhalation doses and personal exposures to air pollutants and related health effects; the use of biomarkers as tracers of exposure and effects to air pollution; the monitoring and assessment of air pollution in indoor microenvironments and ambient air; the characterization of airborne nanoparticle exposures and related health effects; and the study of sources and processes determining airborne pollutant concentrations in indoor and ambient air.

Her recent work focuses in characterising human exposures to a range of air toxics emitted from consumer products (VOCs) and combustion sources (PM2.5, PAH, quinones and black carbon), to find suitable biomarkers to monitor the exposure and effects to low-level of VOCs, especially benzene within the FIXAT Project. She is also characterising levels of metallic nanoparticles in ambient air and estimating human exposures to nanoparticles, within the framework of the FABLE project funded by NERC/MRC Environment and Health.


Dr Prashant Kumar

University of Surrey

Dr Prashant Kumar started as a Lecturer in 2009, became a Senior Lecturer in 2012, in the Division of Civil, Chemical and Environmental Engineering at the University of Surrey. He obtained his PhD from the University of Cambridge and holds a masters degree in Environmental Engineering and Management from the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi. His research focuses on urban air pollution, especially atmospheric ultrafine/nanoparticles, their measurement using advanced instrumentation, dispersion modelling using numerical, wind tunnel and CFD tools, and implications for regulatory control.

His research on atmospheric nanoparticles has attracted international recognition and resulted in over 35 journal papers and a similar number of conference presentations. He has secured research funding from numerous funding bodies such as the EPSRC and was the PI on a recently completed grant that focused on understanding the dispersion of nanoparticles in vehicle wakes. This work included field and wind tunnel studies that have been widely published and presented at conferences and invited lectures in the UK, Europe, Asia and USA, and has gained awards at international conferences.