Contact Dr Mark Pawlett

Areas of expertise

  • Biomass and Waste
  • Nanotechnology
  • Soil
  • Soil Resources



  • PhD 2002. University of East London. Soil Ecology
  • MSc  1995. University of East London. Environmental Sciences
  • BSc (Hons) 1992. Nottingham Trent University. Applied Biology

Previous Employment:

ANALYTICAL CHEMIST: Technichem Laboratories Ltd: 1997 to 1999 UKAS accredited. Analytical duties: Inductively Coupled Plasma (ICP), Atomic Emission Spectroscopy (AES), Atomic Absorption Spectroscopy (AAS) with graphite furnace, hydride generation and cold vapor systems, Florescence Spectroscopy.

ANALYTICAL CHEMIST: London Analytical Ltd: 1995 to 1997: Analysis of environmental samples for: metals, phenol, cyanide, sulphate, sulphide, bomb calorimetry, nutrients as well as sample preparation, training and supervision of junior staff.

CONSERVATION MANAGEMENT: Nottingham Wildlife Trust: 1993 Habitat management

RESEARCH SCIENTIST: University of East London: 1991. Industrial placement research project for BSC (Hons) Applied Biology. A study of peat alternatives using soil microbial techniques.

Current activities

Dr Mark Pawlett is a Senior Research Fellow of Soil Biology, with a focus on developing innovative strategies for sustainable land management.  He is especially interested in the biological interface between the plants and soil, targeting sustainable management solutions to improve soil health (function and nutrient cycling pathways) for improved ecosystem services. Of particular interest is the use of biogas digestaes to manipulate the soil microbiome for improved health, and he has recently become interested in cadaver soil interactions in the context of natural/green burials (Pawlett et al 2019). He is also working with various companies to develop biostimulants for improved soil health. Overseas experience includes sampling and in-field microbial analysis at the Engabreen Glacier in Norway (Barnett et al 2016), heathland restoration in Netherlands, and Bauxite residue recovery area restoration in Ireland (Courtney et al 2014 and 2016).  He is a Chartered Environmental Scientist and Course Director for MSc Environmental Engineering (, and currently supervising six PhD students.

Current research projects

·        Response of soil biological communities to a variety of organic matter amendments how this relates to climate change mitigation

·        Bioremediation of heavy metal and hydrocarbon polluted soil

·        Manipulating the microbial legacy response to organic amendments for soil nutrient bioavailability

·        Has plant breeding decoupled beneficial plant microbiome interactions in wheat?: 

·        Exploitation of beneficial root- associated bacteria in grain cereal-based cropping systems

·        Novel fertilizer formulations for enhanced N use efficiency


  • EA
  • NERC
  • WRAP


Articles In Journals

Conference Papers

  • Fraser F, Corstanje R, Todman L, Bello-Curás D, Bending G, Deeks L, Harris J, Hilton S, Pawlett M, Zawadzka J, Whitmore A & Ritz K (2022) Evidence of ecological critical slowing-down in temperate soils. In: EGU General Assembly, 2022, Vienna, 23-27 May 2022.
  • Chamberlain PC, Black HIJ, Cameron CM, Campbell CD, Creamer RE, Harris JA, Pawlett M, Poskitt J, Singh B, Ritz K & Wood C (2007) Can consistent temporal changes be detected in the diversity of soil invertebrates under different environmental pressures. In: Soils - fit for purpose ? : BSSS Annual Meeting 2007, 1 September 2007.
  • Black HIJ, Cameron CM, Campbell CD, Chamberlain PM, Creamer RE, Harris JA, Pawlett M, Poskitt J, Singh B, Ritz K & Wood C (2007) An ecosystem services approach to the selection of biological indicators of soil quality for national-scale soil monitoring. In: Soil Ecology - British Ecological Society Annual Meeting 2007, Glasgow, UK, 1 September 2007.
  • Creamer RE, Chamberlain PM, Black HIJ, Cameron CM, Campbell CD, Harris JA, Pawlett M, Poskitt J, Singh B, Ritz K & Wood C (2007) How does temporal variability influence the reliability of multiple substrate induced respiration as an indicator of soil quality?. In: Soils - fit for purpose ? - BSSS Annual Meeting 2007, 1 September 2007.
  • Sakrabani R, Pawlett M, Read R & Deeks LK Optimising phosphorus supply from nutrient enriched sludge granules using diffusive gradient in thin films (DGT). In: 16th European Biosolids and Organic Resources Conference, Leeds, 14 November 2011.