Just before Christmas last year (2003), we learnt of the tragic and untimely death of
Pierre Robert, co-editor and founder of Precision Agriculture. Pierre, who many
regarded as the father of PA, was remembered in a special session of the 7th
International Conference on Precision Agriculture held in Minneapolis, USA last
July. One of the papers presented there by another ‘‘giant’’ in PA, Alex McBratney,
has been reproduced as the ﬁrst paper in this issue as our memorial to Pierre. It takes
an overview of the future of PA in what is more of an extended editorial/com-
mentary than a research paper. It will, I trust, provoke thought and further research
endeavours in the important area of precision agriculture.
Since the death of Pierre, I have continued as sole editor of the Journal. I am very
pleased to announce that the large editorial burden is now to be shared by a new
co-editor, Professor Margaret Oliver. Margaret, who is already on the Editorial
Board, brings much expertise and experience which, I am sure, will complement my
editorial skills. She has provided the following brief CV to introduce her to you, the
‘‘I obtained a BSc in Geography and Geology at the University of Bristol, UK and
then taught in higher education prior to doing a doctorate at the University of
Birmingham, UK. The research focused on the multivariate and geostatistical
analysis of soil data from the Wyre Forest. Since then my research interests have
included the application of a wide range of numerical methods to soil and other data
including pollen counts, forestry, radon emission, remotely sensed imagery and the
incidence of childhood cancer. Speciﬁc interests are in sample design for spatial
analysis and eventual mapping, risk associated with prescribed thresholds in relation
to soil pollutants or deﬁciencies of soil nutrients, and the relations between diﬀerent
scales of spatial variation. My most recent research has been in the ﬁeld of precision
agriculture at the University of Reading, UK.
I retired at the end of September 2004 from the post of Reader in Spatial Analysis
but still retain links with the University as Visiting Professor.
I have been an associate editor of the European Journal of Soil Science, on the
editorial board of Precision Agriculture and continue as an assistant editor of
Mathematical Geology. I have published over 60 academic papers and co-authored
Welcome on board, Margaret!
Silsoe Solutions, Ampthill, Bedford, UK
Precision Agriculture, 6, 5, 2005
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